Large companies with deep pockets have long held a strong advantage when it comes to marketing. Simply put, they have the money to spend heavily on advertising and pull ahead of the competition. Thanks to the paradigm changing impact of the Internet, however, smaller companies now have an opportunity to catch up for a fraction of the cost.
That is why I strongly recommend that you read an excellent piece in the New York Times entitled: “Online Video Offers Low-Cost Marketing For Your Company.” The article provides powerful tips on how to use YouTube and other hosting services (Vimeo, MetaCafe, Facebook, Viddler, Brightcove and ) as a low budget form of television advertising as well as a means to demonstrate what a product does.
Below, please find highlights that I have pulled from the article. I strongly suggest, however, that you read the article in its entirety, save it and pass it on to others.
1. SHOW YOUR PRODUCTS - Short of getting a customer in the door or sending a salesperson on the road, online video may be the best way to demonstrate a product.
2. CREATE A DESTINATION - It is easier to win customers if you give them a reason to tune in. For [a company called] BBQguys.com, the reason is food sizzling on the grill.
3. USE ANALYTICS AND TOOLS - YouTube offers tools that allow you to measure the effect of your videos
4. BUILD A BRAND CHANNEL - One way to get the attention of customers is invite them to become your video producers — especially if they jump off cliffs, ski down steep powder ridges or do somersaults on BMX bikes.
5. ADVERTISE WITH VIDEO - YouTube is the second-largest search engine after Google (which owns YouTube) and represents a huge audience of potential customers. It offers a dozen advertising options, including banner ads, promoted videos that appear on top and beside search results, and “preroll ads” that appear during other YouTube videos much like a conventional TV commercial. YouTube recently announced that it was displaying more than three billion ads per week.
6. OFFER INSTRUCTION - Online video makes it easy to follow the adage “Show, don’t tell.” Many businesses have turned to video for instruction manuals and how-to guides.
If you are currently using YouTube and other hosting sites to market your products, write in and let us know.