Five young business people applauding

Putting life in your presentations

One of my biggest recommendations to clients is to refresh their view of PowerPoint. Too often it is used as a speech-writing tool. The result is the text heavy slides that hypnotise the presenter as they read EVERY word that is on the slide.


You know the presentations I’m referring to. They are traditional death by PowerPoint. Text laden slides read in a monotone voice by a presenter who is devoid of enthusiasm for the topic they are presenting.


What’s the cure?


Well, there’s no silver bullet I’m afraid. The problem needs tackling from different angles. Any public speaker must hone and polish their delivery skills. But they must also ensure their PowerPoint presentations are aids – which means reducing the text on the screen as much as possible.


I’m not going to give you silly rules such as seven words per bullet point and only four bullets per slide. There is no one size fits all rule that will work! What I am going to give you is the advice to use images in your slides. These create an emotional appeal to your audience and they naturally say far more than any number of words in a bullet point ever could!


The challenge is where to get quality images… Well there are several sources



PowerPoint has moved beyond the cheap and nasty clip art images (although they are still there). Within PowerPoint they now provide high quality images sourced from iStockPhoto for you to utilise. These are professional grade pictures for free.


Google Images

There are SOME Google images you can utilise. However there are copyright considerations and often there are quality issues. What do I mean? Firstly, with copyright you need to perform an advanced Google search for images that allow others to reuse them before you save them into your PowerPoint presentation.


With regards to the size and quality many images are intentionally small on the web and are not intended to be scaled to the larger size required to be displayed on a presentation. The result is often the pixelated look on the image as it is displayed on the screen – not a good look!


Professional Photo sources

These provide a vast library of high quality images that you can use. The down side is that they cost. Depending upon where you purchase them from the cost can be as low as a dollar per photo to many dollars per picture. There are several photo libraries that I utilise. My favourite is Dollar Photo Club as it is (as the name implies) a dollar per photo. For ten dollars a month you get ten downloads. If you don’t want a monthly subscription then consider iStockPhoto. The cost per image is higher, but you can pay for only what you want to download.

Using images won’t make you an engaging presenter in isolation. BUT, it will give you a presentation that is more interesting and professional for your audience.


N.B. This morning I received an email with a source of FREE pictures on Hub Spot that you can download and utilise. You can find them here.



Mark is a public speaking mentor. He can help you develop dynamic public speaking skills so you can increase your influence and get more clients. Contact Mark today to find out more about his mentoring packages


Mark Kyte
Mark Kyte is a public speaking mentor and founder of the Public Speaking Skills Academy. Mark loves helping clients achieve dynamic results that help them increase their influence and get more clients. Read more of his blog and if you like what you see check out the mentoring programs.