I ♡ PowerPoint and so should all designers

It's now a powerful layout tool and a strong alternative to an interactive PDF

I love PowerPoint

PowerPoint can now leave interactive PDFs in the dust and other ‘print based’ software ‘pointless‘.

I’m a motion graphics & presentation designer, and every time I mention to fellow designers that I love PowerPoint they usually frown and either ask me ‘why, what’s wrong with you?’ or just laugh, but that’s because of misconceptions, not understanding software and the ‘death by PowerPoint’ reputation. Have you used Section zoom or Morph transition?

PowerPoint has come on leaps and bounds and now, in the right hands, you can create engaging interactive stories and presentations. Print is on the decline and digital (onscreen) growing and PowerPoint is now a powerful digital layout tool. If like me,  you can combine with other animation tools then it’s a killer app.

If you can design in InDesign or Illustrator, you can build it in PowerPoint. It’s a powerful layout tool that you can allow others to edit it that don’t have Adobe suite, unlike PDF files.

It allows design but with animation and transitions (when required). It can still be locked so people can’t edit it or even password protected just like a PDF.

Here are some top reasons to give it a second look

Scalable Vector Graphics 
 Either cut and paste from Illustrator or import as an SVG.*

3D models with animation
There are limits and it’s a new feature but you can embed 3D models and animate between views using slide transitions.

Multiple column layout
Like InDesign and Word, PowerPoint supports multi-column text layout.

Prezi style zoom in and out
You can zoom into part of a slide using new transitions and move back again seamlessly.

Embed Video
Something else PDFs don’t let you do easily or properly.

Attachments
You can embed attachments that people can download. Assets, logos etc

Standalone presentations
Navigate them like an offline website. Even if you don’t have PowerPoint it can be packaged as a standalone file.

Font embedding
Now the Mac allows this, licensed or free fonts can be embedded. No need to stick to Arial now.

Audio to guide & illustrate
You can add a voice-over to your presentation, music and sound effects. Great for accessibility or if you aren’t there in person to work through the PowerPoint.

Accessible
Now supporting ALT Tags, pre-approved screen reader templates and is easy to create high contrast versions. There’s a built-in accessibility tool

Some Tips

Build on a PC (or at the very least test)
There are options to convert vector graphics to Microsoft Vector Art which allows you to change colours and shapes. The Mac won’t let you do this. I’ve also seen a variety of font issues crop up over time.

Learn PowerPoint
Yep, if you understand how it works, what animations not to use, the quirks of its menu system then you can design better work.

It’s not perfect
There are still some terrible animation tools built-in and people still try to cram as much text on a page as possible, and then present it, but that’s another post.

I love PowerPoint and it’s no longer to be laughed at!

*There are differences between PowerPoint on a Mac and on a PC. The PC does more. Yep, sorry Mac lovers, but that means, like me, you have to get used to using both to deliver amazing presentations that are consistent and the user can make changes in.

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Contact me if you want to find out how I can help you get more from your presentations on 07808 048719

Leigh Dowding

I’m a UK based motion graphics and presentation designer. I’ve been a graphic designer for for over 20 years working fore Bluechip corporates, live events and brand communications agencies. 

I’ve learnt to be efficient while remaining creative and always delivering. I am based in Hitchin, Hertfordshire but frequently work in London and for other clients across the UK on-site or remotely.

I’ve worked with brands such as Roche, RBS, BP, NS&I, NBC Universal, Capita, Centrica, Nike, Nissan, Rightmove, Misys, Douwe Egberts, Vodafone, British Gas, Gas Safe, ASOS, Ofgem, Marks & Spencer,  OU, Logica,  GE Healthcare, Nest, G4S, Canonical, Avanade, GTR and more.