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How to present slides virtually

This is a step by step tutorial on how to easily and professionally use Keynote to present on Zoom or any other sort of virtual platform.

The goal is to use the friendly presenter controls of Keynote, as well as the good design elements, and also integrate your face while talking to people on Zoom or Streamyard, etc.

I’ve been doing this for years, using clunky software hacks, but now I’ve figured out a user-friendly approach and wanted to share it.

Thanks to the team at Ecamm Live for the help, as well as Adrian Salisbury‘s videos. I find I learn more quickly from seeing it laid it, step by step, so I can scan and go back without messing with video. So, here you go.

If you find this helpful, I hope you’ll become a paid user of Ecamm. It’s so much better and the team is so dedicated… I’m really glad I switched to their software.

NB: This isn’t going to teach you how to install and set up Ecamm. There are plenty of useful tutorials for that.

The overview:

  1. We make Keynote slides but use a green box anywhere you want your face to show through.
  2. That means you can start with a full green screen and have small captions, or you can cover the whole screen with an image and have no face show through, or anything in between.

Next, we discover that the new version of Keynote has a choice under PLAY for IN WINDOW. This means that when you play the slideshow, it won’t take over your entire screen, but instead, play your slideshow in a window. (It’s important that you save your file before you hit play.) Then hit PLAY. It will open a control window, but we don’t need to worry about that now.

Now, go over to Ecamm and create a new SCENE by pressing the + button. Name it something useful.

Then, up top, go to SOURCE and hit BLANK. So now you have a completely empty scene.

Then, at the bottom of the overlay window, you’ll see these icons. Hit the one that looks like a monitor, top row, second from the right:

Ecamm will put up a square on your scene. Hit the little pencil and you get choices.

Choose Keynote and then choose the name of the file you just saved (that’s why you needed to save it first.) Don’t hit ‘Presenter Display’.

Now, we can hit the GREEN SCREEN KEY button and suddenly, the green box disappears!

Now, go back to the OVERLAYS window and choose the little camera icon. It will put your face in front of the slide we just brought in:

Drag it down so the slide is in front of you.

so now you see this:

Drag the slide into position, and voila (you can use option-drag on the edges if you need to trim the window around the slide.

Go back to Keynote and you can now control your slides, boom, boom, boom, seeing the next slide in the queue as you go. Leave ecamm to do its thing and you’re set.

I hope this helps. Life’s too short for ugly presentations.