Everyone knows about Facebook and Twitter as free traffic-generating sources, but there’s a fantastic tool that most brands aren’t savvy with, yet: presentation hub Slideshare.
Ready to be impressed? Slideshare.net can boast of an Alexa rank of 127, thanks to 60 million visitors accounting for 130 million page views monthly. Despite its popularity, it’s still pretty easy to get your brand noticed using the site, so jump at this amazing chance before it gets too difficult.
I can’t say it enough, Slideshare is a stellar marketing tool.
Benefits of Using Slideshare
When you’re creating Slideshare presentations, remember that links are live, so you should direct traffic to your site through a clear, clickable call to action on the last page of the slide, along with other links throughout. And if you sign up for a Slideshare PRO account, you can even add a lead box that appears before the last slide. Pretty snazzy.
Slideshare can also serve as a useful tool to send a cute branding message –upload an aesthetically-pleasing slideshow, then embed it into your blog or website to lighten up the look of the page or to make a long article easier to digest.
The Google ranking of Slideshare presentations is shockingly effective, especially if you include a keyword in each presentation title. I first noticed that within days of setting up a Slideshare profile and uploading the presentation, it would usually rank on page one of Google results.
That, in and of itself, makes Slideshare a gem, but I more recently learned of the Slideshare Holy Grail: being featured on the Slideshare homepage.
Taking into account Slideshare’s crazy traffic numbers you should be expecting thousands to tens of thousands of views to your presentation in every day that it’s featured on their homepage.
Presentation Best Practices
Before we dive into what you need to do to get featured on the homepage, let’s first talk about what makes a great presentation. Because without one you really don’t stand a chance.
Of course, all the hustling in the world won’t help a bad slideshow, so use best practices: compelling large images, minimal text in each slide and appealing fonts and color schemes. Use some images with resolution high enough to go full bleed and really grab the reader’s attention.
A great place to get royalty free images is Flickr Creative Commons just make sure to give credit for each image you take at the end of your presentation.
The most important slide, by far, is your first slide, because that’s the only preview to entice a potential reader to click through to view.
Here’s how our first slide looks like:
Getting Featured on the Homepage
There are multiple ways to finagle a homepage feature, and I’ll list them here in order of descending impact:
• Top Presentations of the Day
• Featured Presentations (runner-ups for Top Presentations)
• Hot on Facebook
• Hot on Twitter
• Hot on Linkedin
You don’t get anything for free in this world, though, and Slideshare makes you work for the spotlight.
Each category chooses presentations with the most page views in the last 24 hours. So keep your eyes peeled, and as soon as the categories update for the day, post your presentation and promote like a maniac for the next 24 hours. The homepage winners are refreshed every day at approximately 3pm EST (GMT -5), but every minute matters, so start checking at 2pm EST on uploading day.
As soon as your presentation is live, reach out to every single person you can, and make it clear that you’re urging people to go RIGHT NOW.
I’ve found it takes about 1,500 views to earn a slot in “Top Presentations of the Day,” and with about 1,100 views, you should make it into “Featured Presentations.” “Top Presentations of the Day” is obviously the most coveted spot, but it’s a direct reflection of the most viewed presentations for the day. If you have a strong social media platform, aim for one of those categories; I’ve found that the easiest to secure is “Hot on Twitter.”
Although getting 1,500+ views is no easy feat, making it into the “Top Presentations of the Day” spot means tens of thousands of additional views… new people you otherwise wouldn’t have reached. And thinking about all of those clickable links in front of new eyeballs makes my heart race. It’s the definition of going viral, and including a strong call to action makes it a goal worth some effort.
If you’ve managed to get your presentation featured on any of the homepage sections you’ll get a thrilling email from Slideshare notifying you about it, which looks like this:
Slideshare can be a massive source of traffic and leads as well as boost your brands awareness.
The most effective way to leverage it is to get featured on the homepage which guarantees thousands and tens of thousands of views every day (for a while).
For this to happen you first must have a great presentation and then squeeze the most out of your marketing channels in order to drive as many views as possible to your presentation in the first day that it’s live.
Now to you: If you’ve tried Slideshare, how is it working for your brand(s)? Have you ever tried to get on the homepage? Let us know in the comments below.