Here’s one of my favorite writer peeps and guest posters, Cathy Miller, who has been rocking Slideshare this year. I asked her to share her process here.
I admit it. I am a Slideshare junkie.
It’s a fairly new addiction, but one I am happy to have.
When Sharon asked me to write a guest post about my process for creating my Slideshare presentations, it reminded me of a similar request from writer friend, Anne Wayman.
Anne asked me for an explanation of my process for creating blog topic lists. I am surprised that anyone wants a peek into the strange inner workings of my mind, but then Anne and Sharon have always been brave souls.
So, if you’re game, allow me to share my Slideshare process. Such as it is.
If you are unfamiliar with Slideshare, let me offer a quick description. The platform markets itself as the world’s largest community for sharing presentations.
As is typical with me, I did not break out of the gates using this popular site’s services. I stumbled upon it through posted presentations and decided to check it out.
Why am I hooked? Let me count the ways.
- I love PowerPoint for simple, visual communication
- Slideshare boasts 60 million MONTHLY visitors and 130 million pageviews
- One of my presentations exceeded 3,200 views in one day when it hit the Featured page
Holy hits, Batman.
Cathy’s 3-C Process
I’d love to say I sat down before my first presentation and developed a well-planned process. That would be a lie.
Maybe it comes naturally or it’s just another example of the strange way my mind works, but I find the process both simple and fun. But, since Sharon asked, I’ll attempt to make sense of my Slideshare presentation process.
#1 – Choose Your Topic
I am a novice at this platform; however, the following are a few ideas for choosing presentation topics.
- Popular blog post topics
- Education or elearning topics
- Trending topics
- Presentation tips (very popular)
So far, I pluck most of my topics from my business writing blog. Slideshare is a great way to repurpose hot blog posts – or the brilliant posts that somehow the world missed. We all have those, right?’
#2 – Create Your Story
We know the world loves stories. That’s the beauty of Slideshare. It is the perfect vehicle for storytelling.
If you are a person who craves structure, Cliff Atkinson’s Beyond Bullet Points has a simple template you can use to help you create your story. Because my mind is very simple, I use this basic approach to storytelling.
- What’s the problem?
- Why does it matter?
- How do you fix it?
I like the tip of one idea per slide, and I always recap at the end to reinforce my message.
Sure, there’s more to it than that. Every story needs something to grab the reader, like conflict, fear, something people relate to. And that’s where the visual aspect of presentations is so powerful.
#3 – Choose Your Images
This step for me is the most critical, and the most time-consuming. After you have done it awhile, you’ll find choosing the right image becomes easier. Promise.
Typically, I use a keyword search for finding my images. I am a fan of Big Stock Photo, but you can use any of your favorite sites that have keyword search capabilities.
This is where my mind-mapping comes in.
- Look at the idea
- What image comes to mind?
- Do a keyword search for that image
I love finding the perfect image. But, even if you don’t at first, variations pop into my head that are sometimes even better.
There is also the humorous side of keyword search. Like the time I was thinking of packing for a trip and the search results brought up an image of a guy in a tight pair of jeans. No comment.
Show Me the Goods
It’s all well and good to share my process, but the proof is in the pudding, as they say. Whatever that means.
What is a post about Slideshare without a Slideshare presentation? So, I created one for you. Let me know what you think.
About the author:
Cathy Miller is a freelance business writer with over 30 years of professional writing experience from small businesses to Fortune 500 customers. Cathy started her own business in 2008, providing all forms of online and print business writing.