Category Archives: Slides that sell

Focus your PowerPoint Slides on Benefits, not Features

When considering a purchase, buyers want to know how a product or service is going to benefit them.  Marketers have been selling benefits on websites for years. However, your pitch decks and other PowerPoint presentations can mirror these concepts of benefit selling.

Before you try benefit selling, take time to understand the difference between a feature vs. benefit to be able to differentiate them in your communications, and effectively captivate your audience. In this article, we will identify the differences between features and benefits and provide 3 actionable steps to make sure your slides are showcasing benefits.

Features vs. Benefits

Let’s explore the difference between features and benefits:

What is a feature?
Features are generic elements that anyone can gain from a product/service. It is something that your product has or is, and eventually, are the details that attract prospects.

What is a benefit?
A benefit is a personalized perk of using a product/service, usually applying to a subset of customers. They are the results that users will experience, and ultimately, persuade people to buy.

Examples of features vs. benefits

Let’s walk through a few website examples of benefits and features that translate to slides as well.  

How to describe the features and benefits of a service

Example 1

Zoom, a video conferencing and communications company, highlights a benefit that their customers highly value – security.

The features:

Features vs. Benefits of Zoom

The benefit:

features vs. benefits of Zoom

Example 2

An online app and website blocker, Freedom, highlights the benefit of being in a distraction-free environment to increase your productivity.

The features:

Features vs benefits of Freedom

The benefit:

Benefit of Freedom
How to describe the features and benefits of a product:

Example 1

Beautycounter, a safer beauty brand, emphasizes that their sunscreen will not only protect your skin but is also created with safer ingredients.

The features:

features of Beautycounter

The benefit:

Beautycounter benefits

Example 2

Apple’s AirPods market the benefits of how you’ll look and sound without having to worry about battery life.

The features:

Apple Airpod features

The benefit:

Apple Airpod benefits

3 actionable steps to make sure your slides are effectively showcasing benefits

1. Focus on the customer

The potential customer does not care about your product, only how the product will benefit them. By keeping your slides focused on the client’s needs and desires, you can effectively capture their attention.

focus on the customer
2.Convert features to benefits by asking, “so what?”

Verify that you’ve presented benefits by asking yourself, “so what” or “what’s in it for them?”. Be sure to leave out benefits that aren’t relevant to your buyer. By creating quality benefits, you can then use features as “proof” of the claims. You can even turn features into quality benefits by simply asking yourself, “Which means?”.

Convert features into benefits
3. Cut your adjectives and adverbs in half

Keep your slides simple and uncluttered by cutting your adjectives in half. Most of the time, adjectives and adverbs don’t contribute valuable information. Instead, they take up space and can clutter your message. By communicating only essential components of your product/service, you get your point across directly.

cut adjectives and adverbs in half
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How to Effectively use PowerPoint Slide Titles to Engage Your Audience

Although they are the largest words on a PowerPoint slide, slide titles are often overlooked.  Learning how to title a PowerPoint slide is a critical skill to build impactful presentations that engage audiences.  When worded and formatted properly, slide titles can help with storytelling and quickly convey your key message.  Audiences want to clearly know what you’re trying to say. Use PowerPoint slide titles to make your message stand out and help them understand the value you bring. In this article, we detail 5 tips to help you create better slide titles.

Top 5 Tips to Create Better PowerPoint Slide Titles

#1: Use action titles to convey the key message of your slide

Most PowerPoint slide titles tend to describe the contents of the slide rather than the takeaway message.  As a result, they do not engage the audience and fail to convey your message. Slide titles are most effective written as an action title, which spells out the ‘so what’ of the slide rather than a written description of the content.

Action title meaning

An action title is a slide title that’s worded to reflect the key takeaway or ‘so what’ of the slide.  If written effectively, the audience should only need to read the action title, and not the rest of the slide, to understand the primary message.

By quickly conveying your message, you can create an engaging and creative PowerPoint presentation that your audience will appreciate. Action titles are critical to creating slides that sell. Your audience’s attention is highest when they are reading the first item of your slides.

For example,

PowerPoint action titles

#2: Create a storyline for your presentation

Before you begin using PowerPoint, write out an outline for the story you’re telling. Setting up a story framework prior to creating slides will give your presentation more organization. One way to check if your PowerPoint slides have effective action titles is to stack your slide titles and see if they make a story. Is there a clear message here surrounding the story you are selling?

PowerPoint storyline

#3: Make sure title alignment is consistent

Make sure that all of your titles are aligned the same way slide-to-slide. You don’t want to distract the audience and reduce the professionalism of your PowerPoint presentation by having the title to “jump” when you change to the next slide. An easy way to do this for your whole presentation is to go into your slide master [link to our article on master slides] and format the title text boxes using placeholders.

PowerPoint place holders

#4: Keep text size the same

Maintaining a consistent font size can also help keep your PowerPoint presentation polished. Once you’ve captured the audience’s attention through storytelling with action titles, make sure the text size is the same from slide-to-slide in both the title and the body text. Manually change this or consider using the slide master again to format the presentation. The consistency of text sizes will add professionalism and uniformity to your presentation.

Powerpoint font size

#5: Stay away from hanging words

Avoid having just one word on the second line of the title as it creates a visual interruption and draws unintended attention to the single word.  You can add a manual break to force two or more words on the second line or add more words to the title. Additionally, consider giving your team examples of how to format titles that go on one line or two lines of text the correct way. This can also be easily formatted within the slide master view. When you create the slide master, make sure to format the title text size and color appropriately.

PowerPoint title hanging words

Related Articles:

Writing your PowerPoint Presentation Story

Mapping your PowerPoint Slides