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slide:ology by Nancy Duarte

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20 slide:ology
When consulting firm ZS Associates wanted a presentation to relaunch
their incentive compensation solution, they needed to convey both the
firm’s market dominance and their application’s ease of use. The original
visual story attempted to communicate too much information and, as a
result, didn’t convey how easy the solution is to use.
To distill their presentation, the first step was creating a new story from
their existing presentation. Their slides contained important information
that could be included in a new script.
Case Study: ZS Associates
An Incentive to Communicate Clearly
Rather than just clean up the original slides, the
content was conceptually reorganized. By think-
ing outside the slide and focusing on the message,
it became apparent that what was thought to be
a three-prong service strategy was in reality four.
The two slides were replaced with a visual over-
view of the services.
BEFORE (example 1a)
BEFORE (example 1b)
AFTER (example 1)
In the original slide the technical details
on the right half of the slide distracted
from the message. The main message
was that there are three easy ways to
install Javelin. To avoid confusion, it’s
better to split the content across more
than one slide.
Creating a New Slide Ideology 21
AFTER (example 2)
BEFORE (example 2)
push left
22 slide:ology
Many MBO (Management by Objectives)
programs are complex, and ZS Software
cuts through the complexity.
The content circled in orange was the
only part addressed verbally. So reduc-
ing the amount of additional information
and using a series of slides to show the
impact of an effective MBO program
highlights the effectiveness and simplic-
ity of the ZS solution.
If your message is “simplicity,” then your
slides should feel simple.
BEFORE (example 3a)
AFTER (example 3a)
BEFORE (example 3b)
AFTER (example 3b)
Most presentation applications have
a push transition. When applied, the
entire slide exits the screen as the
next slide enters. It creates the sense
of a larger space.
© 2008 ZS Associates and Javelin.
All Rights Reserved. Used with permission.
23
People participating in these programs
can feel frustrated, and the product was
built specifically to address those issues.
To give a human face to the new soft-
ware, the presentation used stylized,
full-bleed photos combined with quotes
of common frustrations, now resolved.
These slides introduced each section of
the presentation.
Instead of printing out
the presentation as-is,
the audience received
a handout that incorpo-
rated infographics from
the presentation.

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