Paper or Electronic?

News Paper Origami Dragon Monster

I have never been a fan of printing powerpoint presentation slides or handouts. Today while reading Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business (New Rules Social Media Series)Photos of Raul Colon Web Developer Puerto Rico (affiliate link) I realized that I might have to change my approach.

I also started looking at printing a presentation from different aspects.


Adding more Detail to your presentations. On many occasions I see how people just overload their slides with lots of content. If you have data that will add value and it would overload your slide it might be a better idea to put that information on the printed slides and handouts.

Easier to Take Notes and Write on paper than in digital format. @cc_chapman author of Content Rules sent me the following tweet which Inspired me with this post.
[blackbirdpie url=”!/cc_chapman/status/21935663611904000″]

Having a Backup plan just in case there is no internet connection, projector is not found or not working, the media where presentation is stored not working properly. Many speakers just rely on their slides to run there presentations. You should be able to continue without a projector and having notes in your hand might help you out even more.


We all know what paper is made out of. So printing something on paper does “kill trees”

More stuff to carry when leaving a conference. On most occasions if a presentation is handed to me in paper format I hardly ever go over it again. If I am traveling their is a high probability I will discard it.

Not as easy to share, if your copy is printed to handout and is not in electronic format you should consider using both. In electronic format you can either publish it on blogs, slideshare, tweet it, and publish via other channels where people who are not physically near you can get and share the content.

Most printed presentations I have received have ended in the recycling bin, used for scrap paper, or trash.

Printed presentation take away physical space so getting rid of them physically can actually keep your office clear of non-priority items.


If you want to share your presentation feel free to upload it online either on your corporate site, blog, or third party services such as slideshare.

Email presentation for those who have provided you their email with permission to send them future content.

If you decide to send presentation ahead of the event it can really spark conversations for those who are interested in what you are going to say.

Sending the presentation after the event might be a good idea if you feel that the audience needs to be concentrated in your speech more than your slides.

Resistance to Change

Everyone is resistant to change especially when for years we have been so use to writing on paper. When you are going to speak in a public event it is important to keep in mind that some audiences expect for you to print out a presentation.

Do you prefer a paper or  electronic presentation? Why?

What other advantages and/or disadvantages for printing a presentation?

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