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4 Unexpected Uses for PowerPoint

27 FEB

Death by PowerPoint

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It’s not exactly cool to like PowerPoint.

It’s not new and sexy, and unfortunately, it’s picked up a bit of a bad rep. For many, PowerPoint has become synonymous with interminable screenfuls of bulleted text, copious use of ‘jazzy’ animations and - depending on your age - Clip Art.

Clip Art aside (I make no excuses for Clip Art) I want to step up and defend this reliable and versatile program.

That’s right, I’m coming out and saying it: I like PowerPoint.

Combine this software with a little creativity and skill and you can make practical, beautiful things. Yes, really.

What is it good for?

Firstly, and most obviously, it’s good for presentations. I’ve written before about making lovely presentations so I won’t gab on about it here. I will simply say that just because you’ve seen some crappy PowerPoints in the past, do not discount the software.

So what else can you do?

1. Video

Using PowerPoint’s animation tools you can create videos compatible with most browsers and video players.

Last year, I made a series of short, simple video clips sharing my top 5 presentation tips.

How did I do this? Easy. Follow this simple tutorial I went and made.

2. GIFs

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GIFs, ‘Jifs’, however you pronounce it, they’re everywhere. Although there is no shortage of wee looping videos on the internet, you may want to make your own. Well you can using, yes you guessed, our old pal PowerPoint. 

Here's an easy-to-follow tutorial from IT Blogger Tips.


3. Infographics

Want to make your own infographics? Don’t want to shell out for, or learn how to use, specialist graphic design software? Worry not, you can use your humble copy of PowerPoint to make attractive, shareable graphics.

PowerPoint’s flexible ‘drag and drop’ style interface is built for graphic design. From the Insert menu, you can create vector graphics from custom shapes, create charts and insert photos. You have full control over fonts, colours and your artboard size (just create a custom slide size in the Design tab).

You can save your slide as a PNG or JPEG, suitable for web uploads and shares.

The nice chaps at Hubspot have even created these free PowerPoint infographic templates to get you started.

 

4. Desktop Publishing

Now, if you have a full Office license, you’ll have Microsoft Publisher. And if you’re perfectly happy using Publisher then power to you. Carry on. Ignore this bit.

However, you can also use PowerPoint to create simple documents.

Explore the different page layouts available by clicking ‘Design’ > ‘Slide Size’ and looking through the drop down tab. Here you can also set custom sizes.

Different formats

 

Using PowerPoint’s design tools, you can easily create attractive and functional booklets, forms, flyers, certificates, and...anything really. Possibilities abound.

Finished documents can be sent directly to your printer from PowerPoint, or exported as PDFs for professional printing.

Give PowerPoint a chance

Forget that awful presentation you sat through at the last Managers’ Meeting. PowerPoint can do so much more.

This flexible, user-friendly software has a great deal of potential for those willing to invest the time and effort in learning to master it.

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Why not check out our other PowerPoint blogs: