I’m always up for trying out new digital storytelling tools. So after watching a presentation by Haiku Deck’s Chief Inspiration Officer and VP of marketing Catherine Carr, I spent a couple of hours to take it for a spin the same day. (You can replay the free webinar at Poynter’s News University here.)
Haiku Deck — available on the iPad and via the web — is very simple and limited in its options, but that’s the point. It’s heavily focused on visual storytelling and proves that way too many typical presentations are overcrammed with text (I’m guilty of this).
Sure, you can still cram so much text on a Haiku Deck slide that you need a magnifying glass to read it. But the app is really trying to train its users to include just one thought/idea per slide. I almost managed this but couldn’t resist my old ways on a couple of the slides.
Although it’s still in beta since launching in 2012, Haiku Deck’s been getting rave reviews. Geekwire named it the App of the Year for 2013.
One of the many great things about Haiku Deck is that it includes a very nice collection of images and many of them are breathtaking. Or you can use your own, which can be especially powerful for nonprofits and visually oriented brands.
Using Haiku Deck does feel a bit like creating poetry. But there’s also the utilitarian side, so to speak — the finished deck can be exported to PowerPoint, PDF and (allegedly) SlideShare (I kept getting a login error despite using the correct information and even being logged in directly).
You won’t have the flexibility of PowerPoint or Prezi but the simplicity of Haiku Deck is its beauty. And data geeks still have a few choices of charts.
It’s definitely a fun tool to add to your digital storyteller’s toolkit. But be careful, you may get addicted. Check out below the deck I made in maybe two or three hours. I took my sweet time because I wrote and rewrote the content and played around with the photo choices — but you can probably make a quickie deck in less than 30 minutes if you already know what you want to say. This app has zero learning curve.)