PowerPoint is a handy program that allows you to create slides for a presentation and even turn it into a video. It has aged well and is still one of the most popular choices for educators, in-house business presentations, and home theater applications.
You can add images, text, and multimedia to enhance the look and make your presentations more appealing. The list of rich media, including music and video, continues to grow.
Along with these features is the ever-growing variety of templates. Still, not every template has everything you want or need. Occasionally some editing is needed. The good news is that those templates, purchased or free, can usually be modified and edited by you.
Edit or change a PowerPoint template
When it comes to PowerPoint templates, you can:
- Start from scratch with a blank presentation and use it as a one-time or create a custom template
- Use one of the themes provided in the program or downloaded for free
- Buy templates from various sources
Learning how to edit a presentation is a valuable tool to have in your pack. Many tutorials suggest using the slide master
vision. However, Slide Master offers blank layouts. It is not a way to edit an existing template.
Let’s say you just bought a bundle of templates because they look impressive and you want to use them for your business. However, the templates are niche-based and your company provides online services such as website design.
For example, you might like the layout and built-in animations of a real estate PowerPoint template. Does this mean you can’t use it? No, you can adapt it to your business by swapping out the images with images that are more relevant to your industry.
There are many ways to edit a Powerpoint presentation. For the purposes of this tutorial, we are going to outline the steps to convert a real estate template into a website design company template.
Start with the cover slider
Below you will find the first slide in a PowerPoint presentation of purchased real estate.
The first thing you want to do is replace the house image with a website image. There are two different ways to do this.
Right click on an image to change it
Some templates allow you to swap the image simply by right clicking and choosing Change image† Then select the source of your new image (File, Online Resources, Icons, Clipboard†
I prefer to use image sites that I know are free and not subject to copyright laws. As you can see in the picture below, when you select From online sourceyou will be taken to a screen where you can choose photos under Creative Commons†
However, there is also a disclaimer at the bottom of the popup that says: You are responsible for respecting the rights of others, including copyright.
To be legally safer, use the From a file option and choose an image from a free stock photo website†
Use the selection panel to change images
Templates with more complicated animations and transitions require a different method of altering the images.
Start by making sure you’re on the House tab in the top navigation bar.
Now you want to search and click on the Select drop-down menu on the right slide of the navigation at the top. To elect Selection window†
This will open a new tab that shows you all the elements on the slide and gives you the option to “show” or “hide” them.
Your goal in this step is to isolate the image from other elements on the slide so that you can modify it.
click on Hide everything so you see a blank white screen. The number of elements you see in the selection panel depends on the complexity of the slide.
In this example, it is easy to identify which element the image is, since there is only one image. If your slide has many photos, click the dash (-) next to the name of each image element to find the element you want to change.
Click them on and off until you find the right one.
Once you have found the correct image, make sure that it is the only element that will be displayed. By hiding the other items, you can isolate the image to modify it.
At this point you can follow the same instructions above by right clicking on the image and Change image†
Change font and shape colors
You can also change the font colors and type, as well as the transparency and color of the shapes.
If you choose an image that uses the same color scheme as the template, you will likely only need to make minimal changes. But don’t worry if you find an image you want to use that doesn’t match the color scheme. It’s easy to change.
The image below shows the cover slide with an image from a website that replaced the image of the house.
It looks out of place from a color perspective. So let’s match the colors to our new image for a more congruent look.
Change the color of the shapes
Right click on the background shape containing the title and select Format Shape†
This process will open a side panel where you can see that the bottom bar is filled with a solid color with 30% transparency. You can also see which color has been used.
Let’s select a color that better suits our new image. Click the drop-down arrow next to Colour and choose the pipette choice. You can also select any theme, default or custom colors. But if you want to match the colors in the image, using the Eyedropper works best.
Move your cursor to a part of the image that has the color you want to use and click yield† You will now see that the bottom bar is the color you chose with the Eyedropper.
Now remember that the original slide had a 30% transparency effect. This is removed when you change the color. To use that with your new color, right click on the bottom bar, select Format and put the Transparency level back to 30%.
Follow the same procedures as above to change the right color column to the same color. You will notice that there is now an additional section called Recent Color to make it even easier for you to use the same color you used before.
You can change the color, font, size, and location of any text in your template. Start by highlighting the text and look at the top navigation area that refers to what you can do with text.
With the text highlighted, you can perform several operations, including:
- Style (bold, italics, underline, shadow)
If you’re not sure what any of the options mean, hover your mouse over it to see a description. Of course you want to replace the text that suits your business.
To move the location of the text, place your mouse over one of the dots you see in the highlighted area until your cursor changes to a vertical arrow.
Then use the arrows on your keyboard to move the text up, down, right or left.
In this example, the white text looks good with the image and color scheme. However, it could use a few tweaks to the location and style.
Check out the new slide below and how we transformed it from the original slide by customizing it with the same basic design, animations, and transitions as the template.
The advantage of editing and customizing pre-made templates is that you can take advantage of the design skills, animations, and transitions of professional Powerpoint creators.
There’s no need to avoid a template that targets an industry or niche that doesn’t belong to you. By following the instructions above you can have the best of both worlds.