You can create great videos using PowerPoint! A common reason to create videos is to post them on YouTube but you can post them on a website or on social media as well.
You can make them as simple or as complicated as you want. Here are the basic steps to create a video from PowerPoint slides:
1. Create animated slides (including transitions)
Of course, you start with animated slides. The basic concept is to keep things moving like they would in a video. A video is a very different medium from a slide presentation, so you have to think differently.
For example, after you apply entrance animations, you can apply exit animations so that objects come in and go out. Use some of the more extreme animations that you would never use in a regular business presentation.
2. Add audio (narration and/or music)
Almost all videos have some type of audio–narration, music, or both. You have several choices when adding audio.
Insert audio files on each slide
I often use this method. I record the sound using Audacity, which makes editing easy. Here are the steps to insert the audio file you create onto a slide:
- Go to the Insert tab, Audio, Audio on my PC (the exact labels vary depending on your version of PowerPoint) and insert the audio file.
- Drag the sound icon off the slide.
- Click the Animations tab and click Animation Pane.
- Drag the sound file to the top and click the sound file’s down arrow on the right edge of the Animation pane and choose Start with Previous so that the sound plays immediately when you display the slide.
When you use this method, all other animations need to be set to Start with Previous; if you want them delayed, add a delay in the Delay box on the ribbon. This allows the sound to start at the beginning and continue to play while the animation happens.
Use the Narration feature
You can add your narration in PowerPoint. You can’t do much in the way of editing, although you can re-record. Here are the steps:
- Display the first slide.
- Choose Slide Show, Record Slide Show, Start Recording from the Beginning.
- In the Record Slide Show dialog box, leave both checkboxes checked and click Start Recording. You will go into Slide Show view.
- Narrate the presentation, clicking as necessary to go from slide to slide. Click again on the last slide to end recording.
The nice part about this feature is that PowerPoint automatically saves the timing for each slide. You can now skip Step 3!
If you add separate audio files to each slide, you can synchronize the animation to specific points on the audio timeline by setting bookmarks. I explain the process in my blog post, “Sync animation with a video or audio.”
3. Set slide timings
If you add individual audio files, you need to set the slide timings so that the video moves automatically from slide to slide. You do this on the Transitions tab, in the Timing section, under Advance Slide. Check the After checkbox and add the number of seconds. It’s usually easier to click the up arrow to increase the seconds.
How do you know how many seconds to add? On the Animations tab, in the Animation Pane, you can see when the last animation ends by hovering over its endpoint, as you see in the image below. If necessary, you can widen the Animation Pane by dragging on its left edge. Also, at the bottom, you can click the right arrow to scroll through the timeline. If you don’t see it, click the down arrow next to any animation and choose Show Advanced Timeline.
4. Export to video format
When your animation and audio are done, click the File tab and choose Export. (In earlier versions, use Save & Send or Publish.) Choose Create a Video. You have some choices for quality and what to include, but the defaults are usually good.
Click Create Video and wait until it’s done. Be sure to check it over–you might find that the animation seems too slow or too fast. It’s pretty easy to make adjustments and export again.
What are you waiting for? Have you created videos from PowerPoint? Can you see a use for videos in your work? Leave a comment and use the Share buttons below to spread the word!