I participated in a presentation for the Monitoring Social Media conference organized by the Influence People along with Brandwatch, an enterprise social media monitoring tool which we’re working on an integration with our desktop product at Seesmic.
I’ve done a number of presentations and panels in the past year, but felt like I needed to share this in a post. In all honesty, I wasn’t prepared, since my last participation with the same organizers was on a panel, which is easier to come in and be not as prepared. However, during a meeting the day before, I came to realize that this was going to be a co-presenter session, and realized I had to have a presentation ready.
The presentation took me a few hours, and I kept it as plain and simple as possible and focused on being a complement to the main presenter. Through this, I made sure I had laid out a simple outline for my presentation, chose appropriate graphics to convey my points, kept the slides to a minimum.
Here’s some things that I should have done or kept in mind to do:
- Help your audience spread your information. In my introductory page, I should have added my twitter handle and the hashtag for the conference. It’s not that I’m much of an ego-boosting guy, but there are often times where a slide might strike a chord with someone in the audience and would like to share it out to their followers. Also, I probably would have put the hashtag as a footer for every slide. I’ll try that the next time.
- Choose your graphics wisely. Simple visuals make all the difference in the world. For graphics, I chose Stock.XCHNG or http://www.sxc.hu which is normally my default choice for stock photos. If you’re interested in looking at other photo sites, you can review the Daily Blogger’s 10 Image Search Engine alternatives to Google Images or HongKiat’s 41 Image and Icon Search Engines Designers Should Know
- Offer up information for them to look at. Sometimes you lose an audience when you have so much crap on the screen, and they drift off. However, there were some key charts that I showed and referenced. I noticed that those charts got a lot of response, so I should have just offered some key words they can google so they can find the resource themselves – just a different way to keep them engaged. Next time, on the screen, I’ll put up a “Google Keywords: engagement chart” to find the resource I was referring to in the chart, since in some cases, it might be a pain to type out the whole URL.
- Next Experiment – Tweet out presentation slides. I’m sure that this has been done before, but I think I’ll try an experiment where I tweet out each of the slides or reference link when I go through my presentation. I’m sure I’d lose some followers, but it might be worth a try…
All in all, it was a fun experience, and I realized that I should focus on doing more presentations, only to take the advantage of sharing my thoughts and insights about social media. Here’s my part of the presentation on Slideshare.