Looking for inspiring presentation designs via the Google search bar is actually harder than finding a needle in haystack.  No, seriously. It can also be limiting and paralyze your ability to approach a layout creatively.

For example, it’s difficult to think of a fresh take on your team slide when your inundated with endless examples that look exactly the same. So where can you go to get presentation design ideas when your stuck in a rut? You might be surprised by the often overlooked wellsprings of creativity all around you. Here are a few of our favorite destinations for fresh design ideas.

1. Billboards

Billboards are designed to communicate information and/or sway your behavior in 5 seconds or less — often time our slides should do the same. Duarte’s rule is that effective slides should be able to be processed in 3 seconds or less. They call this the glance test.

Remember, no one can read a slide full of text and engage with what you’re saying at the same time. Even in a lengthier strategy session, quick digestible takeaways on your slides are crucial to keeping your team engaged and the energy up.

We LOVE hunting for billboard inspiration because it means we get to (are forced to?) put away our laptops and spend a few hours walking around the city photographing and sketching marketing signage. It’s also an activity that requires full attention — but doesn’t demand much intellectual power. #winwin

Google Search Billboard Advertisement
Google’s eye-catching billboards for Nearby, a location-based app which helps users discover goods and services via Clearchannel Outdoor

2. Content Graphics

Our favorite in this category are graphics created for blogs and twitter. Charts, diagrams, and infographics make it exponentially easier for audiences to comprehend messages and information.

Additionally, people LOVE to share new information that looks awesome. This means that as brands strive to get noticed, the data-driven content game gets stronger by the minute.

Here are a few good examples:

Percentage of surveyed CIOs integrating AI technologies from the IBM blog


Mindful Tip Content Graph from Twitter
Mindful tip from Headspace via Twitter

3. Explainer Videos

An explainer video is essentially an elevator pitch in video form. They’re typically 1-3 minutes and work to help you understand something with minimal copy. Rather than in-video text, they use voiceover alongside visuals to bring together the full story for the audience.

They are perfect for studying how visuals and composition can effectively bear the bulk of the communication load. They also help inspire a variety of ways to style common slide types.

In the Airbnb video below, you’ll see a creative take on international reach. This type of content, especially in presentations, is typically visualized only using a map—which shows up next. Including the conceptual, color-coded streetscape works well to further emphasize the growth of their community.

Airbnb – New Year’s Eve Datagrams from Seth Benson on Vimeo

4. Five Day Biz Fix

Yes, we mean the television show! Hit play below and Episode 1 will automatically jump to the end where they show us how much revenue the new layout will generate for the hotel. They use plates of sushi to represent “4 guests” alongside a nicely typeset formula, emphasizing total revenue in a cool accent color complementary to the warm hues of the sushi plates.

5. Website content blocks

Similar to presentations, the goal of most websites is to reduce the cognitive load of it’s user. The best ones are self-explanatory, balance a variety of visual content, and demonstrative effective typographic hierarchy.

Creative creative studios and agencies are perfect places to look for cover slide, quote layout, and section divider inspiration.

Excellent presentation inspiration from waaark's vision splash screen
Vision splash screen from waaark.com

Some additional good examples that illustrate what we mean:

  • Lime: can you picture the hero layout working as a great cover slide?
  • Flyreel: Hero animation is a great example of using illustration overlays to help better communicate the secret sauce of the startup.
  • Xero: Features pages are the perfect inspiration for app and platform slides.
  • Postmates: Every single block of this site works well as a slide.
  • Carbon Health: We can envision the “health team centered around you” (scroll down a bit) section working well for ecosystems, customers, growth, and even features.

Web design Inspiration sites such as One Page Love, Web Design Inspiration, and CSS Nectar are great places to browse when you need to spark a new ideas.

6. Commercials

Similar to billboards, great commercials spark an instant connection with minimal elements. The majority of the energy is spent on developing a powerful storyline. From there, award-winning creative and copy hook the audience—they’re nodding their heads; bursting out laughing; or, for those us exposed to Google’s Loretta spot in 2020, crying for the remainder of the Super Bowl.

While you don’t necessarily have the time or budget to create slides that win an ADDY, spending time analyzing inspiring commercials can sharpen your ability to find, create, and combine visual elements in away that moves an audience in the desired direction.

Screenshot of ritual advertising spot
Ritual TV Commercial, ‘Made for Women by Women’ via iSpot.tv

Do you have a favorite place for finding inspiration for your PowerPoint and Keynote presentations? If you do, we want to hear it! Share your resources in the comments below!