Optimal iQ Blog

Posted by: Jason Smith on 8/16/2011 | 0 Comments
If you have worked with me over the years you have heard my argument that video is going to eventually dominate the web.  I don’t believe non-video content will shrink – I just think that video content is going to grow at a much faster rate that other content.  There are a lot of reasons why I believe this but here are two that I believe most strongly in:

1.  People want a richer experience no matter what they are interacting with.  If you look at the recent history of media you will see a similar transition to video.  We started with newspaper, transitioned to radio, that morphed into black and white TV with no sound, black and white with sound, color TV, 3D TV, HD TV, etc.  (I know that those other mediums did not disappear but in many ways they became niche or we saw a similar transition just within that medium – Black and white newspaper to color for instance.)  As people become heavier users of the web and connection speeds become better they spend more time with rich media online.  This is why we see YouTube searches outnumbering Google searches today.  
2.  Businesses are seeing better results online when they use video.  We have customers who have doubled response rates for certain promotions on their websites when video elements were introduced.  Video is able to tell a better story and explain product features more clearly.  More people are not doing it because it is simply more difficult.  As the ease of creating video expands, so will the use of it. 

So what does this mean?  Companies that are proactive about using video on their websites and in their marketing efforts will reap rewards over their competitors who don’t.  Here are a few ways to start using video now:
1.  Set up a YouTube channel for your company.  Once this is done expand to sites like Vimeo and MetaCafe.  
2.  Get a low cost video camera (or use your iPhone) to practice shooting and editing video.  Customers are fine with low budget video quality as long as the message is correct and you are genuine.
3.  If you sell products then shoot video of those products and simply explain what is there.  Point out features and benefits.  
4.  If you sell services do an interview of one of your service people explaining a job they have completed.
5.  Ask two or three of your best customers to give you a testimonial.  It doesn’t have to be long or dramatic.  

I would love to hear your opinions on this topic.  
Posted by: Jason Smith on 8/11/2011 | 0 Comments
Google has been the 800 pound gorilla in search for years.  It would be easy to sit back and coast along without doing any major changes to how search is done.  I am excited to see that Google is now launching new initiatives (like Google +), relaunching existing properties (like google.com) and quickly pushing out updates to how the index and present data (Panda 2.3).  At Optimal iQ we are seeing an increased ability to rank well with video and images as well as an improved ability to control local search.  Rumor has it that YouTube is undergoing a interface redesign similar to what Google proper underwent recently.  
All of this exciting because it gives greater opportunity to perform well and stay ahead of competition for businesses who have a strategic plan that involves SEO.  It will also continue to drive the improvement of the medium faster as Google pushes itself to improve and, in turn, pushed competitors to innovate more quickly.  
I think that in one year from now there will be a lot of companies wondering how their competitors got so far ahead of them in search.