Slideshows vs. Video – A Showdown

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You have an important presentation to make tomorrow, and you’re stuck. You want your presentation to stand out, but you don’t know how to make it unique. Typically, when people think presentation, then automatically a slideshow, whether it be a Powerpoint, Slideshare or Prezi, is created, but you want to have something more interesting. You’ve hear that some people have started using video, but you’re not sure if it would be appropriate.

Both formats can be effective depending on the situation.

Slideshows are most effective when you have an audience that is unlikely to come and go during the course of your presentation. This way, you, the speaker, can use the slideshow as a starting point for your presentation and speak beyond what is written on each slide. Its even more effective, if used when presenting to people who are well informed in the topic so you can get into the details. Consider using a slideshow if giving webinars, workshops or when speaking at conferences. You can put a slideshow on websites, but without an audio to go with it, individuals may lose interest quickly.

Video on the other hand, allows for general overviews of topics. It can explain concepts quickly, using visuals and movement. You can tell a story using video – something that people can relate to. Consider using videos to grab people’s attention on your website. With the internet changing and more and more mobile users, its more likely that people will watch a video rather than flip through a presentation. It doesn’t have to be complicated either. Computers come pre-installed with video editing software to get you started.

Or you could have the best of both worlds. Use video in conjunction with a slideshow. Start your presentation with an introductory video explaining the basics before going in depth. Mix in some video clips throughout your presentation for variety and to grab people’s attention.

Perhaps consider converting your slideshow into a video and adding a voiceover, as mentioned earlier. However, only use this option if you are not readily available to speak and explain what is happening on the screen. And ideal environment for this would be at trade shows where you may be busy talking to others passing your booth and can still have general information running in the background. Or you can put a video slideshow on your website as well.

When trying to decide between a slideshow or video, think about your audience and their needs. Consider where you will be presenting. With these answers you can decide which route is best for you. Or you can use our handy chart:

  • Dynamic and interesting
  • Grabs people’s attention and keeps it
  • You don’t need to be there to explain everything
  • Professional way of presenting your information
  • Keeps you organized
  • Can go into details
  • Difficult to go into details
  • Barriers in trying to make one
  • Boring and overdone
  • People can get lost in the details
Best used forWebsites, introduction of a topic, general overviewsWebinars, seminars, conferences. workshops

Do you use slideshows in your presentations? Have you considered using video to spice it up?