The importance of visual storytelling in presentations (+ effective tips to consider)
Slidepeak / Blog / The importance of visual storytelling in presentations (+ effective tips to consider)

The importance of visual storytelling in presentations (+ effective tips to consider)

One of the most compelling and memorable ways to communicate the value of your business/product/service to anyone is through a medium called visual storytelling in PowerPoint. We’ll not teach you how to write a script. We want to provide an understanding of how you can tell your personal story without expensive tools and media.

Nevertheless, you’ll need attractive and compelling storytelling slides. You can create them by yourself or hire a professional agency for custom PowerPoint slides that captivate, motivate, or do whatever you need them to do.

visual storytelling in presentations

How to tell a story in a presentation?

1. Follow a typical structure

Stories have three acts:

  • Exposition (the given circumstances, the time, the setting, the place);
  • Conflict;
  • Resolution.

2. An entire story should be designed to serve the end

The resolution needs to be worth waiting for. It should build the complete picture with both words and slides. The last slides should complement the previous ones, and no disharmony is acceptable.

If you have tons of exposition and a bright conflict, your exposition should be like “wow” and not like “meh.”

3. Visuals must follow your speech and vice versa

Visual storytelling techniques can be highly effective in conveying information, engaging your audience, and creating an emotional connection. If you want to develop wonder and suspense, the main storytelling technique for your presentation is to align your visuals with the story. Do not add inappropriate pictures or photos, creating chaos in the audience’s mind. Help them to understand it and like it.

Now that you know the basics, let’s move on to the top tips on how to use storytelling in presentations.

17 tips for an awesome visual storytelling presentation

Here are some of the most effective tips to enhance your storytelling in presentation:

1. Know your audience

Understand the preferences, interests, and expectations of your audience. Tailor your visual elements to resonate with them.

2. Start with a strong narrative

Craft a compelling story that has a clear beginning, middle, and end. Your narrative should guide the audience through a journey, making the information memorable.

3. Use high-quality images

Images don’t always have to appear like islands on your custom Google slides with text boxes floating around them. If you access an HD image, blow it up and make it full-screen. Your audience would love to have an over-the-top visual big-screen experience. However, remember to place the text over it appropriately: don’t put words above image objects.

Use an image that bleeds off your slides and puts your audience into the story scene.

4. Make sure your design is consistent

Maintain a consistent design theme throughout your presentation. This includes fonts, colors, and layout. Consistency helps in creating a cohesive and visually appealing presentation.

5. Limit text

Avoid information overload. Use concise text and let visuals convey the main points. People tend to remember information better when it is presented visually.

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6. Utilize infographics

Convert complex data into easily digestible infographics. Infographics are visually appealing and can convey a lot of information in a condensed format.

7. Storyboard your presentation

Plan the flow of your presentation by creating a storyboard. This helps in organizing your content in a logical sequence and ensures a smooth transition between slides.

8. Incorporate storyboard techniques

Use storytelling business presentation techniques like the hero’s journey or a problem-solution approach to structure your narrative. These techniques can make your story more engaging and relatable.

9. Add interactive elements

Integrate interactive elements like clickable buttons, quizzes, or polls. This not only adds an interactive dimension but also keeps the audience actively involved.

10. Keep timing in mind

Time your presentation to ensure it fits within the allotted time. This helps in maintaining the flow and prevents rushing through important points.

11. Aim for visual consistency

Ensure that the visual style of your presentation aligns with your brand or personal style. Consistency in visuals helps in reinforcing your message.

12. Use visual metaphors

Incorporate visual metaphors to enhance understanding. Analogies and metaphors can make complex concepts more relatable and easier to grasp.

13. Tell personal stories

Sharing personal anecdotes or stories can make your presentation more human and relatable. It adds a personal touch and helps in building a connection with the audience.

14. Consider accessibility

Ensure the visuals used throughout your storytelling PowerPoint presentation are accessible to all. Use high contrast for text, provide alternative text for images, and make sure your design is readable for those with visual impairments.

15. Analyze feedback and iterate

Seek feedback from friends or teammates and be willing to iterate. Continuous improvement is key to delivering effective visual storytelling presentations.

16. Watch out for those eyes

The eye gaze that looks directly at their audience has the power to capture the attention and hold onto it. But here, the problem arises. You would most likely add photos if you’re delivering storytelling presentation slides about yourself or your company product/services.

Putting an image where the subject looks directly at your audience is a mistake, and you’ll risk losing their attention. Putting a person with the side gaze is correct ⎼ it will not distract the audience from looking at you and the message itself. Cool, isn’t it?

17. Use those eyes to persuade

This time, we will flip the previous advice and use those eyes to our advantage. If you need to persuade people, spark action, or make them buy a product, you should use those eyes to your advantage to make profitable storytelling in a business presentation. For example, you want to evoke empathy in your visual storytelling to sell services. Put an image of real people who started your company and led it to success. It will help build a connection between the company and the audience.

Remember, your main goal is not just to present information but to create a memorable and impactful experience for your audience, so use the above presentation storytelling techniques to your advantage and PRACTICE, PRACTICE, and PRACTICE.

Main takeaway

Visual storytelling is crucial if you want to transmit information with the utmost impact. We are all visual creatures who tend to visualize stories heard and keep images in our heads that, most importantly, evoke various emotions. Information overloaded with plenty of numbers and official statements will engage a few (none, if speaking frankly). Therefore, your task is to create a story that captivates by details, informs by facts, and makes your audience want to collaborate.

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