Last week, I had to create a presentation about digital marketing. The thought of slaving over yet another PowerPoint made me cringe. I had heard of Prezi.com, an online zooming presentation creation tool. Although it would take a few hours to really learn Prezi, I decided the investment would pay off when I presented a PowerPoint on steroids.
It took me about three hours to learn the ropes of the zoom tools, the frames, the objects, and the paths. I was able to select a theme with colors and fonts, then modify the CSS to use my company’s color codes. The biggest hurdle was breaking out of my longstanding .ppt slide paradigm. I’ll never go back.
Prezi is all Flash and you can import Powerpoint or Keynote slides. On your canvas, a massive grid, add objects and organize them in any array or direction, add visible and hidden frames, and don’t worry about matching sizes of images and fonts. After adding objects, you create a path (progression) by clicking on each unit of text, image, video, or a frame. Click on an object to zoom to it or click the outside of the frame around the object to zoom to the center of the frame.
Insert images, video, live links, .animated gif, YouTube videos, Excel documents, PDFs, and more. If you’re going to present with a projector, TIP: Hold down shift when placing a frame around an object(s). This will automatically size contents in a 4:3 aspect ratio to mitigate distortion. I started in the free account mode but upgraded to the Enjoy package ($59/year) for more features, such as creating private Prezis and inserting my own logo.
Best of all, Prezi is in the cloud. Offline, a downloaded Prezi plays as a movie. However, live links and YouTube videos will not play in offline mode. You can print hard copies, but note that many trees will die because many paths mean more pages.
For ideas, view other Prezis in the Explore section. Here is an official Coke Prezi:
Check out user-generated popular Prezis in the Explore Section. Make a copy of any public Prezi, then work off of that version, editing and adding your own information.
Having the ability to zoom in and out and control the presentation in such a fluid way is great; people will ask questions and instead of flipping back through boring slides, you can just unzoom and zoom back to the desired area. Email and share the Prezi online, it’s iPad friendly, embed it, download it, copy it, and more. Prezi will impress your audience.