Ever tweeted? Then you know how to keep your slides succinct and to the point!
Do the Twitter test: could your slides be tweeted?
What does Twitter have to do with your PowerPoint slides? Can you learn about effective communication from Twitter?
Yes, you can. Twitter has just about perfected the art of brevity. And your perfect slide convinces by being succinct and to the point. How does it work? With the Twitter transfer:
Rule number 1: Message in 140 characters
Twitter allows you, by definition, to include only 140 characters in your message.
And stop! That was exactly 140 characters long. Twitter’s limit of 140 characters forces you to focus on what’s most important. Slides work in a similar way. So reduce complex subject matter down to its essential components. Then your audience understands quickly and can follow you. Of course, further details are often required in order to fully elucidate a topic, but learn from Twitter how to encapsulate your core message.
Rule number 2: One message at a time
A short Twitter message disciplines you to make one point at a time. Try making more in just 140 characters. It’s not easy to do and is usually difficult for the reader to understand. Remember this when making your slides, and keep to one message per slide. The slide title should exactly reflect your message – like a Tweet. Then everyone knows straight away what it’s all about. Use the rest of the slide to support your statement. Keeping to the point.
Rule number 3: Visualization helps
User statistics have shown that messages with a picture attached are circulated more widely and more often read than text-only messages. This shows how important an image is in making your point. The same applies to PowerPoint slides: graphics and images relevant to your message make it more noticeable and convincing to your audience. They pay attention, understand better and remember more easily.
Now do the mental Twitter test: ask yourself if your slides are succinct enough to tweet. Well?