There’s an important reason that you should consider creating a menu slide, which is a slide that links to other parts of your presentation (and maybe outside resources as well).
You could also call it an agenda slide. (In fact, you could create a Questions slide at the end to link back to topics you’ve already covered so that you can redisplay slides in answer to a question.)
With a menu slide, you can offer your audience a choice about which topics they want to hear and in which order. Your presentation can become collaborative and interactive instead of a lecture.
PowerPoint calls this slide a Zoom Slide.
This type of presentation is valuable when:
- You’re presenting to a small group
- Your audience is made up of potential clients
- Your audience is advanced and may want to skip some of the topics
- You’re presenting to children and want to engage them
- You’re presenting to adults and want to engage them
Can you think of other situations when offering the audience a choice would be valuable?
What is the Zoom feature?
The Zoom feature is new for Office 365 and you’ll have it only if you have Office 365, which you pay for by subscription. Although it creates a zoom-like animation, it isn’t related to the Zoom animation effect. It also isn’t related to the feature that allows you to zoom into part of a slide in Slide Show view. (I know, confusing, isn’t it?)
The Zoom feature makes creating a menu slide very easy. The result is an attractive slide that contains (by default) an image of each of the slides you link to. At the end of this post, I have links to other posts that will explain how to create a menu slide if you don’t have Office 365.
An aside about sections
Before I go into detail, I need to explain sections. Starting with PowerPoint 2010, you can create sections for your presentation. Before the Zoom feature, these were just to help you organize your content. As you’ll see, the Zoom feature can now make use of sections to create a Zoom slide.
To add a section to a presentation, you work in the left-hand pane. Right-click just above a slide and choose Add Section. In newer versions of PowerPoint, the Rename Section dialog box pops up where you can type in a name and click Rename. If that doesn’t happen, right-click the unnamed section and choose Rename section to rename it.
Back to Zoom Slides
PowerPoint offers 3 ways to create a Zoom Slide:
- Summary Zoom: Creates a menu slide of selected slides. If you have created sections, the slides that start each section are automatically selected. If you don’t have sections, you choose the slides that you want to hyperlink to and PowerPoint creates the sections for you. When you click on a link on the Zoom Slide, you go to that slide and then continue through the rest of the slides in that section. The next click brings you back to the menu (Zoom) slide.
- Section Zoom: Creates a menu slide on an existing slide from sections that you have defined. You can use a Section Zoom to hyperlink to one or more sections, go through the slides in that section, and then return to the Zoom Slide. This is similar to using Custom Shows and returning. (I explain Custom Shows here.)
- Slide Zoom: Creates a menu slide on an existing slide that links to any slides you choose. Then you continue the presentation to the end. This is similar to using Custom Shows and not returning to the menu slide.
How to create a menu (Zoom) slide
Creating the menu (Zoom) slide is easy. Here are the steps:
- If you want to create a Zoom Slide on an existing slide, display that slide. For a Summary Slide you don’t need to work from an existing slide — in the left-hand pane, click before the slide where you want to create the new menu slide.
- Choose Insert> Zoom and choose the type of zoom you want.
- In the dialog box that opens, choose the slides or sections you want to include.
- Click Insert.
- If necessary, deselect the zooms and rearrange them on the slide.
Tip#1: If you’re creating a Section Zoom, you can simply drag the section name you want in the left-hand pane onto the slide where you want the Section Zoom.
Tip #2: Similarly, if you’re creating a Slide Zoom, you can simply drag the slides you want from the left-hand pane onto the slide where you want the Slide Zoom. You can then rearrange their order on the Zoom Slide.
Customizing Zoom Slides
When you select a Zoom item on a slide, the ZoomTools Format tab appears. There, you can:
- Specify whether you want to return to the Zoom slide after displaying that item (check or uncheck the Return to Zoom checkbox)
- Keep or remove the Zoom transition effect with the Zoom Transition checkbox
- Adjust the speed of the Zoom effect in the Duration box
- Change the Zoom item’s image by choosing another image. By default, the image is the slide you’re linking to
Creating a menu slide manually
You can create a menu slide using hyperlinks. I have two earlier posts that will help you create a menu slide:
Do you create nonlinear, interactive presentations? How?
Do you create menu slides or include hyperlinks to make nonlinear presentations? Please share how and why you do this in the comments. And please share this post on social media using the Social Media buttons.