Business Brains

Is your business ready for its close-up?

Posting in Education

New research from Pew's Internet research center says close to 7 in 10 of online adults has downloaded or viewed video

I was chatting with a contact today who happens to sell video technologies, including videoconferencing equipment that more companies are using to offset the environmental and economic impact of business travel and software that could be used for surveillance applications.

This owner knows firsthand that seeing is believing when it comes to some sales pitches, and video products are an obvious example. He recently experimented with showing how to use some of the technology he sells by creating a demonstration video at a baseball game, and uploading the file to YouTube -- directing certain prospects to its existence with social media. Lo and behold, his company had a sales bite within a week. Not a scientific study, mind you, but he's looking into how to convert a lot of his written-word messaging and collateral into video formats.

Turns out more Americans than ever are showing their voyeuristic tendencies on the Internet. The Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project just reported that almost 70 percent of adults using the Internet have either viewed or downloaded a video. Educational videos, for example, are now being viewed by 38 percent of adult Internet users. That's up from 22 percent in 2007.

Adult Internet users are also uploading more video than ever: About 14 percent have posted a video online, and they are just as likely to share their videos on a site such as Facebook as they are on YouTube, according to the research.

The implications for businesses are rather obvious: If you're not showcasing video on your site to talk up your products, services, even your corporate sustainability messaging, you risk missing out on the potential dialogue related to your company. It doesn't have to be super over-produced, either: The more honest, simple and short your video message, the more likely someone will make it to the end.

Share this

Heather Clancy

Section Editor

Heather Clancy has written for United Press International, ZDNet, Entrepreneur, Fortune Small Business, the International Herald Tribune and the New York Times. She holds a degree from McGill University. She is based in New Jersey. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure