JESS3 Uses SlideShare Pro as Platform for Clients

August 17, 2010

This week we talked with Jesse Thomas, founder of JESS3, about how JESS3 uses SlideShare Pro...

Who is Jess3? Is it a person or a company?
JESS3 is a creative interactive agency that specializes in product design, branding, social media and data visualization. Based in Washington, DC JESS3 has studio spaces in New York City, France, the UK, Argentina and other creative hubs all over the world.

How long has JESS3 been on SlideShare? How do you use it?
JESS3 has been using SlideShare since April 2007, initially under my personal account. But my history with SlideShare goes back even further: One of my most popular presentations of all time is The 25 Basic Styles of Blogging... And When to Use Each One which I designed along with strategist Rohit Bhargava when we both worked at Ogilvy PR together (uploaded 4 years ago, it has received over 120,000 views).

How does your use of SlideShare differentiate your firm from other agencies?
We've been experimenting with the customization and advertising options since they were available. We also take a lot of our internal ideas and move quickly to turn them into decks, without a planned use other than to test and refine ideas.

One such example is my "rant" about the shortcomings of geosocial; this has since turned into a mini-movement, supported by various employees at top platforms (e.g., Facebook, Gowalla and Foursquare) and featured this week on Mashable in an "op-ed" of sorts I wrote titled Why Location-Based Social Media Needs to Get "Passive" Aggressive.  If it wasn't for SlideShare, we wouldn't have had such a low barrier to entry for testing ideas, crowd-sourced additional thinking and sharing it in a concise, snackable, updatable and visually engaging way.

Lastly, we take full advantage of uploading a new version without losing views, Likes or embeds. We view content as living and breathing, so that SlideShare allows us to do this means a lot.

You have a very interesting banner on your channel page. Tell us about it...
JESS3 uses SlideShare ProYes, we certainly do ("JESS3 LOVES SLIDESHARE").   We wanted to get SlideShare's attention and tell them how much we loved their service, so why not dedicate our banner to doing so?  It also has given us the opportunity to double-down on this platform with our clients, putting our money (and our banner) where our mouth is.

Why did you decide to join SlideShare Pro? What are your favorite features in Pro?
We wanted to customize our page in the way that we have for platforms like Twitter, while also removing the ads and taking advantage of the "featured content" opportunities.

The social web is all about personalization and, when done right as is the case with SlideShare, the impact can be even more powerful than creating your own site.

We notice you brought two of your clients (Eloqua and Zogby) onto Slideshare. What do they value most about the service?
For a B2B client like Eloqua who has an amazing trove of data, resources and insights it was a no-brainer.  We are also confident that their target audience -- marketing professionals and C-level decision makers -- are either on SlideShare with their own accounts and / or speak in the "PowerPoint" dialect pioneered by business schools  near and far.

As for Zogby, their brand has been rapidly growing in the market research industry, so having a content distribution "hub" like SlideShare that will allow them to share the reports and infographics we will be working with them on makes a lot of sense.  Like Eloqua, Zogby (and, frankly, any company) speaks to decision makers who are used to receiving information in digestible, visually-impactful formats.

How are you approaching the design of their channels?
With both clients, we have been asked to use our illustration skills. This is super exciting for us, as we believe the social web facilitates the most human interactions the digital age has known.  What better way to herald this than to have a team of illustrators create these pages through sketches and by hand? Also, it is a great contrast to have illustrations along side more corporate, clean content.

Additionally, we have a number of Fortune 500 brands interested in creating channels.  Where we are in those conversations is first identifying that there will be a consistent supply of good content and a purpose for being on SlideShare (e.g., marketing within the community, as well as leveraging the content offsite). From there, the fun begins: customizing the channel and mapping out the SlideShare "editorial calendar" just like you would a YouTube channel, really.

To learn more about JESS3, visit their SlideShare Channel