We have all seen what a bad presentation looks like; unorganized slides, horrendous content, unreadable text, blurry graphics, a jittery speaker, all summed up in an atrocious manifestation of everything that could go wrong. If you want to avoid this, take time to prepare — a presentation should be organized, interesting, and engaging so that this way, you can easily capture the attention of the audience. If you want to make this possible, use the right software and tools.
With hundreds of presentation tools available online, you might find it hard to keep track of them all. So for your convenience, we’ve gathered eight presentation-making formats that may appeal to your necessities in crafting an effective presentation.
Let’s start the list off with one the most recognizable and considered to be the father of all presentation software, MS PowerPoint.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past couple of decades, you’ll know that PowerPoint is the most utilized format for presentation making by the general public. This presentation software is complete with all the features and tools you’d come to expect from a presentation software.
Despite the rise of more modern alternatives with more advanced tools, the tried and tested software capabilities of Microsoft’s PowerPoint still makes it the reliable go-to editing format by people of varying experiences for any presentation they make. In fact, PowerPoint has set the standard for presentation software marketing, and so far, it has not seen any significant decline in users to this day.
One of the keys to PowerPoint’s success is that it’s very user-friendly. Being ideal for beginners, and having access to hundreds of thousands of pre-made templates, there is no reason you can’t create a presentation on PowerPoint.
Impress is part of the Libre Office lines of office software — other products include Writer, a word processor, and Calc, a spreadsheet software. It is a presentation-making software that can be a good alternative to PowerPoint since it has all the same tools and features, and its users consider Impress a truly outstanding tool for creating effective multimedia presentations.
Impress’s multiple editing and view modes give it a wide range of visual perception when making your presentation. It also comes with other tools such as Slide Sorter to aid in editing and in polishing your work. Another feature of Impress is its drawing and diagramming tools that let you give style and sophistication to your presentation, as well as allow you to create slide show animations, effects, and attractive 2D and even 3D images.
The drawback, however, is that Impress can be challenging to use for people who are not familiar with the tool. Despite the steep learning curve and not being ideal for beginners, the Libre Office community does provide thousands of tutorials and guides that are available online.
Prezi is a unique, web-based presentation tool that operates online. While other tools present graphics and text in a slide-to-slide format, Prezi approaches from an entirely different angle; it utilizes a massive canvas where you can place all your text and graphics into one location to create a highly visual and interactive presentation.
Prezi leverages the concept of transitioning to your next slide through a zoom, twist, reveal, or jump animation effect to create a more dynamic presentation without the need of moving a new slide every time. It also uses the concept of Pathway Points to give your presentation a visual cinematic appeal.
This presentation tool is also straightforward to use; specifically designed for people who aren’t familiar or don’t have much experience creating presentations. Prezi has a full library of beautiful and fully customizable presentation templates that you can use to fit your topic or brand. If that isn’t enough, you can also find thousands of presentations made by other people that you can use as your guide or reference in creating your presentations.
While they are not really a slide composer and a direct competition with other presentation software, SlideDog, however, aims to be the presentation player that some people cannot live without. At least that’s what their website says.
What makes this presentation software one of a kind is that it allows you to combine almost any type of media, documents, presentations, pictures, video, and places to create a rich presentation in a seamless manner that grabs the attention of the viewer and keeps their sight from moving away. This is ultimately the reason why some people prefer to use this presentation tool than any other device out there.
SlideDog is also marketed as a web-based multimedia presentation tool that gives you the ability to not only combine the things mentioned above but also combine PowerPoint presentations, Prezi presentations, PDF files, and a lot more. No other presentation tool can do that, and SlideDog may be the first presentation software to incorporate such a streamlined feature.
On top of that, SlideDog allows you to control your presentation from your smartphone using their app remotely. You can also remotely control it using the web or a secondary computer. It will also provide you an option where you can share your slides in real-time. The best part? Anyone can view your slides from their own devices, all they have to do is to click the link that you sent or provided to them. It is a handy feature if you want your audience to feel an immersive presentation experience.
ClearSlide is a sales engagement platform that companies and firms can use to push sales up and to create successful marketing campaigns via presentations and more. G2 Crowd, an industry-leading business software review platform once named ClearSlide a “Leader” in its Spring 2016 G2 Crowd Grid for Presentation report, and ClearSlide has undoubtedly earned the title as the leading sales engagement platform. It isn’t hard to see why either; Clearslides’ interactive presentations for sales pitches, marketing campaigns, and custom interaction gives it all the necessary features and tools you need to create a high-quality business and sales presentation.
Some of ClearSlides great features include; (1) Engagement Tracking and Analytical Software that allows you to see real-time alerts and detailed slide level analytics, (2) Single Content Hub and Content Re-mixing to make transitions through different slides smoothly in response to the customer’s immediate inquiries, and (3) ClearSlide Salesforce Connector that go beyond presentations and screen-sharing, and so much more. However, the features, as mentioned earlier, are meticulously sophisticated and maybe excessively overbearing for some business as a good number of the tools may be irrelevant and have no use to them. Nevertheless, ClearSlide still allows you to create and customize interactive presentations that will reflect your business, your brand, and the message that you are trying to convey.
From logo design to a suitable font, and with over 40 years of rich presentation history, CustomShow is a business presentation software used mainly by businesses and companies. Just like ClearSlides, this tool is the choice of many marketing teams, sales teams, sales professionals, marketing professionals, CEOs, and even design agencies.
Using this tool allows companies or organizations to create better-looking, custom branded outputs that supersede your typical powerpoint presentation. Using this tool, you can create designs that will correctly represent your company and the products you offer — making your presentations much more effective. To top it all off, you have access to slide libraries and analytics options that help make sure your work is of the highest caliber.
CustomShow also allows you to import presentations into the program to use in combination with your existing display. What’s more, this presentation tool is cloud-based, giving you access to your presentations anywhere; whether through a smartphone, tablet, or even a secondary computer that you can access anytime.
The only disadvantage with this presentation tool, however, is that its analytics platform needs more data intelligence. Overall, considering all the fantastic features of CustomShow minus the downside, as mentioned earlier, this tool is perfect for marketing and sales teams.
While other presentation tools only provide you with limited features to customize your slides, Haiku Deck, on the other hand, takes the game to a whole new level. Offering a wide range of themes suited to different needs, Haiku Deck gives you access to over 40 million free images from the Creative Commons. This program initially launched as an iPad app, but now supports not only the iPad but also on smartphones (iPhone) and the web.
Regardless of which platform you use, this presentation tool still allows you to create stunning and beautiful slides with a variety of different fonts, layouts, and filters that you can use to make an effective presentation. Moreover, the best thing about this presentation tool categorizes the various customization options into different industries and use-cases. So, when visiting Haiku Deck’s site or application, you will find multiple templates, such as once for teaching, business, real estate, and start-ups. However, to use these templates and themes, you have to be online as this presentation tool can not do offline work.
Want to try something unique and fun on your presentation? Give PowToon a try — it might just be the presentation tool for you. Powtoon allows you to create amazing designs and videos that are animated, cartoon-styled, exciting, and appealing.
PowToon is also one of the most straightforward presentation tools; it is user-friendly, and they have genuinely customizable animated presentations. You don’t have to worry if you are a beginner in creating presentations as you can quickly learn how to use this tool.
There are not many bad things to say about this tool except maybe one thing — their animated approach in the presentation. You see, this kind of format may help you stand out from the rest; however, it might make you look like you are not taking seriously. So, be careful when to use this presentation tool. Nevertheless, PowToon makes an excellent tool for fun and engaging presentations.
However, with all has been said and done, the final decision still belongs to you, so don’t be hasty. Identify what your business needs, how much “wow” factor do you want in your presentation without sacrificing professionalism, and the advantages and disadvantages that come with any format you choose.