Do you know that using diagrams in your slides is not a luxury but a necessity to help your audience understand your message? Learn the real reason why you MUST use diagrams to hold your audience attention.
Here is a very important fact about how your audience understands information.
Your audience creates diagrams in their minds to put context to your words.
As humans we see things mentally to make sense of the words we hear.
To prove the point, I want you to go through the following puzzle and find the right answer, without using a pen and paper. The puzzle is:
Tony, Tom, Tim and Titus live on four different floors of a building.
- Tom lives one floor above Titus
- Tim lives two floors above Titus
- Tom lives two floors below Tony
Can you identify the floors on which each of the brothers live?
Please don’t be tempted to look at the answer below. Give it a real good try.
I want you to take a minute to quickly review the approach you used to solve the puzzle.
- Some of you may not have even tried, after reading the first 3 sentences. If you belong to this category, don’t feel bad. That is exactly how your audience reacts when you present your information in bullet points. They get overwhelmed and give up.
- If you belong to the group that persisted, you created a mental picture of 4 floors and started placing the 4 brothers based on the information provided.
This is how your mind would have organized the information:
So, the right order is:
Whether you like it or not, your mind visualized the information to understand the context of each sentence. The visualization may not have been as organized as the diagram above, but without visualization it is almost impossible to solve the puzzle.
That proves the claim we made earlier, which is…
Your audience visualizes your words to understand the context.
There is real science behind presenting visually.
What does this mean to you as a presenter?
If you want your audience to understand your information better, you should assist them in visualizing your ideas. You should present your information as diagrams, which show how your ideas are connected, instead of using just bullet points.
What kind of PowerPoint diagram should you use?
Use diagrams to show the relationship between objects instead of using pictures that illustrate the words.
Realize, your audience doesn’t visualize a suited business executive thinking seriously in an arm chair, when they think about a four step process. They want to figure out how the four steps are related. Help them make the connection with a diagram more like this:
Your diagrams need not look beautiful to enhance your audience understanding. Even a scribble on a flipchart will do the trick. But, good presentation graphics have a way of enhancing your professional image in the eyes of your audience.
That doesn’t mean you have to spend hours polishing your design skills to create beautiful diagrams.
Save your time by utilizing off-the-shelf PowerPoint Diagram packs:
Why waste your time creating diagrams when you can pick up professional looking visual diagrams off the shelf?
For example, these are diagrams from the Comprehensive All In One PowerPoint Bundle.
Your value per hour as a business professional is worth far more than the cost of the pack. The one-time investment can serve you for a lifetime.
The pack can inspire your thinking when you are stuck for ideas. When you go through the diagrams in the pack, you’ll get an idea of how to represent your concept visually.
Help your audience to understand your information better and retain your message longer by using PowerPoint diagrams in your presentations. Realize that using visual diagrams is not a luxury but a necessity, if you want your presentation to be effective.
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