The medium is the message.

I have been to more than a few presentations where the presenter’s slides were undermining their message.  Like a presentation about a simple solution to a customer’s problem.  And then using slides that are so full of text, images, charts and graphs that they scream complexity at the audience.  Like a presentation about the advantages of thoughtful design where the slides aren’t thoughtfully designed.

Presenting an exciting and new innovation?  Then your slides have to look exciting and new (not just those words on the slides).  Talking about efficiency? The slides need to look efficient.  In fact, the whole presentation needs to be efficient. Your visuals can be message amplifiers, message killers or just neutral.

Using visuals that resonate with and amplify your message is all part of designing a memorable presentation.  Presentation design is about creating a positive, memorable audience experience. Everything you say or show needs to help your audience understand and remember your message.  If your slides are telling the opposite message to what you are trying to convey, that is confusing.  And confusing is never memorable.

Maybe Marshall McLuhan was right even about presentations,  the medium is the message.


Joe Pops


Thanks Gary for the idea.