Using SlideShare for Storytelling and Brand Awareness
SlideShare, the popular website that allows users to upload and share presentations and other documents publicly or privately, is an increasingly valuable channel for online marketers. Billing itself as the world’s largest community for sharing presentations, the company has injected new life into the slide presentation, a format once ridiculed (both comically and seriously) and relegated to stiff corporate boardrooms and lecture halls.
Since its founding in 2006, SlideShare has managed to attract a massive online audience. The website has become a top web destination for research and learning, now receiving an average of over three billion slide views per month. Furthermore, visits to SlideShare have almost continued to double each year with 60 million hits to their website in 2011 alone, the significance of which is reflected the website’s acquisition by LinkedIn in May 2012.
Businesses ranging from major brands to small businesses and professional service firms are incorporating SlideShare into their content marketing strategies. Some are using SlideShare to illustrate who they are, what kind of products they make and what services they offer, while others are visualizing annual and monthly reports and blog posts to make their content more enticing to viewers. Ultimately, many marketers are finding that a smart and consistent SlideShare strategy can help drive referral traffic, generate business leads, and, overall, positively contribute to a their team’s bottom line.
Overall, SlideShare benefits marketers by:
- Improving visibility online. SlideShare can help marketers improve the rankings of their content in both search results and within the SlideShare community itself. SlideShare has a high Alexa ranking (195 when this post was published), meaning that content posted to the website, when properly optimized for targeted keywords, can drive a significant long tail of traffic. The embed feature for content also offers a great way to build links back to a website or among other pieces of content.
- Engaging online audiences. SlideShare content also provides a forum to engage a company's community. The website’s rich commenting feature allows for real-time discussion around a topic. With social sharing options closely integrated into the website, your content is also ripe for spurring conversations elsewhere across the social web.
- Encouraging content consumption. SlideShare’s platform is built upon visual content, prompting marketers to show rather than tell. Channels can serve as a repository of digestible information like infographs, charts, and images that are more appealing to audiences than text-heavy blog posts, or dense reports.
While a wide variety of companies are on SlideShare, here are three examples from agencies, and one from a brand, that we feel are making the most out of the platform.
JWT leverages its JWTIntelligence channel to visualize content that it publishes through its blog of the same name. This “center of provocative thinking” pairs images with statistics to bring life to cultural shifts that can be opportunities for their clients through reports like “The Remaking of ‘Made in China’” and “10 Ways Marketers are Using the Second Screen.”
Ethos3 is a company that builds presentations for brands. On a mission to spare audiences "death by PowerPoint," Ethos3 invites companies to send them decks to be beautified and streamlined. Their channel features past client work and presentation design tips.
Jess3 is a creative agency that has recently been named one of the top 500 fastest growing by Inc. Magazine. Their SlideShare channel visually explores how, in order for brands and organizations to remain relevant, they have generate constant content.
And one brand example:
4. MS Office
In a slightly different take on how companies in general are creatively using SlideShare to promote their products, MS Office created a “Parents Toolbox” channel where the Web’s most talented parenting bloggers could swap tips and document templates that make family and home life easier.
Fortune 500 brands, agencies and small businesses alike continue to benefit from actively publishing content on SlideShare as a unique way to share knowledge and stories with their audiences. More importantly, SlideShare is just one example of how brands are exploring this new way to create, share, and consume visual content.
As companies pioneer new platforms for interactive media and storytelling, consider also how brands are also inventively crowdsourcing content for their marketing communications.
Download our free white paper, Crowdsourcing Your Social Video Solution, to read why and how marketers are utilizing "the crowd" for storytelling and social video campaigns.