Thursday, January 08, 2009

PowerPoint design in 2009

Olivia Mitchell has asked a number of experts in the PowerPoint community to comment on what we think 2009 will bring in the area of PowerPoint design. I think we will see a clear split into two camps. One group will be those who can afford and desire the highest end design. The other group will be the in-the-trenches presenters who need to get better to survive in the tough economy. Let me expand on each of these groups.

The first group are those for whom design is very important. They are looking for the latest design ideas and have the capacity to pay others to create their presentations. These presentations will incorporate high end graphics, be created by professional designers and may embrace some of the recent trends such as a rapid delivery of hundreds of slides containing just a word or two on them. I think that this group will continue to get the press but will actually consist of a very small minority of the presenters since most can’t afford the time or money. And many of the new trends in presenting simply won’t cut it in most corporate settings.

The much larger group will be those who are trying to sell ideas, products and services in a tough economy. In 2009, presenting effectively will impact your results and ultimately whether you get to keep your job or not. These presenters, who live in the corporate, government and non-profit worlds, make the vast majority of presentations that are delivered each day. They don’t have time for elaborate design. They need to become a little more effective every day. They will look for simple ways to make their message more visual without spending a lot of time and money. They don’t need to be miles better than their competition, one notch above will do just fine. They look at the design folks and conclude correctly that a design-focused approach just won’t work in their world.

I have come to realize this split just recently. In my business, I am happy to give the first group of design focused presenters to the talented designers that exist out there. I will focus on the vast majority of presenters for whom design is nice, but effectiveness rules. This much larger group of corporate, government and non-profit presenters need practical help they can use right away. I will serve them with the ideas for transforming overloaded text slides into persuasive presentations in my book The Visual Slide Revolution, the content templates that allow presenters to copy and customize slides instead of starting from scratch, my short how-to videos for those who want to learn new techniques, and my workshops that include showing the ideas applied to the slides already being used in an organization. And I’ll be sharing examples every two weeks in my slide makeover video podcasts so presenters can get new ideas for their presentations.

I think most of you reading this are in the large group that I intend to focus on. I look forward to serving you this year.


Post a Comment

<< Home