As a consultant, you’re kinda selling ideas, advice, and expertise. And even though you’re not selling a product, you still need to worry about the packaging.
Imagine someone gives you something wrapped in an old yellow newspaper, you’ll definitely question the value of the gift. It might end up being an expensive gift after all, but now you already have a first impression, a bad one to say the least!
In the world of consulting, your presentation is your packaging, and it tells your client a lot about you and your firm, so an outstanding impression is what you should work for.
The following tips will help you offer your ideas in a high-quality consulting presentation that reflects well on your firm and impresses clients.
1. Create an intriguing introduction.
Your first slide might be the most important one. It decides how receptive your audience will be.
Don’t start with a recap about last year’s results or old information that your client already knows. This is important, but not here. Too soon? Too soon.
Open with a teaser about the most intriguing part of your presentation, and make sure it is clearly explained when you reach it later.
Here’s an example of a fake but good opening line:
“There’s just one factor that’s dragging down your profit margin, and it’s not hard to correct.”
2. Craft a compelling storyline.
Don’t throw results and numbers or paste random data in an inconsistent way. There needs to be an interesting storyline for the client to stay focused and actually understand what is going on.
Use one action title for each slide and a title for each section of slides. The client needs to understand what each part of the slide is talking about.
3. Pay attention to notation consistency.
Denote similar data the same way. Use the same currencies, symbols, or codes. If you start with USD, don’t turn Canadian midway.
4. Create an eye friendly view.
Don’t use the 4:3 standard slide aspect ratio, it has gotten really outdated. Use the 16:9 aspect ratio instead for a better slide view and more workspace.
Don’t use different font sizes for similar items.
Follow the principle of data-to-ink ratio. Show as much data as possible with the least amount of ink used.
If you have placed numbers above each bar in your chart, there’s no need for a y-axis at all!
Don’t randomly use background colors behind charts or texts if there’s no apparent need for that.
5. Make a balance between words and other visuals.
Adding background images to catch the eye will not be of real help. Everything you add needs to add more value and clarity to your presentation.
Use visual elements such as charts, graphs, and infographics. These help visual learners understand numbers and data better.
Being professional doesn’t mean filling up your slide with long black paragraphs! Use some humor to engage your audience. Sometimes a meme or a pop culture reference can make the idea easier and more acceptable to the mind.
6. Use high-quality visuals.
Create charts, graphs, diagram or frameworks using auxi.
Make sure to only use high-quality images. Pixelated photos can easily damage your presentation.
7. Align the items.
Center your content to the middle of the slide.
Make sure all items are inside the workspace.
Align rows to the left or right side of each other.
Make sure the vertical and horizontal spaces between items are equal.
8. Use logical data combinations.
If you have two charts on the same slide, they should be related to each other somehow. Don’t just throw your data on slides like you’re seasoning a salad.
Now I can’t help much regarding the point I’m about to mention, it’s more of your side of the work, but make sure your data is correct, logical, and well-expressed.
Don’t underestimate these tips, little things add up to give a full impression about the whole firm itself, so stay aware!