Did you watch Bethany deliver her webinar, “Slide Diets: Before & After Design Tricks to Slim Down your Content!:? It was lively and interactive, thanks to her great content and an engaged audience. We had so many great questions and not enough time to get to them all. In this “dishing” interview, Bethany answered many of your webinar questions and she also provided written answers for others.
More Q&A with Bethany Auck, Slide Rabbit
Convincing an unwilling client to reduce content and wordiness can be one of the most difficult challenges. Sometimes, it just can’t be done. Generally, success comes by sharing some of the thought behind the directive. There are a lot of great thinkers on the subject and their ideas are widely available in books and in quick videos on the internet. I particularly recommend the books by Garr Reynolds and Dr. Carmen Simon, but there are also great videos on YouTube. Of course, our blog Visual Sugar may have some ideas worth sharing.
Some of the slides have sections of ALL CAPS vs. proper case or lower case. When do you suggest to use ALL CAPS?
Many brands will have established guidelines on when and where you can use various text treatments. If you have a little more freedom, I suggest creating a text style hierarchy for your own reference as you begin to design. If “all caps” will be part of your hierarchy but isn’t a large part of the brand identity, make sure to use it sparingly only on the most important information. There aren’t many hard and fast rules in design, so use your judgment to create balance and visual order for your audience.
Any suggestions for when we are developing slides that need to have “screenshots”? An Example would be as we teach a new software program for clinical documentation.
Screenshots are a necessary evil for presentation developers. My first request to the client is usually to get me access to what will be screenshot. That way I can get in there and take hi-res or zoomed shots so they will be legible in presentations. I also mentioned the Mac tool, Paparazzi! on the webinar, which creates vector images of full pages that won’t deteriorate as you blow them up. As for how to use them in a presentation, go full screen and annotate on top for the easiest legibility. Frame into a laptop image (available on stock sites), if the content of the ’shot is less critical. If training on the software, consider launching a live, full-screen demo.
What would you suggest for densely detailed slides for decks that are printed vs. presented live?
Often slides have to do double duty. For detailed handout types slides, many of the same Slide Diets still principles apply, even if you
aren’t looking to remove content. Use visual hierarchy to guide the reader on what are main takeaways vs. detailed or granular supporting information. Consider separating information to separate slides so that the reader will be less visually overwhelmed. Hunt
for places to reduce redundancy – titles subtitles and body text can often be tightened. Remember, the less content on your slide, the greater percentage the audience will be able to remember.