Technology is changing at such a rapid pace. My parents didn’t have smart phones growing up, and my kids have no idea what a phone booth is! But today, most of us depend on mobile phones day-to-day. With Facebook now as big as what the entire internet was in 2004, online marketing continues to grow in ways most of us could not have even imagined twenty years ago.
Along with all these changes in technology is the way we market our business and how we communicate with our customers. By now, we all know that expensive “push” advertising does not work like it used to. But social media and videos help educate, entertain, and show potential customers possibilities without the hard sell. With over 800 million unique visits to YouTube each month, and traffic that has tripled to YouTube on mobile devices since 2011, there is no doubt that marketing with video is key, even when people are mobile.
Interview with a Mediaologist: Marketing with Online Video
I am interviewing Mark Haen who has the unique title of “Mediaologist” at Altimate Medical Inc., and to me, also carries the ever-important title of “Dad”. Altimate Medical Inc. (known in their industry for a product called the EasyStand) has an impressive online marketing presence, including a popular YouTube channel. Here is a first-hand look into the value of marketing with video.
VI: So how did you get the title “Mediaologist” anyways?
Mark: AMI is a small company where you have to wear many hats. Here, we do our own photography, shoot our own videos, and set up our own catalogs and mailings. So yes, I’m big into media, been here over 12 years, thus the Mediaologist.
VI: So how many videos do you have on the EasyStand YouTube page?
Mark: I think there is right around seventy, they deal with just about every aspect of our company from product information to customer stories and online manuals.
VI: Online manuals?
Mark: Really not manuals as much as showing people how to properly use our product, which has really cut down on our customer service calls.
VI: What other kinds of videos do you have online?
Mark: Well, we have videos on how to obtain funding for our products, the health benefits provided by our products, and a special kids series called “HopeAbilities”. Since we deal with people who have disabilities we added a section called “Life After SCI” and a lot of customer stories. I think the customer stories are the most popular.
VI: Why is that?
Mark: Personally, I think it’s because people are tired of being “sold”. If they can listen to a satisfied customer, they can relate to that.
VI: So, why do you think video is more effective than other traditional media?
Mark: Video lets you take your client on a virtual tour of everything you want them to see. It can be emotional, it can be informational, whatever you want, you create. Video creates desire, people can picture themselves using your product and this desire makes them want it.
VI: Kind of like photos?
Mark: Yes, but a picture is only visual. Since a movie is both audio and video, you relate to two of the senses at once!
VI: So the videos on your YouTube channel are a big piece of your marketing….
Mark: Don’t get me wrong, we use other media, mailers, trade magazine ads, and trade shows during the year, but if you figure the costs of those to our online video there is quite a difference. We can easily promote our YouTube videos through our website, social media, and email marketing.
VI: So how do people go about getting started with marketing with video?
Mark: Since professional video software is now affordable, more people are into editing video themselves. Plus the price of quality HD cameras has gone down quite a bit. If you want to learn to shoot your own video there is a plethora of information online.
VI: Tell us about your most successful video on YouTube.
Mark: I remember when we first started putting videos on YouTube, the views seemed to come slowly, 20, 50, 100. That same video, which is a customer story, now has over 120,000 views and 100 comments. Check out the video here.
VI: Wow, but everyone wants to know: how do those “views” turn into sales?
Mark: Good question. Patience is important. But when it boils down, it’s all a game of numbers. When your potential customers are ready to buy, they need to think of you. Get in front of them enough and your sales will go up.
VI: So how does a person know how much video to work into their marketing plan?
Mark: My advice is – Online video will not replace your current marketing plan. But you can use your video to reinforce and increase your present marketing plan without adding too much to the budget. The thing to understand, is that video has such value, you can’t pass it up. You can embed your video on your website and blog when it is out there on YouTube, and share it through all other social media. It is definitely a marketing workhorse.
Thank you to Mark Haen of Altimate Medical for sharing his video insight and Mediaologist expertise with us.