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How to create a good prezi - for Wired magazine

Wired commissioned HMDG  to create their Intelligence Briefing using Prezi, about ten trends worth discussing. Being regular readers of Wired it is no surprise that the result is full of interesting data, includes a massive load of information. To continue our series of Q&A about how to create a good presentation, we have asked Jamie to explain his experience with Prezi this time.

How do you see the future of story telling?

People are consuming media in so many different ways. Without a strong narrative, your message will get lost, whether you are a brand trying to reach a customer or  an individual trying to connect with an audience. But there are also all sorts of new ways to tell a story, of which Prezi is one.

What were the most attractive features of Prezi when you first tried it?

It’s both simple and theatrical at the same time. There’s a wow factor that really helps win your audience’s attention. At HMDG, we’re using it in a lot of our new business meetings and it makes a real difference when your potential clients have sat through a day of Powerpoint. Actually, I was just a bit anxious to be able to use Prezi a few times before too many people found out about it.

jamieWas it easy or hard to switch?

Hard, hard, hard. It doesn’t take long to learn how to use Prezi itself. But I think I’m still getting my head round how to make it work best as a format. There’s a dependency between all the elements of the presentation that you don’t have when you’re working with charts.  So you do have to work at it to make sure your thinking is clear.

Your prezi is really well constructed looking at the big picture and in the smallest details as well. What was the main message you wanted to visualize with it?

I was scratching my head for a bigger theme until I realised this particular presentation was a list when it came down to it. So I wanted a visual that intrigued the audience from a distance and acted as a bridge to these robust individual bits of content.

What was your method of building relations and arguments?

I think you need to answer two questions to make a good prezi. Firstly, what does it look like from a distance? If you can start with that image it helps a lot. It gives you a structure.  Secondly, you need to have work out how the ‘pods’ - the individual sections of the presentation – work. I was creating this for a live presentation, so each one had to be really hit and run – a big thought, a key example, a single powerful statistic. I’ve found Q&As like this quite useful. I read the blogpost on Loqloq and saw how something messy like sketches can work really well when you mix it with the slickness of a Prezi. That made me think handwritten headlines might look ok.

Having said all that, there’s something to be said for just getting your content up on the screen and messing about with it. I try not to worry about adding the paths until I’m nearing the end.

How much time did it take to finish the project?

Maybe a day or two for the actual Prezi. But this particular project took place over several months.

How do you think Prezi helps the audience understand your points?

It’s much less familiar, so I think they concentrate more. And it’s inherently playful, which is useful if you want to reach people.

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Reader Comments (5)

Unfortunately viewing this page is sub-optimal from my iPhone. Any chance you will have the possibility to view Prezis from iPhones? Thanks!

October 21, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSA


First: Congrats! I think prezi is a great addition to the storytelling world. Thank you for that. Im lovin the tool, and I also I'm "just a bit anxious to be able to use Prezi a few times before too many people found out about it."

I want to express one caveat to contribute to the long and healthy life of prezi:

Its main appeal right now is the WOW factor (as it's said in this post).

And that is not a log run strategy.

After the public had watched a few prezis the novelty is vanished. So when you become mainstream, the best element in prezi is lost. (please bear with me, I know that the REAL best element is the skill to tell a story.)

What I would suggest (and I really want it) is to add to the current prezi the elements of the normal slide editors. So the arsenal is bigger for the story teller.

I for one, like to use animations. So I can complete the info I give to the spectator at the pace that I want. I know that I can do that in prezi by several ways. But all of them uses the MOVE of the "camera". And you can get pretty sick of it after a while. Sometimes I just want that something "appear" in the current "frame", or move in.

Remember when "shaky camera fights" where the way to go in hollywood? That's how I feel sometimes. Its like someone says "Ok no more techniques allowed here for filming fights. Only shaky camera. Bye"


Why not make Prezi THE tool belt and nos just one tool (one AMAZING tool)?

Thats my 2 cents.

I just love that you guys broke our chains to "linear presentations" but please don't chains us to "non linear presentations" ;-)

Sorry for the horrible grammar, English isn't my firs language.

Cheers, and keep up with the good work!

October 21, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJP


thanks for your feedback!

Prezi is love at first sight indeed.

However, we belive that Prezi helps you to deliver better presentations.

a. On Prezi's can see the big picture and the detail easily so you can make sure that the content of your presentation makes sense.
b. Prezi's spatial layout help you to convey message better since our brain wired to think large spaces rather then slides.
c. As a presenter you can avoid long boring monologues (death by bullet pointed ppt :-p) and encourage audience involvement by moving across the canvas.

If you simply follow these 3 steps we're convinced that you'll have stronger presentation:

1, Start creating your Prezi by just throwing in your main ideas
2. Develop each idea by just zooming into each topic (use word, images or video u find on the net, google searches does it all :-)
3. Edit: make important topics large, create relations and remove redundant stuff

To avoid the so called dizziness factor in Prezi, just zoom out sometimes to show the big picture instead of making long horizontal moves.

October 22, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterZoli Radnai


[...]How to create a good prezi – for Wired magazine - Blog[...]...

December 28, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterקרקע

;) :D

March 20, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterIJSJSIJS

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