Brain Rule #10: Vision trumps all other senses.

According to brain scientist John Medina, visual presentations are better because vision trumps all other senses.

It’s brain rule #10 in his series, and it’s easy to apply this rule to presentations.

“Toss your PowerPoint presentations. Professionals everywhere need to know about the incredible inefficiency of text-based information and the incredible effects of images.
Burn your current PowerPoint presentations and make new ones.”

These are both quotes from the Brain Rules website:

“We are incredible at remembering pictures. Hear a piece of information, and three days later you’ll remember 10% of it.
Add a picture and you’ll remember 65%.”

visual presentations

Vision is the most powerful of the senses for presentations

So let’s burn/delete/lose those old text heavy presentations. Seek help from the team here at Presented to boost the visuals in your presentations. We have vast experience in improving all kinds of slides. Both through design, and more importantly, through applying brain science.

So, despite Medina mentioning “images”, it’s not as simple as popping in more photos. Indeed, photos can be incredibly distracting to your audience. Badly chosen ones can even confuse your audience about your key messages. Unfortunately, photos can be so rich that they provoke a subjective response, with each audience having a different (often emotiona-based) take away from each image. Especially if that photo contains a face: we try to recognise the people in photos. Stock imagery anyone? No thanks! Did you know your brain is scanning for recognition whether you realise it or not?

We recommend diagrams and bespoke illustrations as a strong alternative to photos.

Use visuals that demonstrate each message. Highly targeted visual presentations are better when you tie in your heading, narration and visuals to each key message on one slide. It is powerful stuff!

If you need some copywriting expertise, just ask: we can distil your key message into fewer words, craft compelling messages, and apply conversational language so that your audience understands faster. To put it another way: your information needs to be simplified but not simplistic.

Visual presentations improve further when animation is applied to control the flow of information. Whilst it’s important not to overwhelm your audience, animation also attracts attention: so use it wisely and to great effect. Animation is yet another visual device that gets your brain involved. So well timed, well designed animation is a visual enhancement that can really pay off.

Do don’t toss out your presentations: improve them visually instead!