What do have teachers, marketers, and HR managers in common?
Technology is not communication, but technology well used is a tremendous support to communication. Just think of how communication has been amplified through history by books, newspapers, radio, TV, PCs and finally the internet. The internet has also changed the rules of the game by allowing anyone to become an author and connect to a potentially worldwide audience, a privilege that in the past was only accessible to a small elite of established writers and media professionals.
If internet is the backbone of the communication, the software tools are providing the interface that enables communication for authors and audience. One software tool widely used among the three professional groups named in the title is PowerPoint. There are many ways to use PowerPoint, but we can analyze its usage in 2 main categories: before a live presentation (a class, a meeting or a webinar) takes place, PowerPoint helps authors illustrating, organizing and planning their message; and during the live presentation PowerPoint helps the presenter to stay on track and focused on the message, and also providing images to support and reinforce the speech.
But that’s not all, we can have good use of PowerPoint even after the live presentation, by syndicating the presentation online to reach a larger audience and to provide possibility for the audience to consume the presentation at a time and place of their choice.
There are many software tools supporting online publishing of PowerPoint presentations. One of them being SlideTalk, a cloud service allowing to easily add voiceover to PowerPoint presentations by using text-to-speech. The result is a video, made of slides and of text-to-speech audio. The video is then automatically published on YouTube or made available for download for later publishing on the channel of choice. Follow the links for more information on the SlideTalk concept and for a tutorial on how to create a SlideTalk video from a PowerPoint presentation.
Let’s have a look now at how and why teachers, marketers and HR managers can benefits from using SlideTalk to syndicate their presentations online.
Teachers, instructional designers, schools and institutions may use SlideTalk videos in three main ways.
- The first and most straightforward is making presentations and lessons available online to students, to allow them to watch again a lesson at any time. A powerful way for students to reinforce their learning and catch up with missed lessons.
- A second way to use SlideTalk videos is to repurpose presentations for supporting information spreading, distance learning and MOOC (Massive Online Open Courses).
- A third way to use SlideTalk videos is to invite students to create SlideTalk videos themselves to learn how to present and prepare material in a structured and concise way. By using both images (slides) and voice (voiceover), students are stimulated to use the medium in a creative way by dedicating attention to both visual and textual aspects of the presentation.
Marketers, project managers and other business users who rely heavily on PowerPoint presentations to spread their ideas, product presentations and business reports can benefit from the possibility offered by publishing their presentations as SlideTalk videos to amplify the reach of their message, both inside and outside their company. Short focused videos are generally much more effective and provide a more lasting impression than textual explanations by stimulating several senses simultaneously and providing thus a more immersive experience.
HR managers and eLearning agencies face often the need to organize company information, presentations for new employees and internal training material. PowerPoint presentation are commonly used for these objectives. Publishing these presentations via SlideTalk would allow to make the information more complete by adding vocal comment and by packaging the whole presentation in a universally accessible video format that can be easily consumed on PCs and on mobile devices, providing employees and stakeholders with just-in-time ubiquitous information end eLearning material.
Paolo Leva. 15 years experience with speech technology, first as developer and then, since 2004, as Product Manager. Currently co-founder of a startup called slidetalk.net, a cloud service converting presentations into talking presentations, by using TTS, and publishing them on the web. Always interested in finding new ways to use existing things, and in finding new perspectives on how technology is perceived, marketed, purchased and consumed. Amateur musician in the spare time, and proud father 24/7.Website: www.slidetalk.net