Thursday, September 4, 2014

Learn How to Be a Better Presenter at the Presentation Summit 2014

We are just seven weeks away from the 2014 rendition of the greatest conference in the universe for presentation professionals, and for the next 14 days, we will offer a most extraordinary promotion:
  • Register for the conference before Sep 8.
  • Designate a second person to go at half-price.
All of our amazing seminars, fabulous keynote addresses, awesome technical support, and phenomenal community building—available to two from a company at the lowest price ever offered. (If you have already registered for the conference, you can add a second person at half-price.)
Join Mike Parkinson as he presents five presentation silver bullets and gives a keynote on how to listen, learn, share, and succeed. Our staff will be at the expo to demonstrate Get My Graphic with fun prizes and specials just for Summit attendees.

Make your plans now to join us...with a friend. (And if you choose to come by yourself, that's okay, too!)

The Presentation Summit
Oct 12-15 • San Diego CA

Friday, August 1, 2014

New Graphics on Get My Graphic and How to Use Them

This July we added 175 new graphics to Get My Graphic. Below is a sampling of these new visuals, editable in PowerPoint 2007 or newer, and hints for how you can use them in your next presentation or marketing materials. 

Bridge Graphic
Use a bridge graphic as a memorable visual metaphor to show a transition from a past to a future state or how separate phases flow together.


A mix of icons with bands of colors help highlight chapters or sections within your presentation, web page, or marketing brochure.

These editable icons can be used a word balloons or to highlight a benefit or description within a graphic.
Place these pin graphics throughout your presentation to highlight features of your product or process. Place the icons on your overview slide and then use the pins to call attention to different sections.

This table graphic acts as a slide rule that you can animate by sliding across rows to highlight relationships between variables and parameters.


Venn Diagram
Venn diagrams are the best way to show synergy. Our new graphics put a twist on Venn diagrams. Adding icons calls out your information so readers instantly see your point.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Presentation Toolbox: Make AMAZING Slides Fast

As the saying goes, “Use the right tool(s) for the job.” It’s commonsense advice that is often ignored. Imagine building a house without the right tools. More money and time is spent trying to get it right using the wrong tools, and the outcome is inferior.

Your Presentation Toolbox should include the following shown in this graphic. (Your goals and challenges will determine the specific solutions you choose.)

First and foremost, select the right presentation software. When in doubt, use ubiquitous software to ensure easy file sharing and easier problem solving. (During a recent webinar, I polled the audience about their presentation software, and 98% of the attendees said they use PowerPoint.)


Make a Presentation Asset Library (PAL). This library should include the following:
  1. Content that speeds development. I pull from the following:

  2. Ideas that stimulate creativity. I keep a folder filled with images of great graphics, slides, designs, layouts, and photographs for inspiration. 
  3. Graphics that can be tailored for each presentation. Typically, I create and save my graphics in the presentation software to make customization fast and easy. 
  4. Articles that explain, clarify, and educate. I save articles related to the topics I help present. At times, I need to pull content immediately, so it helps to have quick access to these pieces. I also keep how-to articles from past projects to save time if I forget the steps to create a unique graphic effect or animation, export slides into other software packages, or any other specialized task I don’t use often. 
Tips and Tricks 
I have frequently needed tips and tricks at my disposal. I organize them into the following three categories:
  1. Content tricks and tips. If a slide or presentation frequently changes, there is probably something wrong with the Content Ladder. We are either misunderstanding the audience, the message is unclear, or there is no story or flow.

  2. Design tips and tricks are tools and techniques that I use often to speed development. Rather than spend hours developing graphics, I go to Get My Graphic ( or similar websites to find PowerPoint graphics. These sites are fast, low-cost and I can reuse the graphics in future presentations. (Make a Graphic Asset Library from the graphics you download and those you create.) I also use a Graphic Cheat Sheet to help me pick the right graphics to communicate my ideas ( 
  3. Editing tips and tricks allow me work fast. Most of my content remains editable in my presentation software. I use the software’s procedural features to fly through inevitable changes. For example, double-clicking on the “Format” paintbrush in PowerPoint holds the formatting of a selected object until you release it (e.g., by selecting “esc” and clicking another object to capture its style). 
I suspect you have had some success integrating components of a Presentation Toolbox. My company and clients regularly see exponential improvements when building or buying new tools. Unfortunately, organizations may expect one solution to solve all challenges, which often results in inaction and no solution is implemented. Do not wait for the perfect solution. It does not exist. Instead, build or buy a solution that solves more than 50% of your challenges. Other processes, tools, or periodic updates can offset a solution’s deficiencies. Make or expand your Presentation Toolbox today and stop losing time (and money) doing things the hard way with the wrong tools.