Video on the Internet – The Basics

One of the things we focused on at System 2006 was video on the Internet.

Just in time too…

One Internet video service, YouTube, is reportedly serving over 100 million video downloads per day!

The Age of Internet Video has definitely arrived and between the individual sessions offered by Declan Dunn, Mike Stewart, Howie Jacobson, Martin Wales and me, there was an entire day`s worth of cutting-edge information and insight on the topic.

So what did we conclude?

Two big points…

1. Video is here for good and good video works in every way that can be measured: higher clickthroughs, higher opt-in rates, more sales.

2. There are many ways to use video.

Here they are in order from the simplest to the most complex…

a. The webcam-style Internet video letter

You sit in front of a webcam or video camera, press record and talk. Press stop when you`re done and post it to the web.

Pros: Easy, fast and cheap

Cons: Unless you`re a natural performer and comfortable and capable in front of a camera, these kinds of videos flop far more often than they succeed.

Fact of life: A single person talking to a screen gets boring  pretty fast.

b. The product demo

In this case, you show your product in action.

A variation of the product demo is the testimonial, having happy customers talk about their experiences. (Some products and services just can`t be `demonstrated` any other way.)

Pros: Nothing sells better than a good demonstration.

Prospects are skeptical and practical. They know that many advertisers try to manipuate them with grand promises. When they can see a product working with their own eyes, you`re far down the road to making the sale.

For the same reason, strong customer testimonials are invaluable. Hearing someone else praise your product is 100 times more powerful that anything you can say as the advertiser.

Cons: Producing video like this requires more work than webcam-style presentations. Lighting and sound issues, which are always important, become critical. Editing, which takes time even with the latest and greatest in technology, is required too.

c. The infomercial

The fact is that there are far more people in this world who will watch a 15 to 20 minute video than there are who will read a sales letter.

(I`m not saying throw out your sales letters – far from it. The sales letter is still the foundation of any sales campaign. Not only that, the fact is that strong video is based on strong writing, so the skills you mastered to become a copywriter apply directly to
producing great video.)

Pros: The infomerical gives you enough space to tell your whole story. It lets you show your product and company from many different angles. Just like a long form sales letter, the infomerical (or long form Internet video) gives you more chances to get your prospects engaged and focused – and to motivate them to act.

Cons: It`s the most complex video to produce of all. You need a much wider variety of material to work with than a simple demonstration or testimonial reel and eExtensive editing will be required.

Bottom line: Internet video is powerful, but it`s a myth that it`s always fast, easy and cheap.

On the other hand, video – on the Internet and off – is the next logical step for building you business once you`ve created a winning sales letter, opt-in and follow up process.

Here`s why`

First, good video will help you sell all the prospects who are on the fence.

Second, it will help you reach the many folks who just don`t respond to print offers.

Third, good video can help you answer key sales questions that really can`t be answered any other way.

For example, for years people have been asking me exactly what The System Seminar is. I`d like to tell them “read the sales letter” but even the sales letter only scratches the surface.

To solve this problem – and that`s the purpose of all sales letters and videos, to solve sales problems – I created a solution using the principles we covered in the Internet video sessions at System 2006.

You can watch it (below) and see how I did it.

The purpose of the video is to:

a. Show what goes on at a System Seminar
b. Convey the primary methods we teach at the seminar
b. Show how attendees – from the super-experienced to beginners – quickly profit from what they learn

Like any business owner, I`ve got the challenege of differentiating what I do from what others in the market place do.

Imagine being in a hyper-competetive market where anyone can show up any time and make any claim, true or not, about their products. That`s what legitimate educators in the Internet marketing field face every day.

You may face a similar challenge, or one that`s completely different, but whatever the case, there`s probably an important sales argument for your product that can ONLY be made with video.

What`s it costing you to NOT successfully make this important sales argument to your prospects and customers?

There`s a lot of learn from the example below:

* how to shoot great testimonials
* how to keep a long form video interesting by continuously changing scenes
* how to focus on the points that make your business different from your competitiors
* how to establish trust and crediblity

If you have a great product, you know that one of your biggest challenges to get get the facts about it to the market. Video is a clear winner for accomplishing this.

Here`s our example from System 2006.


– Ken McCarthy

P.S. For over 25 years I’ve been sharing the simple but powerful things that matter in business with my clients.

If you’d like direction for your business that will work today, tomorrow and twenty years from now, visit us at the System Club.

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April 27 – 29, 2007

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2 Responses to Video on the Internet – The Basics

  1. Ken McCarthy July 22, 2006 at 7:48 pm #

    Yes it really is true…

    Someone wrote me saying it wasn`t possible that YouTube was serving 100 million videos PER DAY.

    The writer went on to add that that I must have had my numbers mixed up – it must be 100 million a year or 100 million per month – and that I should be more careful with my reporting or I`d lose all credibility.

    Well, I`m sorry to disappoint this skeptic, but the number 100 million PER DAY is correct as amazing as it sounds – and I`ll be first to admit, it is amazing.

    YouTube with a little more than 30 employees and less than a year old is serving 60% of the Internet`s video and downloads 100 million programs per day.

    The numbers come from Hitwise, the web measurement site, and were reported in this article from CNET:

    I still don`t see how this is going to turn into money for YouTube (yet), but it shows that the demand for video delivered via the Internet is real.

    Remember, as far as Internet video is concerned, 2006 is `Year One` of the phenomenon. Its all up from here.

  2. nalts July 26, 2006 at 9:38 pm #

    Ken- really nice article. Haven’t seen much like it. I actually have a different POV on “it’s all up from here.” I think we’re due for a bubble burst. There’s so much hype about video, and I think two things will happen in the next 3-9 months:
    1) The darlings of video (especially YouTube) will be exposed at being unsound business models.
    2) Marketers will probably overuse viral marketer in the flooded attempt to break through.

    The online video space feels dangerously like the dot-com era prior to the bubble. Too much money chasing too many companies with too few actual customers or revenue.

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