social media how toAre you using SlideShare?

Would you like more leads?

In this article I’ll reveal how to use SlideShare to generate quality leads.

SlideShare for Leads?

SlideShare is the world’s largest content-sharing community for professionals.

Data collected by ComScore and presented in an infographic by Column Five Media, SlideShare: The Quiet Giant of Content Marketing, reveals SlideShare has 5 times more traffic from business owners than Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn (which now owns SlideShare).

slideshare infographic

SlideShare is a good traffic source for many businesses.

SlideShare traffic is driven largely by search and social networks. Visitors are mostly conducting research at work, so if you’re using the website and its services as a strategic marketing tool, you can make it a substantial weapon in your lead generation arsenal.

How Businesses Can Use SlideShare

The following 3 points will help you generate leads with SlideShare.

#1: Make a Compelling Presentation

SlideShare accepts videos and various types of documents; however, slideshows tend to perform best and earn more views. To increase the effectiveness of your presentation:

  • Compose with SlideShare in mind. Slide decks created for live presentations may fail on SlideShare. Your slides should “speak for themselves.” Revisit and revise slides that are likely to require explanations.

    Slide decks that "speak for themselves" work best on SlideShare.

  • Design with care. Highly viewed presentations tend to feature attractive graphics. Your presentation should include powerful images and quality fonts that are easy to read on small screens and maintain a high degree of professionalism on every slide.

    Communicate your point with simple, arresting design.

  • Keep it simple. Presentations may be viewed quickly and in small spaces, so it’s wise to create a deck with a laser-focused message and present your ideas in small bites using as few words as possible.
    ibm cloud

    Present data in small, easily understood bites.

  • Tell a story. Employ classic storytelling practices with a logical sequence and an obvious beginning, middle and end. Break longer works into chapters.

    Use storytelling conventions and tactics such as chapter markers to deliver a lesson.

  • Employ content marketing best practices. Your presentation will be valued most when its content reflects that you understand your market’s challenges and deliver helpful advice for overcoming them. It won’t hurt to be entertaining too.
    so into social

    Slide decks that blend education and entertainment perform best on SlideShare.

  • Take risks. Presentations stand out from the crowd when they are provocative, funny or bold. Don’t shy away from edgy ideas with the rationale that you’re trying to conduct serious business. A playful sense of humor helped make “The eBook is the Stud in Your Content Marketing Stable” an extremely popular presentation.
    have fun

    Have fun and employ a sense of humor to make your story stand out.

  • Understand the capabilities of SlideShare. Your uploaded content will be converted for presentation. Animations will not convert. The best way to ensure the integrity of your work is to save it as a PDF for uploads to SlideShare.
  • Invest in talent and quality. If you lack writing or design talent, outsource the work. Plan to spend the time or money it takes to secure the rights to strong photography and illustration.
    building personal brand

    Increase your impact with professional design featuring quality photography and illustration.

You’ll find rich libraries of free design templates built into PowerPoint and Keynote. For even more templates, search for “free PowerPoint (or Keynote) templates” to locate sites such as fppt and DezineGuide.

Also, services such as SlideRocket and PhotoSnack offer free online slideshow creation tools.

#2: Capitalize on SlideShare Features

On the site’s SlideShare 101 page, the company points out:

  • SlideShare features a professional and educational community that regularly comments, favorites and downloads content.
  • Content spreads virally through blogs and social networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.
  • Individuals and organizations use SlideShare documents to share ideas, conduct research, connect with others and generate leads for their businesses.

Consider using features such as:

  • Sharing—you can edit the settings for any uploaded presentation to make it available publicly or privately per your project’s objectives.
    privacy options

    Privacy options enable you to make your presentations public or private.

  • Embedding—code is provided, which makes it very simple to embed your SlideShare assets on your website and blog. Users can also embed your work, which often exponentially expands the exposure of your presentations.
    embed options

    SlideShare gives you (and viewers) HTML code to easily embed your presentation on your site or blog.

  • Video and audio—you can embed YouTube videos in your presentations or “slidecast,” meaning you can sync an MP3 soundtrack. Upload wizards are provided in your My Uploads menu.
    user settings

    User settings offer options for adding audio or YouTube video to presentations.

  • Social sharing—it’s easy to share content or promote the sharing of your content on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and Pinterest. In fact, a LinkedIn app allows you to have your SlideShare content fed to your LinkedIn profile page. You might consider targeting a specific social medium because the SlideShare home page features documents that are hot on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
    linkedin app

    A LinkedIn app makes it easy to embed your presentations on your LinkedIn profile page.

  • Go “pro”—a trio of paid Pro plans are specifically designed to enable you to include customizable lead capture forms, create company branded channels, and collect detailed analytics including performance metrics, user identities and interaction details.
    lead capture

    Go pro with a paid account to include lead capture forms and functionality.

  • Following—you can follow other users, mark presentations as a favorite, email content and comment. So, like other social media, you are offered tools to build a community, interact and recognize others.

    Paid account holders have news feeds with updates including follower activity and presentations marked as favorites.

  • SEO—the content of your slides is automatically made into transcripts, which accompany your presentations. When you understand and smartly apply keywords, your SlideShare material can do very well on search engines. (By recent measures, SlideShare amassed 3 billion slide views per month.)

    SlideShare automatically transcribes presentations to improve search engine results.

#3: Make Lead Generation Your Objective

Remember, SlideShare may get filed under “social media,” but you’re taking it seriously because its users are serious about research and discovery.

Remind yourself of this while creating content for SlideShare and be deliberate about generating leads. Consider these additional tips for generating leads:

  • Repurpose with purpose—if you’ve been active in content marketing and social media and have a strong grasp of what works for your business and its objectives, reuse and repurpose your most engaging content for the SlideShare site.
  • Examples and testimonials—don’t forget opportunities to deliver proof of concept. That is, highlight real-world success stories and feature testimonials in a fair and objective way when you can.
    case study

    Include case studies to increase credibility.

  • Leverage authority—if you’re on a mission to establish authority, draw from the ideas of thought leaders. Cite their work. Endorse their ideas and they might just return the favor.
    thought leadership

    Leverage ideas from established leaders to increase authority.

  • Share—SlideShare is a social medium. Follow the content creators you admire and share their work.
    what is hot on social networks

    SlideShare promotes sharing and reports what's "hot" on social networks.

  • Provide contact information and links—your presentations can include links throughout to generate traffic to your site, media outlets and landing pages. At the end of your presentation, provide the relevant contact information and make it easy to continue the conversation.
    provide links

    Embed links to make it easy for viewers to contact your company.

  • Call to action—if a viewer has made it to your final slide, he or she is interested in what you have to say and is likely to have questions, want more information or want to do business. Don’t be coy. Provide the call to action you seek.
    call to action

    Offering additional information on your presentation's topic is an effective call to action.

Marketers are increasingly folding SlideShare into their content marketing strategy because the website has proven effective for building brands and generating leads.

Apply the tips provided here to create a compelling presentation, take full advantage of SlideShare’s rich features and generate leads for your business.

What do you think? Are you using SlideShare? Are you generating leads? Leave your ideas, questions and comments in the box below.

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  • I was looking for some tips about SlideShare marketing, thanks for the tips!

  • The MA Alert

    Just a tremendous review.  Incredibly helpful!

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  • Well done Barry, very informative post.  I have not incorporated Slideshare into my lead generation strategy, but I now see the value of it and will start doing so. What is the primary target market that use slideshare?

  • Talking Finger

    Great article! Excellent tips. We love SlideShare and continually add new content. We’d love to explore other Channels if anyone wants to connect there. Follow us!

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  • John, they target professionals of all kinds. If you click through to the infographic you’ll learn more about the SlideShare audience. And, on SlideShare, you’ll find a number of more vertical “channels.:

  • tracysestili

    Barry – very informative post but I have to say that after having been wildly successful on Slideshare I decided to upgrade to Pro and the lead gen has been awful in terms of the quality of leads. They are all fake names or garbage. It’s truly awful and not worth the investment, I’ve found. 

  • I saw a SlideShare presentation on page 1 of Google for a particular keyword I use. I thought about stopping what I was doing to create a slide for myself. However, i am glad I read this post first.

  • Tracy,
    Not good. I haven’t had that experience at all. Let me know if you want to take a look at that together. There are some settings we might experiment with. You definitely want to turn off the one that insists you complete the form to continue with the presentation.

  • As you’ve probably learned here at SME, page rank and authority factor into your search results in the biggest way. As such, you want your content to appear on highly ranked sites and SlideShare is waaaay up there. Good luck with first effort on their site. Spend a little time checking out the slide decks that are featured and “hot.”

  • Jason Pinto

    Barry, thanks so much for sharing these tips. I loved the point about “making lead generation your objective”.  It certainly is beneficial to freely share educational content, but you have to make it simple for the folks viewing your presentation to connect with you. 

  • this is so insightful. You will definitely be seeing a lot of slides by Urban media after this so look out. Surprised it in the top 150 website though!

  • Thanks Jason. Good point you make. Sometimes us content marketers forget we’re marketing.

  • Susan Newman

    Awesome! I’m going into Slideshare tomorrow to update some presentations and will think hard about some new ones! fun and educational too.

  • Phenomenal presentation Barry.  Have used it for providing content and never thought of the lead side. This was great, thanks! 

  • United appliance repair

    Great post! I am going to do it now. Thanks

  • richard

    i do not get a screen like the one you show ( slide1 of 27) giving different size options for embedding code? Is this a WordPress only option or am i missing a step somewhere?

  • That’s true! Ad agencies and marketers turn to Slideshare when it comes to capturing leads. It’s nice that it will send you an email if your presentation is viral (close to 1k views or reached minimum of 10 downloads by users).  I also highly recommend the “PRO” because it gives you the detailed source of the traffic. I was lucky to get the 1 month free trial. 

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  • Richard, 
    I think you have options other than SlideShare. In the support forum, SlideShare answered a question like yours. Have a look here:

    If you run into problems, try submitting your question to their support staff. They’re quite responsive.

    Also, you might contact me to walk you through the process.

  • Ankur Sharma

    Hi Berry 
    Thanks for sharing such a valuable information .I really appreciate your efforts and one thing that i would really happy to mention here is the effort that you are making here to interect with the people . Very few people in community really do that . Hats off to your humbleness. I want to talk to you regarding something if possible can you write me at . Have a nice day . Cheerssss 

  •  Very educational! I’ve collected some really useful information, thank you!

  • Thank you Barry. I guess I will ad Linkshare to my marketing web.

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  • Thanks for the great information.  As the owner of a small Blog I am always looking for a way to get my information out to the public.  Keep up the good work, we can all use good advice

  • Brandon Halliburton

    Slideshare appears to be something that I should be looking into. Thank you for this information

  • Bholland

    Thanks much for the tips.  I will certainly follow them and start using SlideShare as lead generation.

  • Cisco

     Very educational! I’ve collected some really useful information, thank you!

  • Right strategy will surely give what you want. Many b2b marketers cannot see how important sites like slideshare is. Yes, they do have accounts on it as well as presentations and one of the reason why they don’t get their desired result is they forget to put a Call-to-Action which is very important if your purpose is to generate leads out of your content. Thanks for reminding us Barry.

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  • I haven’t heard that SlideShare gives option to embed the code the way YouTube offers it. But honestly SlideShare need to improve the quality of the shared slides. I try yesterday over an hour to find really good slides and it was hard to do that. Otherwise, good article on the subject.

  • I haven’t heard that SlideShare gives option to embed the code the way YouTube offers it. But honestly SlideShare need to improve the quality of the shared slides. I try yesterday over an hour to find really good slides and it was hard to do that. Otherwise, good article on the subject.

  • I wouldn’t expect SlideShare to do quality control. It’s open to anyone who wants to place content there, so like any media, you’ll find all different levels of quality, which of course is subjective. Thanks for your comment Deyan.

  • I wouldn’t expect SlideShare to do quality control. It’s open to anyone who wants to place content there, so like any media, you’ll find all different levels of quality, which of course is subjective. Thanks for your comment Deyan.

  • Thoroughly enjoyed this post. SlideShare does deserve a lot more credit. I work for the federal government and I produce decks that look like the ones you included in your post. It’s a shame though b/c I usually get told to make it extremely drab and non-visual.  Go figure :p.

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  • Drbill

    I am a Slide Share newbie. But, seeing its full functionality today as I created a promo for our book, I have to say I am impressed. I will definitely be incorporating it into my social media sites. Thanks for the great tips!

    Dr. Bill Dyment, author of Fire Your Excuses.

  • Love the name of your book.

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  • Dayna

    Barry, this article is fantastic. I feel totally ready to conquer SlideShare.

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  • I’ve just started using slideshare and was amazed with the traffic I got. I thought I was doing well until I read your post. Wow! is all I can say. I’ve learnt so much. I’m definitely going to use your tips to beef up my presentations. Thank You Barry.

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