Top 5 Essential Microsoft Powerpoint Tips and Tricks

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Microsoft PowerPoint has revolutionized the delivery of presentations so much so, that it even has its own epidemic – ‘death by PowerPoint’.  This is not so much a result of using it to support presentation but relates to how people use it.  There can be no argument that if used correctly, PowerPoint can turn the most amateur of presentations into ones that are sleek, modern, and digitally useful.

Although PowerPoint training is recommended, here are some essential tips and tricks for anyone using PowerPoint 2010.

1. Broadcast your presentation

This 2010 feature enables you to share your presentation quickly and effectively with anyone no matter where they are.  It is an excellent aid to video conferencing or remote training as it updates in real time and can also be used in replacement to a projector.

It is a great tool which eradicates the need of using PowerPoint with another 3rd party software in order to share your presentation and is a move that is in-line with the digital world presentations are delivered nowadays.

2. Always forgetting to save?

Based on Microsoft Office’s autosave feature, the 2010 version now saves documents, presentations etc. automatically when you close them – even if you forgot to hit save.  This makes recovering work a lot easier than before and, lets you decide the frequency at which PowerPoint automatically saves.  It defaults to 10 minutes.

3. Running the presentation as a video

Previous versions of PowerPoint required a slightly long-winded way of running a presentation automatically without user interaction, namely in ‘kiosk’ mode. Now, you can ‘Create a Video’ of the presentation with set time for each slide to be displayed for.  Perhaps a later development will be to enable the user to control the length of time slides are shown on an individual basis.

4. Removing image backgrounds

PowerPoint 2007 enabled users to remove image backgrounds by setting the desired colour to transparent but, this didn’t always work so well when a background had more than one colour or even shade involved.  2010 has a tool which gives the user far more control with the ‘Remove Background’ button.  It allows you to control which parts to remove and which parts to keep before applying the change.

5. More Animation Options

The ease of which animations can be applied to PowerPoint in previous versions has always been arguable but, the 2010 version seems to make a conscious effort to provide more options.  The usual ready made animation options and triggers are still available but now, there is also the animation painter.  This is similar to the format painter which saves time from trying to recreate the same animation effects repeatedly.  You can also gain more control over animations using the timeline.

Bio – Hollie Miller

Hollie provides Microsoft Powerpoint training for Acuity Training. In her spare time she loves to go to the gym and dress making.

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