8 Tips for Creating Content Like a TV Producer

March 13, 2014

Last week, I made the case for treating your presentations like a TV series. To recap, presenting your message in a series of releases allows you to incorporate feedback, build a following (and excitement!), and, ultimately, produce better content.

Creating a series doesn't mean automatic success -- think of all the TV series that have flopped. But there are some tips for taking the episodic route.

I recently completed a 3-episode SlideShare series on local content. Here are some of the lessons I learned.

1. Become an Information Chunker

Find a logical theme and flow relating to how someone might consume your content. For example:

- Why, How & What

- Who, What, When, Where &  Why

- Before, During & After

Give them enough information in each episode to feel rewarded for their investment of time, but keep them curious enough to want to read more.

2. Focus on the Title

The title is the hook, and will account for most of your success. Consider 20+ alternative titles before you publish. You can even test different titles post publishing, if one doesn't seem to be working.  Of course the body needs to be strong too, but your title will always be your hook.

3. Create a Visual Theme

You need to make each piece of content visually distinct, but also have a visual connection to the series. People judge decks by their cover. The cover page is second only to the title.

4. Repurpose Your Content on Your Blog & Other Platforms

Distill the essence of your deck/story for multiple forms of media. Use extracts to tease readers and build anticipation.

  • SlideShare: Create a simple. short compelling deck.
  • Instagram: Create images adding text highlights or takeaways. Pin, list and tweet these images.
  • SoundCloud / YouTube: Create an audio or video soundbite as a trailer.
  • Listly: Extract your key points as a list and make "playlists."

Be sure to also embed this content on your blog. Think of your blog as the anchor. Have these content outposts lead back to your anchor post for each episode.

Ask others to share and embed on their blogs too. If you don’t ask, you won’t get.

5. Cross Link Your Episodes

Make a list of the links to your different assents, and share and embed that list of links.

Make sure the last slide of each deck cross-links to the other SlideShares. Cross-linking your serial content is an important aspect of serialization -- people will not discover or consume your content linearly.

6. Promote Before, During and After You Release Each Episode

Promotion is about being consistent and persistent. Tell people what's coming, when it has arrived -- and remind people in case they missed it. Don’t get bored of your own content. You can keep promoting it weeks, even months, post publication.

7. Use Hashtags

And speaking of promotion, use hashtags when you promote, too. People don’t just follow people, they also follow keywords (aka hashtags). Check out RiteTag for recommendations of the best hashtags. Hashtags help new people discover you. For many, following topics beats following people.

8. Look to Your Metrics

Let your metrics be your guide. Just as with TV shows, it's possible for you to run a pilot and never proceed to make the rest of the series. Be agile. Measure quality by views, likes, comments and downloads. If any element didn’t work, don’t be afraid to retell the story in another way.

What’s your experience with creating presentations as series? Have you got any tips to share? Tell us in the comments below!

READ MORE: The Case for Creating Series

Nick’s ventures range from a segmentation tool sold to SAP, to an award winning board game. Today, Nick is co-founder of Listly, raising the profile of lists to be on par with SlideShare & YouTube. Find Nick on G+.

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Netflix en Windows Media Center by Manuel Iglesias is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at http://www.flickr.com/photos/michperu/3550944196/.