Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Vimeo Videos Can Now Earn You Cash

September 24, 2012

Vimeo Videos Can Now Earn You Cash

vimeo video

Changes to the Vimeo video platform….

Vimeo has just announced a couple of facilities to enable paid members to earn cash for the videos that they post on their site.

Here we look at the Vimeo model and what the new changes mean.

The Vimeo Video Sharing Model

For those of you who haven’t used it, Vimero is a video sharing website where users can upload and share their videos; they can also, of course, watch other videos that other users have posted. In this respect it is very similar to YouTube.

It is a major player, with over 70 million users worldwide and 13 million registered users.

One of the key differences with Vimeo is its commitment to quality. It was the first video sharing site to support HD. Many of the videos featured on Vimeo are of higher quality than the average video featured on YouTube.

Many businesses upload videos to Vimeo in addition to their YouTube channel, though it is certainly not a business-only site.

The New Developments – Tip Jar and Pay-to-View

The new facility for videos to receive cash from viewers is called “Tip Jar.” Viewers will also be able to send a tip to a video they like by using Paypal; the video maker keeps 85% and 15% goes to Vimeo.

Another major change will allow video makers to put paywalls around their productions and this will be active within the next few months.

Once it is properly rolled out at the end of the year, subscribers will be able to customise the pay-per-view options, whereby they can control price, distribution location and rental duration.

Subscribers regularly uploading content to Vimeo will also be able to pay for extra space or features like branded video players, reflecting its ongoing commitment to the high quality end of the market, and especially for business-oriented videos.

Your Business Video Options

Your business may be able to pick up value from the Vimeo changes. It’s fine having your free YouTube channel, but consider a paid Vimeo membership too; as the general quality improves and more and more HD video is uploaded, Vimeo will likely become an even bigger player.

There are other video platforms which have offered a pay-to-view model  – mainly business video sites like Ooyala, Vzaar and Brightcove; even YouTube is providing a paywall facility for streaming live events.

If your business is creating regular video content, knowing where to put those videos for maximum exposure is just as important as the videos themselves. That’s why it’s good to find a video production company that knows marketing as well as the video business. Speak to Michael at Video Labs on 1300 881 783.

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September 23, 2012

Brisbane Video Production News – Watch Out! Google is About to Dance Like Nobody’s Watching!

August 30, 2012

“What has Google got to do with my video production strategy?” some Brisbane business owners may be wondering. Well, video and Google are big bed-fellows for a number of reasons – partly because they own YouTube, but it goes a lot deeper than that.

Google has made their name as the biggest and best search engine because of the relevance of their search results. If they ceased to be relevant they would decline in popularity and some other huge search monster would displace them at the top.

That’s why Google is serious about weeding out rubbish from their search engines and upping the quality with the most relevant search results. What is relevant to people and businesses these days? Video, social networks and informative and engaging content. So, get ready because that’s exactly what their search results will try to reflect.

The Next Big Google “Dance”

The next big Google “dance”, when they shake up their algorithms and change the way the results work, is expected soon. It’s always a time when web developers, SEO people and businesses alike get a little nervous about how their rankings will be affected.

As a Brisbane business with video production as a big part of your marketing strategy you should not worry. If you are producing regular, informative, entertaining, optimised content, then neither Google nor any of the search engines will be out to punish you. Even if your rankings take a temporary hit, good content will always get you seen near the top of the results.

As you may already realise, search results have included video listings for keywords for quite some time now.

That’s not about to change, but according to some in the know, like Ed Dale, there is a massive change about to take place. This will be a fundamental change in the way search results are to be delivered.

Massive Search Changes

What appears to be about to happen is the demotion of the backlink. These are what SEO people have been focused on for the past many years in terms of off-page SEO; getting backlinks to point to a site to provide it with authority and standing has been the key SEO strategy. Of course, “gaming” this system is certainly not unheard of.

The trouble is, backlinks are less relevant today, as people use social media to “like” and “retweet” so this makes search results less reflective of the content that people really want to see.

This is a big problem for Google and one which, as they have done in the past, they are expected to meet head on with a “scorched earth policy” that will have many SEO people running for the exits.

As a business, you should already know the importance of social media, providing regular content to your audience and keeping them informed, educated and even entertained.

This latest change will be bad news for old-style SEO but GREAT news for those of you with video production strategies that produce consistent, high quality content – on a weekly or monthly basis.

The Market Leadership Club for Video Production

Sorry to get a bit sales-y on you, but we recently released our new, monthly Market Leadership Club packages which gets video content up and out there regularly for your business. It is precisely the type of content that will be rewarded by Google and help you rise to the top of the rankings and stay there.

Speak to Michael on 1300 881 783 for more details.

Why Video Production Makes You the Darling of Google

August 16, 2012

Online businesses are like thousands of suitors all going after the same bride. They will try all the tricks in the book to win its heart. But the bride tends to throw the flowers and the boxes of chocolate out of the window – what she is looking for is some cold, hard video production!

Who is the bride? Well, it’s Google of course. Online business owners have been wooing it for years in the hope of being number one in its eyes.

Much chased, wined, dined and serenaded over the years, just when it seems you’ve won her over, she goes and breaks your heart with an overnight change of heart – another Google update!

Video is the New SEO

Joking aside, since Google bought YouTube back in 2006, at a time when online video started to really become a mass medium, it has rapidly shot to the top of search results.

Yes, Google is pushing its own boat out by promoting video production, but it is also reflecting what people are demanding – which is why Google has dominated search over the years: it provides the most relevant results.

Everywhere you look – at work (when the boss isn’t watching), in lunch hours or coffee breaks on iPhones and SIII’s, on iPads and other mobile devices, on public transport, at bus stops – people are watching video.

So by including video high up on the page in search results, Google is essentially delivering what people are after.

Video production has therefore become a big part of the new SEO. If you’re not making videos regularly and getting them out there and seen, you are not optimising your online business.

Quality and Quantity

The good news is that video is no different to other content; you don’t have to sacrifice quality for quantity – and, if you do, Google may break your heart with one of its updates!

You can provide regular, ongoing content that pleases your darling Google; but you can also keep the quality high with fresh ideas, good scripting, quality video production and professional post production, to educate, inform and entertain your real flesh and blood audience too.

A good video production strategy – like all good ‘marriages’ – is a balancing act between give and take and being able to change and grow with the times.

Speak to Michael at Video Labs – to make the perfect relationship between video and your business happen: 1300 881 783

Video Production in Brisbane: Follow the Speed

August 14, 2012

Video Production in Brisbane

Web content has always been governed by the outer limits of its technological capabilities and with video production it is no different.

The “outer limits” are being pushed back at a quicker rate than ever before with the announcement by Telstra earlier in the year that they were rolling out their new 4G network.

What exactly does this mean for video production for Brisbane businesses?

4G – What is it?

4G is Telstra’s new mobile broadband network and is called ‘long-term evolution technology’ or LTE.

The modems are dongles (as per the above picture), and they work at new faster speeds inside the 4G network, while reverting to the 3G network in other areas. In Brisbane it cuts out beyond Enoggera and The Gap in the west, and after Camp Hill and Lytton in the east.

The Telstra network is likely to be expanded beyond the present limits in the future. Meanwhile Optus and Vodafone Hutchison Australia are looking to launch their networks next year.

The huge benefit is – you guessed it: SPEED. Download speeds range from 2 Mbps – 40 Mbps, which is 25 times faster than the original speeds on 3G.

How can your Brisbane business take advantage of the changes that this means?

4G – How does it Change the Video Production World?

If you think back 5 years, when you started watching YouTube, how much has the quality improved since then; the grainy, washed out videos with poor sound may still be there in some places, but does anybody really watch them?

It’s far more common now to see well thought out, sharp, high definition, well-edited videos. Why is this?

Partly it’s because people are using better gear and they have become more skilled in using it. Technology has brought many short-cuts to the world of video making so that even mums and dads can turn their hands to it.

But it’s the increased bandwidth that has allowed this to happen. Bandwidth is the tarmac of the super-highway! Unless that’s available, it doesn’t matter how fast your car is – it will be a very bumpy ride!

Brisbane business owners need to be considering how they adjust their video production strategy for the 4G world we have entered.

Three points are key:

  • People are demanding better quality – higher definition and generally sharper videos
  • People are demanding it on their mobile devices – smartphones and tablets
  • People are demanding more content

So any Brisbane business serious about standing out from the rest needs to create regular, high quality, mobile-ready video content.

It’s no longer good enough to set and forget; shooting a video, leaving it there on your website for a year before updating it is not going to do much for you.

If you can get into the habit of creating videos monthly or at least four or five times per year, it sends the message out to your visitors and clients that you are still there, still thinking about them, still serving them, still innovating…whatever your key message might be.

For a video production strategy that can keep up with the speed of technology, contact Michael at Video Labs: michael@videolabs.com.au.

Video Production Ideas for Brisbane Business – TV in the Pocket!

August 10, 2012

The type of businesses we deal with in and around the Brisbane area often ask about new video production ideas. They want to use video actively but don’t just want to churn out the standard marketing video that is starting to flood the market; in short they want to differentiate their business from the rest.

Creative planning and scripting and quality video production equipment, together with some video making know-how goes a long way, but every now and again a breakthrough comes along and demands attention.

TV in the Pocket

A while back we mentioned how Ikea had produced multiple seasons of its own web series, which was proving extremely popular.

Now TV recently announced that their web streaming movie service is now available on iPad and iPhone, as well as on some Android devices, on PCs and Macs.

With this and other services becoming available, we are increasingly seeing that people are essentially carrying around TVs in their pocket  – and this is something that should not be missed if you want to create an impact.

Mobile Video – The Level Playing Field

It’s not so long ago that to be seen by a large TV-watching audience would have cost the earth – putting TV advertising beyond the reach of all but the biggest corporations who could afford the 15 seconds of air time during the Superbowl Final!

Nowadays a small Brisbane business hooked up with the right video production company can produce videos that potentially the world can watch…on a device they carry around in their pocket.

Think about that – pretty amazing, huh?

So how can your business use this? You might not be ready to produce a whole web series (though that’s an option) but thinking along the creative lines of TV shows is a good start – because they entertain people. Entertainment is a great way to make your videos less marketing-oriented and to grab attention.

You should certainly also be making your website and videos viewable on the main mobile platforms like iPhone and Android. If you miss out on this, you are missing out on the growing mobile community – just take a look around on the bus, train or in the next café you are sitting in and see how many people are using tablets and smartphones; they could be watching your video!

Whether you are a small Brisbane business or a multinational bank, video production for mobile devices levels the playing field!

Video Production – Creating an Identity for Your Brisbane Business

August 8, 2012

Remember those dark winter days before video production came along?

Your Brisbane business probably struggled to be seen in the huge ocean of businesses competing in a similar market.

Maybe you had a swish website that helped to differentiate you, but building a true identity and getting the message and essence of what you stand for was pretty difficult, without using a professional marketing firm and paying top dollar for it.

Think of it as a unique fingerprint that identifies your business.

Brand or Identity?

We hear a lot about “brand” these days; building a successful “brand” usually takes a long time and is only within reach of larger organisations that have the financial muscle to plough big dollars into it; aiming to be Louis Vuitton or Coca-Cola is clearly ridiculous for most Brisbane businesses.

But aiming big and building an identity that sums up what you stand for is open to all businesses with an online presence these days – and video is the key.

Write Down 3 Words…..

What’s the real essence of your business? What do you stand for? What picture do you want to create in the minds of your target audience, when they say your business name?

Write down three words that sum up why people would buy from you.

This is a great place to start for planning your video production. Many businesses make the mistake of making their message too long-winded and this can be confusing; confused customers have a reason to trust your business.

Packaging those Words into a Video

Three words that sum up your business can be “packaged” into a compelling, high-impact 90 or 120 second message by a skilled video production expert. You don’t need to make it long and it doesn’t need to be complicated; in fact the shorter and simpler it is the better, providing you get your message across clearly.

If you blow your competitors out of the water because of your customer service, then how do we visualise that? If you make their lives easier in some way, then that needs to be in the video? If it’s a cost-saving benefit for the customer, then how can video portray that benefit?

Video has opened this possibility up for every Brisbane business out there; you can look and sound a million dollars even if you’re just starting out!

Are you taking advantage of the great opportunity that affordable online video production has brought to your world?

Corporate Video Production Strategies ….

August 2, 2012

In a marketing world where “engaging the customer” has become the number one priority, there are some corporate video production strategies that hit the spot more than others.

One of those is making how-to and product demo videos; these are usually short videos, no longer than a couple of minutes, which show people how to perform a particular task or function or how to operate a particular device, in an easy-to-follow manner.

Why How-To Videos?

Perhaps we’ll start with a quote form the New York Times

Short of getting a customer in the door or sending a salesperson on the road, online video may be the best way to demonstrate a product.

New York Times, March, 2011

The world has become smaller and business is conducted more remotely. That means we need to speak virtually to our customers, without necessarily meeting face to face.

Online video has allowed us to do that effectively and how-to videos really allow us to demonstrate products and services that previously needed a showroom or shop space to do so.

We can also “engage” the customer (there’s that word again!) by answering the questions that are going through their minds.

If you have done your research about your target audience you will already know what they are searching for on Google and what your prospects are looking for when they hit your website. So you know, more or less, what their queries are and what questions need to be answered. This prepares us for the next step….

Making How-To and Product Demo Videos

The key is to make how-to and product demo videos that answer your prospect’s most pressing questions and concerns.

Let’s say I am choosing between three vacuum cleaners.

I go to one website where there is a video demonstration of the model I like; it shows how to use it, the effectiveness of its cleaning and how to maintain the cleaner over time.

The second website has images of the same vacuum cleaner and some text descriptions of all the functions, performance and maintenance specs. It has before and after shots of the cleaning.

The third site just has a text description.

Say that the prices are basically the same on each site. Now – which site is compelling me to buy?

The fact is that most people will choose the first site, because video demonstration of a product sells it most effectively.

Other How-To Uses

You might also use how-to videos to inform customers how to perform a task,  thereby demonstrating your expertise in your field; virtually every worthwhile business specialises in something that their customers are interested in knowing more about and video is the best medium to communicate that through.

A rounded corporate video production strategy comes with many other benefits, which position your organisation as a leader; how-tos and product demos are an important part of that strategy, strengthening your brand, making your website more attractive and interesting, improving your search engine rankings and, ultimately, expanding your base of prospects.

Why a Strong Story with Strong Video Production is a Winning Formula

July 27, 2012

We changed the first line on our website this week. Not exactly earth-shattering news, but the reasons behind the change are important for the way you view your own video production.

The line was changed to reflect that story telling should be at the heart of most of the corporate and business videos you make.

It’s No Different to Other Video

Many business owners class business video in a genre of its own, totally separate to video for purposes like information, entertainment and so on – and that’s a mistake.

In all genres and for all purpose, people get more out of videos that talk to, engage and captivate them.

Take learning and education videos – which are the ones you remember? Do you remember the best-selling John Cleese management and corporate training videos that entertained you, or the one that bored you silly for an hour? No need to answer that – there’s a reason why some videos become best-sellers.

Business Video Storytelling

Business video is no different in that you need to talk to your audience in a language they understand.

Once you have identified who your audience is, stories are the best way to grab attention; there is something deep within the human psyche that responds to stories – ever since cavemen sat around the fire and had no other means of recalling information, stories have been an important communication and memory tool.

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking “who could possibly be interested in what you have to say?” If you have identified your target audience properly and you are providing a worthwhile service to them, there should be plenty of pairs of eyes and ears ready to tune in.

Everyone has a story inside them that will “press buttons” and emotional responses in others. It’s all about making that connection.

It needs to be genuine, focused and bring out the essence of who you are and what you stand for. That way your story leads the way for your brand – which is what people think about you and your business, not just your products and services but the lasting impression; the things they remember when the video stops playing.

How to Approach a Story

Your story needs to relate to people, with references and language they understand, not with jargon; keep it simple, genuine and focus on struggles and problems that you overcame as your audience may be going through the same problems as they watch your video; focus on outcomes and benefits rather than mere features – how did you feel? How did it improve your life? People want to know what’s in it for them, above everything else. Finally keep it as short and concise as possible.

Brisbane Video Production

Of course, skilled video-making  needs to accompany your stories to deliver them with impact, persuasion and influence; good technical ability with planning, lighting and camera work, as well as post-production work and marketing will complete the winning formula that gets your videos doing what they set out to do.

For any help or advice on getting your story out there through video contact Michael Hanson on 1300 881 783.

Smartphones & Professional Video Production Services Cause Dive in Sales of Video Cameras

July 9, 2012

The rise of the smartphone and the increasing demand for professional video production services are eating away at both ends of the video camera market.

At the one end we have an increasing quality of video from smartphones; so much so that an iPhone can quite easily be used to shoot a customer testimonial video for your website or a How-to video for YouTube.

At the other end of the spectrum we have corporates and medium to large businesses increasingly wanting to differentiate themselves from the opposition by hiring professional services for video making that mark their businesses out as industry leaders or trailblazers.

So the humble old video camera is taking a bit of a battering. We take a closer look below.

Smartphone Video Capabilities

The latest iPhone 4S includes a Full HD 1080p record mode. Of course an iPhone will cost you far more than a cheap video camera but, with all the other features that the phone offers, the impressive video quality is enough as part of a package to convince people that one device can now do it all.

Most reviews of high-end smartphones like the iPhone say that sharpness, color, light, motion and sound performance is as good or better than what you will get from most lower-end camcorders but not as  good as mid to high-range camcorders.

The ‘Flip’ and Beyond

Cisco’s ‘Flip’ video camera acquisition was a hot start-up in 2007; by April 20011 it was dead in the water despite selling a couple of million in the first two years.

This crash was partly due to the rise of the smartphone during the same period, and the perception that a phone can do everything that a cheap video camera can do… so why waste money on another device?

Elsewhere, it was reported that between 2010 and 2011, sales of point and shoot camera units were down by 17% and “pocket” camcorder unit sales were down by 13%.

As Brent Bracelin, an analyst with Pacific Crest Securities, says, “The rapid innovation of smartphones one of the most disruptive trends we’ve seen.”

Mid to high end video cameras still have a place in the market because there are enough enthusiasts out there to need video quality higher than smartphones can deliver.

Professional Video Production Services

At the very top end of the market in Australia you have a whole clutch of video production businesses, which have been set up to feed the growing demand for high-end video.

This extends from the college student who specialises in shooting weddings, to large video production companies offering corporate video production, marketing and distributing, looking after everything along the way from scriptwriting the video and preproduction to uploading the finished videos to multiple websites.

Increasingly businesses which are serious about using video as a key differentiator in their market are taking a more professional approach and not trying to do it in-house.

Therefore, even though businesses may not be investing in their own cameras to shoot video, the future of mid to high-end video camera sales looks a lot more secure than at the lower end of the market.