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Make your PowerPoint presentations pop with charts, graphics, and images

Julie Sartain | July 11, 2014
You can buck the stereotype of PowerPoint presentations as bullet-pointed snoozefest. PowerPoint has a wealth of new graphics, layout, and animation features to liven up your deck. We'll focus on how to add tables, charts, graphics, and images to your slides, but that's just a sample--delve deeper into the menus and you'll find a wealth of additional options.

The Vertical Picture Accent List SAG appears in the right box. Again, you can enter your text on the graphic or in the text dialog box. Click the individual Text words (inside the square brackets) on the graphic to enter text there, or click the small arrow to access the Type Your Text Here dialog box. Enter your text in the Text dialog box, then click the circle icons beside each line of text to insert a picture inside the circle.

Enter a topic in the Search box on the Insert Pictures screen, then click the spyglass. Choose an image from the scrolling list, then click Insert.  You can also insert your own images (From a File), or stock images from the Internet (Bing Image Search).

Enter a slide title, subtitles, and resize the graphics to fit the page more aesthetically. Right-click on each graphic to change colors, font, attributes, and other elements as described above, then check out your flashy slide!


This next feature adds more panache with a single step. Click the Pictures icon, select an image from your local hard drive, then click Insert and PowerPoint does the rest.

To resize an image, click it, grab one of the handles, and drag. Enter the title and text, and it's finished.

Online pictures

Adding online pictures is easy: Choose New Slide from the Home tab and select the Two Content template slide from the drop-down menu. Click the Online Pictures icon in the left box. From the Insert Pictures screen, enter "computer" in the Clip Art search box, then click the spyglass. Scroll through the images, select one that works for your presentation, and click Insert.

On the right side of the Two Content template slide, click the Online Pictures icon again. From the Insert Pictures screen, enter a topic in the Bing Image Search box. Selecting this option extends your search across the entire Internet. Enter "apple mac," then click the spyglass. From the Bing Image Search screen, scroll through the images, select one, and click Insert.

Enter your titles and text (if needed), then size and position your graphics on the page.

Insert video

The last finesse for PowerPoint's default options is the Insert Video feature. You can insert videos from your local drive, YouTube, or a video's embed code. This is great news for companies with widespread branches and dozens of corporate videos on YouTube.

Insert another New Slide from the Home tab. Select the Content with Caption slide and click the Insert Video icon. On the Insert Video screen, you have three options — choose YouTube and click the spyglass. On the YouTube screen, enter "windows" in the Search box and click the spyglass again. Choose a YouTube video that fits your subject matter. To avoid copyright issues, we have selected a Windows/Office video. Click the video, then click Insert.


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