Thursday, February 12, 2009

Should I use online video?

Online video is becoming the new website.

Pretty soon every business will be using it (or desperately exploring how to).

Should YOU use it?

Well . . .

My basic suggestion is: yes.

You might not need the level of quality Erica Ross has in her video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MDxM9IAe4eU&feature=channel_page

but consider this . . .

I'd be willing to bet that when people meet you they like you.

I'd be willing to bet that your marketing materials will never be as powerful as meeting you in person.

Sure, your website and brochures and ads might sound good, but people are going to doubt them - after all - you have a vested interest in them buying.

I'd be willing to bet that when you really have a chance to explain how you do what you do and tell your story - that people are impressed and far more likely to do business with you.

Isn't there something about meeting someone - and getting to read their vibe - that matters a lot?

How many times have you heard of people meeting celebrities and telling their friends, "Wow. He was so down to earth. He wasn't pretentious at all."

I doubt most celebrities are that pretentious.

But most people are naturally suspicious.

And, sad to say, they're suspicious of you too.

Which is a shame.

After all, you're nice. You have integrity. You'd never try to lie, cheat or steal from them. But, until they meet you in person, they just aren't really going to trust you.

People trust their experiences, not your rhetoric.

I can't tell you how many times I've had folks come to my free intro sessions and come up to me afterwards to tell me, "You know, I've been to so many marketing sessions and I thought, 'Hmm. This sounds good but maybe he's just another hype filled marketing ass****.' But you weren't. You were really down to earth. I like you and I think I'll be coming to the weekend."

How can you create this personal connection?

This can mean:

1) Teleseminars
2) Speaking at events
3) Running free intro sessions
4) Meeting with people one on one

But all of the above are very time intensive. You have to actually be there in person.

What if there was a way for people to 'meet' you that required almost none of your time?

Wouldn't that be useful?

I recon it would.

Before I tell you what I did - let me come at this from another angle and then tie it all together.

Word of Mouth is powerful, right?

But, why?

Because, instead of people having to take the time and energy and risk of meeting you in person (and being trapped in a two hour seminar that ends up sucking) they can hear about your experience. And since you're someone they trust and since you're independent of the business you're recommending - you can be trusted.

But sometimes, this isn't enough.

After all, can't you think of times when you have recommended some workshop or seminar or restaurant to someone only to have them never act on it?

Of course you have.

Why?

They hadn't experienced it for themselves yet.

They weren't sold on the relevance or value or the product or service for themselves (and maybe you aren't as credible to them as you thought you were - owch).

Imagine you're at an ice cream shop with a friend.

You want them to try the Mango Tofulatti. They shrug. You tell them it's the most delicious thing you've ever tasted. They seem unimpressed.

"Think I'll just stick with strawberry."

You keep trying to convince them but you are afraid to push it too far. After all, if you push them too hard they might decide to never try it just out of principle.

So, why don't they try it?

Well, if they spend five bucks on the cone and they don't like it, they're out the money and they know they could have spent that money on something they know they would have liked. Right?

But, what if you said, "Here, try this little pink spoon."

They do. They're curious after all, they just don't want to have to commit their whole five bucks.

Pink spoon marketing is powerful.

You give people a sample - not enough to satisfy - but enough to let them make an informed decision about whether or not they want more.

Do you have any of these for your business?

What are YOUR pink spoons?

Your pink spoons should fit a few critical criteria.

1) It should contain enough to let them know if it's a fit.
2) It should be something that your existing clients will actively WANT to pass on to their friends.
3) It should be low risk (or ideally NO risk) for people to try out.

Now, there's lots of different things you can do:

- Offer people a free buyers guide or special report on a critical topic
- Free downloadable audio files
- A Blog

etc.

But there's a relatively new medium that's available to you now - for almost NO money.

Online video.

It's a powerful way for people to learn about you, who you are and how (and why) you do what you do.

Instead of simply reading words - they can see you, read your body language and get a sense of who you are.

Again:

I'd be willing to bet that when people meet you they like you.

I'd be willing to bet that your marketing materials will never be as powerful as meeting you in person.

Online video fits the criteria below extremely well.

1) It should contain enough to let them know if it's a fit.

An online video can give them a chance to get as much or as little information as you want.

2) It should be something that your existing clients will actively WANT to pass on to their friends.

A link to an online video is incredibly easy to send. Youtube.com has made it brainless. And it's becoming more and more common to do. People are sending each other videos all the time. Remember: your clients probably love you. They want to support you. They want to spread the word - but you almost certainly haven't given them the tools to do so.

And your website likely isn't exciting or novel enough to warrant them sending it to folks.

But a cool online video?

Why not create one about your business.

I know - you don't know how. I'll address that in a second.

But, imagine the email from your client to a friend of theirs . . .

"You remember that organic restaurant I was telling you about? Check this link out."

"You remember that practitioner I was telling you about? Check this link out."

"You remember that eco-friendly house cleaner I was telling you about? Check this link out."


3) It should be low risk (or ideally NO risk) for people to try out.

Is there anything less risky than watching a video on your computer? No pushy salespeople. Nothing to print off. You can stop it (and restart it) anytime you want. No obligation to buy.

And it doesn't have to be perfect.

You don't have to spend thousands of dollars. It can be a quick 7 minute video shot on a friends camera of you giving a tour about your restaurant or your clinic.

The point is that people get to meet YOU before they take the risk of meeting you in person. And, right now, YOU are likely the critical piece to your businesses success. People are likely buying YOU as much as they are your product and service.

Online video gives YOUR clients an easy way to introduce you to their friends.

It gives you something you can send to someone you meet briefly so they can 'get to know you better'.

**How can YOU put up your own online videos?**

To be honest, I have no idea.

But Gurbeen Bhasin from Meow Films does. She made Erica's video.

Why not drop her an email to see if an online video might be a fit for you?

gurbeen (at) meowfilms (d.o.t.) com

www.meowfilms.com

And feel free to drop me a line with any questions you might have.

--
warmest,

tad
radical business

P.S. Please consider the environment before printing this email - Thank You!



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1 comment:

Tom said...

Hey Tad:

Interesting reflections for me looking at this. I do have a better sense of her and what she offers by seeing it with so many dimensions of information/meaning presented.

I saw a factoid a few times to the effect that the brain can process 1.5 Billion bits of info per second. So, therefore, if you give more information...in a gestalt...it stands to reason and feeling that it will more strongly resonate.

I think you can safely conclude that more people will "get it", and get it more quickly and will register it more deeply when you add those other elements.

Tom St. Louis
zerald.com
marketingfromtheheart.wordpress.com