How to Create Professional Presentations with Impact
Nothing will make your next presentation pop like a professional design that uses color, typography, and infographics well. The design might be one of the first impressions you make with a new customer or potential investor, so you need to make it a good one.
Not every small business owner has the budget for having a designer on staff or retainer. Here, we'll look at some things you can do to help spruce up your presentations to create a more visually appealing style.
Professional Presentations Impact Business
In the context of marketing your business, having a professional look and feel matters.
Like it or not, every person your business comes in contact with will judge it by the way it looks. This includes everything from your brand mark or logo to the way your physical or online shop looks to the design of presentations when you consult, give a speech, or present a proposal.
A well-organized and designed presentation will make your ideas seem more polished and together. This is especially important for startups looking for early-stage funding.
Presentations with misspellings, design errors, or elements that are hard to read can confuse people — and make them feel you're unprofessional and not a good proposition.
3 Signs of a Professional Presentation
So, what does a professional presentation design look like?
You don't have to be a designer to figure that one out. There are three things that almost everyone notices right away about a presentation design.
A professional presentation is:
- Easy to read at a distance or on a screen. Each slide or panel in an infographic should contain one thought, metric, or idea. Keep it simple and don't try to cram too many ideas in at once.
- Consistent in use of color, style, and design elements. Pick a color palette, one font, and a theme for the presentation design. Every slide or page should look like it belongs with the one before it and the one after.
- Free from errors. Ensure your presentation does not suffer from incorrect information, misspellings, or errors in the design (such as words on top of pictures that you can't read).
How to Create a Professional Presentation
When it comes to creating a professional presentation for your business, the top recommendation is to hire a designer to create a custom template for you. This can be a cost-effective solution that gives you a PowerPoint (or other) presentation template tailored to your business and brand.
You can use and reuse the template by adding content and removing slide types that you don't need. Ask the designer for a template with slide types for all of the different kinds of information you might be interested in displaying.
Make sure to gather existing brand materials before starting the design process. This includes a style guide (if you have one), logo files, color palette, and fonts that you like. It's also a good idea to gather a library of images as well.
But what if you still don't have a budget for this kind of job?
Presentation Design Tools
With a little time, you can create a professional-looking presentation on your own without using one of the defaults from standard software.
For most small business owners, a free tool such as Canva or Visme, has enough functionality to create simple, but stunning presentations or infographics.
The trick here is to keep content, ideas, and design concepts simple. The less complex the design, the more likely it is to have a sleek finish. Plus, minimal designs are rather trendy.
- Canva has quick setup templates to create presentations, social media infographics, and more with a drag-and-drop tool that you can use online.
- Visme helps you create infographics and presentations using your content and data with plenty of templates and photos, video, and maps.
Both tools are rather intuitive, have free options for small business owners and plans that can grow with your needs.
Presentations communicate a lot about your business. A professional design will make you look organized, polished, and put-together. And it can be just the thing that helps you land even more business.