Faced with the prospect of having to deliver a presentation, PowerPoint is usually the first and last thing that people consider when choosing visual aids to accompany their talks. Which is a shame because there are many other powerful tools available to help you convey your message. And let’s face it, the novelty of PowerPoint expired a long time ago. Many peoples’ eyes will glaze over at the sight of your title slide and you’re going to have to work really hard to hold their attention with PowerPoint.
Some of the alternatives are relatively high tech or time consuming; creating video for your presentation can be very effective, but it takes a lot of time and skill to make it look professional. But others are disarmingly simple. Have you considered drawing your own visual aids?
These RSA Animate videos (the are many more available on YouTube) are extreme examples– few of us would be talented enough or fast enough to draw the images for an entire presentation. But why not write some of your bullet points on flip charts while you’re speaking or draw a simple chart to illustrate a point? Your audience is likely to be pulled in by your movements and the novelty of your having stepped away from your slides for a moment. They’ll probably even be rooting for you to succeed. Which means you really need to practice what you intend to draw or write– you don’t want to try to create an elaborate chart for the first time in front of a crowd. Just figuring out how much you can get on one page can sometimes be a challenge.
The effort’s definitely worth it if you’re able to draw in your audience and get them more involved in your presentation.