Content Marketing

Did We Just Invent A New Form of Blogging?

word-words-wordsJay Baer Blog PostSlideShare is one of the most underrated content platforms in existence. Owned by LinkedIn, SlideShare is essentially the YouTube for presentations. Although, it’s not just presentations these days, as SlideShare’s 60 million monthly visitors also upload and view infographics, documents and other file types. SlideShare has even gotten into the video game, as you can easily embed YouTube clips into your presentations if you have a SlideShare Pro account (I did this in Youtility – The Five Minute Version presentation).

Pro accounts also give you the ability to collect lead data when people download your SlideShare content. We’ve been doing that for awhile here at Convince & Convert, and each year generate thousands of new subscribers to our popular daily email.

There are several great resources for how to create a sound presentation on Slideshare, including this one and this one, so I won’t trod upon that ground. But I do want to raise awareness for a new type of SlideShare that you might be seeing a LOT more of in the future.

The New Presentation Blog Post Hybrid

The new type of presentation is essentially a written blog post or manifesto, delivered word-for-word in slides. Historically, the words on slides are thematic guideposts that the speaker then uses as a springboard. But in these new blog/slide format (I’m hereby coining “BlogShare” to describe these) the language on the slides is a linear narrative – almost like a flip book of words. Given that the rest of social media and content marketing is moving steadily more visual, it’s fascinating to see presentations – which started visual, and where best practices have always been around fewer words – moving toward a more copy-centric style.

The hot new presentation format is about words first and foremost, not pictures. (tweet this)

Given how much harder blogging has become, plus the built-in audience on SlideShare, this is a fascinating technique with which I definitely an going to experiment, and you should too.

3 Great Examples of BlogShares

One of the first BlogShares I noticed was this gem from U.K. content marketing agency Velocity Partners, about the dangers of too much content that doesn’t resonate with the audience.

Gary Vaynerchuk has been using BlogShares to promote his new book, and to deliver his ideas in a somewhat more expansive format. Since Gary doesn’t have his own blog (but does write occasional posts on Medium, and creates video posts now and then) this use of SlideShare fits neatly into his Digital Dandelion strategy.

Check out how the words are the star here, even though the graphics are very nicely executed.

An even more stripped-down version was launched last week by Tamsen Webster of SME Digital, who created this gem about the lie of content marketing. Essentially no graphics in the classic sense, but Tamsen’s words pull you through the presentation, and there’s no chance of you not really knowing the author’s point (as is often the case with photo-dominant presentations on SlideShare).

These BlogShares take inspiration from the presentation technique PechaKucha, where the speaker presents 20 slides, each for 20 seconds each. It keeps thing moving briskly, and keeps your attention.

I like BlogShares, and believe this blog post + presentation mash-up has a bright future. How about you?

Article Name
Did We Just Invent A New Form of Blogging?
Presentations are becoming less visual, as the rest of social media and content marketing becomes more visual. The new BlogShare presentation style is all about the words.
  • Justin McGill @ Workado

    I’m banging this drum pretty loudly myself. SlideShare results populate well in search so it’ behooves everyone to have a presence.

    • jaybaer

      No doubt. Still underutilized, and I can’t quite understand why.

  • Torry Hamilton

    Love this post! I am seeing more and more of these BlogShares and get so much out of them! What a great tool to tell stories. Thanks for this, Jay!

  • Torry Hamilton

    Love this post! I am seeing more and more of these BlogShares and get so much out of them! What a great tool to tell stories. Thanks for this, Jay!

    • jaybaer

      My pleasure Torry. Great to have you here!

  • Todd Wheatland

    H Jay – this seems really timely. @Marisa_Wong from SlideShare, @noyesjesse and I were discussing this very topic last week. Whilst SlideShare works for all types of digital content (video, whitepapers, ebooks, etc), in the past year in particular the high-trending stuff is heavily slanted towards this ‘new’ format of read-on-screen narrative. None of us really knew what to call it. Let’s see how sticky ‘BlogShare’ becomes….

    • jaybaer

      Get Marisa to embrace it!

  • Kimota

    Couldn’t agree more. I’ve always structured or even adjusted my slideshow presentations to read well on SlideShare without the context of the speaker, scripted audio or copious speaker notes. For best results, it needs to exist ‘in the wild’ outside of my presentation. It always frustrated me to view a presentation from a great speaker to be met with a mix of text heavy slides interspersed with caption-less and often context-less images so that the SlideShare becomes an incomplete and often confusing version of the core message.

    BlogShare it is!

    • jaybaer

      Nicely done!

  • Sahail Ashraf

    I think the blogshare is a good idea as long as it doesn’t create a situation where bloggers try too hard to be clever. What I’m getting at is the possibility that some bloggers may try and focus more on being witty rather than sharing good and useful information. People still like reading long-form content, and I sometimes feel a little like we are being patronised if we get three word slides over and over again. So, a good medium (apart from the clicking) but hopefully not a triumph of style over substance (and I’m saying that as a true fan of Vaynerchuk).

    • jaybaer

      Well said on the clever contest. It can get a little thick up in there.

  • Jeroen Backelandt

    You are so right Jay. It is a good way of getting your information consumed in a world where everybody has an attention deficit (at least the younger generation) even more on mobile: i rather read a slideshare presentation with good visuals and excellent choice of words, then read through a looooong blogpost. People in general are lazy, so if we can make it easier for them to get to the essence of the content quick and easy, definitely you have a competitive advantage. By the way: what i also love is prior to reading a post (or any kind of format) explain to the audience how LONG it will take to consume the content: Medium does a great job here…it tells you how many minutes it takes to read the post: personally for me this is key to read it or bleed it (just made this up;) I´m dutch! )

    • jaybaer

      Totally. I love the medium “time to read” thing. And even the G+ “number of lines” indicator on longer posts. I would like to add that here, but not sure how. Is there a WP plug-in for that? Important, because I usually write pretty long posts.

      • Bill Roth

        Hi Jay – check out this ‘time left to read’ plugin. Its similar to the style on Medium.

        • jaybaer

          Thanks Bill!

  • Doug Kessler

    Great post. I hadn’t thought of these as a form of blog post. But mine do start as blog posts, so I think you’re on to something.

    I have noticed Gary V’s seem to be taking the form that way.

    (And thanks for the shout)

    • jaybaer

      Very interesting that yours start as posts Doug. Thanks! (and great job)

  • alexasamuels

    Oh, how I wish you’d called them “shlogs”…

    • jaybaer

      Backup was Slogs!

  • Dr. Anthony C. Edwards

    Thanks, Jay! I really like this style of presentations. It seems to force the author to use a conversational tone which increases engagement. Using a traditional presentation makes it easy to slip into corporate-speak. I also like the way you integrated YouTube into your presentation. I think this will definitely help Slideshare grow. While I love blogs, I think repurposing content as a Slideshare or having a Slideshare strategy allows us to expose a new audience to our content and reach more social/mobile users.

    • jaybaer

      Great point about forcing brevity and clarity. I hadn’t really thought of it like that, but you’re totally right.

  • Jennifer Kane

    I love these in blogs, but HATE them when delivered from stages.

    I think it feels like you’re being read to like a bunch of second graders.

    • jaybaer

      Totally agree. And one of the interesting sides notes here is that “good” Slideshares are no longer what you present. They are custom-made for the platform.

  • Andrew J. Coate

    This is perfect Jay. We’re big fans of SlideShare for all the reasons you mentioned. In fact, all 3 of our most recent presentations began as blog post ideas but took on new life as SlideShares, including one about Masters of the SlideShare craft.

    • jaybaer

      Yes indeed. That Masters thing was really, really good. Keep it up!

  • Benedict

    This is fantastic, and SO timely!! And not so much in the context of a blog post for me; I literally just finished authoring about a 7 minute piece for a new ‘business language learning’ product we’re building for Chinese students. The format is educational, but has a very casual, almost blog-like tone. I’ll be recording in the booth tonight, and planned to add slides w/ basic text and accompanying imagery. You just added HUGE insight as to how to make it really different and effective. I hadn’t considered using all (or most) of the text, and I hope duplicating it visually doesn’t get too daunting to keep up with for someone who’s learning. But my assumption is that it will actually play into our favor. Thanks man! :)

    • jaybaer

      Thanks Benedict. So glad it helped. Send me a link when you’re done. I want to check it out!

  • Jeff Domansky PR

    Jay, really enjoyed your post. Inspired me to blog and riff further about it and a second trend I’m calling “InstaVids” like the World’s shortest cooking show on Instagram. More on that on my blog post

  • Hashim Warren

    Jay, how do you decide if something works as a blog post or a blogshare?

  • William West

    Thanks for the reference Jay. We’ve started to use this and it’s fantastic. Our whole marketing approach has been story telling. This gives us a very intriguing method to tell these stories on a broader basis. Bill West

  • Sander Biehn

    The only thing missing is the clean and crisp guitar music. When will sound be added to these things?