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What is the 10 20 30 Rule of PowerPoint?

What is the 10 20 30 Rule of PowerPoint? When you hear about the 10-20-30 rule, the first thing you might think of is who invented such a rule and why? Guy Kawasaki, who was an American marketer and writer, created this rule. Kawasaki mentioned this rule for presentations during one of his speeches. He claimed that since having to sit down for 70 slide long presentations is not particularly fun, he came up with the idea of the 10-20-30 rule. 

You can use this rule to make your presentations brief, to the point, and more engaging. The 10-20-30 rule is a golden rule when you want to create and present your exhibition. According to this rule, your Presentation should have a maximum of 10 slides and, in terms of time, be limited to 20 minutes, and the font you use should be 30. Now we will try to break this down and see in detail what it is. 

What is the 10 20 30 Rule of PowerPoint?
10 20 30 rule of PowerPoint

10/20/30 rule for an effective presentation means

Professional marketers use the 10/20/30 rule of PowerPoint for presenting the audience with a memorable presentation. All of the comprising elements of the Presentation are in harmony with one another. To limit yourself to a maximum of 10 slides, you must focus on the most critical points concerning your topic. The function of a 20-minute timeline is that it helps you ensure that you don’t present your audience with unnecessary details instead of the salient points concerning your argument(s). 

The 30pt font is the last check for your Presentation. The significance of this final check is that it helps you display only the key points in your presentation slides instead of unnecessarily big chunks of text. This 30pt font usage is in harmony with the ten slides restriction Because you will have to make your sentences so that they fill your slides with a 30pt font. Paying attention to details such as the slide number, font size, and presentation length is a way to ensure that your audience maintains an interest in your Presentation as you explain the significance of your work. 

Who is this Guy Kawasaki? 

Guy Kawasaki gained an iconic status amongst venture capitalists. Kawasaki, previously an apple employee, found fame not because of being a venture capitalist but since he was a genius thinker. He came up with the 10-20-30 rule in 2005. This rule transformed PowerPoint representations globally. 

The Rule in Detail:

Could you keep it to up to 10 PowerPoint Slides?

Your audience will pay more attention to your Presentation if it is brief, salient, and visually pleasant. Try not to bombard the audience with too many slides. This rule states that ten slides are pretty enough for making your point effectively. Make sure not to fill your slides with complicated material. 

The ten slides that Kawasaki suggested to venture capitalists are as such:

  1. Title. You should find a suitable name for your Presentation.
  2. Try to demonstrate your main points or opportunities. 
  3. Proposing value(s). you should explain the value(s) of your solutions.
  4. The magic trick. It would be best to talk about the secret recipe of your tech or services/products that makes all the difference here. 
  5. Business plan. Try to explain your designs for the business and how you’re going to get there.
  6. Marketing plan. You should draw on your designs for marketing your product(s).
  7. Free enterprise Analysis. Try to draw on the strengths and weaknesses of your potential competitors in the market. 
  8. The management team. Present the group you have in mind for management: investors, advisors, the directorial board, etc.
  9. Financial outlook. Here you should explain your future income & potential expenses. You can also define your key metrics for financial performance in this slide. 
  10. Current status and funds. You can explain the current status of your product/service, its accomplishments to date, the timeline, and how you will use your funds.  

Keep it within a time frame of 20 minutes. 

If you want to understand how frustrating it is to sit through an hour-long presentation, think about the 2 hours long Netflix Original episodes that you had to watch for research purposes!

The second portion of the 10 -20-30 rule suggests that you should never make your Presentation longer than an episode of FX original Archer. Remember that time he became the king of pirates?

What is the perfect 20-Minute Presentation?

  • Introduction. Don’t let a flair for dramatics ruin your introduction section. Your audience is already aware of the reason for their presence there. So don’t give them the impression that they are confronted with a lengthy presentation before you even begin presenting it. One minute is enough for this section.
  • Draw on your problem or question. Discuss the main topic of your Presentation and its significance through informative or real-time examples. Try to utilize the opinions of the audience to help them focus. Try to keep this section to up to 4 minutes. 
  • The main body. This section is the essential part of your Presentation. Here it would be best if you tried to provide answers to the questions you posed previously. To make your Presentation as cohesive as possible, use visual figures and facts to support your argument(s). 13 minutes is the ideal time for this section.
  • Conclusion. It would help if you tried to summarize your problem and its critical solutions. This is extremely helpful in hardening the crucial info of Your Presentation in the audience’s minds before the Q&A part of your Presentation. Give this section 2 minutes.

If you finish your Presentation in 20 minutes, you will be left with 40 minutes for answering questions. Such a ratio is most practical for encouraging your audience to participate more.

One of the best tools for post-presentation questions is AhaSlides‘ Q&A feature. With an interactive Q&A slide (whether you are presenting online or in person), you can address the genuine concerns of your audience. 

Utilize a 30point font

You should observe the 30pt rule to provide all your audience with a similar experience to follow your Presentation. This way, the person sitting in the back will have the same opportunity to access your material as the person in the front.

The 30-point rule is there is because of the limitations of our eyesight. You want the person in the back to follow the Presentation in similar means as the person sitting right there before you. Make it a similar experience for everyone.

You are right to think that not much can be fit into a slide with larger than 30pt fonts. At any rate, you don’t have to do so. You are the one which conveys your ideas, and your computer and your PowerPoint are just means that help you in doing so.

Now whether you use PowerPoint or its alternatives, the 10-20-30 rule is beneficial and highly effective. The reason for this rule’s timeless effectiveness so far is the individuals who utilize it. 


In this article, you found out what is the 10 20 30 rule of PowerPoint?. Still need help with your doing PowerPoint?


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