It seems like technology has made presentation design a simple task. Today’s tools offer templates, suggestions, libraries of stock imagery, and more. So in theory, all you need to do is add your content, make a few clicks, and voilà! But if it were that simple, wouldn’t your boss have commended you on the layout and design style? Maybe your team would have mentioned that the aesthetic was more on-brand than any presentation they’ve seen? Or they would have said how they could really focus on what you were saying, because the text was concise and the design was so consistent? If you’re looking to get that reaction from your next presentation, you may be surprised to learn that infographic designers make the best partners when it comes to designing great slide decks.
So Why Hire Infographic Designers for a Presentation?
“But a presentation isn’t an infographic! It’s a collection of slides, telling a story over time. How do those talents overlap?”
You’re probably already working with a visual communication agency to produce much of your visual content. Every designer on that team should be a well-rounded visual communication expert capable of producing everything from infographics to visual annual reports. That means they’re also fully trained in how to create effective presentation designs. Using the principles of strategic visual identity development, a campaign-specific mindset, and an arsenal of questions and answers to best ascertain your goals, this infographic design partner will create a presentation that can truly wow your audience.
Let’s explore some of the key components that coincide between infographic design and presentation design.
1. Calculated Layout
Whether they’re made for web or print, infographic designs require a strong understanding of layout. This is true even for long-scroll web infographics. While these designs may be several thousand pixels in vertical length, they’re usually no more than 1000 pixels wide. This constraint eliminates the need for unwieldy horizontal scrolling. However, it also requires considerable layout planning to properly balance the content. That means designers need to understand content limitations, proportions, design flow, and balance to ensure each section stands well on its own and that all sections work together.
These considerations for infographics are also important for presentation design. The designer must understand what can fit on each slide, where. They must also consider how each slide’s layout relates to the others in order to ensure a cohesive overall presentation.
2. Information Hierarchy
A successful infographic designer needs to understand what parts of the content are most important and why. They must also understand how best to present that information to showcase its importance. When looking at a full infographic design, viewers need information hierarchy. It’s a vital cue to guide their eyes to key points.
You’ll include far less content in a slide than in a full infographic. But information hierarchy is just as important here. Which graphs and illustrations are most important, and how can we make sure they stand out? What content is more distracting than it is useful, and should we eliminate it from the presentation entirely?
Meanwhile, your text — while limited — may still include titles, subheads, and bullets that benefit from dynamic typography to set them apart.
Hierarchy also helps determine which content must stay together on a single slide, and which content can be broken up among several slides to improve comprehension and avoid overwhelming the audience. Trustworthy visual communication designers should have expertise in both infographic and presentation design information hierarchy.
3. Concise Text
As a visual communication tool, successful infographics are driven by visuals. They only use limited text when it’s necessary to clearly convey a message. Luckily, infographic designers are already very well versed in working with small amounts of text. That’s the exact approach your presentation needs, too.
We’ve all witnessed — or created — presentations that are driven by text. Each slide is a paragraph, or a screenshot of an article. Worse still, the presenter might be reading that slide word for word. How boring! Beyond that, it’s also likely that a text-driven presentation would be hard to understand, since pairing text with images improves comprehension by 89%.
For this reason, designers who are versed in creating concise infographics driven by visuals will often be a good match for designing your presentation.
4. Engaging Data Visualization
Many infographics use data visualization to tell their story. As in the case of presentation templates, there are plenty of tools that can auto-generate data visualization. Whether any of them can create charts and graphs as engaging and on-brand as a visual communication expert can, though, is debatable.
Infographics and presentations both require a designer who understands the appropriate use cases and best practices for data visualization. They should also know how to tailor data visualization to your brand or campaign style, creating a cohesive aesthetic. That way, your custom icons and illustrations won’t clash with tool-generated charts. Speaking of those …
5. Relevant Icons and Illustrations
Without icons, illustrations, or both, only a combination of text, photography, or data visualizations can drive your infographic. We’ll assume your presentation isn’t exclusively comprised of photos or charts and graphs. In that case, you’ll need to include icons and illustrations to avoid excessive text.
Where to start? Stock imagery isn’t likely to make a presentation feel unique or fully on-brand. What’s worse, it’s quite difficult to find stock imagery that tells the exact story you’re trying to tell. These are the reasons that custom design is so important.
Expert infographic designers create custom work every time. The same will be true for your presentation design.
On top of all these similarities between infographic and presentation design, there’s another component to consider — quality service. Do you have a strong working relationship with the firm producing your infographics, motion graphics, interactive content, and more? If so, there’s a high likelihood you’ll be excited to work with them on presentation designs, too. Just ask to see some sample work!