There isn’t a one-size-fits-all for PowerPoint Presentations and that’s because your audience is a dynamic bunch of people who know a lot about what they don’t like.

Your addresee needs to be at the heart of your presentation. While it will be revolutionary for some, it might be confusing or bland to others. You need to adapt your PowerPoint presentation for your audience to ensure that the information you provide is relevant and valuable.

Your audience is used to being passive participants in excruciating presentations. So give them something different.

Know who you are addressing?

The first question you need to ask is: “Who am I addressing?”

This step is fundamental and needs to be answered before you begin mindlessly tapping away in PowerPoint. If your audience decides your presentation isn’t for them, it won’t matter if it is beautifully designed or contains cutting-edge data.

Having a clear idea of who your audiences is will help you determine the best way to set the tone, introduce the topic, tailor the content, and choose the right language.

Recall your brief psychology stint at uni and delve into the psyche of your audiences. Understand their biases, misconceptions about your topic, and assess their existing knowledge. This will help form the foundation of your presentation and act as a guide for your potential speaking points.

Consider these three main factors:

Demographic:

Age

Educational Level

Occupation and Income

Gender

Race, Culture, Ethnicity

Psychology: 

Attitudes, Beliefs, Values

Lifestyle

Personality

Bias

Environmental: 

Location

Size of Group

Seating Arrangement

Occasion

State your Objective TO AUDIENCE

Tell your audience why you’ve decided to give a presentation and why they should care.

While we like to think you’ve willingly attended presentations before, you more often than not have been on the receiving end of a confusing PowerPoint as an involuntary audience member. While we’eve tried to avoid death by PowerPoint, it seems almost cruel that we would repeat the same presentation faux pas. We can try to improve engagement through clarity and effective design.

Choose Appropriate Visuals

Incorporating the latest meme isn’t really going to make sense to an audience of baby boomers. But it might be funnier to post-ironic Millennials. Consider selecting visuals which your addresee might enjoy, rather than your subjective preferences. While you are the presenter, remember that you’re presentation isn’t for you – it’s for your audience.

Customise Content

How you choose to present information should be influenced by your message, and what your audience knows and needs to know.

There’s a lot of conflicting information about the best way to communicate to your addresee, and even more arbitrary rules for writing: Write formally. Don’t use slang. Jargon is bad.  Don’t do this. Do that.

While we create presentations with differing purposes, common “tips and tricks” about slide content often doesn’t consider audience demographics. Some might say; fewer data, less text. But that’s not relevant to ASX companies or organisations in the finance sector who need to visualise data.

If you want to develop your PowerPoint presentation skills, click here to encourage better audience participation.

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Keep informed and get inspired

Want to learn more about how to stretch the creative limits of PowerPoint?

Subscribe today and receive the latest in blog content, design templates, and much more – all made in PowerPoint.

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