One of the challenges when creating infographics is that they can end up looking the same as any other.
But there are ways to keep up with the current trends and make something that really stands out.
Firstly, choose original images instead of stock photos to add that personal branding touch.
A second way is to use quote roundups.
These can work if you want to share a dose of inspiration or food for thought.
Find a quote aligned with your topic and add the picture of the person who said the quote. Add more quotes from other people to create a set.
For this to add value, the people you quote are probably as important as the information in the quote. Look for celebrities, famous people and key influencers in a relevant niche. Or it could be a compilation of sayings from your client’s senior team.
A third trend is the emergence of dynamic infographics. As the name suggests, this is where the content includes GIFs and other moving elements.
There also seems to be a bit of a resurgence in the use of 3D designs. They do stand out compared to two dimensions.
Another trend is towards brighter and bolder fonts.
They help to draw the reader’s attention to the information and make it look fun. The danger is that you can go overboard with colours and fonts and spoil the professional feel of it.
Now you may be thinking – I know you can start a presentation from a template, but did you know that Microsoft provides lots of ready made design templates both locally on your computer and online? No? Well let me show you.
In PowerPoint click File New and you can choose from any of the templates offered on the screen. These are Design templates and include colours and layouts and sometimes variations.
But if you look at the top of the New screen you will see that you can search online and there are categories. One such category is Business which I picked to use as an illustration.
When I click Business I can now choose from quite a selection and I chose Tech Dividend Design.
It downloads the template and when you click Create a new presentation is opened on your screen complete with ready-made slides for you to simply update with your data.
Cool no? I think so!
Did you know that I have three PowerPoint courses in the tomorrow’s VA Academy?
Master the Slide Master takes you through how to get to and modify the slide master so that you can update the design of your presentation in one place.
How to Create Infographics just using PowerPoint – shows you how to harness the software you have on your machine to create Infographcis.
Create Instant Instagram Posts in 30 Minutes or Less – yep, you are correct! I show you how to use PowerPoint to create Instagram posts. Once your template is set up you can create 30 or so in half an hour.
The Master The Slide Master comes in two flavours, one for Windows and one for Mac.
The other two are recorded using PowerPoint for Windows – however work the same way for Mac.
You will see that there is also a bundle – Social Traffic Mastery which includes all three courses.
Testimonial – This is what one of my students says about Master the Slide Master
The first thing I heard about Shelley Fishel, the author of this course, was from my web designer – “she knows EVERYTHING about Microsoft Office. Any problems, just message her.” This came an the right time. I had just had my first skirmish with the Slide Master and I had come off worst. Still licking my wounds, I didn’t have the confidence to ask for help.
Word reached Shelley that I needed help and she told me about the course. I knew I needed it but ego knew better. Oh, crud. A few months went by and I had reached the dizzy heights of 20 to the Slide Master, 0 to me. I had spent hours trying to recreate the same thing in Excel that someone had done using the Slide Master. It didn’t work. Of course, it didn’t work!
Swallowing my pride, I took this course. It’s great. Easy to manage, there’s one video that’s just over five minutes and the rest are less than five minutes. It’s in bite-sized pieces and everything is carefully explained with Shelley doing it as she’s talking.
It’s clear and easy to understand even a bolshi 63 year old can understand it.
I’ve changed the fonts and I’ve changed the colours in the Slide Master, which is my new BFF. It isn’t quite purring but we’ve shaken paws and I’m taking it out for a drink later 🙂
Why would anyone take a perfectly good idea for a presentation then build it using the Slide Master when PowerPoint is so good for putting projects together?
Because, when your project is a daily planner with 365 pages and you get to the end and realise you’ve got the same spelling mistake on every page you’ll wish you had used the Slide Master to build it on, because you’ve got to go and correct every page. Or start again using the Slide Master.
Using the Slide Master will be a game-changer in my journal design business. It will save me hours of work.
You have a client who asks you to create a presentation. Now amongst the information that needs to go into that presentation is some data. Your client really wants this data presented as a chart and asks you to do this.
What if you are not sure how to do so? How long is it going to take you to learn? How many hours will you spend trawling the inernet to find out how to create a chart in PowerPoint?
In today’s blog post, I am going to help you with that
Get started via the Insert Ribbon or the Chart Placeholder on a slide.
Click on the Insert Chart icon in a placeholder
Or Click on the Charts Icon on the Insert Ribbon
Figure 1 – add a chart
You will see the Insert Chart Dialogue Box which prompts you to select the type of chart you want to create.
Figure 2- choose the chart type
Once you have selected the type of chart, an Excel spreadsheet opens up on top of your slide, with a sample chart in the placeholder. Fill in the data area on the spreadsheet and the chart will update with your numbers and categories. When you have finished filling in the data, simply close the spreadsheet. The chart updates and the spreadsheet disappears.
Figure 3- fill in the mini spread sheet
Open and view chart data
You may want to see the data in the spreadsheet in order to make a small (or even big) change.
Click on the chart you want to modify.
On the chart tools ribbon click Edit Data
The mini spreadsheet opens up and you can now modify the data
Figure 4- edit the data
If you select Edit Data in Excel, then a full size spreadsheet opens up on top of PowerPoint complete with data ready to edit.
Figure 5- complete the spreadsheet
You can overtype the cells that are filled in. If you need to add more columns to the chart drag the small blue triangle which appears at the bottom right of the range and then add in your new data.
Figure 6- drag the corner to make the chart larger
Continue to update the mini spreadsheet until you have all the data. Then use familiar Chart Tools just like in Excel as the Ribbon will change to show the Chart Ribbon.
Leave me a comment telling me how this has helped you and what else you would love help with in PowerPoint?
As you know I am all about saving time and getting more done so I was wondering how much time do you spend trying to figure out where the command to do something is in PowerPoint? Or in any Microsoft Office product for that matter. Do you know your Keyboard Magic?
We have many icons on the Ribbon and sometimes the one you want is not on the Home Ribbon but on one of the other ones. Tough to remember where everything is right?
Here is where Keyboard Shortcuts come in.
By remembering the keyboard shortcuts, you will save a whole load of time. You will stop taking your hands off the keyboard mid typing, you will instantly get the job done and you will save all that time wondering where the icon lives.
Here are a few of my favourite Keyboard Shortcuts for PowerPoint.
Make The Screen Go Black Or White
When in the mid presentation there are times when you need to make whatever is on the screen disappear for a moment. Perhaps you have a particular message to impart and the images on the screen will detract. You have two choices here. Make the screen go black or white.
This shortcut works when you are in Slide Show mode or presenting.
To make the screen go Black – press the letter B
To make the screen go White – press the letter W
That’s it! Simples!
Duplicate A Shape
This is a lifesaver and a timesaver. When designing your slides, often you will have shapes or text boxes and you need to copy or duplicate them. Yes, you can create new shapes but if you want them to be exactly the same then duplicating is the way to go. You can always change the colour or text afterwards.
Press Control + the letter D – your shape will be perfectly duplicated.
Two for the price of one!
Control + D to duplicate a shape works in Word too!
Start The Presentation From The Current Slide
When building a slide deck or presentation, it helps to put the presentation into slide show mode every so often to see what it will look like to your audience.
My favourite keyboard shortcut for this is to press
Alt +S+C – this will start the presentation from the current slide so that you can check how it will look and then press the Escape Key to get back into the presentation to work on it.
Find any keyboard shortcut easily
Did you know that you can press the ALT key and see what the keyboard shortcuts are? Try it. Note the letters on each of the Ribbon tabs. Press the letter indicated and you will switch to that Ribbon, you will then see more letters on the Ribbon, press the keys indicated to activate the command.
Before long you will start to remember the shortcuts that you use often and the keyboard becomes a way of life.
Leave a comment and let me know what your favourite PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcut is.
Why would you need to create a timeline? What purpose does it serve? What if a client asks you to create a visual timeline in PowerPoint to show her book launch plan? It would be a real shame if you declined the job because you did not know how to do this.
The first thought to pop into your head might be, wow. This is going to be really time consuming. How will I be able to charge the client for all that time. I will have to draw lots of shapes and arrows and connectors, add the text and change how it looks. Easier to just say no or to outsource it.
I will let you into a secret. If you have PowerPoint 2016 as part of an Office365 account you can utilise the Artificial Intelligence that is built in to the PowerPoint Designer, to create a timeline. With just a few clicks!
Here is how to do it:
Step One – add tasks with dates
Add the events that need to appear on the timeline in a bulleted list with dates – like this:
Step Two – use Design Ideas
Once you have your bulleted list of items to add to the timeline the next step is to go to the Design Ribbon and click on the Design Ideas Icon at the far right of the Ribbon
When you click on the Design Ideas icon, PowerPoint will show you a list of design ideas in a task pane on the right-hand side of the screen.
Just pick one of the designs that you like. If you don’t see one you like, click the Design Ideas button again to have PowerPoint suggest more designs for you.
The Design Ideas button is now one of my go-to buttons in PowerPoint. As I am not a designer, and often don’t trust my own aesthetic judgment, it is great to have a tool that suggests how to set out your graphics. It works for pictures as well as bulleted lists and it will also adjust the way that Smart Art looks. It suggests different layouts and picks up your colours from the colour palette. If you have changed the default colour scheme that is what it will use. Really handy for keeping everything on brand.
You do need to be using PowerPoint 2016 and have an Internet Connection for this to work!
Have you used Design Ideas yet? If so what do you think? Please leave a comment below.
P.S – did you know that over on the Course Directory you will find links to all my PowerPoint Courses? Take a look at the Course Directory to see what is there!