1.Spend time researching and understanding who your audience is.
2.Allocate enough time to put the presentation together. Then add another 30%. You will always need more time than you thought.
3.Start with your story. What is the story you want to tell people. By thinking of your presentation as a story it has a proper beginning, middle and end.
4.Start with a notepad – not PowerPoint. Start sketching out what you want to do on a notepad… it will give you more space to think and be creative outside the rectangle window of PowerPoint
5.Save the detail for the handout/leave behind (and please do a handout). Use the presentation for visual support of the presentation. This applies to live 1:1 presentations as well as presentations that get emailed. If you need that much detail then send in a word document.
6.Get feedback. Each time you or a sales person gives the presentation and get them to ask for feedback. This way you can improve it over time.
7.Create an experience. Think about how you can add elements that will give a good entertainment/visual experience
8.Choose strong images. This takes time and is tough but will give such a better look to your presentation. Find images that are not obviously image library images. You know the sort. Lots of smiling, white toothed good looking people all shaking hands.
9.Keep it simple. The design, the text, the layout etc. Try to have only one or two thoughts per page.
10.Learn about the rule of thirds (just Google it) and how it can help you place the images for maximum impact.
11.If you template looks bad, outdated, etc. – throw it away. Have a template that is simple, leaves maximum white space for the presentation and uses “quiet” colors. The content of the presentation is the hero, not the template.
12.Less is more. Keep slide content to a minimum. Don’t be afraid to split content over multiple slides. People would rather sit through more slides than see lots of text crammed onto fewer slides.
13.Use video and audio. It is very easy now to add video and audio content to a presentation and can really increase both the enjoyment and effectiveness of a presentation.
14.Don’t use too much heavy industry terminology. Keep the language as simple as possible.