Friday, April 15

Vlogging and commerce - the evolving mediascape

I made a post yesterday in which I rambled about branded media and Vans backing of the film Dogtown and Z-boys in 2001, a (very good) skating documentary. Today I stumbled across a couple items that may shed a little more insight into the future of advertising in new media.

First, the fun stuff. Today while flipping through some old vlog posts I stumbled upon what else but the following post by a young new vlogger about her Vans shoe buying "saga".

Watch it:
(3.2 mb, 0:54 seconds Quicktime video)

More info: Annieisms, is it?: Shoe Saga Finale

I thought it was great, and incredibly on point. Free promo for Vans here! It's called the newly revitalized word of mouth industry. I don't know that corporations will ever be able to do any traditional commerce (such as ad buys) on this level and that would likely be very wrong, but maybe they'll send her a free pair of shoes or something. What is interesting is that certainly this is a reflection of something Vans is doing much higher up in the chain. Dog Town and Z-boys is just one example. The great thing is if they want to find out all they have to do is email Ann or leave a comment on her blog. Seriously a single comment goes a long way with vloggers and bloggers, we thrive on feedback.

So, second, a little perspective, looking back at an article from January 6th on advertising and marketing in blogs.

If you're an online media buyer, planner, or advertiser, you're probably already salivating at the thought. Ever since blogs took off and made their way onto millions of marketers' collective radar last year, progressive souls have been racking their brains for ways to utilize this tool. Some companies, such as BizNetTravel, created their own blogs to interact with customers and clients online. Others, such as Lee Jeans, launched blogs as part of cross-media promotional campaigns.

Those who simply wanted to advertise in an existing blog, however, found placements hard to come by. Although some opportunities do exist (and new ones are cropping up), the channel definitely left something to be desired.

If we're lucky, vblogs will change all that.

Nearly as popular as blogs in 2004 was online video advertising. Demand for video formats and placements remains high. According to a year-end survey conducted by video ad developer Unicast, as much as 70 percent of advertisers and agencies plan to increase online ad spending by an average of nearly 50 percent this year. They say they're particularly interested in boosting their online video usage.

Those stats are consistent with what Jupiter Research (a Jupitermedia Corp. division) reported last summer. It estimated online video ad spending would grow fivefold to reach $657 million by 2009.

As marketers' obsession with online video advertising grows, what better time to introduce a placement that unifies the power of video with the value of blogs? By inserting unique, unconventional ad messages into video clips on vlogs, marketers may just be able to take both video and blog advertising to the next level.

If vlogs take off as expected, it's likely only a handful will accept advertising or provide enough traffic volume to make a placement worthwhile. Whether blog readers will tolerate the more intrusive video advertising also remains to be seen. If they do, the Internet industry may be singing the praises of yet another new online ad format by this time next year.

Bloggers are ready to 'show' instead of 'tell.' My bet is advertisers will devour this next generation of blogs.

From: Vlogs: Richer Rich Media?

As I said, I don't know that advertisers will ever or should ever buy their way into personal vlogs though I'm sure some opportunities will exist with commercial vlog ventures. We're reaching a balanced state in the great conversation where the corporate and personal can mix on their own terms.

I think the important thing to start with is just making yourself available to your target market. Place your TV spots online in open formats. Make them fun, interesting, something people would actually want to see, viral. Be visible, sponsor as many events and websites that relate to your market as possible. Start a conversation, start a corporate vlog / blog / podcast. Accessibility is the first and safest step. Just make yourself available.

And in the future... I think we're going to see the rise of new types of lifestyle media. Not just lifestyle publications, but lifestyle media companies that branch out into internet video programming, podcasting and audio programing, as well as their publishing internet and hard copy textual and photographic content. If so it's going to be a great time to be a videographer. They should finally be as in demand as magazine photogs. I'm betting this will be one of the primary markets where monetization will happen and so far we have none. There are now small to mid size "media companies". The closest I've seen are small players like Weblogs, Inc. and Wireless Watch Japan which are starting to mix video and or audio programing with text based publications. I'm really looking for it to take off when publishers of lifestyle rags like Skateboarder magazine become true media networks. Not to give away to much, got some tricks up my sleeve. ;)



Annie said...

Thanks for linking me. Like you said, bloggers thrive on feedback.

I realized that a lot of my vids could be potential ads. My new jeans, my new shoes, my frosted flakes. These companies should really cut me some checks already. ;)

Michael Meiser said...

Just flipping back through and noticed your comment. I just wanted to note I don't think there's anything wrong with talking about things you like. It could be a hobby or it could be a product, no difference. It's just important to be aware of it.

In fact there are some advantages to this to the degree, that we the people take back over the marketplace with new democratized media is to the degree that we get more power and more control as consumers. A larger amount of the coporate "marketing" will have to exist on our court. THis will have challenges, such as the corrupting power of money on the individual. There's little way to regulate and disclose this, but there are also tremendous benifits. No longer will coporations be able to dump millions of dollars trying to pump out messages in an obtuse manner they will be forced to interact with the market and this will seperate the truely customer oriented companies from the companies whom think they can buy happiness with feel good ads... a prime example being Phillip Morris who went on a PR blitz and started changing there name. (What is it, Altria now?) In the future you'll no longer be able to pump out "we're a good company" messages without changing your ways. If ebay is any indicator not only will buyers become sellers and sellers buyers, but the ties between the corporations and the indivudal will get much more granular, yes it will get sticky, but while some of us may be focused on how coporations influence people, undoubtedly the biggest change will be how this granular interaction changes the coporations themselves.