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Scott Harvey discusses is it possible to be innovative with powerpoint?

Sometimes I think we hear the words "innovation" and "innovative" all too often.

Every QVC type sales tv channel present a host of innovative ground breaking products that are going to change the way you exercise, or transform your stomach into a finely tuned board that would give Rambo a run for his money. But if everything we see and are told is innovative then it's hard to understand why my pc still crashes just like it did 15 years ago? Back when it was running Windows 95 or 98 or something or some other prehistoric system.

Or how Microsoft Office 2010 still works the same it always has. I open a PowerPoint slide, I add some text, I press the SlideShow F5 key and you'd never know if it was made in PowerPoint 2010 or PowerPoint 97.

I have a cell phone now that it seems can do most everything except whenever I try to do anything more than answer a call or send an SMS text it decides to lock up and freeze. I remember the guy who sold it to me said it was the latest in innovation and cell phone technology, but I had my first cell back in 1995 and whilst it was about 10 times bigger and granted about 100 times heavier, it could do exactly the same thing as my ultra modern lightweight model. In truth I could theoretically do much more with my older model, for example if anyone tried attacked me on the subway on the way home I could probably knock them out cold with it.

So what is innovation? And more importantly what is innovation in our world of presentations and PowerPoint?

Presentation Article and Advice about Communicating Your Message

Is it possible to be innovative with PowerPoint?

Scott Harvey, Managing Director, The Impossible Media Group

Presentations trends don't equal innovation

I attend a lot of seminars and trade shows, and it seems every few years certain trends become popular and cycle through the presentations. Last year I remember it was the return of the black slide with one word. A presenter would go through a few slides in his presentation and then when coming to the end of the topic a black slide would appear with one key word on it like "FOCUS" or "PROFIT" and everyone would nod and say "FOCUS" or "PROFIT". But after sitting through several presentations audiences began to feel a bit robotic repeating single words like kindergarten children in a classroom. I remember in 2009, there were so many presenters revolting against PowerPoint and instead stood in front of their audiences and tried to get eye contact. This was the latest trend. PowerPoint was only distraction. A good presenter doesn't need distractions, the sound of his voice is enough to motivate any audience. Of course it's a problem if you're not Charlton Heston, or James Earl Jones and for the most part audiences got bored and tired quickly listening to all the "hmm's" and "errr's" as presenters struggled to remember what it is they were supposed to be talking about without any visual prompts.

Of course at the time, these as well as just about every other approach to using PowerPoint or not using PowerPoint and presenting has been heralded as "innovative" but in truth they are not. They are merely reflections of trend. When audiences tire of one approach of presenting, the presenter tries to be "innovative" and thinks, "OK then I will do my presentation this way and the audience will be engaged".

But most audience members have been around for a while and certainly any trend being heralded as innovative is quickly dismissed as a temporary revival carrying with it whatever bad experiences the audience had from the presentation approach in its previous circulation.

Who knows what innovation is anyway?

So the question remains, what is innovation in our world of presentations and PowerPoint?

For me at least, innovation is the ability to create success and be successful with something that has never been done before.

Wiki states simply, "The term innovation refers to a new way of doing something". Whilst the Online Dictionary sees innovation as "The act of introducing something new".

Of course there's no arguing what is innovation or perhaps even trying to find a new innovative way to explain innovation. There are plenty of business consultancy that claim to be leaders at that. So if we follow the idea of a new way of doing something and the act of introducing something new, then taking PowerPoint away for example from your presentation all together is most definitely not innovative. It may be considered gambling or perhaps speculative, but not innovative. Using an old presentation technique as a means to standout from other presenters is then perhaps at best contrast rather than innovation.

Which again not only leads us back to my original question, but perhaps adds an added dimension to it. Is it possible to create innovation with your presentation and PowerPoint?

Reinventing PowerPoint

Well, I believe it is. In fact, my belief is a view that is shared by many thousands of users around the world, and surprisingly enough, it all began as a simple idea and revolt to the very limitations of PowerPoint itself. But that idea has grown and materialized and manifested itself into perhaps the single strongest innovation in PowerPoint history.

What am I referring to? The ability to import, control and play back video behind PowerPoint slide content to create truly engaging PowerPoint presentations.

When I first tried the 123PPT Video Backgrounds Player and PowerPoint Add-In, my immediate reactions were those of QVC and the uni-bi-multi-lateral multi-purpose abdominal toning exerciser. The magnificent "all-in-one tool" that creates amazing results every time.

But much to my surprise I soon found my sarcasm misplaced. I say misplaced because the 123PPT Video Backgrounds Player and PowerPoint Add-In really does do something incredible to your PowerPoint presentations. It creates much more than innovation. It creates real motivation. Audience motivation. And you can see its impact immediately.

For years perhaps the greatest thorn in any Office users back has been the lack of development, tools and functions in PowerPoint. A slide is still a slide and a bullet is still a bullet. And whether your text fades in, flies in, runs off for half an hour, does a triple somersault and cartwheel before landing in perfect alignment to your other slide objects, it's still a bullet point and it's still a line of text.

Enter the 123PPT Video Backgrounds Studio

What is so ground breaking with the 123PPT Video Backgrounds Studio is that it takes your slide and transforms it from the static to the cinematic. From a still image to an incredible full screen full motion moving video that plays at 25 frames a second.

Your PowerPoint presentation is transformed from a collection of slides into a full screen video. In fact even a blank black slide with the word "FOCUS" on it, really does gain focus because it looks more like a tv or movie title than a PowerPoint slide.

In all my years as a presenter, I have never come across or used a PowerPoint add-in, plug-in, or macro which could lay claim to being innovative or providing presenters with real innovation.

Without doubt and without question the 123PPT Video Backgrounds Studio not only provides every presenter with a means to truly engage and motivate their audiences, but also make their content come alive and connect with audiences in a way that has never before been possible without the use of Flash or video editing software. Applications which for the most of us are far too complication and far too time confusing.

The ingenuity of the 123PPT Video Backgrounds Studio is that it allows you to create visually stunning results in the program that you know best. PowerPoint.

The irony of innovation

And there I was, only this morning, as I sat in my car driving to work, I heard an announcement on the radio for a new ground breaking diet supplement. I smiled as I sat there in traffic and thought to myself, if taking a pill to help lose weight is innovation then I think 123PPT has just reinvented the wheel. But then if someone could invent a wheel to help get me out of this traffic then they would get my attention, and they would make me sit up and they would get my focus as well. The irony being that they would probably need to use the 123PPT Video Backgrounds Studio to promote it anyway.
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