The core of your financial success is to be able to sell your services using presentations. But for a small business, creating an eye-catching, fully interactive presentation experience can be a challenge without an in-house marketing staff. PowerPoint presentations have lost their luster as presentations with sound, video, and artsy graphics increasingly become the norm. In fact, SmallBizTechology quoted a study last year that found more than 30 percent of respondents reported falling asleep during a PowerPoint presentation. More than twenty percent said they’d fallen asleep more times than they can count.
Thankfully, several Cloud-based solutions can help you create professional-looking presentations that will rival even the largest corporation’s. But which one is the best for your small business? Here are a few services to help you make a decision:
- SlideRocket — This web-based presentation software emphasizes team collaboration and communication with your audience. Not only does SlideRocket contain web authoring tools, but the team-oriented nature of the software means your staff will always have access to the latest version of each presentation. Update one slide and it updates that slide in every instance it appears in your presentation library. And with SlideRocket’s tracking feature, you’ll be able to see how many have seen each of your presentations and even how many liked it. A lite version that includes tools, online and mobile access, and a basic library is free. For professional tools, versioning, and professional analytics, you’ll pay $24 per user per month. More intensive plans are available on a custom pricing basis.
- Brainshark — Brainshark allows you to upload your video, documents, or photos to its server, then add audio via telephone, microphone, or uploaded audio file. This provides a true multimedia presentation. Like SlideRocket, Brainshark also allows you to track your presentation’s viewers and access your files via any device. Individual access is free, with group pricing available on a custom pricing basis. An individual pro version of myBrainshark is available for $9.99 a month, with a trainer version available for individuals at $19.99 a month.
- 9 Slides — This start-up presentation storage solution shows you alongside your presentation in a split-screen effect that engages users. “We allow users to synchronize their slides with speaker video and make them available on-demand, for iPad, Android or any other device with modern browsers,” 9Slides’ Ruchit Garg states. The free version includes up to 200MB of video storage and a 25MB presentation limit. For $24 a month, you’ll get up to 300MB video limit and 50MB presentation limit. Up to 1GB plans are available on a custom pricing basis.
- SlideShare — For those interested in merely sharing existing presentations, SlideShare can help your presentation go viral. Upload your presentation and share on social media sites. Think of SlideShare as YouTube for slideshows, where you can set up channels, post and respond to comments, and browse other slideshows for inspiration. Basic membership in SlideShare is free, but a paid version gets you analytics, private uploads, sharing abilities, and more for $19 a month.
Thanks to the proliferation of Cloud-based solutions, professional, high-tech presentations are available for little to nothing per month. These are ideal solutions for small businesses, who are short on staff but long on ideas.