August 13, 2020

Multiple Animations in PowerPoint

Everyone, from professionals and students, knows Microsoft PowerPoint as the number one presentation program. Long presentations tend to be monotonous, making it easy for an audience to quickly lose interest. Here we’ll show you how to use and organize several PowerPoint animations to grab your audience’s attention.


Tip: Bring objects to life using multiple animations in PowerPoint

Program requirements

First, make sure that you have installed the correct program version. You’ll need PowerPoint 2013 or higher. To find out the version of your software, go to the File tab and click on Account. You current PowerPoint version is listed under Product Information.

Objects that can be animated

Objects that can be animated include pictures, shapes, SmartArt graphics and diagrams. There is also the possibility to apply special effects to titles and text fields.



The Animation Pane

The Animation Pane helps you keep track of the animated objects in your presentation. Go to the Animations menu in the ribbon and look in the Advanced Animation grouping. Click on Animation Pane. This opens a window on the right-hand of your screen which displays the animated objects in your presentation.



Add Animations

Now it’s time to apply the first animation to your object. To do this, left-click on the desired effect in the Animation tab. There are four animation categories in PowerPoint: Entrance, Emphasis, Exit and Motion Paths. Once you’ve applied your first animation, a small number 1 will appear in the upper-left corner of your object and the Animation Pane will display the effect you created. Clicking on another effect will cancel the previous one.

To apply multiple animations to an object, use the Add Animation menu in the Advanced Animation grouping. The new effect will be added to the Animation Pane below the previous one. You will also see a 2 under the 1 in the upper-left hand corner of your object.



Edit animations

All the effects are listed in the Animation Pane. Animation effects can be adapted to customize your presentation even more. To do this, right-click on an effect in the Animation Pane. This will open a menu with various options.



Set up the start of the animation

There are three different ways to start an animation:

The default option is Start On Click, indicated by a small mouse icon in the Animation Pane. As the name implies, this animation only starts when the presenter clicks on the slide during the presentation.
The second option is Start With Previous and has no icon. When this is selected, the animation starts with the effect above it. It doesn’t have its own number and is instead, assigned to the animation above it.
The last option is Start After Previous and is represented by a small clock. The effect starts directly after the animation above it. This option works best to create a chain of several PowerPoint animations.



PowerPoint animation effect options

After setting the start of each PowerPoint animation, you may want to adjust them more. This can be done using Effect Options, which can be found by left-clicking the animation in the Animation Pane. From this menu you can set animation sounds and decide what should happen to the object when the animation ends (After animation). Effect options vary between animation types but can be applied to multiple objects.



Set the duration of each animation

The duration of each animation helps to determine the order in which they are presented and to organize multiple effects. To set the duration, either go to Duration in the Timing tab or right-click the animation name in the Animation Pane, select Effect Options and then Timing. The selected duration will be displayed as a colored bar called the Advanced Timeline.

Use the Advanced Timeline in PowerPoint for multiple animations

The Advanced Timeline is a handy tool to make sure that your animations run in the right order. The timeline appears when an effect is applied to an object using the Start After Previous option. The order and duration of each animation can be seen in the Animation Pane and be changed by dragging and dropping.


Rename animated objects

It can get a bit confusing when there are multiple animated objects on one slide. So, here’s a handy tip:  Give each object its own name.

First, select the slide with the objects you want to rename. The Animation Pane doesn’t need to be open for this. In the Home tab in the Editing grouping, click on Select and choose Selection Pane. This will open a new window on the right side of your screen where you can rename every single object and text element by simply left-clicking on it. By right-clicking on the eye symbol to the right of the name, you can also hide and restore each element.



We hope you’ve learned something new and have fun using animations in your next presentation. Feel free to share this article with your friends and colleagues to help them take their PowerPoint skills to the next level. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We look forward to your feedback.




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