Posts Tagged ‘PowerPoint’


Tuesday, October 6th, 2015 by Matt<

I’m sure like me you’ve seen the new iPhone 6s advert a whole bunch of times and Apple’s rather innovative (if slightly unbelievable) strapline of…


It’s a lovely line, if true.

And if I could think up a strapline to describe PowerPoint 16 it would be similar, but would read, “The only thing that’s changed is nothing”!

I tell a lie, the colour of PowerPoint is now a slightly deeper shade of orange.

If these sound like the bitter and twisted words of some pro Prezi, PowerPoint hater then you couldn’t be more wrong.  I absolutely love PowerPoint and particular PowerPoint 16. So if nothing’s changed, why do I love PowerPoint 16 so much?

Because it’s exactly the same as PowerPoint 13, which is an absolutely brilliant version of the worlds most used presentation tool.

So please don’t think for one moment that PowerPoint 16 isn’t good, because it’s great. It’s just not the progressive leap that PowerPoint 13 was from 2010.

Ok, so I’ve taken a good look around and there a few and I mean few new things!

Charts have had an upgrade with the introduction of 5 new creatively named graphs, including “Box and Whisker” (which I promise is not a form of cat food)…

Remember data tells a story and there is no point showing your audience an interesting nice new looking sunburst graph if all it does is confuse them. Whatever the story is in your data, make sure that it’s crystal clear to your audience!

The ability to add in clip-art has gone! Gone and hopefully never, ever to be seen again…


Tell me There’s a new box at the top of PowerPoint, that allows you to type into it, for example you could select an image and start typing “hyperlink” which would bring up the option to “Add a hyperlink” which is kind of handy.

This is more useful when the function you need is hidden away in the menus, so you could type “Align” instead of going to “Format” and then “Align”.

It’s not much of an improvement for accessing regular tools, as its best to keep links to these in a well organised “Quick Access Toolbar”.

But if it’s a function you know exists but don’t know where find it, then it will come in very handy.

I also think this is more for people with devices using Cortana, as using voice recognition will speed things up no end, compared to typing.

In terms of additional tools and functionality, that’s about all that’s new to PowerPoint 16.

So I guess the strapline should be, “The only things that’s changed is a couple of things!”.

The official strapline of Office 16 is actually…


The real changes to Office 16 are to its real time collaborated working environment…

The online videos that demonstrate this in Word look absolutely amazing, with 2 or more people logged into the same file, at the same time, typing as the page live updates in front of their very eyes.

Sadly, the PowerPoint experience really depends on how your organisation’s data is arranged.

At Eyeful we work like many others, we have an HQ with multiple users in different offices and users, along with individual team members who are field based, with us all accessing files from a central server, so true collaborative working would have been a game changer – sense the tone.

Myself and my designer colleague Lorna have recently upgraded to 2016 and thought we would put the real time collaboration through its paces…

Alas, when Lorna went onto the server and opened the same file as me, she got the age old error message:

“Matt Roper is working on [doc name]. Do you want to open a read-only copy in the meantime?” Great, not much collaborating going on here then!

After some researching and testing, we found by saving the file onto our corporate OneDrive account, we could both open and edit the file in PowerPoint at the same time.

The collaborative experience was quite clunky though. If I made a change, Lorna could only see it if I saved the file. She would then receive a notification in a tiny grey box that an updated version was available.

Updates Avail

We took our stroll through the virtual collaborative working arena into the cloud and things got a little better.

By collaborating in the cloud based PowerPoint App, we started to see changes happening in real time, great, but…

Unfortunately the solution was also the problem…

You see the online version of PowerPoint is and, how can I put this gently, RUBBISH!

It lacks so many features, it doesn’t even have the most basic of tools such as “Align”. How can anybody create a new presentation without the ability to align objects and keep things looking consistent and neat?

The PowerPoint App is better for making small text and image changes, it’s simply not cut out for designing and creating proper presentations and thus has little to offer when it comes to live collaboration.

For us, the hassle of moving files back and forth between our server and Onedrive means this form of collaborative working is simply not an option.

Moving away from collaborative working, PowerPoint 16 is a really excellent piece of presentation creation software and if you would like to master it we have an excellent course to support you, it’s just not the leap and bounds jump we got from Office 10 to Office 13, nor the truly collaborative working environment that Microsoft are promising.

Our verdict is if you have PowerPoint 2013, it’s probably not worth upgrading.

If you have PowerPoint 2010 or older, 2016 is a must have presentation creation tool, but when it comes to true collaborative working, it really isn’t as good as what Microsoft are suggesting…

So when it comes to PowerPoint and collaborative working, please do insert your own word to compete the strapline…


And let us know your thoughts once you’ve tried out the latest version of PowerPoint…

The First Step To A World Beating Presentation

Friday, September 25th, 2015 by Matt<

It’s such a terrible feeling when you’re stood in front of your audience and things just aren’t going well, you get that knot in your stomach, your palms go sweaty and from nowhere a stutter appears.

It’s so frustrating when you genuinely know your stuff, but for some unknown reason, you just can’t get your audience to understand that you are genuinely trying to help them. That’s one kind of awful presentation experience.

But there’s an even worse one…

Where the presentation goes great, but for some illogical reason the audience isn’t interested in following your call to action.

Where did you go so wrong?

Well, this is where Eyeful can help, we offer a completely free Presentation Healthcheck Service.

All you need to do is email us your presentation and one of our expert presentation consultants will give you a call back to get the full picture of what you’re trying to achieve.

They will then fully review your slides and figure out where your presentation isn’t working as well as it could and provide you with invaluable feedback to take your presentation to the next level.

The next level being where your presentation’s key messages flow effortlessly, visuals look impressive and you stand head and shoulders above your competition.

Getting your Presentation Healthchecked won’t cost you a dime, so what are you waiting for? Just send your presentation over and we’ll get to work on suggesting how to make it the very best it can be…


Thursday, September 17th, 2015 by Matt<

During our numerous activities, such as presentation training, live webinars or even articles on this very blog, there is one particular question we get asked all the time…

Where can I get good stock images and graphics from?

rsz_1graphics_picThis is because we are always advising our customers on how to strengthen their presentation messages, how to make that slide or that message more easily digested and remembered by the audience.

Strong imagery is a great way to connect with your audience, using the right picture can set the tone and emotion of the presentation and likewise using the wrong imagery can harm this communication…

“Well-chosen images not only help demonstrate a point, they lock it into your audience’s psyche. The visual is often the key to them remembering and being able to share/act on your message; it acts as the synapse to recall.” Eyeful’s founder Simon Morton, The Presentation Lab

Images and graphics are a key building block in all presentations, but where do you get good ones?

When it comes to sourcing images, google images is NOT the best place to go due to the possibility of copyright infringement.

You don’t need to rely on search engine websites either, there are numerous free and paid websites out there with great quality imagery.

To save you from trawling around the web, we’ve pulled together a few of our favourites in a rather useful stock image guide, which we’ve broken into those that are free and those you have to pay for…


Don’t forget to bookmark the page for future reference and to vote for the site you think is most useful…

8 Awesome Innovation Designs

Wednesday, August 19th, 2015 by Matt<

It’s that time of year again, where the Eyeful design team proudly unleash their innovation projects to the world!

Over the past couple of months, every ounce of downtime they’ve had, has seen them get their heads down and work on their individual pieces ready for this moment.

The brief was to take a piece of audio from a movie, book, story or a poem and to create a visual version.

And boy have they delivered… prepare to be wowed and amazed at what can only be described as ‘visual masterpieces’.

All 8 are packaged up below for you to peruse, share and save for future inspiration.

Enjoy and don’t forget to vote for your favourite…



Tech Season – The Internet is Set to Ruin Your Next Presentation

Thursday, July 30th, 2015 by Simon<

I love a spot of innovation now and again.

For example, I’m currently relishing the fact that Apple’s new iTunes service means that the cost of feeding my habit for new music has dramatically reduced.  I’m forever grateful that my car will beep at me whenever I consider going over the speed limit.  Oh, and what would I do without the technical wonder that is Evernote?

Technology is ruddy marvellous, isn’t it?

Yet sometimes innovation can go too far.  It can prompt behaviours that simply do us mere mortals no favours whatsoever.  For example take the forthcoming version of PowerPoint which now includes a Bing powered fact checker.  Yep…you heard that right.  Your presentation software of choice will review your slide content, stroke it’s silicon chin and then tell you if you’ve got it correct.  The name of this new feature is Insights.


I’m sorry but this has to stop.

Trite though this may sound, presentations are about people.  In their raw form, they are about people communicating messages, facts and opinion to prompt an action from their audience (who, coincidentally, also happen to be people).  The resulting action might be understanding, could be recognition of your point of view or the act of signing on the dotted line…whatever the end goal, it starts with communication and connection from one person to another.

My fear is that Insights is a big step back down a rocky road we’ve trodden before.  Remember that widely vilified character Clippy?  People hated Clippy – like an unwelcome party guest, he popped up when you least expected it and proceeded to sit in the background, nagging and interrupting like some kind of technological tinnitus.

Of course, it wasn’t just Clippy we had to contend with.  Back in the day, PowerPoint came preloaded with story structures to help you with all manner of presentation scenarios, from Building a Business Case through to Sales Meetings.  No doubt these ideas were well intentioned when on the drawing board but the reality was that it prompted millions of people to stop thinking and start typing as soon as they entered ‘presentation mode’.

Brains immediately started to disengage as soon as the PowerPoint icon was double-clicked and pre-loaded pointers were slavishly followed.

We all know that Death by PowerPoint has absolutely nothing to do with the software and everything to do with the way people use it.

Make no mistake, powerful presentations that resonate with audiences require smart thinking and hard work – quite frankly, Clippy and pre-built story structures are the antithesis to the required levels of clarity and quality of thought.

So back to my rising sense of panic that technology is pushing us back into the bad habits of old.  Like Clippy and pre-built story structures, I have no doubt someone somewhere within Microsoft has the very best of intentions with Insights.

The issue is that by letting the technology take the strain, we’re taking the thinking, creativity and audience connection out of presentation development…and that’s a bad thing.  A very bad thing.

The ugly truth is that creating great presentations requires hard work, deep thinking and a commitment to not cut corners.  For all their good intentions, the Insights function within PowerPoint has just made it easier for potentially great presentations to fall back into the trap of ‘autopilot drivel’…and when this happens, nobody wins.

Tech Season – The Presentation Landscape Scenario #2: An Educational Presentation

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015 by Matt<

We continue Tech Season this week with a look at a second presentation scenario where you could use the presentation landscape to your advantage when planning and preparing for your event.

Scenario #2: An Educational Presentation (CPD Or Training)


The first thing to do is to look at the outer ring and consider the environment you are presenting in.

In this instance the presentation is taking place in a classroom environment, to an audience of between 10-30 people who ideally the presenter or trainer would want to interact with, to support their learning.

So in the outer segment you would be sitting in the Interactive segment.

Then working inwards, you can choose from the relevant presentation delivery tools and choose the best one for your specific audience.

You could also consider a blended presenting approach. This is where you would create elements of your presentation in different formats, for example you might start off the presentation using a traditional linear PowerPoint before moving to a Flipchart to note interactions from the audience.

You could also consider using an interactive PowerPoint presentation. This is where the presentation can be set up with custom shows and hyperlinks and work a little like a website. The benefit here in a training environment is it allows for interactivity with the audience, perhaps asking someone to answer a question, to which you click on the answer and ‘correct’ or ‘incorrect’ is displayed.

Your training could also be supported with ELearning material. This is where you would add voiceover or a video presenter to your presentation material and convert this to a web format.

The benefit here being your audience can leave the training, but dip back into an online version later to refresh their memory or possibly take online quiz or test, the results of which would then be emailed back to the presenter/trainer for marking or feedback.

So, now you have some food for thought on what your final output could be, it’s time to decide what it will and plan it out. Once you’ve done this the software and tools required pretty much choose themselves.

Typical presentation tools in this interactive area are PowerPoint, Whiteboard and Web Presentation.

If you have any questions on how best to tackle any of the above, please feel free to ASK MATT! Just drop me a message at the bottom of this blog post and I’ll get back to you.

Or if you or a colleague will be giving a CPD presentation or delivering training in the future, be sure to give us a call on 0845 056 8528 when the time comes.

Tech Season – The Presentation Landscape Scenario #1

Thursday, July 2nd, 2015 by Matt<

In last week’s Tech Season we explored the fascinating concept that is the Presentation Landscape.

To recap, the Landscape can actually be used as a rather handy tool to help you give your audience and end presentation environment some well needed due care and attention.

And to put this into context we’ve created three differing presentation scenarios to show how you could use the landscape when preparing presentations.


Scenario 1: A Large Corporate Event Presentation

The first thing to do is to look at the outer ring and consider the environment you are presenting in.

In this instance the presentation is taking place in a large auditorium, to an audience of hundreds of people with little audience interaction.

So in the outer segment you would be clearly sitting in the Formal segment.

Then working inwards, you can choose from the relevant presentation delivery tools and choose the best one for your specific audience.

For example, a Large Screen would be the right option to deliver to a large audience.

Now you know what the final output is you can easily choose the best tool to create your supporting visuals with.

Typical presentation tools in this formal area are PowerPoint, Prezi, or Keynote – with PowerPoint being the most likely choice.

One thing to always remember if you’re creating PowerPoint slides for a large event, the AV company running the stage will probably be running the presentations in 16×9 format – but you never know, so always check before creating any presentation collateral.

Then make sure that everyone in your company who is responsible for creating slides has been briefed to create them in the same ratio and using the same template.

The last thing you want to be doing right before a large event is trying to convert everybody’s slides into the same ratio and template.

If you need any help with planning your presentations for a large event, please do just give us a call.

We are well versed in pulling together multiple presentations into one large, visually stunning, perfectly consistent and formatted presentation.

In fact you could say, Eyeful are the aspirin to your event headache!

We’ll have another presentation scenario example soon and stand by for more Tech Season articles.

If in the meantime you have a presentation to give and feel some expert advice may be in order, then just give us a ring on 0845 056 8528.

Tech Season – The Presentation Landscape

Monday, June 22nd, 2015 by Matt<

In this week’s Tech Season we look at a concept called the Presentation Landscape.

The Presentation Landscape is a fascinating concept that Eyeful’s founder Simon Morton came up with after spending many years working with customers and helping them to create more effective presentations.

It is a concept I absolutely love because it un-muddies the waters around presentations and the technology used to either create or deliver them.

And that is an important distinction to make here. The technology you use to create your presentation will not necessarily be the technology used to deliver it.


So, where do you start?

Newsflash – Presentations do not start by opening up PowerPoint. Those that do, are the presentations you hate giving and hate receiving even more.

The technology that would be used to create and deliver the end presentation is not where a presentation begins. It’s not an afterthought but a consideration for further down the line.

So you need to put the tech on hold and think long and hard about your audience, your message and your content.

The creation sequence is in 4 stages:


Let’s assume you have read The Presentation Lab book, or at least our recent Story Season and thus you have considered your audience and worked out your message and story you intend to deliver.

If this isn’t clear to you, hold at this point and talk to Eyeful – our consultants are presentation messaging experts.

After stages 1 & 2 are ready, you actually just for a moment need to jump ahead to stage 4 and consider your live presentation environment and situation.

Your presentation delivery will sit in either the formal, interactive or informal area of the presentation landscape and it’s this which defines what the software and hardware options are.

Ignore this and you could end up presenting to ten people on a tablet device, sitting down over a coffee with a single prospect and pulling out a laptop and a projector. This isn’t just awkward – it’s plain daft.

So look at the landscape and choose the best and most relevant delivery software which then indicates what creation software you should use.

You can now get cracking on your support visuals.

So there you have it – the presentation landscape in all its glory. Use it wisely, keep it in a safe place and share it widely with colleagues who continually get their presentation technology confused.

If you haven’t already do follow this blog as we release more and more articles for tech season. This week we are releasing more blogs with examples of where differing presentation scenarios might sit on the landscape.

And next week we will start on the technology… there will be software reviews, technological tips and even a look at alternative technology such as using a phone to control PowerPoint.

And if you have any technical questions please feel free to ASK MATT! Just drop me a message at the bottom of this blog post and I’ll get back to you.

Or if you have a presentation to give and need some expert advice for any stage of the process just pick up the phone and give us a ring on 0845 056 8528.

Tech Season is Open

Friday, June 12th, 2015 by Matt<

After the excellent feedback we received for our recent blog series, Story Season, it got us thinking about the next logical thing to talk about that will help folk’s like you on the path to better more effective presentations…

And the next logical step? Technology!

PowerPoint has come in for some serious bashing over the years, phrases like ‘Death by PowerPoint’ and ‘PowerPoint is evil’ have been bandied about – some organisations have even banned PowerPoint.

I have my own thoughts on the small orange one and I’ll save these for later in Tech Season.

But if PowerPoint is so bad, let’s find out what else is out there and if there truly is a better option?

And that’s just talking about presentation production software, I’m not stopping there!

Over the next few months I’m going to be going into geek overdrive, I’ll be digging out new programs, apps, tools – any kind of technology that I can get my hands on that might help improve and make your presentation life a bit easier – from creating to standing up and presenting – I’ll thoroughly test them out and review their usefulness for you, I’m going to geek it up big time!


Tech Season kicks off properly next week with an introduction to the Presentation Landscape, which will give you a full understanding of where technology sits when it comes to presentations. It might sound like the be all and end all, but technology only plays one or two parts in the presentation process.

So keep an eye out for this one, or drop us a comment below and sign up to be alerted to new blogs, as this information you don’t want to miss. If you can’t wait for the next blog to decide which piece of tech you should be using for your presentation just give us a call, we’d love to talk to you.

The Best Presentation Training In The World?

Thursday, June 11th, 2015 by Liz<

You heard it here first…. Eyeful’s really rather exciting, new and improved Training offering is about to launch!

Today, I hit print on a document that’s been 18 months in the making – but with the Eyeful website going through a complete rebrand, I was tempted to hold fire on writing this blog until the site goes live.

But in true Eyeful style, I’m just way too excited about what I’ve got to share, to wait until then.

So here it is…

The Presentation Lab book was released to critical acclaim last year and this amazing piece of collateral was too good not to share in more ways, so we’ve used it to inspire our all new modular training offering.

The training we’ve been delivering for the last decade was good, it was working well and was delivering real impact for our customers.

The kind of feedback we received was positive…

“Strategic, Focused, Challenging, Thought Provoking, Inspirational”

These were the things we heard most, which of course made us happy, very happy in fact.

But as the saying goes, if you’re not moving forward, you’re moving backwards.

And the release of The Presentation Lab was just the impetus and direction we needed to start thinking and tinkering with our training packages.

And we spent a lot of time thinking. In the Labs, on the drive to and from work, at the weekends and on the odd sleepless night too.

And so, here it is, our new and improved modular approach to Presentation Training.


We’ve focused the training on 4 key areas.

Story Using Story to engage with your audiences.

Visuals Using Visuals to deliver results.

Delivery Tools Using the right Delivery Tools in the Right Way for maximum impact.

Bitesize 90 minute bitesize “lunch and learn” sessions.

Each subject area contains flexible modules that allow you to focus on the areas that you need the most, and not have to sit through a day’s worth of training just to get to that part.

The modules in each area compliment and strengthen each other, providing the most flexible approach to the training you receive.

We’ve painstakingly spent the last 18 months listening to your feedback and created a new offering in line with what you need.

We’ve put this program together with you in mind, we’ve looked at all types of training that’s out there, taken inspiration from the best ideas and mixed these in with our own methodologies, creating a blend of modules that will give presenters like you, the very best chance of presentation success.

Because we always want to deliver more to you. That’s just what we do, what we are in fact all about!

This is a very exciting time for Eyeful and if you think your team could benefit from seriously upping their game when it comes to creating presentations, then follow our blog and keep an eye out over the next week or so as we release more in-depth information around each of the subject areas.

If you just can’t wait and would like to book into the labs whilst we still have summer availability, then please do get in touch.

We would love to chat.