Tips for a good PowerPoint presentation Part 2: What your audience really wants to know

The PowerPoint program has accompanied most of us on our professional journey. It was developed from 1984. The first version was available for Apple computers from 1987. That same year, Microsoft acquired the rights to PowerPoint, and worldwide distribution began. However, despite the fact that this program is used on all continents, many users do not know how to create a really good PowerPoint presentation. Preparation starts with asking what the audience is really interested in and how to properly convey relevant information.

You’ve probably seen a number of presentations. Some good ones and some that didn’t turn out so perfectly. Try to remember a really good PowerPoint presentation you’ve seen recently. Why was the lecture so good? What did you like most about it? Did the speaker inspire you with his rhetoric and arguments, or was it the slides that were structured so plausibly that you were able to grasp the information well? Perhaps it was the successful combination of PowerPoint slides and moderation.

What are the components of a good PowerPoint presentation?

Let’s move on to the components of a successful presentation. This includes, of course, the content. What do you want or need your viewers to know? What messages should be conveyed? This should be at the beginning of your work with your presentation. Don’t assume what would be great for you personally, but be clear about what your audience needs to know about your topic. How much info can you fit in without confusing viewers? Experts in particular tend to go into too much detail. With specialist audiences, of course, enough knowledge can be assumed to delve deeper into a topic. Nevertheless, I can only advise to focus on the really most important information. The danger of getting bogged down in “sideshows” is simply too great. In the second step, the content must be professionally prepared so that the individual slides can be quickly grasped and understood by the audience. But a PowerPoint presentation is only as good as the speaker who delivers the content. The speaker must know how to welcome the audience and how to introduce the topic. He must master the ability to quickly gain the audience’s attention and maintain it. And he must know how to end the presentation properly. There’s a whole lot of knowledge involved.

5 tips for a really good PowerPoint presentation

The road to a presentation that really wows customers is usually a marathon run, not a sprint. They get better and better over time. If you have a really important presentation ahead of you, on the success of which much depends, then you will not be able to avoid the advice of an expert. Depending on how much experience you already have, your presentation will either need extensive help, or just a polish. Check with a good presentation agency if you are unsure. If you’d like to tinker further with your presentation yourself, we have a few tips for you on how to do it.

  1. Study the work of real professionals. How do they do it? There are good examples on Youtube of how to really engage your audience. In this video, for example, a presentation by Steve Jobs (Apple) is analyzed.
  2. What do you know about your audience? Unfortunately, there is no presentation for all cases. You need to adapt your slides to the audience each time. For example, you can start with a basic set of slides for absolute laypersons and add additional slides for special target groups later.
  3. Make it easier for your audience and provide your slides only with content that is really essential. Often, a single word shown on a slide is enough to give your presentation the right reinforcement at that point. Anything that distracts the audience from the important content, such as logos, addresses, slogans, should be avoided.
  4. Take your time with the visual design. Finding suitable photos, graphics or charts is sometimes not so easy. Which image could reinforce which message or make it more understandable?
  5. Deal intensively with presentation techniques. This is a broad field, but you should take working on your moderation very seriously. If you don’t generate audience interest during the introduction to your topic, you’ve lost them for the rest of your talk. This also applies to the middle section and the conclusion of the presentation. It is not enough to manage the moderation “somehow”. The audience needs to see you as competent, entertaining and confident, otherwise they won’t really listen or believe what you say.

A good PowerPoint presentation is a task that requires a lot of dedication and work. You should develop your own personal style, otherwise you will quickly look like an untrustworthy copy of another person. If you are unsure, ask colleagues for honest feedback. If you are unsure how to convince your target audience, ask a presentation agency for assistance. For more information on how to present properly with many practical examples, you can also find, for example, in my book “The Magic Box for Presentations” For more tips and tricks on how to present, sign up here to our newsletter.

Referent und PowerPoint Trainer Matthias Garten

Dipl.-Wirtsch.-Informatiker Matthias Garten as the expert for multimedia presentations and professional PowerPoint presentations knows about the art of professional slide design. He is an entrepreneur, speaker (TOP 100 Speaker), trainer (TOP 100 Excellence Trainer), multiple book author, presentation coach (presentation training), member of the GSA and Club 55, organizer of the Presentation Conference, Presentation Bootcamp and Presentation Rocket Day. In addition to PowerPoint and presentation training, he inspires and advises companies to present themselves even more effectively and thus stand out from competitors. He is the business owner of the presentation and PowerPoint agency smavicon Best Business Presentations and with his team has created over 10,000 professional PowerPoint presentations for over 150 industries since 1993.