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April 21, 2010

YouTube’s annoying Advertising – Here are 3 of my Alternatives

Have anyone else been exposed to YouTube’s new ad format? Well, basically it goes like this. You search, click a link and then expect to see the video right away. Sadly, you are now put on hold for a few seconds (30s max) and have to watch a commercial. Luckily this doesn’t play out for every video you watch, and I haven’t seen at what frequency they are going to use this, but I sure as hell hope they charge BILLIONS for it as it really f**ks with my user experience.

Alternative 1 – Flashvars CPC

I don’t think any ad format that interrupts user experience will be good in the long run. They should work with dynamic annotations and cpc within videos. Allow for the use of flashvars so that the advertisers can make interactive video-formats and CPO deals. Naturally, the marketeer would have to pay for this as a service, but I think most would as the limits… well there are no limits to what you could do with such a system.

This actually worked before YouTube put a stop to it. Was one of my favorite “creative” tactics for YouTube videos.

Alternative 2 – Ad rating

Put a section where you only display ad-videos and make it a contest. The users will then like/dislike the different videos. This would create a toplist of commercials. I am sure that companies would pay a small sum each month to be added to a list like that.

Alternative 3 – Related products

Now, the long tail on YouTube is fantastic. We know they can index the content of a video by looking at what they did over att Google video. Why not put related products that are relevant for the video itself. For poker, put poker products, for fashion, put fashion products. Not on the side, but as a part of the main content area. Especially as you are working with flash and annotations you could create a “product annotation” where an advertiser puts in a link to an xml-document listing products for different places in the video. That way you could actually buy the dress that someone is wearing by clicking it, or adding it directly to your purchase basket.

I guess that is about it for now, but there are no limitations on how YouTube easily could monetize if they would just move away from the traditional display ad format. I guess this format was produced in order to be able to push advertising to the 80% of the views that are not taking place on YouTube. I wonder what Facebook will say when they find out that Google earns money from ads on their platform 😀 haha..

//Jesper

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April 15, 2010

YouTube Bulletins to your Subscribers

Something that Digg removed as the best way to rally your fans, has now been made available on YouTube. Today they launched the “Post a bulletin” feature which enables you to post a message to the walls of your subscribers. This is excellent. Now it actually make sense invest money into building subscribers to a channel as you get a direct way to notify them when you post new material or when you have updates.

Perhaps this is one further step in the way to increase the social features of the YouTube platform. They have until recently been limited to interaction on pages, but has launched network features in both the connection box as well as the way they promote videos watched by your friends.

I am looking forward to the next step in YouTubes iteration towards becoming a real social platform.

5 ways to use YouTube bulletins

  1. Promote a recently uploaded video
  2. Communicate with your subscribers about some specific message in the video content
  3. Create competitions where users shall find stuff in existing videos
  4. Enforce call to action in your videos
  5. Get feedback from users on your videos

Please continue in the comments field.

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April 13, 2010

What Would you do If I Sang out of tune?

… would you stand up and walk out on me?

What would your fans, followers and readers do if you happened to do something a bit off? Would they stay or would they walk out on you? I think this is the most important question to answer when you engage with your customers in online environments. What can you do for them, so that they don’t walk out on you if you were to fuck up.

Cause just consider the power you get when you’re down and you can “have a little help” from your friends. How do you translate this sense of belonging to the way you communicate with your customer?

Cause everyone needs someone, or something to love, and why not let yourself be that someone or something to someone else?

An unnaturally short post by my standards, but I feel like Joe does it better then anyone. You can see his words are sincere, you can see that he is a true original, you can not only hear what he sings, but you can feel it. That is what you have to translate into your communication so that even when you REALLY need to say something (like when you release a new product), people listen cause they appreciate how you say it.

Cause in the modern world of the Internets, we all could use a little help from our friends. Now go out there and get some!!

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April 2, 2010

Donate To Trubador – The Realest band in the World

For some reason I started following this band on YouTube a couple of months back. I didn’t have a clue why I started following them. Trubador.tv – At first I didn’t even like their music. I generally don’t listen to metal. But for some reason I stuck around, continued to subscribe to their channel and listen in on their quite unique sound. A few months have passed, and now I listen to each of their basement recordings. I somehow know they will hit it big in the future and I want to be able to say that “I was there when it started”.

A few years back this wouldn’t have been possible. Now, with YouTube, it is. Anyhow, they’ve been kickin’ it on the East Coast for a while but they are looking to go to Nashville. This fund raising video should be viewed by many of you out there trying to raise funds. These guy’s are for real. They are honest in their dream and they are willing to walk the line to get there.

Think about it. This shit is like Obama, but with heart. We have an election in Sweden coming up. The politicians working their campaigns should really look at this video as an example of how it is done. Honest, direct and delivers a promise for the future. Who can resist donating a few bucks? This is my contribution.

//Jesper

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April 2, 2010

YouTube’s new design and features

As I wrote the other day, YouTube has gone social with their new social stream. They’ve had social features before but they haven’t really had any networking features on their own platform worth mentioning.

Yesterday YouTube launched their new design and here are some new features for you working with the video landing page. I start out with the overview provided by YouTube and then discuss these changes in detail.


1. New User and subscribe

At last they put the subscribe button in a prominent place making it much easier for new users to subscribe to your content when they land on your movie page.

This button is found on top of the youtube page

2. New video description – still nofollow links

The next change is the video description. They seem to have made the default visible text a bit shorter which sucks, but it is in a much better place now and it looks a bit more as though it is a part of the comment flow. This will probably give you a better chance to build conversations in your video comment fields by asking questions/making statements etc.

3. Removed star rating – Insert Like button

They have removed the star rating button and replaced it with a like button and a dislike button. I personally believe this will lead to a lot more interactions as it becomes much easier to make the choice between liking something or not liking it and the choice of setting stars for it.

They have also made it quite a lot easier to share it to facebook, twitter and through e-mail. At first I got a hard on when I saw the “Save to”-button, but… it is all about playlists. This is good, but it is also not AS good as if I could save movie to desktop. I suppose that would have been a good April fools joke. Sigh…

4. New display of the video count

The new display for the view count does two things. First it shows you how many views, just like before, but then it also expands to an honors field where you can see all the honors this movie clip has got. Honors have previously been found under insights on your stats page. They are now being made public. “Fastest growing education video in sweden”, “#5 most new subscriptions in UK” etc. These are the honors and it makes it quite easy to see who spoof their vid count and who doesn’t :D.

5 and 6. The new Comments box

The new comments box enables you to choose to make a video response, make a simple comment or interact in the way you find most suitable quite more easily than before. This is really good as video responses have lacked the possibility to attach a comment why you post that video response previously.

7. Highest rated comments

The different comments and video responses have a new order. The highest rated comments are shown on top, then there are the video responses and last you get the normal comments.

8. Next in series/next in line

This feature is really nice as it gives you the opportunity to click “watch subscriptions” and then just kick back to view all the subscriptions in one go. It also enables you to put the next video to watch in line so that you don’t get those nasty find next in series moments. 🙂 This is awesome!! Now I can start making tutorials longer than 10 minutes without worrying if the viewer finds the next one or not.

9. Add a movie to a YouTube queue

This next feature shows you how to add one of those movies to a queue whilst watching another video.

You find it from the button that appears when you hover the movie.

10. New account options display

This is more of a taste move on YouTube’s behalf. They had to make available some further options in this drop down, but I am unsure whether or not I like the look of it. Another thing I dislike is that I cannot click my name anymore and get to my channel page. That sucks, but it is only a small bump in the road.

Conclusion

These changes will surely increase the interaction on the video page on YouTube. I would really love for them to make the same kind of social changes to the channel page. That would be awesome!!  Great success 😀

//Jesper

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March 28, 2010

YouTube Goes Social

For all it counts, YouTube has decided to go social. Not only in the way that it recommends videos upon what you have previously watched but also based upon what you’re friends have interacted with. This enforces the notion that Google is truly pushing the social bar a bit higher.

Yes, you have been able to connect to Facebook and Twitter before, but they haven’t used this format to display your friends activities before. This adds to the normal YouTube networking strategies as you can use your activities and interaction with all the content on the platform to become interesting for fans and followers. You can also use the old Facebook tactic that you push other people’s content and thus pull traffic to it, making the people you promote immensely thankful and loyal (not that easy, but this is one out of many ways to do it).

Thus, the new “Recent Activity” box is something which I am all for.

You can only view it if you have interacted with other people on YouTube and you are logged in.

January 17, 2010

Pitch in for Red Cross and Haiti

I know this blog is about social media and SEO and so I will make an effort to try to make this post into such a post as well. So here we go: The Swedish Red Cross has launched a YouTube channel with a short message on how to support their efforts on Haiti. Please make your donation.

This is my way of pitching in next to donating money.

I think this is an excellent way of using social media’s ability to get your news out fast. Instead of running an expensive TV-ad you can engage your supporters online to get the information out fast and to those that can do something about it.

Plz subscribe to their channel as well.

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