In the 25 years since its launch, PowerPoint has become the most popular presentation aid, holding 95% of the presentation software market. Nowadays, most presentations are given with PowerPoint or similar digital supports.
Despite their popularity, these presentations have also become synonymous with repetition and boredom. We’ve gotten used to the same screens with pie charts, graphs and carefully bullet pointed information. So much so that Microsoft has been making a significant effort to improve their software and has recently added a moving object functionality.
What many people don’t consider is that presentations don’t have to be given with the aid of technology. “Analog” supports can be a great way to capture the audience’s attention simply because they have become so unusual. In addition, flip charts and handouts remove any potential technical difficulties which could waste precious business time.
Print can be the winning element of a business presentation to help your audience stay focussed. Here’s how:
Business cards are essential for personal networking
While many parts of doing business can be replaced by their digital alternatives, business cards are still important and, according to Entrepreneur, will not be replaced any time soon. Giving contact information digitally, especially after a face to face meeting, can be very impersonal. In addition, business cards show that the speaker is prepared and interested in doing business.
It is also important to remember that a well designed business card gives an opportunity to make a lasting impression of a company’s brand. Poster and business card printer Ro-Am Posters sees business cards as an excellent means to create brand awareness because they might remind a client of a company more powerfully after a meeting or presentation.
Lights on and printed text help attention
According to a study from the University of Washington, any audience’s attention will “plummet to near zero” as quickly as 9 minutes and 59 seconds into a presentation.
If your print presentation is not placed on a backlit screen, the lights must be kept on. This might seem like a small difference, but it will make audience members less likely to slump in their chairs while the speaker delivers a presentation.
A 2013 study showed that reading on paper makes a significant difference in comprehension. When reading from a screen, information isn’t registered as efficiently. This means that PowerPoint presentations might leave no trace in the audience’s memory in a matter of minutes while print ingrains itself for later recall.
Flip charts and handouts can help keep a presentation concise
Giving out handouts can also be a precious aid during a presentation: conveying a lot of data clearly can be hard, and the audience may struggle to remember the content of a data-heavy presentation.
Handouts should contain an in-depth look at what was just skimmed through in PowerPoint slides or flip chart pages. Experts at the University of Leicester say that it is usually better to give out handouts after a presentation, so that clients can focus on what is being said and have a reminder later.