March 27, 2010, Templates
A PowerPoint template is much more than a nice design to frame each page of your presentation. It is the foundation off which the entire presentation is built.
It’s true, a well-designed template will provide a cover and background art, which act as a sort of stationery for the presentation. However, there is a strong purpose behind that artwork. Your designer will create artwork that reinforces your company’s or product’s brand by adapting colors, shapes and photography to blend with your printed collateral and your website. The design of your PowerPoint template should be able to work together with your other marketing materials to tell your company’s story.
Unlike the printed page, a PowerPoint slide is a fleeting message. The design of your body pages should be subtle enough to let each slide’s message remain dominant and impactful. A good body slide design has to be adaptable enough to work with text, large photos and complex diagrams. It’s the elements of these individual slides that will bring the design to life.
The artwork is the most apparent attribute of the PowerPoint template. But within its shell lie important settings that predetermine the presentation’s structure, which can help you build more impactful presentations in the future.
When a designer puts your template together, he or she sets up a grid or framework for your content using the PowerPoint guidelines. These set off the active area and assist in aligning elements on the slides. Working within these guidelines can help you create your own slides while keeping in line with the overall look and feel of the template.
The template also contains settings for the formatting and positioning of your text. When entering text, the preset placeholders in your PowerPoint layouts will give your presentation a clean and polished look. The fonts and formatting set in these placeholders are carefully chosen to provide legibility on screen, to work well within your brand, and to provide the best compatibility when sharing your presentation with others. Even the shape, color, and positioning of the bullets are customized to work with your brand.
Default text styles are also set for entering text boxes outside of the standard placeholders. This ensures that all the text you enter will have a similar style.
One of the most powerful settings working behind the scenes in your template is the Color Theme. Every company and brand has its unique set of colors which work together to communicate your message in the marketplace. The Color Theme sets your brand’s colors, as well as other accent colors, as the default colors used in creating artwork in your presentation. When you enter a new diagram, graph, or chart the elements will pick up those colors from your template’s palette.
A well-designed template gives your presentations more than just a pretty face. There is an entire support system of presets and structure working to help you create consistent, well branded presentations.