Making Finance Fun: An Ethos3 Design Story

Created: Friday, January 27, 2017, posted by Geetesh Bajaj at 4:00 am



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At Ethos3, we work with several clients from a variety of industries. As a Content Strategist at the Nashville-based presentation design and training agency, I create content and mold narratives. Recently, I worked on a set of slides for Mark Harmon, a financial and retirement planning advisor. After discussing the details of his original presentation on our first meeting, I discovered that he had a powerful personal story related to his interest in the financial field. But he hadn’t been telling the story. Check out the presentation below!

I, along with one of our expert presentation designers, crafted a deck with these 3 influential elements:

1. Bookending Story

Mark’s mom lost her husband. She was left with 5 children – all of which she wanted to put through college. On a teacher’s salary, this was difficult. However, she enlisted the aid of family and a financial advisor to take control of her and her childrens’ destinies. This simple narrative began the presentation. But, attendees didn’t know that the woman Mark mentioned in his story was his mom until the conclusion of the talk. The ending describes how Mark’s mom has more money saved than she has ever had in her lifetime – a success story.

2. Animation and Iconography

Throughout the deck, a few slides reveal information via animation to emphasize certain parts of the narrative – such as Mark’s mom’s loss of her husband. Iconography serves as a visual hook for the presentation message without playing a prominent role in the design layout. The use of both of these design techniques add a fun flair to what could otherwise be another dull finance deck.

3. Dynamic Tone

Mark primarily delivers this presentation to his own potential clients, however, his main objective isn’t necessarily selling them on his services. Instead, he aims to inform them and gift them with the foundational knowledge needed to secure a bright financial future. First and foremost, he wanted the design and content to illustrate the opportunity understanding finance can bring for individuals and families. Through off-center color blocking and a visual metaphor of “snapshots,” the Ethos3 team created a dynamic and vibrant tone for Mark’s presentation. Mark even mentioned the engaged and attentive mood in the room during the initial presentation of his new set of slides.

Gabrielle ReedGabrielle Reed is a Content Strategist at Ethos3, a company specializing in presentation design and training. She posts thoroughly-researched, highly-useful content frequently to the Ethos3 blog, which offers presentation tips geared toward a variety of professions.

See Also: Designing Story Slides in PowerPoint: Learning from Ethos3

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