Cue cards in Presentation Deck, Yay or Nay?

cue card
Image Credit: Carolyn Kaster/AP

Cue Cards In Presentation Deck

Every speaker has the fear of missing out on important points during a presentation. There are business presentations with more texts just to avoid the speaker getting stuck. But turning your back during the presentation is never a good idea. This is where cue cards come into play. We are literally talking to our hands with cue cards with us. While making a cue card isn’t a difficult task, using them can be tricky

As mentioned, turning your back isn’t an ideal way, but looking down while pitch presentation is not good either. The use of cue notes is to avoid getting stuck, which also helps us having more visual slides. Using a cue card in a proper manner can help improve your presentation quality. But at the same time writing the whole script on cue cards is not advisable.

Best ways to use cue cards:

  • Headers or one-liner.
  • Large fonts that are readable
  • Space between phrases.
  • Written on one side.
  • Number your cues.
  • Use your color gracefully and graciously. For example, the use of a different color pen to highlight your points.


cue card for presentation deck
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Like every coin has two sides and every advantage comes with a disadvantage.

  • Looking down every time. Like what do you have down there?
  • Reading isn’t presenting.
  • Disconnected from the audience. Be more like Vodafone than BSNL.
  • Restricted to move.
  • Not numbering your cue cards may differ from the points in slides. Like that’s awkward.

If in case cue cards are necessary, try and start pitch presentation without them. Use the cue cards only if required or else let them hide in your pocket. Cue cards should be used only to catch your train of thoughts and not to read it as a speech. Sometimes cue cards act as a confidence booster before going in for an investor’s pitch.

Advantages of Not having cue cards:

  • Engaging presentation
  • It helps in being more responsive to your audience.
  • Free hands mean more hand gestures.
  • It helps in moving freely during the presentation.
  • It helps in keeping eye contact with the audience.

Having no cue cards helps one in feeling, looking and sounding more positive on stage. Using cue cards restricts us to not be in the moment. There is no better way of avoiding cue cards than to rehearse. Having rehearsed a couple of times will make you more confident about your presentation. Use cue cards only if you feel it’s necessary or else tries and incorporate your presentation without them.

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