Best-of-the-Best Practices on Slideshare – My private collection
The first time I ever published something on Slideshare, I was excited. It was a presentation called “Spreading the Content Marketing Virus”, which in essence told “my story”.
It tells the story of why I dramatically shifted the marketing strategy of the company I worked for at the time. From outbound to inbound marketing.
Hybrid marketing is probably more correct, as we kept on applying paid media where useful. But also from analog marketing (does that even exist ?) to digital marketing.
I was excited because it was ‘my’ story. And obviously that’s important to me. Ever since then I have continued to post presentations on Slideshare.
Today I want to
- share with you what I learned on Slideshare,
- and share some of my “private web resources collection” of best practices about Slideshare publishing.
From Theory to Practice: How to become a “digital, social, and content” driven B2B company ?
Most marketers in B2B today have a project to introduce or expand digital, content and social media marketing into their companies.
In the last few years these types of marketing have become extremely important.
I believe it is the solution to the B2B marketing challenges of today, where companies can transcend from fulfilling the basic marketing needs of their customers.
Transcend towards connecting with their audience by creating experiences that lasts. These experiences that provides your customers with the desire to share their experiences, and become your brand advocates.
But how do you move from theory to practice ?
Which social media network brings most success in B2B ?
2013 is almost there. What will 2013 bring? most probably another social media network.
Who knows, they come and go as Marcus Sheridan from @saleslion wrote about it on his blog. (by the way, I am a big fan of his work, check him out if you don’t know him).
Looking at the big ones, which ones will bring you the most success in B2B? I have seen many blog post about this subject: Facebook is better for this, LinkedIn is better for that. Twitter is only useful for this and that…
When developing a social media strategy, many companies start thinking which social media networks they should start developing. Developing means to create a presence, invest in time and maybe money to fuel that network with relevant content, and then organize actions to grow your follower base. Companies start hiring “conversation managers” that monitor the conversations, trigger the discussions, answer questions, be helpful where they can, and get the conversations going.
Should we do Facebook ? LinkedIn ? Whatever network ?
It’s definitely an important question. And on the other hand it’s not an important question. It’s even a simple question.
I’ll tell you : it doesn’t matter. It’s not up to you or me to choose which network you will develop. If your customers are there, you better be there. It’s as simple as that.
But how do you know if your customers are on that particular network? Mmmm, difficult question, that much I agree.
Then maybe we should jump on every network that sticks its head above the ground?
Should we be on LinkedIn?
In the case of LinkdedIn, there should be no doubt : if you are in B2B, you need to be on LinkedIn.
Almost all B2B professionals are on LinkedIn, using it for personal branding reasons, personal networking but also increasingly to find information.
Linkedin is changing from a pure B2B networking site, towards a site that is positioning itself as an information portal: updates from your contacts, the companies you are following, and more recently thought leaders like Richard Branson or Pete Cashmore.
Slideshare didn’t want my business
Some time ago, I started using Slideshare as an extra way of putting out content to buyers.
At first it was an experiment, but we must have done something right, because soon we had over 10.000 views on a number of presentations.
Because we passed the 10.000 views mark, we got a mail from Slideshare to try the PRO version of Slideshare, adding lots of interesting functionality. Yeah, nice !
Sneaky free offering
Interesting, as it seemed, I went on to their website and tried to activate the free month trial period.
I got quickly disappointed, as the offering required me to fill in my credit card details. The sneaky bit here is that although they would not debit my credit card, filling in all the details would mean an AUTOMATIC renewed monthly debit subscription to the PRO service. I also saw that at LinkedIn, but hey, aren’t they the same company?
Marketing take-away: if you are offering a free trial period, make sure the terms and conditions do not harm your brand by putting in sneaky or less appealing conditions. Your offering must remain attractive, even during the free trial period.
Resisting to have me as their customer
The number of views kept growing, so I decided to go for it. As our company is not set-up to work easily with on-line credit card payments, I hoped that Slideshare would be able to invoice me fort heir services.
How to listen, and show thought leadership in your industry?
After 2 weeks of publishing a thought leadership presentation on Slideshare, I was blown away with the effect it had.
In only 2 weeks, it had 1000 views. Today, it has close to 4500 views after 3 months. Although for some companies these numbers might not be impressive, for the company I work for and the market we are in, this is great.
Why is this presentation more successful than others?
I believe the real reason to this success is that it is valuable content for buyers because it fulfills a need. B2B companies want to see opinions, and companies that think about the future for them.
Why do you need thought leadership?
Providing thought leadership to your customers doesn’t make sense if they don’t consider it relevant to their business. Customers are faced with lots of questions during the complete buying cycle that need to be answered.
As I wrote before, first customers find answers “in the cloud”, before they turn to you as a vendor for the remaining answers: they visit reviewing sites, read whitepapers of several vendors, and go to conferences or tradeshow to find answers. Based on that they create their shortlist. If you are not giving the answers ‘in the cloud’, you are not going to be on their shortlist!
It is my strong believe that in order to create thought leadership, you first need to incorporate a process within your organisation that listens to the issues and information needs of your customers.
The process should not only allow listening during the buying cycle, but also during the customer life cycle.