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One Slide Show—Many Uses

Friday, November 19th, 2004 by | Filed Under: MS PowerPoint

One Slide Show—Many Uses

What do you do when you have to take an MS PowerPoint presentation tailored for one audience and alter it for a slightly different audience?

I mean, the bulk of the presentation material will be the same but you’ve got to accommodate some differences.

Maybe the presentation is two hours long and you’ve got to do the job in just one hour.

Or… maybe you’ve got sensitive materials in the presentation that aren’t for the eyes of the new audience.

Or… what about the situations where you need to put audience-specific slides in?

What do you do?

If you’re like many people you keep creating a whole lot of extremely similar presentations that quickly become a file management mess.


You could also choose to change the presentation each time by marking some slides as hidden before you begin. (See the MS Office Tips issue from May 6, 2003 in our archives at to take a look at hiding slides.)

While this option works well for a once-in-a-while deal, it probably isn’t the best solution for constant changes.

Let’s face it, the routine of hide some slides, give the presentation, unhide some slides and hide others, give the presentation, unhide and hide, give the presentation… (you get the idea) is a process overflowing with opportunities for mistakes.

You could easily overlook the addition or removal of a crucial slide and blow the entire presentation on any given day.

Ok, so you see the dilemma.

Looking for a better solution?


Well then, you’re in the right place at the right time because today we’re going to take a look at custom shows in MS PowerPoint.

A good definition for a custom show comes from the Office Assistant himself.

“When you create a custom show, you group slides in an existing presentation so that you can easily show that section of the presentation to a particular audience and omit it for other audiences.”

I couldn’t have said it any better.


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