Tagguest Q&A

AccuWeather Tells Winning Weather Stories with Haiku Deck

Headquartered in State College, PA, AccuWeather provides worldwide weather forecasting services with superior accuracy, and they’re using Haiku Deck to help aid their efforts of spreading the news. Most recently, we had the opportunity to speak to their team about how they’re using Haiku Deck, and their predictions for using in the future.

Guest Q&A

Haiku Deck: Tell us a little bit about how your team is using Haiku Deck at AccuWeather.

AccuWeather: We first heard about Haiku Deck in a Poynter NewsU Webinar. Our team started experimenting with it afterward and we now build Haiku Decks on a regular basis for very visual stories. We believe that pictures help to tell the whole story of an event, so we like to provide our readers with compelling visual evidence in addition to our written news content.

“We believe that pictures help to tell the whole story of an event.”

We usually build Haiku Decks around major weather events, such as dangerous flooding, tornado outbreaks, heavy snowfalls, tropical storms and hurricanes. They’re also great for summary stories. Once per week, we use them for our weekly wrap-ups and frequently for end-of-season recaps.

Underwater Cyclone Destruction – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

Haiku Deck: What are your team’s favorite things about it?

AccuWeather: Haiku Deck is one of the best tools we’ve found to date that allows us to recreate weather events on a timeline. Our most recent deck was a weather recap of the summer of 2014. It’s now received nearly 160,000 views!

Summer of 2014 – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

(Here’s the blog post that goes along with the above Haiku Deck.)

We love that it allows us to create photo galleries to complement our editorial content. If we’re talking about a specific typhoon, we may build a deck encompassing the overall typhoon season. It becomes a second destination for people who are interested in knowing more after reading.

“It becomes a second destination for people who are interested in knowing more after reading.”

It also allows us to house all of our photos related to a story in one location, instead of embedding numerous images throughout and pushing our editorial content too far down the page.

Haiku Deck: Your decks have been very popular! Have you gotten good feedback from your audience? Do you have more planned?

AccuWeather: We think the feedback is in the page views! We’ve also seen a lot of engagement in stories that contain decks. We definitely believe that this tool adds something to our editorial content and plan to continue brainstorming new ways to use it!

We’ve seen a lot of engagement in stories that contain decks.

Check out some of their other stories here:

Haiku Deck: Do you use Haiku Deck for purposes other than for the AccuWeather blog?

AccuWeather: We’re experimenting with using it as an invite tool for our AccuWeather LIVE weekday noon shows and our Thursday extended editions.

Share Your Ideas

How do you use Haiku Deck? Share your experience and ideas with us in the comments below, or drop us a line at — we’d love to hear about them!

Blogging Case Study: The Story of the Most Popular Haiku Deck of All Time

Blogging Inspiration

2 Months; 250K Views

When design blogger Desiree Groenendal of Vosgesparis used Haiku Deck for her keynote at Hive Berlin, and racked up more close to a quarter-million views in just two months, we had to find out more!

Haiku Deck: How did you hear about Haiku Deck, and what inspired you to try it?

Desiree: I first heard about it from a fellow blogger. I had to make a presentation in a very short time, and since I’d never made one before I asked around on what to use and what would be the easiest to work with.

Many of the programs that were suggested just looked a bit too boring to me. And others looked so difficult to learn. I am a very visual person, and I wanted it to look beautiful. When I saw the black and white Haiku Decks in the Gallery, I knew instantly that this was what I wanted.

I am a very visual person, and I wanted it to look beautiful. When I saw the black and white Haiku Decks in the Gallery, I knew instantly that this was what I wanted.

Haiku Deck: How did creating your first Haiku Deck go?

Desiree: I had never used a presentation tool before, so it was all new to me. I thought it was so easy to learn and to use. Once I found out the right size for the background images I created them on my laptop, uploaded them to my Dropbox, and made the slides one by one on the iPad.

I loved how easy it was to adjust the position of the text. Also, it was very easy to change the order of the slides — the whole process was really very stress-free.

Tip: You can easily import photos to Haiku Deck from your iPad camera roll, Facebook, Instagram, Flickr, Dropbox, and more.

Haiku Deck: Your  Haiku Deck, “The Mini Company,” with advice for monetizing a blog, has been viewed almost 250,000 times. (Wow!) What do you think is driving so much interest?

Desiree: I’ve been surprised myself! I think bloggers like it because it answers things we are all wondering about when we start. I actually got several emails from bloggers with even more questions.

The Mini Company – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

Haiku Deck: What tips or ideas do you have for bloggers who might be interested in trying Haiku Deck?

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iPads in the Classroom: Sensory Poems and Character Studies

We love seeing how innovative educators are using Haiku Deck to bring creativity to iPads in the classroom. When we saw tweets from Annie Lafont (of Acacia Elementary in Fullerton, CA) about her students’ storytelling projects, we got in touch to hear more.

iPads in the Classroom: 4th Graders using Haiku Deck at Acacia Elementary

4th graders using Haiku Deck at Acacia Elementary

Q&A with Fourth Grade Teacher Annie Lafont

Haiku Deck: What inspired you to try Haiku Deck?

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iPads in the Classroom: Guest Q&A with Jeremy Macdonald

Educators and innovators, we invite you to be inspired by Haiku Deck Guru Jeremy Macdonald, a.k.a. “MrMacnology,” an expert on using iPads in the classroom. Jeremy was one of the first Gurus to come on board, and we have loved collaborating with him–especially on Twitter, where he often jumps in to answer customer questions before we can–Hai-5, Jeremy!

About Jeremy

Bio: ESOL & RTI specialist, instructional technology coach at Mills Elementary, team member of the ORVSD, father of 4
Location: Klamath Falls, OR
Guru inspiration: #HaikuEDU hashtag (Let’s make it happen!)
Go-to theme: Tabletop

About Me – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires;

Guest Q&A

Haiku Deck: What inspired you to start using Haiku Deck?

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Blog Inspiration: Guest Q&A with Megan Hunt

We’re delighted to announce our newest Haiku Deck Guru: entrepreneur, blogger, and all-around creative force Megan Hunt, a.k.a. Princess Lasertron. Megan’s high-style Haiku Decks have been wowing us for weeks, and we finally had a chance to hear more about how she’s using the app–and how it provided blog inspiration for Radvent, her latest creative undertaking.

Q&A with Megan Hunt

Haiku Deck: So, what inspired you to start using Haiku Deck?

Megan: I found out about Haiku Deck when I saw a business use it to pitch during a local Startup Weekend competition. I’m always super interested in trying new apps that seem like they’d make my life a little easier (particularly in the context of entrepreneurship). I thought Haiku Deck had a cute name and seemed promising, so I downloaded it and was immediately hooked. For me, the sparseness of the app makes it as fun to play with as it is useful. It honestly reminds me of the hours spent toying with HyperStudio as a kid. Really. It’s just fun.

Stuff You Need To Know About Me – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires;

Haiku Deck: Could you tell us a little bit about how you’ve been using it?

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The Superiority of Simplicity: Guest Q&A with Ethos3

Our friends at Ethos3 have been working for years to fight against the dreaded “Death by Powerpoint.” We caught up with Ethos3’s content writer and blogger Maggie Summers to hear her thoughts on simplicity, and how Haiku Deck can help further the cause. 

Haiku Deck: We’re certainly aligned in our quest for simplicity! Tell us more about your take on it.

Maggie: Leonardo da Vinci once said, “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” The very existence of simplicity implies thorough understanding, as well as thoughtful inclusion and careful omission. It’s far easier to maintain complexity than it is to foster simplicity.

Distilling complexity is worth the effort. Ideas are far easier to understand when they’re presented simply. Points are more easily retained when there’s no clutter or extraneous jargon. In reality, most people just turn off and tune out in the face of complexity.

Simplicity is the Ultimate Sophistication - L. Da Vinci

Creative Commons licensed image by Wesley Fryer

Haiku Deck: And what are your thoughts about Haiku Deck in particular?

We’ve been huge proponents of simplicity since the beginning of Ethos3, so we’re really excited to see this app come into the presentation space. Haiku Deck is essentially a manifestation of the presentation designer’s most important commandment––use big visuals with little text. We think it’s a great resource for the at-home presentation designer striving for simplicity.

Haiku Deck: What’s your advice for people who’d like to simplify their presentation style with Haiku Deck?

Maggie: Don’t be intimidated by Haiku Deck’s two-line per slide limit. Really, the app is doing you a favor by encouraging the use of as little text as possible to convey a point. It forces you to weed out the complicated, and find the simple. How can you disseminate that point in five words instead of ten? How can you narrow that message down into a single, pithy line rather than squeeze it into a bulky two? Simplify.

The two-line limit becomes much less daunting if you restrict yourself to including only one point per slide. There’s no such thing as a presentation that’s too long or too short. In fact, try not to think of length in terms of number of slides at all. More often than not, expanding a 25-slide presentation into a 50-slide presentation presents the same information much more effectively. The quantity of slides isn’t important. The memorability and impact of each individual slide in the deck is what truly matters.

Haiku Deck: What tips do you have for using images effectively?

Maggie: Large visuals also help the presentation designer embrace simplicity. Use visuals that support and nuance the point on a slide. Don’t be overly literal or prosaic with your choice of images. Instead, play up visual metaphors and use humor, irony, and unexpectedness to add depth to the words on the slide. Use text to communicate the essence of your main point, and then use a compelling visual to communicate further its meaning.

Haiku Deck: Any last thoughts?

Maggie: The simple resonates with audiences much more quickly and resoundingly than the complex. Where complexity tends to alienate and dissuade, simplicity implies accessibility and thoughtfulness, inspiring an equal chance at understanding for all.

Here’s a lovely Haiku Deck that Maggie created to capture her thoughts on simplicity:

Simplicity – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

For more tips on embracing simplicity, you might enjoy Maggie’s thoughts on how a presentation is like a backpack on Ethos3.

Would you like to do a guest Q&A for our blog? Please get in touch:

How Entrepreneur Tze Chun Uses Haiku Deck to Tell Her Story

We’ve viewed thousands upon thousands of Haiku Decks these past few months and loved each one, but a particularly striking one by Uprise Art recently caught our eye. We reached out to founder and entrepreneur Tze Chun to hear how Haiku Deck has played a role in her startup’s success.

Q&A with Entrepreneur Tze Chun

Haiku Deck: How are you using Haiku Deck in your business?

Tze: Uprise Art is an art collectors club, and we regularly host art events for our members. Haiku Deck is a great way for us to showcase the exciting artwork in our online gallery and create simple and elegant slides. I speak about art entrepreneurship fairly often as well, and have used Haiku Deck for “Art Collection 101” talks and presentations on Uprise Art.

Haiku Deck: What inspired you to start using it?

Tze: My boyfriend sent me your teaser video after seeing me struggle with slow programs on my laptop computer. Now, I use my iPad and create my Haiku Decks on the go. Literally, sometimes on the NYC subway.

Haiku Deck: How has it changed your experience of creating and sharing presentations?

Tze: As an entrepreneur, I’m constantly short on time. Unfortunately, I’m also a perfectionist. Haiku Deck enables me to make dynamic, clear, and properly aligned presentations efficiently. It’s also great to one-touch share the deck and know that I can always access it in the cloud when I arrive at my destination or conference.

Haiku Deck: What kind of response are you getting?

Tze: People think we have an in-house designer!

Haiku Deck: What’s on your Haiku Deck wish list?

Tze: Bullet points  — I love the simplicity and appreciate that there are only a few text options; however, in some cases I’d like to have the option to present a short list. (Note: Tze’s wish came true in Haiku Deck 2.0! Read more about lists the Haiku Deck way here.)

Here is the Haiku Deck that Tze used to (successfully) pitch her business for the highly competitive InSITE  fall mentorship program:

INSITE – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

Uprise Art has been featured in Huffington Post and recently won a Start Small, Go Big award from Daily Candy.

Congratulations Tze, and keep those artistic Haiku Decks coming!

More Inspiration for Entrepreneurs

For more inspiration, check out our Business Case Studies and Templates Pinterest boards.

How a Colorado Realtor Used Haiku Deck to Land a $1.4M Listing

In an industry as detail-oriented and spreadsheet-heavy as real estate, it might seem there’s no avoiding PowerPoint. But John James, a broker out of Steamboat Springs, has broken the mold by using Haiku Deck to present to potential clients. John’s novel approach wowed his audience, landing him a $1.4 million listing. The story, covered by Chris Smith on InmanNext, has gotten big-time buzz, and we’ve seen realtors around the globe taking note. We reached out to John to hear firsthand how he made the switch to win the pitch.

Q&A with John James

Haiku Deck: Why did you decide to try Haiku Deck for your business?

John: I was trying to do a comparative market analysis provided by my MLS site. I was getting annoyed at how much work it was and how clunky it looked. Also, the presentation didn’t feel like mine. Finally, I said “Screw it!” and pulled up Haiku Deck on my iPad. I had only briefly toyed around with it up to that point. It took me minutes to put together on Haiku Deck what I had tried to do for hours on Powerpoint.

I also have to thank Chris Smith of InmanNext and Robert Scoble of RackSpace, who both had great things to say about the app and influenced my decision to download. {See Robert Scoble’s video review of Haiku Deck here.}

Haiku Deck: And how did it turn out?

John: My biggest takeaway on Haiku Deck is how its visual impact transformed my presentation. The key for me was having a limited amount of words per slide, which helped me focus my presentation. The images the app pulled up, along with my own photos, made dry market statistics come to life. It ended up being exactly the way I wanted it to be.

Here’s the Haiku Deck John created:

Base Area Market Analysis – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

And here’s what his clients had to say about it:

“The information you presented was so much easier to understand than any of the others. That’s why we went with you.”

John, high-five on your Haiku Deck coup! This also leaves us wondering…what other kinds of pitches are ripe for transformation with Haiku Deck? We’d love to hear your ideas (and your success stories) in the comments!

Haiku Deck for Real Estate: More Inspiration

See more great real estate case studies and presentation resources on our blog. And our Real Estate Case Studies Pinterest board collects dozens of great uses of Haiku Deck by real estate pros.

Case Study: How KeseyPollock Revved Up Their Kickstarter Campaign with Haiku Deck

Every day at HDHQ we love checking out the daily report, which showcases the decks that have been published in the past 24 hours. It’s like a dynamic visual poem of the hundreds of stories being created with Haiku Deck each day. We look for decks to showcase in our Gallery and power users to become Haiku Deck gurus. It’s how we keep our finger on the creative pulse and get new ideas for making Haiku Deck better and more useful.

Every once in a while, one of us notices a Haiku Deck that’s so mind-blowingly awesome we get the team to drop everything and huddle around a desk to check it out. This was one of those.

KeseyPollock: Women In Art Photo Project – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires;
The creative use of visuals really make this Haiku Deck a work of art in and of itself, but we were really intrigued by how these young artists used Haiku Deck to drive support for their Kickstarter campaign (now in its final hours–be sure to check it out!). We got in touch with Steph and Erin of KeseyPollock, who shared their story.

Haiku Deck: How did you end up using Haiku Deck?

KeseyPollock: We heard about it from our friend Debbie’s GoldieBlox Kickstarter campaign! As women artists seeking funds in a city that is currently celebrating lots of women artists (many of them already dead!), we wanted to communicate our role in that lineage. We wanted to celebrate the beautiful women of this city, the amazing artists and the potential for a vibrant city of arts, highlighting how important it is to support contemporary art if we want it to continue to exist. Haiku Deck allowed us to do this in a quick, visual, easy-to understand way. We really didn’t have the time or equipment to do a video. But we wanted a platform that was easy and fast to click through, where the pictures conveyed a narrative message.

Haiku Deck: How did you go about making and circulating your Haiku Deck?

KeseyPollock: Nothing fancy. We simply made signs, asked lots of women in Seattle to hold them and participate in what we called a photo-poem, and took photos with our phones. To circulate it, we just sent it to all of our friends!

Haiku Deck: And how has the response been?

KeseyPollock: The response has been great. It really helped us bridge the gap between all the celebration of women artists and what we are trying to do right now.




Presentation Inspiration: Guest Q&A with Nolan Haims

Over the past few weeks we’ve enjoyed collaborating with Nolan Haims, VP and Presentation Director at Edelman and author of the excellent blog Present Your Story, a fantastic resource for presentation inspiration and best practices. Nolan has been keeping us on our toes to make sure we’re not unleashing the wrong kind of zen presentation style into the world. We are grateful.

Q&A with Nolan Haims

Haiku Deck: What’s your presentation design philosophy in a nutshell? (Or, for super bonus extra credit, in a haiku?)


Design content

Not just frames 

Around that content

[Haiku Deck note: This is technically more of a lune. But if we’ve learned anything from Nolan, it’s that there’s always a way to further simplify. Why have 17 syllables when 12 will suffice?]

Back to Nolan: The majority of presentation design continues to be focused on templates and unintegrated elements like clipart and random rectangles of imagery thrown on slides. Presentation design is too often thought of as template design, but a heavily designed template is just a frame around your actual message. I would love to see more people spend their energies and talents laying out and designing content, focusing on information design and a visual communication of the actual messages on a slide by slide basis.

Haiku Deck: What most makes you cringe in a poorly designed presentation?

Nolan: Too much content in on-screen presentations. Simply stated: the more that is on your slide, the less your audience will absorb—or even read in the first place. Studies have shown that students learn more when presented with less. It should be the same for presenters’ audiences. This means ruthless editing and often separate, more detailed print documents. Both of these things take time, which is why I think most people simply avoid them.

But, know when your presentation is actually a print document. There’s nothing wrong with creating a detailed textual document using PowerPoint—just know the difference between that and an on-screen presentation.

Haiku Deck: It’s not every presentation expert that recommends making your presentation like a Twinkie. Could you elaborate on that a bit?

Nolan: Oh, the Twinkie bit! When I train and coach, I tell people that they should have only two goals when creating presentations: 1) clarity and 2) stickiness. It doesn’t matter how brilliant you or your message is, if an audience doesn’t clearly understand your message and then remember it, your efforts are all for naught.

Much of presentation design is rightfully focused on the clarity part, but when it comes to stickiness, the most effective way to get your audience to remember your messages is to wrap them in stories. Charts, graphs, text, and pictures don’t last. Stories can live forever.

So, think of an idea as a Twinkie’s filling: on its own, it might be delicious, but it’s hard to digest, and it won’t last. But wrap that idea in a delicious cake wrapper—a story—and it will last forever. Just like a Twinkie…

Make Your Presentation Like a Twinkie – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

A fantastic book on the stickiness of stories is Chip and Dan Heath’s Made to Stick.

Haiku Deck: What’s the best presentation you’ve ever seen, and what did you love about it?

Nolan: I love Don Draper’s Kodak Carousel pitch from Season 1 of Mad Men. He makes use of many techniques that business presenters are hesitant to employ, but would be smart to incorporate:

  • Brevity: The pitch lasts just a few minutes.
  • Emotion: A good presentation should be a healthy mix of the analytical and emotional. While Don’s almost 100% emotional presentation style is probably too much for most non-fictional presenters, I think most presentations would be aided by more emotion.
  • The Personal: Every picture is a personal one of Don’s family—no stock handshakes, no guys climbing mountains; as with the emotional, most presentations would benefit from more personal touches.
  • Stories: Don tells a personal, visual story of his own life; it not only leaves his audience literally speechless, but will no doubt be remembered for years—only a story can do that.
  • Limited Text: “Kodak Introduces Carousel” is the only text on screen…

Haiku Deck: What advice do you have for Haiku Deck users who want to create strong presentations?

Nolan: Well, you could create a great Don Draper-like presentation with it, for sure. I think that Haiku Deck can be a good tool for creating a highly distilled presentation and in many ways keeping the focus on the presenter rather than the slides. Slides should always just be the backup singers—the presenter should be main attraction. But avoid the temptation of randomness and incessant metaphor in choosing imagery. If you’re selling widgets, but all your audience remembers are pictures of lemonade stands, handshakes and relay races (“teamwork!”), you haven’t created anything very sticky. Consider literal imagery when possible: How about a picture of your widget’s manufacturing process instead of one of a Swiss watchmaker?

More Presentation Inspiration

For more presentation inspiration, be sure to take a spin through our Presentation Pointers Pinterest board and our Featured and Popular Galleries, which highlight new awesome examples every week. You can also access the Gallery any time, right from the app.

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