Round up of presentations by type

A digital image featuring the opening slides of different presentations in cool tones of purple, blue, and pink.

Presentations are a common way of sharing information between people. Used for a variety of purposes in different settings, it’s important to hone in on what your goals are in presenting information and in what context it will be shared. From there, you can better create a presentation that suits your needs. Let’s look through the nuts and bolts of presentations and consider common types you could utilize regardless of your content themes.



The why, who, and what of presentations

We make presentations to easily share information from a presenter to an audience. In thinking about the why, we are also able to focus more intently on the type of presentation we could create. Are we attempting to educate or inform, persuade, or even tell a story? By considering the goal or problem to be solved, we can more readily form our presentation in line with common frameworks.

The two primary parties involved in presentations are the presenter(s) and the audience. When planning a presentation, it is important to consider who is presenting and who is receiving the information. This relationship alone may easily identify the type of presentation.

Most presentations use a narrow widescreen size (16:9), which is 1920px by 1080px. Standard slides (4:3) measure at 1024px x 768px. In Adobe Express, you can choose whichever format you prefer and use the Resize tool to change the slide size at any time.

The power and the point of presentations

Presentations are a useful medium because they pair textual information with visual images. Whether using diagrams, charts, or pictures to illustrate the information, the visual aspect supports a concise body of text so that they are easily read. The presenter will typically have more to say than what is provided within the presentation, but the presentation serves as an outline or summary of the main points.

Presentations should be easily understood in an immediate way. As mentioned before, the physical presentation serves as a summary for the more thorough information provided by the speaker. When done well, presentations can be referenced down the line and call to mind a more complete picture of the presenter’s work.

When to use presentations and for whom

Anytime you have a specific time window and audience, presentations can be a useful tool. Whether this is in a professional or educational context, or even just between friends, there are many times when presentations can be used to share information.

Some examples might be:

The essential elements of any type of presentation

Making compelling presentations that complement and strengthen your objective is not the easiest task. What makes a presentation successful, and what should you include?

To start with, you'll want to make sure the message you're sharing with your audience is conveyed in a verbal and visual way. There should also be a balance of visual elements like graphs, charts, images, and text that help you back up insights you have to share.

Animation is a common tool that captures an audience’s attention. It can help you emphasize key points and add interest and a sense of fun to your presentation. By bringing a dynamic aspect to your visuals, you make your work more memorable and often get your points across more effectively.

Common types of presentations

Here we will look at common types of presentations focusing on their goals. Does your presentation aim to inform, persuade, instruct, or educate? With a defined intention in mind, the type can be applied to a variety of different settings.


This kind of presentation aims to convince the audience of something. Whether you are pitching an idea for a book to an editor or providing a marketing plan to a potential client, presentations can be a useful vehicle in which to make an argument. This type of presentation is often used in competitive circumstances, such as during an election cycle. Whether it be an idea for a product or project, you can lay out for your audience what you're offering and how you will go about accomplishing it.

Informative or educational

Presentations can be used for sharing knowledge and insight on a particular topic. Whether the topic is design history or the chemical properties of an element, these aim to increase understanding. This kind of presentation is given in a class or webinar setting and can benefit from space to discuss or clarify. Provided that information defines this kind of presentation, it’s important to be mindful about keeping it as essential and easily digestible as possible. You don’t want your audience to be overloaded. By finding the right balance of strong text-based points and visual support, your work will better serve its purpose of informing your audience.


Whereas an informative presentation is often the who, what, when, and where, the instructional presentation deals with the how. If there’s a process or practice that your audience could benefit from learning, this is the presentation for you. These provide practical instructions for accomplishing a given task, often moving step-by-step to guide the audience. Clarity and concision are key here; too much information or jargon has the potential to overload the audience and take away from your efforts. Live demonstration can be a useful supplement alongside instructional presentations.

Progress or status reporting

If you are in the process of accomplishing something and you are asked for an update, a presentation can be a useful way of showing what you’ve done thus far. Demonstrating your progress communicates effort to your team and commitment to your mission, instilling more confidence in your audience. It also offers a chance to communicate about potential changes if needed towards the goal's completion. This kind of presentation suits an educational or professional setting, whether tracking a student’s work through the academic year or following the status of a professional project for a client or supervisor.

Motivational or inspirational

Sometimes you just need a little boost. A motivational or inspirational presentation is aimed at an audience that could benefit from a positive perspective. This form is typically more personal and emotional than the others, working to build confidence and meaningfully shift the energy of an audience. Whether focusing on a historical figure’s overcoming of an obstacle or using the presenter’s own story to catalyze and inspire, the goal here is to engage in a way that encourages your audience. Energy is everything, so keep it light.

Design any type of presentation with Adobe Express

Build amazing presentations that are engaging, educational, and impactful. From clearly conveying complex information and highlighting your brand to boosting your marketing efforts and fostering collaboration, you can quickly and easily make captivating presentations that will win your audience over with the help of our extensive template collections.

Get inspired with our gigantic collection of professionally designed presentation templates, then choose one to customize. Drop in your information, add your own images, or even organize information with icons. Send your presentation to team members to collaborate via the share link and download whenever you’re finished. It’s as easy as choosing a template, customizing, and sharing.