Using quotes in PowerPoint presentation can be a powerful way to maximize impact and invoke an emotional response from your audience.
Whether you aim to inspire, provoke, or motivate, quotes must be chosen carefully and presented correctly if they are to have the desired effect on your audience.
Here are 5 tips for successfully using quotes in your PowerPoint presentation.
Tip #1: Find the right quote for your topic
Before you can even begin to think about how best to present your quote, you’ve got to find the right one. The best quotes are those from experts, authors, philosophers, famous and respected public figures, or industry leaders- someone who will bring an additional sense of credibility to your presentation.
Of course, their words should also be relevant to your subject in some way, either by topic, reflecting your message, or by proving a point you wish to make. It’s got to make sense and add value to your presentation. Don’t use a quote just because it’s clever or funny— like every element of your presentation, it’s got to have meaning.
If you don’t have a quote or a person in mind, there are plenty of websites where you can browse quotes by topic. Brainyquote.com, Quotegarden.com, and Thinkexist.com are all good resources and have a wide selection of quotes on every topic imaginable.
Tip #2: Did they really say that?
Once you’ve found the perfect quote, it’s a good idea just to double-check if the particular person actually said those words. All too often, a popular quote is attributed to the wrong person or they have been misquoted.
If you’ve found a great quote that is by ‘Anonymous’ or the author is unknown, it’s also good practice to double-check that too. With a little extra internet research, you should be able to verify who said what.
Also, if you can check the context of the quote- certain words may sound inspiring on their own but may have been uttered in a very contentious situation that could reflect badly on your presentation.
Tip #3: Cite quotes correctly
Whichever quote you decide to use and however you decide to present it, there is one thing you must be sure to do, and that gives proper citation. When you use any material, be it photos, graphics, data, or words from someone else in your PowerPoint presentation, you should cite the original creator or author.
Citing quotes in PowerPoint presentations is fairly straightforward. If the quote is directly from a book, you can include the title, author, page number or publisher in small font below the quote. So, when you are researching for quotes, make sure you also take note of the necessary information to save yourself a headache later!
If it’s from a historical source with no such details, you can simply provide the author’s name.
For help citing quotes (and other types of content) in your PowerPoint presentations, read this article here.
Tip #4: Keep it short and sweet
The best quotes for presentations are ones that aren’t overly long. Remember, you want to display them on a PowerPoint slide, so the font size has to be large enough for the people sitting at the back to read it comfortably.
If you have 10 lines of text, it would have to be pretty small to fit on the screen. Try to find quotes that are around 15-20 words, or if you really want to use a larger piece try to cut out any unnecessary sections with an ellipsis (…) to make it shorter.
Tip #5: Design your quote slide
You may want the words to speak for themselves, and have simple text on a plain background, white on dark, or dark on a light background, for example, to make it easy to read. But there are other ways to present the quote that look great and can add even more power to your PowerPoint presentation.
Here are a few design options for quote slides:
- Choose the most important words within the quote and emphasis them in bold, italics, in a color or change the size
- If the author is well-known, include a photo of them beside the text
- If the quote is descriptive of a certain issue, you can insert a relevant photo which heightens the impact
- Put the quote in a speech bubble
- Use dark photo as the PowerPoint background and insert a contrasting color text box to place your quote
Of course, there is no ‘best’ way to design your quote slide, it will depend on your topic, tone, and your audience, but this should set you on the right path!
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