3 tips on using PowerPoint as a design tool

Almost all business professionals know how to use PowerPoint and use it regularly. But how many people think of it as an advanced design and desktop publishing tool?

Last week, one of my clients asked me to revamp a template of a flyer for her company. She specifically asked me to design it in a way that can enable her to do editing down the line. She also said that no one in her team has InDesign.

After mulling this over, instead of the designer-favourite InDesign, I decided to use PowerPoint to design the flyer, based on the following analysis of the software:


  • The only tool the client can use to edit content down the line
  • Can achieve mostly the same visual effects
  • Easy-to-use and user-friendly


  • Alignment of images and objects are less convenient with less visual guides and snap to grids. It can get frustrating.

The client and her team are thrilled with the result. Here are three takeaways from me on using PowerPoint:

1. Portrait mode in PowerPoint

Most of us are used to using PowerPoint in the landscape mode for presentations. But did you know that you can design flyers in PowerPoint using portrait mode? Simply go to “Design” and “Adjust slide size”.

2. Creating special shapes for text boxes

Enhance the style of your design by using special shapes. You can draw almost everything using the shape tool in PowerPoint. I created a simple GIF to illustrate.

3. A picture says a thousand words

Yes, stating the obvious, no one likes to read rows of small print. Use as many images as possible to make your presentation or design more appealing. If possible, use full-bleed and high-resolution images for the best aesthetic effect.

That’s it from me for now. Feel free to email me if you have any questions, or if you also have tips to share!

3 thoughts on “3 tips on using PowerPoint as a design tool

  1. Ray

    Great tips! Surprised that PowerPoint can create such professional layouts.

  2. Great tips! Didn’t realize that PowerPoint can be so handy even when creating professional layouts. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Hmm…didn’t know some of those tips that you mentioned!! Thanks for that–was just googling about portrait slides!!

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