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What Channel are you watching?

You remember that top-loading VHS from the 80’s right? Well you may also remember that it was not only there to play your favourite film, or record your favourite TV show. It was also a corporate machine to help with training, promotion and advertising the latest company products and services.

The silver suit, complimented by brown tie worn by the Marketing Director, sat leisurely across a desk inviting the viewer to join him, in a quasi-sexual manner, on a cheesy visual video tour of his operation, his training course, his shiny new product, his office block. You know the one… the introduction consisted of roundabouts, grey buildings and people walking across the company car park – some of them might have even been smoking ‘in public places’! This is what corporate videos used to be about.

We have seen the demise of many traditional ways of marketing and where many things have suffered at the hands of technology, video has proven time and time again to be a hugely valuable and successful way of getting the message out, understood and (re)acted upon.

Video is more inclusive than ever today. It is accessible, it is tangible and with the many different platforms that it can be accessed from, it is a favourite choice of many marketers – often returning huge response rates and ROI.

For me there are two main reasons for this: 1) YouTube and 2) everything else!

1) YouTube is quite simply the single biggest phenomenon in video (sharing) and the absolute key to its continued success. The ability to publish material within seconds of capture and then share it with a global audience is incredible. The way it links across other networks/platforms and acts as a hosting service to embed video into websites, emails, presentations and documents offers so many opportunities. And all from one website: not bad for a fun plan thrown together by a few friends in 2005.

2) Everything else. What do I mean by ‘everything else’? Well, with YouTube essentially at the core of video hosting (remember this is not just a website to post videos on, it is a hosting platform and social and corporate sharing machine) many other doors have opened. Vimeo for example, (which actually launched before YouTube, but has never quite seen the same enormity) is a favourite platform for many corporate users and those wishing to restrict viewing access (of course you can do this on YouTube too).

You can view video on literally thousands of devices, from mobile phones, to tablets, pcs and laptops. Then you have the inordinate number of places where you can share your videos: adding to websites, sending out via email, including in fancy DMs, sharing on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, MySpace (remember MySpace?) and the many other social platforms out there. With this increase in opportunity, access and flexibility comes an increase in capability and global interest: From self-publishing teenagers falling off skateboards to parents of finger-biting babies. From product launches and training manuals to infomercials and viral Gangnam Style craziness, right the way through to the most immensely talented digital, video and multimedia designers and production companies: It’s all there!

These days, of course, more and more companies are embracing it; blogs, newsletters and corporate updates have all gone video! Combine this with a much more mobile workforce and you can really see the impact. The C-suite are even recording themselves on their smartphones and tablets, video blogging their way around the world, posting their views and updates immediately to intranets, YouTube channels and company websites.

So how exactly can you harness this power? Well, in addition to the above tech, accessibility and multiple platform flexibility… who doesn’t like watching a video? People love video. People like engagement and the connection that video gives you. The bottom line is people like to be entertained. But the flip side is, people don’t want to be bored or kept waiting! So create the script and the storyboard and define the length, music, animation and voice over combinations wisely.

There are plenty of options from hosting your very own (or client) YouTube/Vimeo channel, to placing videos on landing pages, linking from emails and even embedding ‘hidden’ information/content behind interactive, clickable hot-spots.

You might even like to try bridging the interactive gap between the physical and virtual world where the use of QR codes and/or augmented reality applications (like blippar or Aurasma for example) can really bring things to life.

The key is to understand the potential. In a marketing world where the landscape is changing dramatically on an almost daily basis, one thing continues to remain constant…video works (and it works well!) With just one video you can reach every link in your channel via many different platforms, across numerous devices and via a multitude of deliverables. It’s not just me who thinks it either… check this out!!!

Video has a solid foundation in the past and it has an amazing future. People like it, marketers love it, customers embrace and engage with it.

For more information on how you too can make the most of video marketing across your channel, please contact:

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Usage: YouTube channel, Video pack DM, Website, email, direct links.

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