Category Archives: Slide design

Interview with Peter Zvirinsky, founder of infoDiagram.com

We’ve had pleasure of meeting Peter Zvirinsky, the founder of infoDiagram.com an innovative company that offers business focused diagrams, icons, and other visual assets.

What is infoDiagram?
Our service infoDiagram.com is a marketplace for unique business diagrams and presentation icons. When you browse our library you’ll notice that we love the hand drawn style of icons. They’re a great way to make presentations personal. But you can also find formal modern flat graphics.

What is your background and how did you get involved with infoDiagram?
By education, I’m a data science nerd who discovered the beauty of marketing and design. AI and artificial life simulations used to be my playing field. Later, I worked in marketing & business development in data analytics company. There I understood the impact of well-designed presentations especially in conferences, training or sales pitches. Thus I decided with two other friends to start a business helping companies with presentation design – and infoDiagram is our baby.

What separates infoDiagram from its competitors?
I’m glad you asked 🙂

There are a few unique points we’re proud of:

  • We’ve probably designed the largest collection of hand drawn icons and shapes – for people who like to make presentations look natural and personal.
  • We value good design. Therefore we ensure our library contains fresh modern style – flat icons and infographics diagrams, for example. No old looking clipart, no Comic Sans font.
  • Our graphics are also fully editable in vector format. You can change the color of icons and shapes to fit your brand colors. Icons will remain razor sharp when resized, unlike bitmap images.

How does infoDiagram help its users?
infoDiagram helps people by replacing their monotonous slides with nice catchy visuals, to help make their presentations creative and stand out. And we make it as simple as possible, without the need for additional applications. A simple cut and paste from slide to slide will do. You can get a specific icon or a flowchart, add it into your PowerPoint or Keynote presentation, adapt colors and create a strong visual slide within a minute. This allows our users to save time and focus on the content instead.

How do you imagine visual communication will evolve over the next 5-10 years?
Well, whether we’ll be using some augmented vision wearables, like Google Glasses, or having 4D screens, one thing will remain. The importance of simplicity. I can imagine the amount of information will still be increasing and there will be a lot of noise. The winning apps and technologies will be those that will manage to be simple and informative at the same time.

What’s the best way for readers of this blog to get started with infoDiagram?
Start with getting our free hand drawn shapes. You will receive a few icons and a guide on how to prepare a creative slide on your own. You can also search through our catalogs of scribble icons, watercolor shapes, or our industry specific visuals. To get inspired check slide examples on our blog.infodiagram.com. Or reach out to me personally, I’ll gladly chat and help on visual communication topics. I’m present on twitter @Peter_iDiagram or LinkedIn.

Mastering the art of the PowerPoint presentation

Pulling off an effective PowerPoint presentation involves perfecting several elements: messaging, story-line, graphic visuals, and data representation.  While this typically takes years of practice and training to master, it leads to numerous business efficiencies that are well worth the effort. However, managers and individual contributors don’t always have the luxury of time and need to quickly improve their presentation capabilities.

We looked for ways that teams can accelerate their PowerPoint presentation skills and found Laura M. Foley Design. The owner, Laura Foley, specializes in Cheating Death by PowerPoint. Laura specifically focuses on helping teams build better presentations and offers a variety of training sessions and services that can jump-start your team’s presentation capabilities. We had the chance to connect with Laura late last year and she shared some valuable advice:

Start with an outline: Many times, people begin new presentations by opening PowerPoint and designing slides. That’s like shooting a movie without a script! A better idea is to create an outline for your presentation that has an introduction that states the purpose and hoped-for outcomes of the presentation, a middle that supports your introduction, and an ending that repeats the stated goals of the presentation and provides next steps.

Reduce the amount of text on your slides: If there’s lots of text on your slides, the audience will divide their time between listening to you and reading your slides. It’s even worse if you read your slides to your audience! The slide is there to provide a backdrop to you, not to be a teleprompter or a distraction.

Simplify your messages: Try to present just one idea per slide and to simplify complex ideas so that more people understand what you’re talking about. If you’re trying to persuade people to buy your product or service or to give you resources, the last thing you want to do is to confuse them!

If you are looking to improve your presentation skills, check out Laura’s site. She’s written several blog entries with a ton of valuable information.

Slide design is a critical component of effective messaging

Aploris users know that creating clean, visually pleasing charts helps better convey the insights of any data set. As we look beyond the chart, however, the slide and the presentation itself are also important tools to effectively convey the key messages.

Thanks to vast improvements in desktop computing and software, building presentations has become a quick task. However, carefully crafting the visuals behind a slide or presentation takes thought and time.  Is there a better way to tell your story than just using bullets? What style and palette would best match your brand and the presenter, are the messages clear and right for the purpose?

We were recently introduced to Neil Tomlinson, CEO of a UK based presentation firm, Neil was one of the first to become a professional PowerPoint designer with a ton of experience building high impact presentations. Over the years, Neil’s business has helped organizations around the world across all industries and size improve their presentation design and better communicate – to which his impressive client list is a testament to. In our conversations with Neil we learned:

  • Presentation design is a critical part of your marketing effort along with your websites, videos, logos, and brochures
  • Outstanding visuals can help your audience remember your key messages
  • Audiences now expect to see professional high quality presentations
  • A poorly designed presentation can actually work against you with an audience

For more advice and information on presentations visit www.neiltomlinson.com