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How to Narrate a PowerPoint Presentation (And Record Your Voice)

For a presentation that you aren’t actually giving in person, you can narrate it within PowerPoint, recording your voice so that others can play it back when they watch the presentation.

It’s a nifty trick that popular with slide shows and presentations on networks such as SlideShare, YouTube, and even individual websites. And it can even help you when rehearsing your presentation as well.

Here’s how to narrate a PowerPoint presentation by recording your voice, in a few quick steps!

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Create and Design Your Presentation

The first step to preparing a narrated or recorded PowerPoint presentation is to design the presentation and refine the content. During this step you may even want to think about how you will script the presentation so that you are designing with a flow in mind.

Make sure to include any specific transitions you want to use from slide to slide, and don’t forget to read our guide on how to design a professional presentation for tips and pointers.

Prepare for Recording

Before recording a narration, it is advised to write out a script and check your computer microphone to ensure that the sound is correct and that recordings will be at an appropriate volume. You can do this with a short test recording.

Now it is time to record the narration. You can record narration for all slides or select slides.

Open your presentation and navigate to the Slide Show tab.

how to record a powerpoint

If you are recording narration for all of the slides, you are ready. If you plan to record a voiceover for only some of the slides, you want to hide the slides you won’t have a recording for.

You can do this by selecting the slides you don’t want to include, right- or ctrl-click and then Hide Slide.

how to record a powerpoint

The other option is to create a custom show. From the menu select Custom Show > Custom Slide Show > use the + to add slides. You will need to know which slide numbers you want for this option because you can’t see previews.

Record the Narration

how to record a powerpoint

Now you are ready to record. (Good luck!)

In the Slide Show tab, click the Record Slide Show Button from the first slide in your presentation.

how to record a powerpoint

Recording starts automatically. (You’ll notice the screen shifts into full presentation mode.) As you record the narration, you can use the navigation tools on the screen to advance slides. This will override any previous timing settings so that slides advance in tandem with your voice narration.

When you are finished, click End and you will be prompted to save the recording. Only one recording can be saved at a time. A new recording will override any previously saved recorded narrations.

You can preview the recording using the start button.

Helpful Keyboard Shortcuts

Using keyboard shortcuts during recording can make it a little easier.

Some shortcuts you might use include:

  • Click, spacebar or right arrow: Advance to the next slide
  • Delete or left arrow: Go back one slide
  • B: Toggle to black screen
  • Esc: End slide show recording

Choose a Playback Option

how to record a powerpoint

Finally, you’ll want to determine how the presentation will be played back for users.

Click on Set Up Slide Show from the menu and make your selections from the options on the screen. Then you can save or export to a desired file format.

Conclusion

A PowerPoint presentation with a narrated recording can be a useful tool to help get your information in front of more people. All you need to do it is a quiet room to record and a microphone attached to your computer.

Don’t forget to take a look at our full PowerPoint templates guide, or our collection of the best PowerPoint templates for your next project!