Prezi Business Review: A Prezi Expert’s look at the latest alternative to PowerPoint presentations.
Summer 2016 saw the good folks at Prezi Inc. launch “Prezi Business,” an all-new version of the visual presentation software with a fresh feature set tailored for use within business teams. As Official Prezi Experts we’ve since been excitedly testing the tool to see how far we can push this new platform to create meaningful and memorable visual aids for our clients.
So if you’re wondering if Prezi Business is worth trying out for yourself, here’s our Expert guide…
What is Prezi Business?
Prezi Business is an entirely new product from Prezi Inc. — the company known for creating zooming presentation software as an alternative to presenting with PowerPoint. With the launch of Prezi Business, consumers now have two distinct versions of the platform to choose from. To clarify, you can now choose between the original version of the software which is simply called “Prezi”, and the new version of the software, called “Prezi Business”.
What can Prezi Business do?
Just like the original version of Prezi, you can use Prezi Business to create eye-catching presentations that may help you to connect with your audience in a more engaging way. This time, however, Prezi Business has a streamlined design workflow and some nice new features aimed at teams looking to create presentations more efficiently and deliver them more interactively.
Building a presentation with Prezi Business is easy…
The creation experience in Prezi Business is greatly simplified compared to the original version, and you really don’t need any graphic design skills to get started. To begin, you choose from a range of pre-designed and partly customisable templates to produce what looks like a styled ‘mind map’ structure for your presentation content. Each distinct section of your presentation is clustered into separate “topics”, which are clearly visible within your map’s overview. The user-friendly interface makes it easy to then quickly add your content into each of your chosen topics. Finally, you can create additional subtopics should you need to drill down into more detail to complete the visualisation of your idea.
In short, Prezi Business can offer a novice user a simple design workflow to rapidly create well-organised visual maps of your presentation content. For example, you could use it to create a prezi explaining all the different products and services your company offers — showing them all in one clear overview and grouped by their related characteristics.
Presenting with Prezi Business allows for more interactivity…
The map structure that Prezi Business creates also enables a far more ‘conversational’ style of presentation delivery. With all of your topics clearly visible from the overview, your content is now easily accessible in any order with the click of a button or tap of your finger. This means you can ditch your rehearsed monologue in favour of asking your audience what they actually want to focus on. The rationale being that once you have your audience’s input, you’ll have their attention, and you can then use your prezi to move easily between macro and micro discussions on the topics that interest everyone.
You can learn more about conversational presenting over at www.conversationalpresenting.co or watch the video below with Spencer Waldron, Prezi’s Regional Manager in Western Europe.
Our favourite new Prezi Business feature — Progressive Disclosure (aka Zoom Reveal)
You could argue it’s possible to create a similar mind map style presentation using the original version of Prezi (although perhaps not as quickly as in Prezi Business) where it not for the addition of a very interesting new zooming feature called Progressive Disclosure.
This feature means that as you zoom into a topic in your presentation, the overview layer disappears and all the content of your chosen topic is revealed in a new layer underneath. It avoids the clutter on the canvas that can occur with this style of Prezi in the original product, keeping your overview topics clear for the audience and easy for the presenter to navigate.
In our own tests with Prezi Business we couldn’t help but have a little fun experimenting with this feature to see how far beyond template based structuring we could go. Check out the video of one of our experiments with progressive disclosure below, and while you’re at it you can learn some fun facts about constellations!
Teamwork pays off in Prezi Business…
Prezi Business also comes loaded with several neat collaboration features, among them the ability for teams to co-create and leave comments for others directly within the editing interface. Teams can easily work together on prezis either in person or remotely, and there’s also integration with Slack, which means you can receive notifications when a comment has been made by a collaborator, or when a client’s viewing your prezi.
On the post-presentation side, there’s also the nice addition of engagement analytics, giving all presentation owners some handy data on how the prezi is performing with its viewers.
And with the introduction of a ‘company leaderboard’ — you now have the chance to learn who are the most active team members on your prezi projects, and what are your team’s most viewed presentations.
If used well, these features have the potential for teams to seamlessly work together to create, review, and hone a presentation to perfection.
What’s missing from Prezi Business?
The feature set…
Prezi Business needs more functionality before it will satisfy a seasoned presentation designer. In the first hour of use alone we wished for the option to add offline video, group content, crop images, snap objects to relative scales, and more. Granted it’s early days yet but we really hope the Prezi team release these much-needed features asap!
With only a small amount of template structures currently available in Prezi Business there’s the real possibility of ‘death by Prezi’ occurring — where all Prezi Business presentations begin to look the exact same, and any competitive advantage over slide-based tools is lost on the bored eyes of the viewer. To avoid this, many more templates need to be added, alongside more customisation options within the templates.
Prezi, now with anti-vomit safeguards!
Perhaps one contentious omission within the Prezi Business editor is the obvious ability to rotate content on the canvas (it is possible but we aren’t going to show you how in this post!) As Prezi Business is clearly designed for those who lack professional graphic design or visual communication skills we think this is a sensible attempt to help untrained users avoid the unintentional dizzying transitions and audience complaints of motion sickness that continue to haunt Prezi users.
So what (and who) is Prezi Business good for?
As training & design professionals we still love the original version of the Prezi software for all the creative freedom it offers in bringing our client’s ideas to life with unique visual storytelling. We generally find clients turn to this version of Prezi when they want to invest a little more time than usual in creating a truly memorable presentation, often for a high-stakes scenario, like the CEO keynote at your company AGM or your once-in-a-lifetime pitch to new investors.
The launch of Prezi Business, however, offers some interesting new possibilities for businesses and teams looking to break away from slides and create simple yet memorable, interactive, and measurable day-to-day business presentations with ease. We think the following may find Prezi Business of particular use:
· Sales professionals looking for a tool to help them utilise a more conversational style of delivery and react better to questions from the audience.
· Marketing teams interested in analysing and refining the performance of their presentations amongst their audiences.
· Presentation builders with no graphic design skills who are looking for a user-friendly tool that can make well structured and good looking business presentations quickly.
Want to try Prezi Business?
We hope our review of Prezi Business has been useful. If you’d like to give it a try, or learn how to master Prezi, please get in touch and we’d be happy to help!
Chris Connick. Official Prezi Expert.
Director & Head of Training, Prezi Training & Design Ltd, London UK.