Dealing with multiple slide masters

Multiple Slide Masters

You can end up with multiple slide masters in your PowerPoint presentation in two ways – intentionally (and there are two ways that this can happen) and unintentionally (in which case, you may want to remove one or more of them). You’ll recall that in last month’s PowerPoint tip we talked about creating Slide masters (go here if you need a reminder: ), well last week, I received the following in an email: “I’m doing a presentation which is amalgamating from about 3 different presentations, only one of which uses our company slide master. The slide numbering is different in each. I’d like it all ‘bottom right’ in the footer, but some slides I’ve copied must have it top left, so I’ve got slides numbered correctly and consecutively, but some appear top left and some bottom right!” So, this is the “unintentional” option.

Removing Slide Masters

I’m a member of a business to business network – Business for Breakfast – & we use a PowerPoint presentation to help the meeting run smoothly. In addition to the “BforB” Master (1), there’s one that’s still there from a previous user (2) and also one from the time when I did my “Business Spotlight” (3) as you can see here…

Selecting the Slide master that’s there in error (in this case No 2) & selecting Delete from the slide master menu removes that master (and all of its associated layouts). Any slides that were using that layout then revert to whatever is left. So that’s all that my client needed to do – remove the ones that were not based on the company slide master & the slides then fall neatly into line.

Using multiple slide masters

Neatly leading on from this, the above also illustrates neatly why you might want more than one slide master…

In the first case, there may be more than one organisation presenting but for smoothness of presentation, you need to collate all of the slides into a single presentation, but each organisation may have their own Slide Master & so you will want to ensure that when the slides are copied over, you bring that with them.

To do that, with each of the presentations in Slide Sorter view, select all of the slides that you want to copy (they will gain red borders), click copy

Select where you want to paste them in the other presentation, select the dropdown arrow under Paste & then if you want to also bring across the Slide Master, select “Keep Source Formatting”

If you just want the content & need it to fit in with your existing Slide Master, then select “Use Destination Theme”

Creating a second slide master within your presentation

The other reason why you may require a second (or more) slide master is if, for example, each department of an organisation or sector that is being discussed has a different style to help remind people which topic they’re looking at. For example, I may decide to use one master for my overall presentation & then a slightly different one to talk about Training, different again for Consultancy & a further one for Support; alternatively, I may match colours with the various programs if I’m covering Excel, Word & PowerPoint (Green, Blue & Amber)…

To do this, having selected VIEW>SLIDE MASTER, I select INSERT SLIDE MASTER from the menu & proceed in the same way as detailed here: