Most of us have had to go through oral presentations at some point in our lives accompanied by visual or audiovisual format help. It has been a good handful of decades, both educational and professional, which is very common, even essential, the practice of exhibitions with Microsoft PowerPoint platforms or, more recently, Prezi. At the heart of the matter, this tool is a great explanatory support for our conferences and presentations.
However, many students and teachers admit to having serious difficulties in giving a good presentation, and those who are already accustomed to the use of these technologies, do not always use them in an optimal way. This is due to the ability to synthesize needed to make a better story in front of the target audience, not to leave the most transcendent ideas or issues in ink and other issues that we often don’t think about. In this article we will focus specifically on how to improve our presentations at public conferences or at project exhibitions.
How to improve a project presentation with slides
Here are some points to improve your next presentation.
1. An introduction with a hook
In our first slides, we need to present the topic correctly, expressing it in a direct and clear manner. In addition to naming the authors involved in the project and a title that sums up the main idea of what there is to seeIt should be noted that if after the first minute we have not yet been told exactly what it is and why it is interesting, maybe the attention the public will give us will diminish a bit.
2. Consistent use of colors
Remember that the visual impact is very important. Choosing the right colors and shades gives meaning and consistency, as well as having aesthetic values. The size of the font and its style are also very important, as is the degree of contrast with the background of what is seen. In that sense, there are no magic formulas: you have to think about what the surface on which these images will look like, how far away the audience will be, and how the whole thing will look.
It is important not to use a text background photograph, unless it has very little color variability and a very homogeneous shade that contrasts with the lyrics.
3. Quality images
The graphic support with illustrations or quality photographs, however, gives a presentation a lot of life. it is not advisable to be obsessed with including a lot of them, Because besides wasting time, saturating everything with them will probably be too distracting. It is important that these images are not pixelated and do not interfere with the rest of the content, overlapping.
4. Size of slide parts
This is surely one of the pillars of a good presentation. The size of the slide is important, both in its content and in its frame. Usually the title is in all capitals and the points to be explained should be sentences no longer than two lines. Remember we need to be brief but concise.
5. Focus on the important
The slides are a support, and we don’t have to trust everyone in the audience to review them in detail to understand what we are saying in the presentation. When the information is relevant, it should be highlighted visually, either in bold, with the size of the letter, or by directing the attention of the rest with the help of graphic elements of the periphery.
To improve our Power Point or Prezi presentation, or even PDF, we must be scrupulous in time. The time required to explain each of the slides. Ideally, don’t spend more than a minute on each oneUnless it is a “slide directory”, a “map” to understand much of the content of what we are explaining in the presentation.
Also, taking time into account will help us make sure that the minutes we spend in each of the sections correspond to their real importance, without creating imbalances.
7. Attractive narration
As we pointed out above, the simple fact of using a visual aid in a presentation answers the need to make a session much more didactic than a presentation or a traditional course. Therefore, an effort must be made to keep the attention alive, by doing what we say goes with this philosophy.
Without going beyond informality, we could offer a narrative through metaphors and anecdotes that audiences can relate to, although the amount of this element it must correspond to the subject to be treated and the nature of the project presented. In a presentation where there is a lot at stake, it is good not to take the event seriously, so one or two of these references is normal, whereas if it is classroom presentation training or in the workshop, others can be included.
Note that it will be easier to attract attention and communicate clearly the more the presentation will be narrative. This means that we need to avoid limiting ourselves to “describing” a set of concepts that we want the audience to understand: what we need to do is tell a story which, whether simpler or more complex, must have an intro, node and result. This way, the overall message we want to convey will be easier to understand and, as people get lost less, they will remember what we say better.
8. Bibliographical references
This is the culmination of a good presentation job, so you should never forget this section. Some users often neglect the reference element, the sources consulted or the bibliography used, which it serves. to support our message. Adding recommended books, articles viewed, and support sites from which resources were pulled on the last slide project a very professional picture of our work.