I use Slideshare in my blog. I personally think it is one of the best social media applications for what we do as educators and communicators. It takes your hard work in a PowerPoint presentation and posts it to the cloud where others can access it (with or without download options). It’s also a nifty social media style site where you have your own space to show off your posts and others you tag as favorites. Check out my slidespace for an example.
Once a presentation is uploaded and processed, you can select your blogging software (mine is WordPress) from a list of logos under “Share” and Slideshare will produce some code for you to post into the blog (note: in the HTML view). You can can simply cut and paste this code into the post and viola!–there appears a little window into my presentation, right there, in my blog post on the same topic. For example, here’s someone’s useful presentation broadcast on blogging that I pasted here:
All of that stuff you see above–author, source, etc. is automatically formatted in the blog with the code. It only took me a couple of carriage returns and a cut-and-paste to post this!
So for example, I do what I hope is a nifty presentation on invasive species for gardeners. I take 10 minutes to post it to Slideshare for others to see. Then, I can post my slideshow up on a blog post (as you see above), give that and other electronically linked resources to participants via a single (or half) sheet of paper. I can even just write it on the board. Check out this post that I wrote for a Master Gardener Minicollege training last summer as an example. I gave them a sheet resource links and put the link to the blog post where they could go look for all of that in one handy spot. All the participants need is the link to my site and they can go back and revisit the presentation as much as they want. I no longer print oodles of pages of slides to hand out. I also don’t give out paper copies of most OSU or other reference publications. I just link them in my blog. This is more sustainable and cheaper for OSU.
A major benefit of using Slideshare and my blog this way is that it also gives me more blog traffic. I end up with a few new readers every time I present and give out the link. Some folks then come back for more or sign up to my RSS feed for regular updates. I know that these folks are the exact Oregonians I want to reach because they came to my training. They may share my post with others in their network–thereby increasing my reach.
One other use of Slideshare in blogging: if I’ve had a chance to see someone’s talk that I think the rest of the world would appreciate, I can post that to the blog if the author has put it up on Slideshare. For example, I’ve posted presentations by OSU colleagues Todd Jarvis and Mark Crossler (with permission). In the case of Todd, I introduced him to Slideshare to get the post up.
Like all social media, Slideshare gives us an opportunity to broaden the audience as we blog. It links to just about all of the other social media out there too (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, most blogger applications, etc.).
In my opinion, the combo of Slideshare posted presentations and blogs with resources on them is the single best discovery of how to use social media as an Extension faculty member.