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Beyond Bullet Points: Using PowerPoint to tell a compelling story that gets results, Fourth Edition

Book Description

Beyond Bullet Points, Fourth Edition

“Throw away those room-emptying, left-brain slides–and use Atkinson’s book to turn your PowerPoint presentation into an epic.” –Daniel H. Pink, author of Drive and A Whole New Mind


Think beyond bullet points–and amplify the impact of your message! Now in its fourth edition, this popular classic illuminates an innovative, step-by-step methodology designed to unlock the amazing visual story waiting to be released from your message. Communications expert Cliff Atkinson shows how to apply classic storytelling tenets and practical, research-based guidelines as you work with Microsoft PowerPoint–for memorable, meaningful, and persuasive visual stories. Change your approach–and transform your results!


Find your story thread
Create an emotional connection to increase your impact.


Cut through the clutter
Distill your message and get right to the point.



Bring your story to life
Storyboard your ideas, find your natural voice, and deliver a compelling presentation!

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Dedication Page
  5. Acknowledgements
  6. Contents at Glance
  7. Contents
  8. About the Author
  9. Introduction: A Canvas of Light
  10. 1 A Theater of Persuasion
    1. Stepping onto the Media Stage
    2. A Singular Story
    3. The Heart of the Problem
    4. Distilling to the Essence
    5. Mixing Mediums
    6. Fade to Gray
    7. Stark Choices
    8. Winds of Change
  11. 2 Busting the Top 3 Myths About PowerPoint
    1. The State of the Art of Presentations
    2. The Old Story about PowerPoint
    3. Myth 1: Your Audience Will “Get” Whatever You Show Them
    4. Myth 2: The Same Slide Works Equally Well as Both a Visual on a Screen and as a Printed Handout
    5. Myth 3: Making a List Is an Effective Way to Present Information
    6. The Opportunity: Using PowerPoint to Tell a Persuasive Story that Gets Results
  12. 3 The 5 Principles and 10 Building Blocks of Persuasive Visual Storytelling
    1. Introducing the BBP Story Template
    2. The Five Principles of Visual Storytelling
    3. The 10 Building Blocks of a Persuasive Storyboard
    4. Getting Started with the BBP Story Template
  13. 4 Crafting Your Story Structure
    1. What Will You Show, Say, and Do in the First Few Slides?
    2. Choosing a Story Thread
    3. Adding a Story Theme
    4. Closing the Curtain on Act I
    5. 10 Tips for Enhancing Act I
  14. 5 Anchoring Your Story in Your Audience’s Minds
    1. And Now Presenting…Act II
    2. Tapping the Power of Hierarchy
    3. Prioritizing Your Slides
    4. Pulling Through What’s Most Important First
    5. Lowering the Curtain on Your Story Template
    6. 10 Tips for Enhancing Your Story Template
  15. 6 Thinking Like a Storyboard
    1. What Will You Show, Say, and Do During Every Slide?
    2. Preparing the Storyboard
    3. Planning for the Verbal Channel by Writing Down What You’ll Say
    4. Planning for the Visual Channel by Sketching Your Storyboard
    5. Storyboarding Using Three Guidelines
    6. 10 Tips for Enhancing Your Storyboard
  16. 7 The Magic of Sketching your Graphics First
    1. What Do I Sketch on Each Slide?
    2. Sketching the Act I Slides
    3. Sketching the Title Slide
    4. Adding a Speaker Introduction Slide
    5. Sketching The Hook Slide
    6. Sketching the Relevance Slide
    7. Create a Simple Visual Prompt with a Photo
    8. Tap into the Power of Paper
    9. Sketching the Challenge and Desire Slides
    10. Introduce the Theme
    11. Unlock Information with a Visual Prompt
    12. Link the Act I Slides with a Visual Story
    13. Sketching the Map and Anchor Slides
    14. Using Video, Sound, or Motion Graphics (Sparingly)
    15. Raising Interest with Your Layouts
    16. Keeping the Theme Flowing
    17. Presenting with More than One Speaker
    18. Sketching an Optional Navigation Bar
    19. Sketching the Explanation Slides
    20. Sketching a Visual Organizer
    21. Sketching Headline-Only Explanation Slides
    22. Sketching the Backup Slides
    23. Explaining Ideas by Building a Diagram
    24. Building a Chart Across a Series of Slides
    25. Completing the Backup Slides
    26. Switching to Other Media
    27. Adapting Your Sketches to Your Profession
    28. Sketching Your Story Template
    29. BBP Checklist: Sketching the Storyboard
    30. Ready, Set, Sketch!
  17. 8 Getting Graphics, Quick and Easy
    1. Which Graphics Do I Add to Each Slide?
    2. Starting the Production Flow
    3. Customizing Layouts
    4. Creating the Act III Slides
    5. Fine-Tuning and Finishing Up
    6. BBP Checklist: Adding Graphics to the Storyboard
    7. 10 Tips for Enhancing Your Storyboard
  18. 9 Delivering Your Visual Story
    1. Delivering Your Presentation Using Three Guidelines
    2. Getting Ready
    3. Using Notes
    4. Prompting a Dialogue
    5. Preparing for Different Contexts
    6. And Now, Presenting…
    7. 10 Tips for Enhancing Your Delivery
  19. 10 Present This, Not That
    1. What Other Examples Can I See?
    2. Example: Presenting in Court
    3. Example: Presenting a Plan
    4. Example: Presenting Research Results
    5. Example: Presenting a Report
    6. Example: Presenting in a Classroom
    7. Example: Presenting a Pitch
    8. Handling Objections to Visual Storytelling
  20. A BBP Guidelines
    1. The BBP Guidelines
  21. B Starting Your Challenge and Desire Headlines
  22. C Starting Your Map Headlines
  23. Index