Saturday, July 29, 2006

Why video blogging is the Next Big Thing: UPDATED

[Update appears at end of post...]

During my advertising career, I learned the Law of Ad Images: (1) show the CEO in appropriate prestige or as an approachable regular gal/guy, (2) show the product in use, by a typical customer, solving a real, common problem.

At Garden Way Marketing Associates, in-house agency for Troy-Bilt garden machinery, we combined them: Dean Leith, CEO, using a Troy-Bilt tiller with Just One Hand ease of operation.

This is the real potential of video blogging, or vlogging.

(1) Show yourself.

Come out from behind your computer and be real. Most CEOs don't want to be so vulnerable and open to ridicule? Great news! That means you can stand out and get all kinds of free publicity! Be yourself, your best self, but your authentic self. Web users can smell inathenticity and deception a mile away. Remember Dan Rather and Trent Lott. But also think of how television and film made stars out of the early pioneers.

(2) Demonstrate your product.

Users can SEE the benefits to be gained, actually watch that chainsaw cut through an oak tree trunk in less than 30 seconds, or whatever. Not just the product sitting there on the shelf doing nothing. Unless it's the beauty of the thing that sells it. Even then, put that beautiful skirt on a typical customer's body. Show it solving a problem, in the case of fashion, the problem is frumpiness. Ha!


Chris Ritke
to me

More options 1:26 pm (14 minutes ago)

Yes, videoblogs probably are the next big thing... the long tail is happening. Great stuff, quite confusing though. Where is it headed? I don't know.

All of the 'real videobloggers' hate YouTube (whatever that means), I personally think they're doing some cool stuff, you might say they've figured out how to exploit the stupidity of the general public - but hey: they're people too, right?

The big problem with most of these services is that you pretty much give up all rights to your work, ie the site owns what you create. Two sites that the videoblogging crowd (members of the yahoo videoblogging group and those who attended vloggercon etc etc etc) are using and (I suggest you try blip).

You might want to join the videoblogging group at yahoo if you want to hook up with some of those folks!

If you want to check out some of the more well known videobloggers (A-Listers? Blah):
(watch out, it's not what it looks like... dig in anyway - great guy, watch his Folk Video Manifesto!)
is a great place for tech tricks and tips.

I've got to say this: they are all extremely nice people - I've met quite a few videobloggers - lots of fun, and they're really thinking hard about all of this.

Have a great weekend!


chris ritke

NOTE: Chris Ritke, of 49 Media, did the first and only podcast interview with Vaspers the Grate about a year ago.

site is...



CK said...

Agreed. I think 'mixed-media' blogs are both the next big-and-necessary thing. You're spot on, we need to demonstrate our products and come out from our just must hold value for the user, value the user's time.

All the people I've queried (consumers and clients) have a far longer attention span for longer text posts than videos or podcasts. That said, if something is of value, we'll watch/read/listen for a long time. So I believe you might add the "time" factor to the list. Not only does a piece under 5 minutes (and more like 2 -3) respect users' time, it also lowers the barriers for many bloggers, including CEOs (a 2-minute podcast or videocast is less daunting then a 60-minute briefing).

But you've inspired me (and politely kicked my butt) to go multi-media.

steven edward streight said...

CK: While I'm an advocate of brevity, and I hate slow build-ups, the ideal or optimum duration of a podcast or video depends on many different considerations.

If something is too short, it may be perceived as nothing, like a 28 second (0:28) video of the band Stereolab. You see a lot of these too brief excerpts.

If too long, it may be perceived as boring and monotonous.

If I did a video called "All About CK and Her Problems, Desires, and Mistakes" and it lasted for 20 minutes, you might be motivated to watch every bit of it.

But a 30 second (0:30) video on Web 2.0 would be considered stupid, right?

Podcasts are in a very different league from both vlogs and text blogs.

Longer podcasts can work, because some users want to listen to something entertaining or informative while they work out at the gym, or while the mow the lawn, or paint their livingroom, or do some other activity.

So there are many factors involved.

But generally, brevity is best.

carrie said...

if you think about it, ppl have really short attention spans ESPECIALLY online!!!!!!

i only watch a long video (over 2-3 mins) if i have some sort of vested interest in doing so.