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Online Presentations: The Content Swiss Army Knife

Content Marketing

Online Presentations: The Content Swiss Army Knife image swiss army knife 300x3003If you only have one tool…

Whenever I trek into the backcountry, I always have my Leatherman multi-tool (It’s one of my ten essentials). We all pretty much know what these are: it’s basically a folding knife with a bunch of other handy little items folded into the housing. Mine has a serrated knife, a file, screwdrivers, needlenose pliers, a flint, bottle opener, scissors, and the housing itself is a ruler. It includes a leather sheath with a belt-strap, although I tend to carry it in the pack. It comes in handy in almost any situation, like when I need to cut up some kindling, rig up a bear bag, or repair a torn backpack. I’ve used it for those things and more. All of these tools separately would weigh a ton, but together they weigh less than a pound. It’s a very effective little device. It got me wondering:

What is the ultimate content tool?

In our quest for content delivery platforms, there’s a huge array of options:

  • Video is dynamic and easy to share, but takes a little effort to produce.
  • Slideshows are cool and captivating, but somewhat limited in their message.
  • Articles are easy to publish and great for keywords, but not as accessible as video.
  • Infographics are a lot of fun, but like video these take some production time.
  • Live online events draw an interested audience, but are tricky to pull off perfectly.
  • White papers and e-Books have a longer shelf-life than most other content, but can take months in preparation.

The list can be a lot longer than that, but as long as it goes, there really is no be-all, end-all solution for creating and sharing content. Yet, we continue to search for the platform that is dynamic, captivating, sharable, searchable, cost-effective, and have staying power. Online Presentations: The Content Swiss Army Knife image knife leatherman wave 263x3003

Online Presentations For Every Purpose

Online presentations can get much of the way there. Like a multi-tool, an online presentation can deliver a lot of the benefits of the separate tools on their own, but in a light, versatile package. For instance, a blog article is a lot like pliers; it’s utilitarian, easy to use and absolutely necessary at times. The knife is more like video, not needed as often but powerful when it is used. The screwdriver is like a slideshow, perfect for keeping things tight, like a simple message. There are more attributes to an online presentation that make them useful for numerous situations. For instance:

  • Online presentations can involve full video or just audio. You can also determine whether to use slides or text, or include downloads or links that appear throughout the presentation, or only at certain times. The benefits are that a true presentation can be tailored for its intended audience, like a tool applied to a specific purpose.
  • An online presentations can be presented On-Demand or Live. There are benefits to both. With a live event, people are getting up-to-the-minute information, which is why webinars and trade show presentations are popular in every industry. However, the ability to store a presentation for viewing whenever the audience wants it is also a valuable attribute of webcasts and videos.
  • They can be hosted online or packaged for download. You can decide what kind of environment you want to offer an online presentation in. Should it be made public for viewing on the Internet, or should it be locally-hosted and password-protected? It can also be downloadable for later viewing, such as on a plane trip, in an open format or a proprietary one that requires a player.
  • Online presentations can be hidden behind a registration gate, if you are using them to track viewership by students or employees, or if you are collecting names for sales and marketing purposes. The registration can be collected in multiple ways, by spreadsheet or direct integration with a Learning Management System or sales automation platform.

The best part about a versatile online presentation is that, just like a multi-tool, they can be used for multiple purposes. I think of my Leatherman as a tool for camping and hiking, but I’ve found it useful in a pinch for fixing a bike and making a quick plumbing repair in the kitchen. An online presentation that involves video, slides, audio, notes, links, downloads and selectable chapters can be used for online corporate training, continuing education and e-Learning, content marketing, financial advising and to enhance sales efforts. Why not see the ultimate online content multi-tool in action?

Originally posted on The KnowledgeVision Fresh Ideas Blog.

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