By now, it should be abundantly clear that social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others are one of the most powerful tools that you have when it comes to forging a deeper, more organic and more valuable connection with your target audience.
But are all types of content created equally on social media?
Twitter and Instagram in particular come with built-in user bases that are positively massive. Those users also tend to prefer shorter, visual heavy bursts of information. That’s why content like Infographics tend to perform particularly well. They cut right to the point, they’re easy to digest and even easier to share.
So what does that mean for another type of collateral, like the presentation?
In truth, presentations absolutely have a place in social media marketing – one that can generate results that would be hard to replicate through other means. You just have to keep a few key things in mind regarding when, where and how you use them.
The Power of Presentations on Social Media
Think for a moment about a few of the major goals that social media marketers have for their content. According to one recent study, a massive 71% of small businesses in particular say that attracting new customers is one of their primary goals. Based on that, the chances are high that you’re among them.
When you’re trying to connect with people who likely have little-to-no exposure to your brand at this point, you need content that will “ease” them into the relationship that you’re trying to create. Something that will give them a good idea of not only what you do, but why that matters. Something that gives your message room to breathe, offering a more intimate experience than content designed for someone who may be farther along the sales funnel.
Now, what does that sound like?
If you said it sounded like a presentation – you’re absolutely right.
People follow brands because they want to know more about you. They want to hear your story, see what you’re all about, find out what you stand for and learn the ways in which your goals align with theirs. Any piece of collateral that you create to help further that goal, by definition, becomes incredibly valuable as a result.
By and large, the right type of presentation is an effective way to accomplish all of these things at roughly the same time. It really is a “best of all worlds” situation. You get the visual element that Twitter and Facebook users love, coupled with space to really tell a moving story, coupled with a delivery mechanism that lends itself to sharing with others.
So if anyone ever tells you that presentations have no place on social media marketing, they’re probably not making the right type of presentations to begin with.
Social Media Presentation Best Practices
None of this is to say that you can’t do presentations wrong on social media – because you can. As with just about anything, the key to your success involves remembering a few important rules as you craft that content in the first place.
Shorter is always better, even for a format that naturally lends itself to longer experiences like presentations. This is doubly true on social networking, where the value of one’s time is at an absolute premium. Based on that, it’s probably not a good idea to use the presentation format as a way to tell your entire life’s story, or the founding story of your company, or anything else that would quickly prove to be insurmountable in length. For the best results, try to design something that takes about five (or so) minutes to digest from start to finish. If you start to feel like your content is running long, don’t be afraid to break it up into shorter chunks.
Likewise, you should also make sure that you’re using as many visuals as possible in your presentation destined for social networking – even though the format itself lends itself pretty nicely to an equal balance between pictures and text. Fall back on the “spine” of your presentation and work to guarantee that it’s as strong as possible. Decide on your one-sentence summary or thesis statement for your presentation at the very beginning and then build everything around it. Anything that doesn’t “hang” on that spine needs to fall away for the sake of the end product.
Try to work hard to use as many bullet points as possible. Make your presentation easily skimmable for people who choose to use it that way. People who want to really dive deep into it and think about it can still do exactly that – but for those who are simply wondering “what is this all about?” and their urge is to get through the content as quickly as possible, they’ll still get the entirety of the “story” that you’re trying to tell.
Presenting the Best Version of Your Brand
The fact of the matter is that any type of collateral, when done properly, absolutely has a place in the hallowed halls of social media. When you sit down to create something with a presentation maker like Visme (which I founded), you’ve got everything you need to create something that will deeply resonate with your audience.
Whether you’re using such a tool to create Infographics or presentations or even as a flyer maker, what matters more is the story you’re trying to tell and the audience that is going to be captivated by it. Yes, it’s true that nobody wants to view a 300 page presentation on their Twitter feed – but that doesn’t mean the format itself won’t bring with it a huge number of advantages that would be hard to replicate through other means.
So long as you start with the audience, hone your message around their needs and questions and then build your collateral with those properties in mind, the format itself matters less than the person who is going to be viewing it. If you’ve taken great care to make sure that your content is created with that person in mind, at that point you can essentially do anything you want.
Also Read: Data Presentation and Analysis
About the Author
Payman Taei is the founder of Visme, an easy-to-use online tool to create engaging presentations, infographics, and other forms of visual content. He is also the founder of HindSite Interactive, an award-winning Maryland digital agency specializing in website design, user experience and web app development.