Animate Your Presentations – with Caution!
March 26, 2007, Animation
Animation is an important aspect of a presentation that you can leverage in your efforts to produce a professional, effective business presentation. As most people know, it is also a great way to make your presentation come alive, whether you’re using PowerPoint or Flash. Adding movement to text, graphics, and images creates a dynamic, engaging experience for your audience. Animated effects can help you pace the delivery of information, illustrate processes, reinforce key concepts, focus the audience, and enhance visual interest and impact.
Use Animated Effects to breathe life into your logo…
…illustrate a dynamic process…
…or simply pace the delivery of information.
But beware! Knowing when and where to draw the line between dynamic content and distraction is essential to creating clear and compelling presentations. We have all seen examples of over-the-top animation that ends up undermining a presentation’s message. It’s not only unprofessional; you will leave your audience feeling irritated and often confused.
Advancements in software have made it easy to add a dizzying array of animated effects with the click of a button — but just because you can doesn’t mean you should. Remember that anyone can add animation, but not everyone can do it well.
How can you make good choices about animation? Here are some useful guidelines for using animated effects to your advantage:
- Content Comes First — Your presentation is about information, not animation. Animated effects should always support a goal, such as pacing delivery of information or clarifying a complex process.
- Keep it Simple – Animated effects should always be used to enhance – not distract from – your content. Choose subtle effects like fades and dissolves rather than Fly-Ins or fancy effects like checkerboards.
- Continuity is Key — Choose one or two types of animation and make them consistent across the entire presentation. Use the same effects for Slide Transitions and text and graphic elements on each slide.
- Set up for Easy Presenting — Consider the presenter, the content, and the audience when choosing between manual or automatic advancing. And, of course, make sure the speaker knows which one you chose.