Prezi Next is the new online presentation software from Prezi that has useful and innovative features that let you present in a natural and engaging way. In this article, we’ll show you:
- how to quickly and easily create your first presentation in Prezi Next
- how to “pick your own path” through a nonlinear presentation
- how to keep important information hidden until the right time to show your audience
- how to add animations and zooming to any part of your presentation
- and more
What if you didn’t have to slug through the memorization and step-by-step misery of a typical PowerPoint? We’ll show you how to use Prezi Next to beat the boredom and make a presentation that rocks!
First, get your topic and main points in mind, gather any photos, charts, or videos—yes videos!—you want to use in your presentation, and head over to http://prezi.com. Log in or sign up and select Prezi Next from the drop-down in the top left corner.
You’ll see a screen that houses all of your saved Prezi Next presentations and folders. Select “New presentation” or create a new folder in the left side navigation and then select “New presentation.” You can use folders to better organize your presentations by topic or audience.
Prezi Next comes loaded with a selection of customizable templates in various styles. Everything on these templates can be edited and customized. However, choosing the right template is important to save time, and usually your final presentation will reflect the structure of the template you choose.
You can see the structure and design of each template by clicking it and previewing it. You’ll be able to click through the arrows at the bottom of the screen, or click each topic to zoom to it and see what’s inside. When you’ve decided on a template to start with, click “Use this template” at the bottom of the screen.
In editor mode, you’ll see the overview. From the overview, you can double click the main topics to zoom into them and edit their content, or single click to edit their appearance in the overview. You can also select the main topics from the left-side navigation bar.
Whenever you begin editing a topic or subtopic, you can go back by clicking either the “Overview” button at the top left or the back button at the bottom left.
Whenever you are editing a topic, you can zoom to a subtopic by double-clicking, or single click to edit its appearance at the current topic level. Prezi Next features innovative subtopics called “planets” that give presenters the ability to jump around during a presentation by clicking on the information. Any information on the level of a planet topic will not be shown until the presenter clicks on it during the presentation. Planets give you the greatest flexibility with your presentation.
If you want to have planet subtopics, you’ll have to start with a main topic that allows planet subtopics. Click the “+ Topic” button and choose “Planet” to do this from the overview. Whenever you zoom into a planet topic, it will show the background around it and more planets can be arranged around the main topic.
You can also add stack topics and subtopics, which follow a traditional, linear presentation style. When you click on a stack topic in your presentation, the entire screen will be filled by that topic and your only choice will be to click through the slides in order.
You can add planet subtopics to planet topics, and you can add more planet subtopics to planet subtopics, going down as many levels as you like. You cannot add subtopics to stack topics or subtopics, however.
Once you have your information added with topics and subtopics laid out in the structure you want, it’s time to customize by changing colors, line thickness, and opacity of shapes. All you have to do is click on the element you want to edit and click the color palette on the tool bar at the top of the editor.
To change the background, simply right-click it and select “Background and theme.” This will open a right-side menu to upload an image for your background, or change the color and select solid fill or gradient.
One of the most used functions is the “Insert” menu. You can use this to add anything from text boxes, shapes, and images to YouTube videos and new topics. You can add any item to any level of your presentation, whether a video on the overview or an arrow in a subtopic. To add a video, click Insert —> Video, then choose to upload a file or enter the URL of a YouTube video.
Movement attracts attention, so adding animations can really make your presentation pop. You can animate any element of a presentation, or you can create a zoom animation that zooms to a smaller area of the presentation level you’re on. This is great for zooming into detailed charts to highlight information, or for moving in to showcase a photograph.
If you’re working with a team, you don’t have to do everything yourself! You can add collaborators to your presentations in Prezi Next and set their restrictions. Simply click the icon in the top right corner, click the “Total collaborators” button on the dropdown, and enter the email address and restrictions for each person on your team. You can allow members to view the presentation and leave feedback but not make changes, and you can allow presenters to present but not edit, keeping the power to make changes in the hands of your design team.
Make sure the cloud in the top-left corner shows a check mark, and if not, simply click it or select File —> Save to save your presentation.
Now, you can exit the editor tab and return to the screen that shows your folders and finished Prezis, including the one you just made. From here, you can click the pencil icon to edit, the play icon to present, or the arrow icon for many more options that include presenting online to a live audience and adding collaborators from outside the editor.
From this screen, you can also check viewer statistics that can give you insights on what content in your presentation is working and where you might be losing the interest of your audience.
You can also download your Prezi or use it on a smartphone or tablet through Prezi’s mobile app. This means that you could be walking around the room, presenting from a phone or tablet using Chromecast or Airplay to show the presentation on a larger display, while choosing exactly which parts of the presentation you want to show. This is incredibly powerful for engaging a live audience or group, as you can gauge their reaction, ask questions, and respond to questions in real time with a click or a tap, without having to step back 30 slides like you might with linear presentation software.
Now you’re ready to present. Simply click the big play button over the presentation of your choice and click present when it has loaded. Then, click or tap the first topic you want to discuss, and continue down through your subtopics until you’re ready to move back.
To move back, just click the small back up arrow at the bottom left of the screen. You’ll notice the left and right arrows at the bottom of the screen, but those are to step through your presentation in a linear order, and aren’t the best way to backup a level in a nonlinear presentation.
Now you’re ready to create and present dynamic presentations using Prezi Next!
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