PowerPoint-based Reports: Overused or Just Abused?
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×
 

PowerPoint-based Reports: Overused or Just Abused?

on

  • 909 views

Poor PowerPoint. It has many two-faced critics who on one hand use it to create market research deliverables but on the other deride it as an over-used crutch. The debate tends to get framed in an ...

Poor PowerPoint. It has many two-faced critics who on one hand use it to create market research deliverables but on the other deride it as an over-used crutch. The debate tends to get framed in an over-simplified way as, “Should market researchers use PowerPoint to deliver research results?” If you are planning a market research project, you do need to think ahead and craft a comprehensive deliverables strategy.

Statistics

Views

Total Views
909
Views on SlideShare
906
Embed Views
3

Actions

Likes
0
Downloads
3
Comments
0

2 Embeds 3

http://www.linkedin.com 2
http://www.lmodules.com 1

Accessibility

Categories

Upload Details

Uploaded via as Adobe PDF

Usage Rights

© All Rights Reserved

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Processing…
Post Comment
Edit your comment

PowerPoint-based Reports: Overused or Just Abused? PowerPoint-based Reports: Overused or Just Abused? Document Transcript

  • PowerPoint-based Reports: Overused or Just Abused? Poor PowerPoint. It has many two-faced critics who on one hand use it to create market research deliverables but on the other deride it as an over-used crutch. The debate tends to get framed in an over-simplified way as, “Should market researchers use PowerPoint to deliver research results?” This is over-simplified in 2 ways: 1. It assumes that a PowerPoint report is the only deliverable (which among good researchers, is rarely the case) 2. It assumes all PowerPoint reports are mammoth-sized piles of boring charts. If you are planning a market research project, you do need to think ahead and craft a comprehensive deliverables strategy. The key components of this strategy will likely include some mix of: • Interactive workshop (to engage clients—internal or external—in the data analysis process) • Internal blogs or podcasts • On-site presentation(s) • One-on-one briefings for key executives • Slide deck (either brief or comprehensive) • Text document: Written executive summary or top-line report • Web conferences (perhaps one for each regional or functional division of a company) • White papers (most common in technology fields)
  • • For quantitative projects, deliverables may also include: o Raw data o Tables (the tables showing all data as cross-tabs) o Online reporting tools (these vary a great deal, but generally allow you to do data analysis on the fly) • For qualitative projects, deliverables may also include: o Video, often edited to show only the most important parts o Audio files o Transcripts So a slide deck, in reality, is only one part of the strategy. It alone can’t carry the messages from a study with impact or credibility. That said, a well-crafted PowerPoint (or Keynote, for some Mac users) report is an excellent way to deliver a research project’s key findings. It allows for easy sharing, reference, and reuse. Of course, the reports need to be well designed, the charts clearly labeled, and options for customization offered. Simply chugging out a slide deck where you have a chart or table for every item that was in a questionnaire is awful. And if you want to jazz up those charts, there are options available. Check out iCharts (http://ichartsbusiness.com/). And if you want to complement or replace PPT with an online tool? Great. Most of the major online research tools also include interactive reporting; check out ConfirmIt (http://www.confirmit.com/solutions/reporting- solutions.aspx) and Vovici (http://www.vovici.com/survey-analytics/survey-data- analysis.aspx) for a ouple of good examples. But the most important thing? A good presenter! An engaged, articulate speaker who can bring the data to life. Who can add context to the results. Who can weave otherwise lifeless data points into compelling “so whats.” Market researchers will start using more interactive reporting tools in the future. But without a good presenter—grounded in both research methodology and relevant project context—the deliverables are still going to be ineffective. I don’t care how flashy your interactive tool is; if a compelling, intelligent speaker isn’t there to discuss the key findings, it ain't gonna have much more impact than a slide deck. Consider your college experience: which professor had the most impact on you? The one who was charismatic in the classroom or the one with the best lecture materials? Or
  • consider television: which TV talk show personality do you like best? The one with the fanciest set, or the one who strikes you as most authentic? Bottom Line: It’s always great to challenge the status quo. To get researchers rethinking how we do things. But PowerPoint is too often blamed for research’s inability to impact decision making. PowerPoint is a software program. We can’t blame it for how poorly we use it. We can’t expect it to be a substitute for engaging, credible human interaction. So let’s use it, without abusing it. Let’s stop blaming slideware, and start using it sensibly as one part of a comprehensive deliverables strategy. For more information, please contact Kathryn Korostoff at KKorostoff@ResearchRockstar.com or visit us online at www.ResearchRockstar.com.