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Getting Started with Slideform



Welcome to Slideform!  

Creating presentations can take a lot of time. You may find yourself creating the same slide decks over and over for different customers or for monthly or weekly reports. This is where Slideform can help. We are here to help you simplify and automate your presentations, across your team, for easy, more professional, data-driven presentations. The perfect deck, every time!

Slideform works by taking in three elements:

  • a slide deck template
  • optional data sources
  • a form filled in by the user

and combining them to create a customized version of the presentation.

Slideform workspace

When you initially log into Slideform, you will see some example slide decks in your workspace.


Example Sales Deck with Visibility Toggle

The first example slide deck, Example Sales Deck, is a simple three-slide deck that takes as input the client name and the client type, either startup or enterprise. You can configure the visibility of the second and third slide based on the client type.

Click on Create Presentation to open the user form for this deck and let's step through it.


The Form allows the user to generate a slide deck from a template by filling in the required information. In this example, there are two questions on the form. The first is the Client Name. The user should type the name into the text box.

The second question is Client Size, either startup or enterprise. The user would choose the type from the dropdown menu. Then click Preview to see the resulting presentation. 

You can then save the presentation as Google Slides, Powerpoint, or PDF.


Next, go back to the main workspace by clicking on Forms on the left-hand menu. Let's dive into the template and form by clicking on Edit Form on the example slide deck.

Project view in slideform 

This page allows you to set up the template presentation and configure the questions that will be presented on the user-facing form.

  • The Description tab shows the template name, description, the template file itself, and the form configuration.

  • The Collaborators tab shows the users and user teams that have access to this template.

  • The Data Sources tab shows any data sources that are enabled for this template.

On the Description tab, we can see a preview of the presentation template on the right-hand side of the page. Notice the curly braces, {{ }} , around the word "client". The braces tell us that those elements are placeholders, called "pragmas", and they will be replaced in the different versions of the presentation. The regular text on the slides will appear the same in the final presentation. This slide deck has only three slides.
In the center of the page, we step through the setup of the data fields, called pragmas, that will be filled in the presentation. There are three pragmas in this example: {{client}}, {{fn:date}}, and {{client_size}}.
Placeholder pragma types:
Type in a value: In the {{client}} pragma, the form is configured for the user to Type in a value when they fill out the form.
Function: The {{fn:date}} pragma is a function that pulls the current date into the presentation. You can choose how to format the date. This pragma is automatically filled in and will not appear as a question in the user-facing form.
Dropdown: The {{client_size}} pragma creates a dropdown on the user-facing form that is populated with the two choices that are entered into the text box (startup or enterprise).
Slide Visibility: There is one more pragma in the deck that controls the visibility of slides 2 and 3. This is set up in the template so that slide 2 is visible only if "startup" is selected for {{client_size}} and slide 3 is visible only if "enterprise" is selected for {{client_size}}.
You can save or delete the form and its configuration with the buttons at the bottom of the page.

Example report with data from Google Sheet
The second example slide deck, Quarterly Report from Customer Success Department, is a report that takes data and charts from a Google Sheet and populates a slide deck.
For example, each of the pragmas highlighted in green in the animation below are replaced by data from the Google Sheet.

filling in a slide with Slideform 
It is helpful to look at the data spreadsheet in conjunction with this template. You can access the data in Data Sources on the main menu. There you can see all available data sources and view them by clicking on the "Link to shared DOMAIN folder" and then navigating to the sheets directory.

Click on Edit Form to open the template and let's step through it.
There are several types of pragmas in this template.
configure the data mapping


Dropdown: The {{quarter}} pragma creates a dropdown on the user-facing form that is populated with values from the Google Sheet.
In the form setup, you specify the data source, the sheet, and the query. In this case, the query is the header of the column that contains the data you want in the dropdown.
Image pragma: The {{image:logo}} pragma allows you to specify an image for the company logo. Do this by choosing "Preset a value" and uploading the image to the form. If the image is preset, then the image will be populated in every version of the presentation and no question will be presented to the form user.
Type in a value: In the {{effort1}} pragma, the form is configured for the user to Type in a value when they fill out the form. You can provide guidance to the user by entering a prompt for the user in the form.
Preset data pragmas: The {{nrr}} pragma, for example, pulls data from the linked Google Sheet. We set this up by choosing Preset a value and specifying the data format (percent) the data source (the correct Google spreadsheet), and the sheet within the spreadsheet. Then we specify the query to pull this exact data from the sheet. In this case the query is
select nrr where quarter_name == {{quarter}}
This means that the data from the column "nrr" in the Google Sheet, where the value for column "quarter_name" corresponds to the value of the {{quarter}} pragma. So if the quarter is set to Q4 2022, then the nrr data from Q4 2022 will be pulled into this pragma. There are many preset data pragmas in this presentation, which makes the form very short and simple for the end-user.
set a chart to be filled in from google sheets 

Chart pragmas: A chart pragma pulls in a preconfigured chart from Excel or Google Sheets. An example is {{chart:nrr_ytd}} in this presentation. To set this up we select Preset a value and fill in the data source. Then we select from the charts that are available in that spreadsheet. You can preview the chart with the preview button.
Now that we have an idea of the form options, let's go to Create Presentation and fill out the form. Take a look at the resulting presentation for the data and charts.

Another example that uses Google Sheets is available in the video here: