Many clients have asked SOAP how we’re able to incorporate amazing animation into the presentations we create. “How do you do your animated PPT presentations, is it PowerPoint?” they ask. “Doesn’t look like PowerPoint.”
Well, in the matter of animation specifically, the answer is yes. PowerPoint is the animation tool we use, but prior to animating, we design most of the Visuals first in Photoshop. Then we use PowerPoint to animate the elements or the layers.
Most of our “sophisticated” animations actually result from a simple fade animation effect. What makes the result sophisticated, though, is that we design each layer as a stop-motion image, so when the slides are animated one after the other the result looks like a motion picture.
Most of the time, though, the most important slides in a presentation won’t be the fancier, animated ones. Instead, they will be the slides that help the audience to follow the flow, the story being told. The most important thing to know about animation is that it guides the audience’s eyes, and as a result guides the audience as to what should be looked at first, second, etc., so as to ultimately drive understanding.
Here are some examples from Animated PPT Presentations:(You can see these examples in the video linked below.)
1- Introducing ideas – Animate the introduced elements one at a time so that the audience can pay attention exclusively to what you’re presenting at any given moment.
2- Flow – Animate each element one step at a time. Instead of showing the steps of a process flow all at once, introduce the steps one-by-one, so the audience can follow the sequence instead of having to figure out where to look first.
3- Use motion paths to help convey your message visually.
4- Tables – Build them up. First show columns, then titles (or vice-versa), so when you add the data, the audience has already digested the variables you’re presenting and will be able to interpret the information, instead of just staring at a mass of raw data.
5- Tables and screenshots – Highlight the important information. Whenever facing a busy screen or slide, a viewer tends to lose focus. If you guide the audience through the exact information you want to be seen, it becomes much easier for the audience to follow the flow.
6- Layers – Build up layers to create a “stop-motion” type of animation. This effect attracts attention and lends a nice movement to a presentation. It’s a simple fade animation with layers. What makes it special is that we create the Visuals in Photoshop and use many layers to build the animation. So we’re in effect designing the visuals, then layering them one on the other. The result is an animation that looks like a moving picture.
Remember: Nobody buys an idea or product he/she doesn’t understand perfectly. So whenever you’re trying to convey an animated message, the MOST important thing about animation is knowing HOW to use it to send your message in the most digestible and informative way possible. If you do this, the audience will follow every step of your explanation and arrive with you at your conclusions.