Disruptions from COVID-19 can be felt almost everywhere — in our social lives, in our home lives, and in our personal thoughts and feelings. And the disruptions to our work lives are also significant. For those workers who are not a part of the essential workforce that is selflessly providing services we rely on, and those not facing furloughs and layoffs, we are each adjusting to “office life” outside the office. Webinars are now among the very few effective options we have for real-time information-sharing. They also allow us to connect personally with our audiences and customers during the COVID-19 crisis. That’s why now, perhaps more than ever, impactful slide design in PowerPoint, Keynote, Prezi, and any number of other tools is vital for engaging your target audience. In this post, you’ll find tips on how to produce the best webinars of your career using principles of effective visual communication and presentation slide design.
Prior to Design, Decide on Your 1 Main Goal
With a lot to say and not a lot of time to say it, you might approach a webinar by creating a script that touches on all the points you want to make at a high level, demonstrating the breadth of your knowledge. But this approach may lead to problems. By not allowing yourself time to dive into those points in more depth, you run the risk of not effectively communicating any of them. So instead of your audience learning a little about a lot of things, they may just end up confused about what you really wanted to say.
Instead, decide what’s the most important subject that your audience will want to know more about. Perhaps it’s how COVID-19 is impacting global marketing, or the state of the national or global economy, or the impact to our health-care systems. Once you know that subject, distill the topic of your PowerPoint presentation down to only the most relevant content for that single topic. In doig so, include details, data, and design on each slide that provide context. In this way, you can teach your audience more about what’s vital about a single topic, and save the other content for additional webinars later on.
Let Visuals Drive Engagement
Some 29% of workers in the United States had the option to work from home pre-COVID-19, and nearly 25% took advantage of that option. For these people, virtual meetings and webinars may already feel familiar. However, for others, learning to devote as much attention to a virtual presentation as to an in-person one will take some adjustment.
For those who are new to the webinar experience, powerful visual communication is among your best tools to soften the transition. Most of us are already used to consuming highly visual digital media, so drawing inspiration from infographics, motion graphics, and more in your PowerPoint slide design can brighten up your presentation in a welcoming, familiar manner.
Ensure that the visuals you’re using pull from a brand identity or visual language that matches the topic of your presentation. And if you have a visual workbench, your webinar slide design is one of the best places to use those assets! If not, just be sure to generate or source assets from your existing materials that all fit under a unified style. By keeping your icons and illustrations in the same aesthetic throughout your presentation, you create memorable cohesion and allow your audience to focus on your message — instead of fixating on visual inconsistencies or excessive text.
Remember: The Best PowerPoint Slide Design Keeps Things Simple
Just as you want your full webinar to focus on 1 main topic or goal, each slide design in your PowerPoint presentation should account for 1 main point. This should be driven by visuals, with minimal text. Your oral presentation will often drive the narrative. Because of this, by simplifying text and visual content, your audience can quickly understand the intention of the slide and continue to devote their attention to the lessons you’re providing.
Include only visuals that exemplify and further your message. It can be tempting to fill a slide with imagery when you’re already minimizing text. But audiences can spot “fluff” — unnecessary content. Resist the temptation! Audit your visuals to ensure they’re each adding to the message.
As we navigate COVID-19 together, Killer’s employees are working from their own homes in and around the Seattle area. As a flexible workplace, our team thrives on working all together in an office, but is also experienced in communicating on the go. Our collaborative spirit can’t be tamed by physical distance, so it’s business as usual (that is, as usual as possible!) for our team here in Seattle. So if you need PowerPoint slide design help, whether you’re new to webinars or have been hosting them for years, Killer is here to support you!