Slides have come a long way

It wasn't too long ago that slide presentations were delivered using a carousel and film mounted in 35mm slides. In the late 90's laptops and projectors started fulfilling this role and slides became a thing of the past. The electronic era began and in no time we went from physical printed products to electronic data sharing.

PowerPoint has become the standard for delivering presentations and is a competent slide manager.   When used to support the presentation, rather than becoming a substitute for it, the program is effective.  PowerPoint was created in 1984 and originally named "Presenter." It was later acquired by Microsoft and became part of the Office bundle.  

Visually slides have changed dramatically.   Blue blended background with yellow titles and white text has been replaced with fancy graphics and bright color palettes.  Blue is still a predominant color in business presentations and appears to be the color of choice for most, however, templates and graphics and dramatically improved.

Regardless of how good or bad a presentation looks ultimately it is the content that is most important and learning how to pare down the information to design a slide that looks more like a billboard is an art.  Slides should support the speaker by reinforcing the message with graphics and elements that are easy to see and understand.

A few basic graphics that can be found in most investor presentations include:

Competitive Matrix

Milestone or Timeline

Market Opportunity