Use juxtapositions of different objects or states in PowerPoint slides

In a presentation, the aim is to prepare information in such a way that the audience quickly understands the speaker’s argumentation and ideally adopts it themselves. We’ve already seen how to use the before and after effect for a compelling presentation. The direct comparison of, for example, two products with their features, advantages and deficits is another good way to effectively use slides for your argumentation.

Differences at a glance. With the comparison of two or more objects, processes, ideas or states on a slide, properties, advantages or disadvantages can be compared with each other .  Advertising uses this stylistic element very often. Juxtapositions are popular in product comparisons, for example. How does Samsung’s latest product compare with Apple? BMW, Mercedes or Audi – which brand leads the luxury class? The rental car company Sixt uses humorous juxtapositions to attract attention. One poster, for example, showed the portrait of our defense minister on the left and the face of a Sixt employee on the right. The advertising slogan for it was “Von der Leyen. Or von der leihen.”  You are probably also familiar with the comparisons used by Stiftung Warentest to present readers with the differences between tested vacuum cleaners, televisions or shavers at a glance. This technique can be used for presentations in the same way.

The simplest way to use it is to use the PowerPoint template “Comparison” with the possibility to directly compare two objects or ideas . Here you can, for example, summarize pros and cons on a topic by listing the positive aspects or characteristics on the left side and the negative ones on the right.


Engage your audience and have them vote on two alternatives.  

In some cases, the presenter uses juxtaposition to get a direct decision from his audience about two alternatives. For example, an occasion might be a vote by employees in a department on two different courses of action. In the same way, alternative offers can be presented in summary form during a company presentation to customers. You can also do a little research on your audience this way by asking your audience directly which of two juxtaposed options they like better. This could be, for example, the packaging design of a product; which packaging appeals more to the audience  ? Or which of the slogans on the ballot do your audiences find more appropriate?

Comparisons in a presentation are not limited to the slides.

As a presenter, you have the possibility to use juxtapositions also outside of your PowerPoint slides. They increase attention,  for example, when they directly show objects that are to be compared. Of course, this kind of “live” juxtapositions are only suitable if the audience has the chance to recognize the objects to be compared. If you are lecturing via laptops, you can hold up the copies so that your auditorium gets a first impression. However, there are certainly more expressive comparisons, which makes differences recognizable in an almost striking way and works better from a foil. Imagine you want to compare the price difference between delis and discounters.  In each case, shopping is done with a large shopping list and a budget of 100 euros. How far can the shopping list  be worked off in the two markets? You can put two shopping baskets with the two purchases on the table and unpack them in front of your audience. Where can you get more for 100 euros? This should become very memorably clear to your audience with this vivid juxtaposition.

Wherever you want to highlight differences in your presentation, you can incorporate forms of juxtaposition into your talk. Use your creativity to make the comparisons as vivid as possible.

Portrait of Trainer Matthias Garten - Expert for Presentations and PowerPointDipl.-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 15,000 professional PowerPoint presentations for over 150 industries since 1993.