Piktochart is a great tool for creating infographics to impress your friends and help you land your next job. But did you know that we also have pre-designed templates and a special mode for presentations?
Presentation mode is one of my favorite parts of the Piktochart editor. A presentation was the first thing I created in Piktochart, and I was blown away by what the tool can do.
I’d spent years working with Powerpoint, Keynote, or Google Slides to put together my presentations. I’m a little biased, but I can honestly say after using Piktochart, I’m not going back.
Let’s take a walk through the process of creating a presentation with Piktochart. I might even drop in some behind-the-scenes tips along the way.
Step 1: Pick a Template
Just like with our infographics and posters, we have a template gallery specifically for presentation.
The biggest difference between creating an infographic in Piktochart and creating a presentation is size and formatting.
If you add a block to an infographic, the new block is the same size as the block above it. When it’s created, the new block is attached to the bottom of the block above it.
On the other hand, when you create a presentation in Piktochart, generating a new block will place a new “slide” at the end of your presentation. The new slides are locked at a size ratio that keeps all of your material visible while you’re presenting.
You always have the option of starting from scratch with Piktochart, but I like using the templates. They give me a much stronger starting point and can serve as a source of inspiration when I get stuck trying to express myself.
One last thing before we get into creating your presentation masterpiece. See that spot at the top that says “Untitled Infographic”? Go ahead and name your creation now. That’ll make it much easier for you (or, heaven forbid, a member of our Customer Delight team) to find your presentation later. Everything is automagically saved, but titles makes things easier to find.
Step 2: Design it Well
If you’ve decided to use one of our expertly designed templates, you’re already on your way towards great design. If you’ve decided to go it alone, make sure to follow these tips to keep things looking great.
First, let’s talk about words. More specifically, we should address the fonts you plan to use. According to our head of design See Mei, you’ll want to limit yourself to two fonts and four font variations. The goal is to support the points you’re delivering, not to wow your audience with your vast knowledge of script font faces.
Your goal is to make your presentation easy to read and easy to understand. Keeping your font choices to a minimum encourages your audience to focus on the content instead of how it’s styled.
One mistake that is common in presentations (and infographics) is to try to jam too many words into too little space. This results in one of two problems: either you have to shrink your font in order to make everything will fit, or everything gets so cluttered on your slides that there’s no whitespace and no room for your content to breathe.
Here’s a good rule of thumb: aim for a minimum 36-pt. font size in either a serif or sans serif font face. In addition, use bullet points instead of complete sentences, and limit yourself to 12–15 words per slide.
Your slide deck should be supporting your presentation, not the entire presentation. If you’re reading your slides word for word, you’re not connecting with your audience or giving them anything extra. You could’ve just given them a printed copy of your slides (which we’ll talk about soon). Step away from the podium. Enjoy yourself.
Speaking of limits, follow the advice of Geoffery James at Inc. and make your presentation as short as you can. As James puts it, “When was the last time you heard someone complain that a presentation was too short?”. Keep it short, and then cut it just a little shorter.
Along with following these guideline, Piktochart has some additional tools that can help make your presentation great. Let’s look at a couple of features that can add some variation to your delivery.
First, if you have charts and graphs as part of your presentation, make sure you’re using our Data Import feature.
You can use the tool to add your data manually, or you can import a spreadsheet in most of the common formats (CSV, XLS, etc.).
If you use Google’s suite of office apps, you can take advantage of one of my favorite features. You can connect a chart in your presentation to a Google Spreadsheet in your Google Drive.
We call this feature the “Dynamic Data” importer because connecting your chart to a Google spreadsheet allows the chart to change as the data in your Google spreadsheet is updated. There are no additional steps needed on your end. Pretty cool, huh?
You can also take advantage of importing data directly from SurveyMonkey. If you’ve used SurveyMonkey to interact with your users, readers, or customers, and you want to show your results in your presentation, using this tool to import your results and translate them directly into an easy-to-understand graph or chart is the easiest and clearest way to do so.
The second feature you’ll want to keep in mind is more of a “hack” than a specific feature. If you’ve picked a dark background for your presentation (which is a good idea if you know you’ll be presenting in a darkened room), the last thing you want to do is temporarily blind your audience with a brighter-than-the-sun image in the middle of your presentation.
Try placing a “filter” over your image to decrease the brightness. You can do this by adding a dark grey block to your presentation and placing it on top of an image. Then you can reduce the block’s opacity to the shade of grey that’s best suited for your background.
Step 3: Make it Your Own
By this point, you’ve got a good handle on your design and you’ve added the content you need to show. Now it’s time to add a bit of flare to make this presentation your own. Let’s take it to the next level.
Here are three things that you can add to your presentation to truly make it pop:
Text and Photo Frames
Anyone can add a block of text or a photo to an already outstanding presentation. The things that makes your creation stand out are the interesting ways you can arrange and design these elements.
Text frames are easy ways to add badges or callouts that need the viewers’ attention:
Photo frames are similar, but they add a little more design flexibility to the images you’ve uploaded or used from our stock database:
Using both of these tools (in moderation) can give you an easy way to personalize your presentation and give it some visual variety.
Let’s be honest: who doesn’t love a good, well-placed GIF? No matter how you pronounce it, there are times when a short clip says far more than a static picture ever could.
Did you know you can add GIFs to your Piktochart creations? Our head of marketing Marta has written a post about how to do it, and it’s not too hard to get going.
The process is as easy as adding any other image to your presentation with one little twist: you’ll need to change the file extension from .gif to .jpg so that our image uploader will place nice.
After that, simply import the image to the editor, drag and drop it in, and watch your presentation come to life!
One of the features people enjoy most about Powerpoint, Google Slides, and Keynote is the ability to add transitions to their presentations. It’s a simple, non-distracting way to keep your presentation engaging and interesting.
Piktochart offers the same options for use with presentations. After you Publish your presentation, choose to view it on the web, and click Present in the upper right hand corner of your browser window. The drawer that slides up from the bottom of the screen allows you to pick different transitions like this:
None of the transitions are too flashy (and there are no sound effects, thank goodness!), but they do add a little something special to your presentation.
Step 4: Print it Out
The last thing you’ll want to consider with your presentation is whether or not you’ll need to share it or print it out. These days, most people are happy to have a digital version to review or annotate, but some people (myself included) enjoy having something tangible to circle, underline, and actually hold.
If you need to share your presentation or slide deck in a different mode other than “in person”, Piktochart has got you covered. We’ve got a setting that’s specifically for saving (and printing) your presentation blocks.
If you choose to save your creation as presentation blocks, your PDF will be paginated (or split into separate pages) based on the layout and order of your slides. You’ll want to enable the “Copyable Text” option if you plan to share the PDF file with anyone who might want to search its contents sometime down the line.
So there you have it: four easy steps to creating an amazing presentation with Piktochart. What plans do you have for using a Piktopresentation? Reporting major gains in social media engagement? A higher-than-ever customer satisfaction rating? Or maybe you want a new way to teach a topic that hasn’t exactly been the most engaging with your students? Let us know what you plan to do in the comments below, or tweet at us and tell us about your ideas!