Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Promoting Small Business with the Web and Video

Since we launched our "SiteGreeter" video spokesperson product I have continued to seek out competitor sites, study their products and visit their clients to see how different businesses use the tools. Like NetVideoMaker, our competitors produce the original video and the final set of files that go up to a web server. Unlike NVM our competitors retain the files on their servers and as part of the contract, monitor visits and provide data (web metrics) to the client. The pricing reflects their continued presence in the transaction. We are a small business marketing to small business. Our clients own their files, host them and track their own metrics. If you understand this feel free to move on. If you aren't sure, here's a brief description of what is possible for minimal investment.

You have a business web site. You want more traffic and you can't afford to put your URL on billboards around town. Choosing a Google AdWords campaign is likely to be your best next decision. Setting up an account takes minutes. You can set a budget as low as one dollar a day, and bid for keywords for as little as ten cents per click. Results from popular keywords will cost more but let's put that aside for now. Once you have a campaign running you qualify for Google Analytics - data about action on your site. It takes another few minutes to generate the HTML required to track visits to your web pages, and a few more to paste that code in, or have your web editor do it. But once it's done, you can log onto your Analytics account any time, from anywhere to access visitor data, all for the price of your existing AdWords campaign.

Adding a video spokesperson, or a video window is the next step. Which you choose and what you choose to say will depend on the specific nature of your business. A Beverly Hills car dealer greets visitors and directs them to the pre-owned car page, where he appears again to provide more information, and hopefully to make you like him so you'll come to his dealership. An actor introduces Wal-Mart Canada's promotion of the next big Xbox game release. A documentary filmmaker talks about the DVD-Video program available for purchase on the same page. A cosmetic surgeon takes the anxiety out of preparing for a medical procedure. Like all tools, web video has many uses and only you can decide which is best for your purpose. But if you're looking for examples of how other businesses are using it we are always happy to help. Just visit the site and fill in a contact box on any page. We'll be in touch right away.