7 Tips to Create Powerful Keynote Slide Decks

Pow­er­ful Keynote slide decks that get your mes­sage across effec­tive­ly are more impor­tant than ever, with the rise of online pre­sen­ta­tions and remote events.

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Our sto­ries are wired to teach, empow­er, and leave a lega­cy through our knowl­edge. When done right, Keynote pre­sen­ta­tions and brand sto­ries will leave a last­ing impression. 

How­ev­er, too much sto­ry can also over­whelm, bore, or con­fuse —so any­time we make pre­sen­ta­tions for our brand, we want to focus on expe­ri­ence rather than infor­ma­tion over­load. We often become so excit­ed about a par­tic­u­lar sub­ject, that we end up shar­ing too much infor­ma­tion in one slide. So how can we cre­ate a pow­er­ful Keynote?

7 Tips to create powerful keynote Slide Decks

1. Start with a Plan

Before you pur­chase a tem­plate online, hire a design­er, or design your own Keynote tem­plate,  define what you want to accom­plish with each pre­sen­ta­tion. The three things you want to define are:

  • Your top­ic and main key points
  • How to explain it in sim­ple terms
  • A list of con­tent you will need to sup­port your nar­ra­tive (ie. videos, pho­tos, graph­ics, illus­tra­tions, info­graph­ics etc.) 

2. Write Your Copy

Your copy and the design of your Keynote pre­sen­ta­tions or tem­plates need to work hand in hand. Write your con­tent before you pur­chase a tem­plate online — you want to know what your copy will entail before you do, so you don’t end up wast­ing time fig­ur­ing out how to fit copy into the design. 

Keep in mind that the copy on your pre­sen­ta­tion is there to guide the ideas, not be the pre­sen­ta­tion. Oth­er­wise, peo­ple will spend their time writ­ing notes from your copy, instead of lis­ten­ing to your presentation. 

Too much copy makes a dif­fer­ence — you can see that in the dif­fer­ence between the slide above. The first one is crowd­ed with too much info, where­as the sec­ond is clean, and denotes key prompts for your talk­ing points. Chances are, your eyes pre­fer the sec­ond, and that is all you need to know about how it will affect your viewer!

3. Set a Template Structure 

Set­ting a tem­plate struc­ture will allow you to focus more on the con­tent deliv­ery than hav­ing to refor­mat your Keynote every time you cre­ate a new pre­sen­ta­tion. Plus, this helps you estab­lish brand con­ti­nu­ity

Start with mak­ing a sim­ple list of the slides you know you will need for any type of pre­sen­ta­tion you do. Think of this as your Keynote tem­plate blueprint!

4. Avoid Using Bullet Points

f you are using bul­let points today, you can say good­bye to them. They are dis­tract­ing — and that takes away from the val­ue in your infor­ma­tion. Instead, try some­thing like this:

Cog­ni­tive sci­en­tists say we can only focus on 3 key points at a time. Try to keep each slide to 3 points — max­i­mum 5.

5. Use Visuals to Support Your Narrative 

When it comes to visu­al com­mu­ni­ca­tion, the expe­ri­ence your view­ers have with your con­tent is cru­cial for them to remem­ber what you said. 

Our brains are wired to con­nect with visu­als first — espe­cial­ly though col­or. When you deter­mine what visu­al con­tent you need, not only will you save time (and headaches), but your Keynote design process will have far more clar­i­ty than when you start with a tem­plate first and make your con­tent work with that.

6. Establish Content Hierarchy 

Deliv­er­ing val­ue doesn’t mean show­ing an entire sto­ry in one slide. When you cre­ate con­tent hier­ar­chy, you improve a viewer’s expe­ri­ence.  If you aren’t sure about how you can estab­lish this, think of what we call the High­rise Effect for Hierarchy.

This means struc­tur­ing your con­tent through text and its font size to fit the lev­el of impor­tance: the high­er the “peo­ple” are in the high rise, the greater their impor­tance, reflect­ed by their larg­er font size. 

7. Design a Template to Fit Your Needs

Design­ing an Apple Keynote pre­sen­ta­tion that fits your needs allows you to con­vey your mes­sage effec­tive­ly while rais­ing brand aware­ness. Done right, it will save mon­ey and time. If you aren’t a design­er, it can feel over­whelm­ing — but it doesn’t have to be so! We’ve got you cov­ered with Nicte’s LinkedIn Learn­ing Course that gives you the tools you need to achieve your pre­sen­ta­tion goals. It’s called Cre­ate Pow­er­ful Pre­sen­ta­tions in Adobe Keynote.

Con­nect with us below and we’ll send you addi­tion­al resources to give you peace of mind as you cre­ate stand­out Keynote presentations!

About the Author

Nicte Cuevas, Principal of Nicte Creative Design, empowers mission-driven businesses through strategic design & branding. Nicte has applied this when working with Adobe Spark and Twitter Business, LinkedIn Learning, Dogs on Deployment and Purina, Girl Scouts, The Houston Zoo and The Contemporary Arts Museum. Her excellence in communication design & marketing has been recognized by multiple national / international awards, including a coveted feature in Graphic Design USA's People to Watch.

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