We get it (probably more than anyone else): Presentations are hard. After you finally figure out what you need to say, and how you’ll say it, you still have to contend with putting the thing together. That means slides, charts, and gasp! bullets. Not to mention your own hangups about getting up in front of a crowd (instant goose bumps). Which is why we built Beautiful.ai to begin with — to solve for some of these pain points.
For the other challenges associated with presentations, enter Present Beautifully: A 5 Step Guide to Standout Presentations: A collection of high-quality articles designed to help you nail down your presentation from start to finish — from story to mindset, visual design and best practices... It’s all here.
You may even call this guide a “hack” for better presentation slides and better public speaking. And well, who doesn’t love a good hack (or shortcut, or knowledge bomb) that cracks the brain open and makes doing “a thing” easier. Your grandparents may have told you that “there’s nothing like a hard day’s work,” but in today's world we vehemently disagree.
That’s why we put together this guide — to help you on your road to presentation domination. So take a hard pass on hard work, and check out these foundational strategies, trends, tips, tricks, and examples that set you up, set it off, and level-up your next presentation. And hopefully, will make the whole thing easier for you in the process.
STEP #1: UNDERSTAND THE ART OF PRESENTATION STRUCTURE + STORY
Serving up storytelling realness and why this element is clutch to keeping your audience spellbound — meanwhile forgetting all about their full inboxes and grumbling stomachs. Oh, and for those startups out there — this could make or break the success of your pitch deck. Start here.
STEP #2: PASS THE PRESENTATION DESIGN 101 COURSE
If there was ever a “Hot or Not” list for visual presentations, friends — this would be it. This post gives you the red carpet lowdown on what’s trendy this season in slide design and what’s always in fashion when it comes to presentation design. Take inspiration from this list of solid design ideas, and get ready for the paparazzi. Don’t forget your shades, but you can forget your presentation designer (it's built right into the software.) Start here.
STEP #3: PASS THE PRESENTATION DESIGN 201 COURSE
Your slide design is one of the most important elements to keeping your audience following along with you during your presentation. And, ahem, it just so happens to be something we excel at — helping you to own the room without breaking a sweat (not to brag). Learn the key places you can use data visualization, a strong color scheme and eye-catching imagery to improve your slide design by 10x in no time (because our A.I. does the heavy lifting for you). Start here.
STEP #4: MASTER THESE POWER PRESENTING SKILLS
Ok, bad news first: The hard work isn’t over when your slides are done. But it's our own mind and hidden fears that really make us weak and wobbly in the knees when we think about public speaking, forcing us to forget everything we thought we knew about, well, everything.
This article gives you — and the rest of the reluctant public speakers out there — the locker room pep talk you didn’t know you needed (or that a certain powerpoint presentation software never gave you) to help you blow past your own mental blocks and morph into a power presenter in no time. We talk about body language from top presenters at Ted Talks, communication skills, eye contact, stage fright, everything. And promise that these mindset tweaks and public speaking tips will make you a better speaker immediately. Start here.
STEP #5: USE THESE 3 PRESENTATION TEMPLATES TO KICKSTART YOUR NEXT DECK
Full disclosure: we don’t advocate theft. But if you’re gonna steal, you might as well steal some ideas from these three exceptionally well-designed presentation templates for your own use. Make note of the color palettes used, ample white space, stock photos, san serif fonts, et cetera. Go ahead, we won’t tell.
Specifically, we've highlighted a Sales Proposal for winning new business, a Company Overview for introducing your company and product/service to new audiences, and a Human Resources (HR) Onboarding Manual to make new employees feel right at home from the very beginning. For additional presentation templates, scroll through the ones featured on our blog.
And there you have it. Follow these 5 Steps (and that means read them through, people — there's gold in there) and we promise to dub you "Master Presenter" next time we see you. Or find you on social media: #workbeautiful.