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Using Props and Visual Aids in Your Presentation

Using Props and Visual Aids in Your Presentation
Using Props and Visual Aids in Your Presentation

How can you effectively use a prop or visual aid in your presentation? If you are going to use props in your presentation, make sure you have a very good reason to do so. In general, there are three great reasons why you might want to use a prop as follow:

Using Props and Visual Aids in Your Presentation

  1. Demonstration 

The number one reason is demonstration It’s a basic truth: for most demos, showing is far more effective than telling. If you want to have a little fun over lunch, try asking a friend what a xylophone is.

It’s almost a sure bet that your friend won’t be able to use only his words. He might start playing an invisible xylophone to help make you understand. Audiences long to see and even interact with a prop that’s being demoed, even if it’s imaginary.

  1. A Concrete Metaphor

The second reason you might want to use a prop is to provide a concrete metaphor for an abstract concept. If you want to talk about market share your company for example, you might want to show your audience a pie chart.

Props like graphs charts and photos, they can help an audience visualize abstract and numerical concepts.

  1. Dramatic Effect

The third reason you might want to use a prop is for dramatic effect. Use a prop when you want to provoke an emotional respond. It’s one thing to simply tell an audience that mosquitoes cause Malaria, it’s quite another a few to bring out a court jar, open it and tell your audience that you have just released a few mosquitoes into the room.

Microsoft founder Bill Gates did just that in a tat talk. He effectively used a prop to elucidate a very emotional audience responds.

Tips to Use Props

  1. Rehearse With Prop

Rehearse with your prop, practice properly. This is especially important for demonstration. If you are presenting yourself as an authority in how to use the prop, it’s better know exactly in how it works and how to recover if things go wrong.

  1. Remember the Slides

Remember every slide in your PowerPoint presentation is actually a prop. If your slide or prop isn’t demonstrating something, serving as a metaphor or adding a dramatic effect, you properly need to eliminate it entirely from your presentation.

  1. Presentation Is Important

The way you present your prop can enhance its overall effectiveness. Keeping your prop hidden and performing a slow dramatic reveal can build anticipation and add to the excitement of a new product or in an announcement.

Remember, if your prop isn’t necessary cut it, if you are going to use one, use it for a great reason and always rehearse with your props properly



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