Designing for presentations

The key to designing for presentations is to keep it simple. You don’t want overly ornamental design elements that will overshadow the content, nor do you want a blank presentation that doesn’t somehow relate the visuals back to your organization. All that you need is an element or two that tie the presentation to the organization you’re presenting about. Let’s take a look at both good and bad design options.


This first template is very colorful, but ultimately is a poor option for a presentation template. The graphics are very well done, but they take up half of the screen and overwhelm the text. They are too distracting. The scale and contrast of the graphics vs the text put the emphasis (or hierarchy) on the graphic elements, not the content. For presentations, content is everything.

This example is a much better alternative. The template has branding elements consistent with the organization, but they take up less real estate than the last option. They also work to frame the content area, focusing in on the content rather than distracting from it. While the design is much more simple, it is still very interesting.

In addition to the template design, it is important that you consider the design of your presentation in terms of how the audience will engage with it. Watch the Prezi presentation on presentations. Although it mentions elements of creating successful Prezi presentations, the principals mentioned of engagement and storytelling apply to any type of multimedia presentation.

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