Great Presentation Handouts Draw Inspiration From Books

slidedocs being read

Need more words to communicate your information that a traditional presentation? Slidedocs are a new medium with the visual punch of a presentation that allow for extended text that your audience can read without a presenter. Using this powerful tool, your information can travel through an organization without you.

A great slidedoc is a bit like a well-designed book. It combines content with a visual style, consistent formats, and clear visuals, and then sequences them together into a cohesive whole.

​Slidedocs borrow some specific design aspects from books. Books have a cover, table of contents, clear chapter indicators, prose, page numbers, and other small design decisions that have big information architecture implications to help readers navigate the contents.

​Flipping through the pages of a slidedoc should be similar to flipping through the printed pages of a book. In the case of a slidedoc, you might turn a printed page, click to advance if reading on a computer screen or swipe with your finger if reading on a tablet.

stack of books

How many times have you picked up a book just because it had a great cover? Publishers purposefully create book covers to grab people’s attention.

​Covers work best when they have a highly conceptual visual and a snappy title, but they should also include a subtitle and the author’s name. A slidedoc should have all these elements.

​Your cover page is an opportunity to convey a message right off the bat, so make your title and subtitle intuitive and interesting. Titling it “Q4 Strategy” isn’t interesting. Instead, be creative and call it “Land Grab: Competitive shake-up in Q4.” People should read the cover, get what it’s about, and want to dive in.

​Your company logo can go into your slidedoc, but not as a huge cover graphic or on the corner of every page. Think of your company as the publisher of your slidedoc. Similar to how the publisher’s logo on a book is small and on the spine, your company’s visual presence should be simple and discrete.

 Anatomy of a Book cover

resonate book diagram