Creative Presentation Ideas

Presentation Magazine’s readers provide their top tips on how to liven up a dull presentation.


I have to do a presentation for my college professional guest services class. There are 4 people in my group including myself. The presentation has to be exactly 20 minutes, and we have to formally review and evaluate a restaurant. We were thinking of PowerPoint because it is easily controlled but it can be boring and unoriginal. We were also thinking of doing a skit but that can sometimes be unpredictable and childish. Can you give us any unique and memorable ideas? Or any ways to improve a PowerPoint presentation to make it interesting?



A couple of pointers. Firstly on timing. The secret is to rehearse the presentation. If you rehearse out loud in front of the group – ideally four times – and time yourself you will be able to get your timing right. As you do your rehearsals you will see how it is working and where time is being lost.

The secret of making PowerPoint better is to use images. Images are five times more memorable than bullet points – so I would certainly avoid using bullet points.

If you want to bring in a theme then an idea may be to use one of the celebrity TV chefs. For example, theme it like Gordon Ramsey’s Hell’s Kitchen or Jamie Oliver’s School Dinners.


There are a couple of techniques. A ‘Top 10’ countdown could give you an idea, to count down to your Number 1 point. You could also do “10 tips in 10 minutes” You could do this as a timed presentation. You could face a clock towards the audience and get them to count down the minutes. This works best if you are well rehearsed.


If you want to capture your audience and make a very memorable presentation you must concentrate on your speech, body language and behaviour. Slides are not for reading, they are only to help remind you what you are talking about.

To make a more creative presentation, you could use some kind of remote device. I use my PocketPc to control presentations and it is very effective. When I want to highlight something – I just write it with my pencil on the PocketPc screen and these drawings are immediately displayed on screen! Many times members of my audience have asked me what I use to make this kind of presentation.


Since there are four members in your group, you can split up the topic into four main sub-topics. For example, in case of the restaurant, the sub-topics could be the service, the food, interiors, and the cost. Let each of the four take equal time and present the review by using graphs and statistics.

The golden rule is never to read out anything from the slide. Do most of the talking all by yourselves. Just show pictures and diagrams on the slide. This way, the overall presentation will look formal and will also be easier to create using PowerPoint.


This is going to sound like cold water but it’s important you all remember that the presentations are a means, not an end. I train people in making better business presentations and my wife’s a teacher. I can assure you that the reason you’re making these presentations is not because the presentations are important (per se) as you think they are. If teachers/lecturers/professors give you a research topic which finishes with a presentation remember that the presentation isn’t the important bit… it’s just there to finish off the topic with a bang and to get you to formulate your thinking clearly.

The important bit is doing the research and learning your topic!


As an option why don’t you break your presentation up into a menu style.

Starters: Background, objectives.
Main course: Content, review, research results.
Dessert: results analysis, conclusion.

You could even have questions as ‘after dinner drinks’. Design the layout of your slides to look like a menu. If you really wanted to theme it, you could deliver it as a waiter/waitress. A bit off the wall. But then off-the-wall presentations are often the most memorable.

Matthew Brown


Published On: 13th Dec 2010

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  1. A few good websites to bring something new to your presentatation are prezzi, and Wordle,they are both good websites. Good luck.

    Anonymous 17 Feb at 11:20 am
  2. i need a simple topic for a beginner get any ideas

    abbi 7 Feb at 11:19 pm