Success With Video Blogging

Andy Plesser is the founder of New York City-based Plesser Holland
Associates, which advises companies and nonprofits on creating and
using Web media, especially video. The firm also created the popular
video-blogging site, which posts interviews with Web personalities and thought leaders. Plesser spoke with Senior Writer Edward Cone about the “mediafication” of all sorts of organizations.

CIO Insight: Why would a busy executive want to spend time
making videos for relatively
small audiences?
Plesser: If you are a company
with something interesting going
on, it’s important to understand
that video clips can help you grow
virally. At some level, it’s the economics
of reputation: You want
to be seen as authoritative in
your field. Businesspeople may
inspire or lead best by performing
on a physical stage, where words
are spoken aloud and gestures
matter—not via the written word,
which is often bland. When you can
just whip out your iMac and get a
message out to prospective clients,
it starts to make sense in terms of
time and effort.

What should companies be
saying in these videos?
Video blogging is like an informational
TV channel, a travel channel
or a trade publication. It has to
be tailored for the strategy of the
company, whether that means
communicating closely with consumers
or customers, creating
brand loyalty, or providing service
information. Companies can use
video blogs to provide really valuable
information, not just about
how great their car or computer is,
but about what’s happening in the
automotive world, or what’s exciting
in the larger market. It’s about
creating media that’s interesting,
not just a sales job.

How do you find the right
audience for this stuff?

Having a robust e-mail list and
strong Web presence are good
starts. Proper search terms and
the use of RSS feeds can even the
playing field for small companies.
This is supposed to be easy: Coded
flash video can be used effectively
in platforms that already exist,
and in a seamless way—expensive
streaming and servers are
not essential. But you want to do
it right, with integrity and editorial
excellence. My approach
is to create video on a blog platform,
with text as metadata,
and cross links to other sites and
other people. That builds audience,
authority, searchability and
Google juice. It’s got to be searchable,
or else it may get lost.

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