Posts Tagged ‘PowerPoint Template’

How Refreshing

Monday, July 8th, 2013 by Justine<

We all feel better for a bit of pampering. Treating ourselves to a new haircut, buying the latest tech or going on holiday has been clinically proven (honest) to make us feel better. And when we feel better we’re more sociable and productive.

It’s the same for your presentation; if its feeling dated and unloved it’s unlikely to be doing its best for you. But there’s no need to throw the baby out with the bathwater – if you’re presentation content is still topical then maybe it just needs a makeover.

Our Presentation Refresh service is an excellent way to give flagging presentations a new lease of life.

It’s like taking your presentation on a luxury spa weekend and ordering champagne at breakfast……

 

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“Presenters Say The Darndest Things” Or Strange Statistics From The Last Business Presentation Survey

Friday, September 21st, 2012 by Simon<

The response to our 2012 Business Presentation Survey is building nicely from business both large and small and located in all corners of the globe.  Thank you to those who have been kind enough to give us 5 minutes of your time to complete the online survey…and for those who have yet to get around to it, here’s the link.

It was way back in 2010 that we last ran this important survey (the only one of it’s type as far as we know) and it threw up a number of remarkable statistics.  In a short series of “Presenters Say The Darndest Things“, we’ll highlight some of the remarkable things our research revealed.

Presentations are, in the main, unloved…

The survey highlighted that a whopping 25% of presentations are not reviewed more than once a year.  That is the equivalent of leaving your website/blog/sales collateral untouched for over a year…and then expecting it to still deliver.  In this time, all manner of things could (and probably would) have happened to your slide deck:

  • The message and content is out of date
  • Your brand may have moved on…and your primary sales tool is stuck in the ice age
  • “Creative” members of the team may have added or tweaked slides to give the presentation a completely different slant

In short, scary stuff…

Our advice?  Go and review your presentation now…  Right now…

Why? Because your business and your presenters deserve it…and, more importantly, so does your audience.

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PowerPoint 2013 – The Übergeek Review – Part 2

Friday, August 3rd, 2012 by Justine<

The Innovation continues….

Game Changing Animation Pane

I had hoped and dreamed for an animation pane with a scrub bar so that I could view animations from a chosen part of the sequence only.

Well, there isn’t a scrub bar but Microsoft have certainly upped their game in the department of animation preview. Now when you are creating a long sequence of animation you can either select a point in the pane to start from, or you can use CTRL to select any animations in the pane and preview only these! FANTASTIC!

Hours and hours of painful animation previewing will be consigned to history as this fantastic new tool makes PowerPoint designer’s lives across the world that bit easier!

And if that wasn’t impressive enough there is another great upgrade to animation, this time to motion paths. To make a shape arrive at exactly the position you want it has always been a highly skilled and fiddly task. PowerPoint 2013 now creates a temporary copy of the object you are adding a motion path to and projects a preview of exactly where the object will be when it has travelled along the motion path. This is the sort of functionality that encourages designers to dream up ambitious schemes so it’s all good!

Other Design Upgrades

The auto alignment tool that really improved in 2010 has been upgraded, the automatic guides now highlight the equal spacing between two objects, saving time on distributing later.

The yellow diamond when altering the edges of a rounded rectangle for example, has improved as the circles and lines around the shape disappear allowing you to see what you are doing!

The selection pane looks much better now, but works  in much the same way, now with the ability to drag objects into position.

In my PowerPoint dream, I hoped for the combine shapes tool to be a part of the ribbon and they are now indeed there along with a couple of new additions to this small family of commands which sits nestled in the Drawing Tools tab.

Copying objects across from an open PowerPoint 2010 deck is OK, the objects keep all of their attributes apart from animation.

Outside of Design

Microsoft’s big push for Office 2013 is the functionality linked to SkyDrive, pushing people to save documents here as opposed to locally on their machines. This is really useful as you can now start a document on one PC then continue on another PC or a mobile device without the need for emailing a different version back and forth.

Another new function is in presenting mode you can hit a button and zoom straight into a particular area of a slide. This is useful for highlighting content to your audience but I think caution will be needed; if you’re using this all the time it may be that your slides are too cluttered and too much of this could leave your audience dizzy a la Prezi.

Overall the thing that you really notice is that everything seems to happen much quicker than in previous versions.  This is apparent throughout PowerPoint2013 but to satisfy myself that I wasn’t imagining it, I did a quick test.

  • Inserting a piece of music into a slide PowerPoint 2010 = 9.5 seconds
  • PowerPoint 2013 = less than 1 second

The suspected improvement is real and significant (to the point that I am unembarrassed about using a stopwatch in the office)!

And finally some of with the things that haven’t come true from my PowerPoint 2013 hopes… there is still no ‘Insert Icons’ ‘Insert Silhouettes’ buttons and the animation ‘Random Bars’ is still there!

Still you can’t have everything!

In this PowerPoint übergeeks opinion PowerPoint 2013 is a worthy successor to 2010 and has taken some big steps forward in functionality. It’s not the huge leap we had from 2003 to 2007 but there is a lot to be said about not fixing what isn’t broken.

PowerPoint 2013 means that PowerPoint users across the land can save even more time and work with less stressful animations leaving them extra energy to let their imaginations (and their storytelling skills) run wild!

Thank you Microsoft! It finally feels like we are on the same page…

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PowerPoint 2013 – The Übergeek Review – Part 1

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012 by Justine<

An Insight Courtesy of Eyeful’s Resident PowerPoint Boffin, Matt

A while ago I spoke of my hopes and dreams for PowerPoint 2013 and how it might make my life as a PowerPoint designer that little bit easier.

Well, after many happy hours putting the sneaky peek Beta version through its paces I’m very happy to report that, in the humble option of this PowerPoint übergeek, PowerPoint 2013 has been worth the wait.

Look and Feel

When you first open PowerPoint 2013 you are instantly struck by the sleek new look and feel. This is not only visually appealing but also makes the whole program feel very solid and reliable.  Also the default slide size is now 16×9 rather than the traditional 4×3 – an improvement which we’ve been looking forward to for a while now.

It may look a little different, but the ribbon is still there and the layout of this has barely changed. What has changed though is when you right click and select format shape, the window for this now appears to the right and as a solid part of PowerPoint, rather that floating ethereally. It takes a little getting used to but essentially it’s the same.

Not a lot’s changed on the template front, with PowerPoint 2013 sticking to the same format as its 2010 and 2007 predecessors.  We’re great believers in hanging on to what works so there’s no disappointment on that front.

It’s the Insert Tab on the ribbon that’s changed most. Colours are the same as before but the gradient fill pre-sets have really improved to give a more modern look and feel.

Images

The Insert tab also includes some new image options. The first of which is the ability to Insert Online Pictures, this allows you to load directly from SkyDrive or by searching the web for images using Bing Image Search – great for home users but not really applicable in the professional world.

This does pose the question – is Microsoft opening its users up to a whole world of pain in terms of using unlicensed images? Our recommendation is tread carefully out there when choosing images to add to your presentation!

Another upgrade to inserting images is the Insert Screen Shot tool, which those of you who use Windows Snipping Tool will be familiar with. You can either snip parts of you monitor view or this tool will show you a screen grab of any applications that you have open. Integrating this type of functionality has made a previously clunky task much smoother.

This screen shot functionality is also really useful when used in conjunction with the new Eyedropper tool which is part of the fill section when it comes to changing colour.

Now you can snip anything on screen and quickly and easily create a consistent colour palette by using the Eyedropper tool to replicate colours from one shape or image to another.

Video

One of the big advances of PowerPoint 2010 was the ability to save a presentation as a WMV video. In 2013 Microsoft have added the functionality to save out as an MP4 video. No great advantage as you can easily convert a WMV video outside of PowerPoint, but nonetheless it will save time.

Sadly the only way to export to Flash/HTML5  is still an external plug in but maybe that’s something we’ll see in the next iteration.

Which is quite enough excitement for one blog, but there’s much more to come in part 2….

 

 

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You’ve Got to Have a Dream… (Part Two)

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012 by Matt<

After the rudest of alarm clock interruptions, I have resorted to daydreaming to finish my PowerPoint 2013 wishlist:

When you add multiple motion paths to an object, the following motion path automatically starts at the end of the previous one! Saving hours of faffing about.

You can now create a group with all the objects within it animating separately, before adding them into your slide… Mind blowing animation, without blowing your own mind trying to put it all together.

Insert shapes has been overhauled too, now you can insert new shapes such as icons and silhouettes of people… We’ve also created a PowerPoint shape library and you can now download additional shapes and add them in!

Combine Shapes has become part of the ribbon as opposed to something you need add in yourself. Even better, you can now combine any object! Creativity can go wild!

And last but not least….3D shapes with a multitude of decent pre-sets.

Wow, time to celebrate with a coffee and a bacon butty methinks!

Sweet Dreams!

Matt Roper, PowerPoint übergeek, Eyeful Presentations Ltd

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Corporate Presentations – Time to cut the B.S.

Sunday, May 22nd, 2011 by Simon<

Everyone has the misfortune to hear “it”.

The use of “it” is rife amongst all businesses today.

It” is jargon.

BS Free ZoneCall it what you want – catchphrases, buzzwords or business speak – either way, it’s completely incomprehensible and certainly damaging to presentations.

Indeed, the use of business speak has become so prevalent that campaigns have been set up to try and prevent the use of such jargon. There’s even a yearly online award for the worst offenders.

It is time to stamp it out!

Next time you write a presentation, we implore you to look closely at what you’re saying and how you’re saying it.

Then spend time to re-write it as simply as possible. After some soul searching, you’ll see that a very large proportion of your slides become more focussed and to the point. More importantly, they become easier to engage with and therefore much more likely to be understood.

As a rule of thumb, if you find yourself replacing “let’s run it up the flagpole” with “without leverage we won’t synergise” then you clearly need our help!  If not, read on for some common mistakes and how to tackle them.

Missing the point

Long words and incomprehensible sentences cloud your message. These tend to be used by people who are desperately trying to jazz up a presentation (you know who you are!).

Remember – the most effective way of communicating is the most basic.

Over complicate and over promise

The hard sell just doesn’t work.

Business people are generally intelligent folk. If you show them the facts in a clear, consultative manner, they can see for themselves the benefits of your proposal. 

Go on…show you audience some respect and give it a go.

Boredom

A presentation is about getting a message across.

The more attentive an audience, the more of the message will be absorbed. Now we’re not for one minute suggesting you perform magic tricks or show off with some juggling…just remember that long-winded business jargon is a surefire way of terminally boring the audience.

In Summary…

Your presentation is an opportunity to communicate, convince and instigate change. It’s a priviledge that shouldn’t be underestimated by the presenter.

Your audience are a captive audience, at least at the start of your presentation. The best way to lose them is to overcomplicate the delivery.

Tell your story in simple ways and in your own style - this will ensure you really get that message across

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2010 Business Presentation Survey – The Results Now Available Online

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010 by Simon<

It’s been a busy few weeks here at Eyeful Towers

We spent a fair amount of time reviewing, crunching and analysing the numbers from the 2010 Business Presentation Survey…and then pulling together a webinar to explain to the hundreds of interested parties on quite what the results meant.

If you were one of the unlucky ones who didn’t quite get on the webinar invite list (we were over-subscribed – sorry!), then fret no more.  Using the wonders of PowerPoint Repurposing, we’re able to bring you the edited highlights of both webinars here on YouTube.

So grab a coffee, sit back and enjoy the show (we’d also respectfully recommend having a pen and paper handy as you’re likely to want to scribble down a lot of the findings and suggestions). 

But enough of my yacking – on with the show:   

Part 1

Part 2

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Repurposing PowerPoint – We May Have Mentioned This Once Or Twice…

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010 by Simon<

If you’re a regular reader of the Eyeful Blog, you’ll be aware that we get very animated (excuse the pun) when it comes to getting the most out of your PowerPoint.

Panic not! 

This is not some clumsy, heavy-handed way of selling our wares.  If you’re a regular here, you’ll know all about the wonders of Presentation Optimisation, the glowing testimonials of our ever-growing customer base and the magic we can weave with the most basic of presentations.  Let’s not get into that now…

Nope – we’re talking about Repurposing PowerPoint.  Taking the hard work you’ve put into creating your masterpiece in PowerPoint and repackaging it for other mediums. 

From PowerPoint to Podcast…to video…to interactive PDF…and finally to web presentation.  The choice is yours.

To help explain how this works and the options available to you, we thought we’d repurpose one of our own presentations originally developed for a RIBA conference. 

It’s a case study in it’s own right…

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The event within the event

Monday, March 15th, 2010 by Simon<

If you’ve visited a B2B exhibition in the last few years you will undoubtedly been impressed by some very fancy, multistorey and ultimately expensive stands.

Exhibition framed 1

Not only are the stands expensive, the floorspace upon which they are plonked will have also cost a pretty penny.

On top of that, the stand is (quite rightly) extensively staffed and choc-a-bloc with gleaming corporate collateral. 

Quite an investment and statement of serious intent by the exhibitor.  Bravo!

Exhibition framed 2But hang on – what’s that lurking on the plasma screen? It is one of the most unengaging PowerPoint presentations you will ever see (or most likely walk past) and typically the weakest link on the whole stand.

Chances are it was put together at the last minute by one of the marketing team who basically got lumbered as they “know PowerPoint”.  In short, an own goal of majestic proportions!

As with all things your organisation does, surely its time to make that presentation as impressive, eyecatching and generally tip-top as the rest of your stand?

When putting together a stand presentation there are 2 important points to remember.

Design – No Time for Scrimping!

Make no bones about it – this presentation is a shop window and as such needs to look A1. Don’t knock something up - get a professional in to do it properly.

Structure – The 30 Second Rule

You have a maximum of 30 seconds to get across what you need to get across so you have to spend a lot of time deciding how those 30 seconds builds and tells a story.

It may be that you have lots of different stories to tell so have lots of 30 second stories – but whatever you do make sure it is short, sharp and to the point.

So in conclusion…

When it comes to creating a presentation for an exhibition, all you need to is grab people’s attention through a combination of eye catching design and a powerful story.  All in less than 30 seconds.

Sounds a doddle..!

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Get your motor running…

Friday, January 15th, 2010 by Simon<

We’re a lucky bunch here at Eyeful Presentations

We get to work with some of the World’s most interesting businesses and advise them on the best way for them to share their message through presentations. 

As Triumph Framedregular visitors to this blog and website will know, this is so much more that simply pulling together a fancy PowerPoint presentation. 

The Presentation Optimisation process requires that we really get under the skin of our customer and gain a full understanding of their proposition, their audience and their objectives.

No matter what the industry, this is always an interesting process with some amazing insights into products and services that, on the surface, can look pretty mundane.

So imagine how exciting life gets when we work with the likes of Triumph Motorcycles.  All that chrome, leather and talk of torque.  What makes it all the more rewarding is when we get the likes of Paul Taylor from Triumph singing our praises:

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Triumph Motorcycles – a thoroughly nice bunch of people.  Almost makes you want to go out and buy a leather jacket…

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