Sticky Presentations bite size article: Add a touch of flavour to your presentation slides using simple infographic elements

Add a touch of flavour to your presentation slides using simple infographic elements

Jul 08, 2018

Infographic elements—they add a nice touch to spice up the presentation slides bringing life to information. They are simple yet effective, and easily available or can be created without much effort. Try using infographic elements in some of your slides and see the visual impact they bring to your presentations.

Data and lengthy text slides can be quite dry as a method to communicate information during a presentation. This may be worse when many of your slides are in similar formats developed using standard templates. These data heavy slides will bore your audience and can easily put them to sleep. Chances are that we sometimes were not aware of the torture we had put our audience through, by showing too much data and texts in our slides.

Raw data and information from reports/documents are not suitable when used for presentation slides. Too much content for reading is not good specifically in presentation slides.

Fig.1—This slide has too much text. It is difficult to understand and not suitable to use as a presentation slide.

No one likes to look at boring information that requires them to read or decipher to achieve understanding. Many would actually prefer looking at more visual and simplified content. Simplified content can be made more interesting by adding visual elements to the slide. Fortunately, the presentation softwares (PowerPoint or Keynote) that most of us use can easily add infographic elements making our slides more visual.

Fig.2—This is a good text only slide, focused with a clear message.

We can either use the inbuilt software's objects (infographic elements) library or create our own using standard shapes and lines. Adding suitable infographic elements that would represent a number or some keywords can enhance visual understanding and makes the slide visually more exciting.

Let's start with something really simple—an infographic element of a person. We can build one on our own using multiple standard shapes or insert one from the infographic element library.

To build one on our own.

  1. Combine a Circle shape and 2 rounded Rectangle shapes to form the infographic element of a person.
  2. Fill all the 3 shapes with a colour of your choice.
  3. Remove the outlines, and group all the 3 shapes together.

Next, we'll build a clock that shows 11:45am.

  1. We need a Circle and 2 rounded Rectangle shapes for the clock.
  2. Adjust the rounded Rectangles to form the Hour and Minute hands of the clock.
  3. Fill the Circle with a colour.
  4. Fill the Hour and Minute hands with white.
  5. Remove outline for all the shapes.
  6. Group all the 3 shapes together.

Once we have created the required elements, we can duplicate them, make them different colours, and resize them to fit our purpose.

Compare the final slide below in Fig.3 (enhanced with infographic elements) with the one above in Fig.2 (without infographic elements). We can be sure that our audience will prefer to see the one enhanced with infographic elements.

Fig.3—Adding infographic elements to the original text only content gave this slide an interesting visual impact making it more exciting.

Give infographic elements a try the next time you create your presentation slides. It's not too difficult and will get easier after a while.


The author, ANG Tian Teck is a coach, trainer, and speaker, specialising in inspiring organisations and business leaders to deliver high impact presentations. He has coached, trained, and infected over 10,000 individuals across the region with his Amazing Sticky Presentations® approach. Tian Teck is also the author of two books, Sticky Presentations®, and Spinning I.D.E.A.S.

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