Not all of us are born public speakers. For a lot of people (probably even most), delivering a presentation is a skill that you need to practice.
There are a lot of articles out that provide tips on how to deliver a presentation. But I want to talk about how presentation design can play to your specific strengths as a presenter—even if you think you don’t have any.
The way you structure and design your presentation slides can help prompt your memory, engage your audience, and make your presentation more effective overall. You just have to find what works best for you.
Identify Your Presentation Style
According to studies about presentation styles, it’s generally agreed upon that there are 6 types of presenters (the number might vary from study to study but they all follow the same general lines). The folks over at Make a Powerful Point identified these 6 styles in their study:
- The Coach: An enthusiastic speaker who is great at engaging and inspiring their audience, but who may lose passion if their audience doesn’t reciprocate their energy.
- The Inventor: A speaker who is good at connecting ideas but would rather not present. They’re more comfortable doing Q&As.
- The Counselor: An eloquent and logical speaker who can connect small points to the big picture, but who can have trouble connecting with their audience.
- The Storyteller: A natural storyteller who can connect with their audience easily, but who can easily lose track of their main point and confuse their audience.
- The Teacher: A speaker who is good at explaining ideas using figures and metaphors, but who tends to care more about their material their audience and may disconnect from them.
- The Coordinator: While they are not comfortable public speaking and prefer to be in the audience, they are a speaker who delivers organized and well-structured presentations.
Create a Presentation That Plays to Your Strengths
Over at Venngage, we identified 6 types of presentation design that can be used to play to the strengths of different presenter types.
Efficient Flat Design
If you’re someone with an Inventor or Coordinator style of presenting, using an efficient flat design will help you create an organized presentation. Using plenty of charts, icons, and other visuals to illustrate your ideas will help make your presentation easy to follow.
A neutral color scheme with some pops of color will make your slides easy to read.
Colorful and Coordinated
Colors can be a very effective tool for organizing information. A presentation with color-coded information can be a great tool for Counselor and Coordinator-style presenters.
For example, you could color code sections of your presentation or even types of information on each slide. Specific colors can help prompt your memory and direct your talking points.
Bold and Iconic
Icons are the perfect kind of visual for presentation because they can communicate ideas in one small graphic. They’re great for emphasizing points and connecting ideas. If you’re a Storyteller or Teacher-style presenter, icons and illustrations are a great way to bring your ideas to life.
Intense and Photo-Heavy
I’m not going to say a picture is worth a thousand words, but it definitely helps tell a more rounded story. If you’re a Coach or Inventor-style presenter, creating a presentation with evocative photos and a bold color scheme can help give your words impact.
Classic and Data-Driven
There’s nothing wrong with a classic presentation when done right: a simple design, headers on every slide, minimalist charts. If you’re a Teacher or Inventor-style presenter, a classic presentation can help you keep your thoughts organized. Adding creative data visualizations and illustrative icons will keep your design engaging.
Find What Works For You
Ultimately, finding what works for your particular presentation style will take some trial and error. When in doubt, ask for feedback from a coworker or friend if you’re not sure whether or not your presentation is effective.
Public speaking can be intimidating – help yourself be as prepared as possible with a well-designed presentation.
Sara McGuire is a Content Editor at Venngage Poster Maker. When she isn’t writing about data visualization, design and business, she enjoys reviewing music and testing new recipes in the kitchen. Follow her on Twitter @Sara_McGuire.
This article was based on the original article, Which Of These Expert Presentation Design Tips Should You Use? that was posted on October 2017.