For many, the ability to share presentations online has changed the way they design their slides, present material, and interact with their audience long after the presentation has passed. But when it comes right down to it, a presentation - regardless of the artistic rendering of the materials - is only as good as the presenter.
SlideShare, the largest presentation-sharing community on the Web, has continued to introduce functionality that helps bring presentations to life. But they've never allowed a presenter to embed themselves. Until now. Introducing YouTube embedding in SlideShare.
Why would a SlideShare user want to embed a YouTube video within a presentation? There are any number of reasons. Using the feature, users could add a screencast of a product, show footage of location, provide additional context for a point, or - most importantly - include more of themselves in the presentation.
Voiceover helps, but seeing the presenter is the key. When we watch presentations, we rarely stare at the slides nonstop. Instead, we oscillate between slides and presenter. Using YouTube in combination with SlideShare, one could easily recreate that back-and-forth between slides and the presenter, adding a more realistic feel to "canned" presentations online. Or, if the presentation was recorded, the presenter could add the video of the presentation to the end of the slides - letting users see the content and then see the presenter interacting with it.
To try the feature for yourself, visit SlideShare and upload your presentation as you would normally. While you're waiting for the upload to finish, head over to YouTube and grab the URLs for the videos you'd like to use. Once the upload completes, choose "Edit" and then click on the YouTube tab.
The embedding feature is still in beta, so you may encounter some issues. I tried a couple of different presentation and I didn't have any problems. In fact, I threw the following presentation together in a couple of seconds to give you an example:
In reality, the video encoding will take far longer, so that is going to be the biggest hurdle. But if your content already exists on YouTube, you're ready to go right now. Don't use YouTube? SlideShare has plans to add other players if the feature proves popular.
Adding videos to presentations promises to add a great deal of depth to otherwise static online presentations - and more personality than a voiceover can provide. Couple your new dynamic presentations with SlideShare's ability to embed presentations in LinkedIn and you could be on a speaking junket before you know it.