5 Video Marketing Predictions and Past Performance Indicators

Just a few more hours to go before we start a New Year. While many, myself included are looking forward to the new doors and opportunity’s that await us for 2014 and beyond…many are still trying to summarize what lessons they can take from 2013? While others, will still be trying to ascertain how success eluded them and where exactly, did they miss their business cues…and moreover, how do they get back on track to achieve the New Year’s goals that they will be setting tonight?

Whew that’s a lot of thinking and strategizing there. Well since we are all about Video and working within the SMB community to get their business noticed…we have put together this bite size article that is well worth your reading tomorrow with that Black Coffee and Aspirin ….right?Black Coffe

A lot of talk has been going on in Social Media realms about Facebook vs. Google Plus (G+) wars. While Google+ is making steady inroads this year…the one area it lost too FB was Social Media Marketing and more specifically – Video.

According to the team at Viral ad Network:  Facebook and Twitter are way ahead of the competition when it comes to video sharing in 2013, but they’re not the only contenders. The past 12 months have seen over 5% of shares of the top trending virals come from Google+, with Stumble Upon now the 4th most popular source of viral chart video shares.

2013 video sharing sites - stats


helpoutsOk, I can hear all my fellow Google Helpout aficionado’s s and the growing leagues of Google Hang Outs and (HO) and Hangouts on Air (HOA) and YouTube Live eventers….start to groan.

As we all know Google, has come on strong in the last half of 2013…and is positioned itself very well……to  dominate the Video Sharing Business in 2014.


Now onto the 2014 Digital PREDICTIONs… this is where it gets interesting.  The team over at Millward Brown, that  includes some of the most talented market researchers, and consultants within 56 countries from around the globe provides this compelling look into the future of marketing trends, and multi-screen is hot…hot…hot

1. Brands will experiment with micro-video platforms, like Vine.

Micro-video became a force in 2013, with Coca-Cola, Oreo, and Red Bull experimenting with short videos or animated GIFs on Vine, Instragram, and Tumblr. The key for marketers is to combine creativity with simplicity. Branded Vine videos are four times more likely to be shared virally than traditional online videos, it notes.

2. Spending on mobile media will increase, especially for youth brands.

When trying to reach young people, smartphones are the only screens that matter, says Millward Brown. Since this audience is especially fickle, marketers need to connect when them on their level, using their language and youth-centric style. Constant innovation will be the key in 2014.

3. Marketing budgets will continue to shift from TV to online video.

For TV marketers who wonder whether online screens can deliver like TV, Millward Brown says don’t worry. It studied the effect of moving 40 percent of a campaign’s TV budget online in China, and found that reach increased 20 percent. In 2014, video campaigns will need to work well across all screens. Look for marketing agencies to be restructured since it will no longer make sense to have separate TV and online divisions.

4. Marketers will experiment with new screens, such as smart watches and Google Glass.

We’ll see new screens hit the market in 2014, such as Google Glass getting a general release and Apple unveiling the iWatch. Those new screens will represent new opportunities for video marketers. The challenge, Millward Brown says, is to learn what wearers want from those new screens and offer something useful.

5. The line between TV and online video will disappear.

The screen won’t matter to the viewer in 2014, and it shouldn’t matter to the video marketer, either, says Millward Brown. Viewers will be happy to start watching a program on a smartphone and resume it on a big-screen TV. Video marketing needs to move just as fluidly, and marketers will need to do greater research to understand who’s watching.

All of this points to a REAL BANNER YEAR for anyone working with Video…..if they Do It Right.  This is where SMB’s will need to seek out Professionals that have worked with these mediums, to help sort their way through the DIGITAL noise. There are quite a few Google + pros out there and a lot of hopefuls….It’s great to experiment on your own personal level, but when it comes to your Business…you really need to study the waters before jumping in.

Of course that’s why Virtual Interactive Systems is here. We believe the video paradigm has shifted in a good way. We are quickly learning how to Navigate the Waters so you don’t have to do it all alone.  Contact Us any time and we can help point you in the right direction.

Are you a Christmas or New Year Dummy?

candy caneFor all you PC folks Happy Holidays or for the non-pc Merry Christmas and soon to be Happy New Years.

OK, so it’s been quite a while since I have posted anything new to the Virtual Interactive Systems site, and if it’s been some time since you have been here you will notice a whole new look and feel to the site. Welcome to those of you that are first time visitors and please keep checking back as this will be getting updated on a weekly basis from here on out.

I wanted to wait till the New Year before officially relaunching the site….as I still have a few tweaks here and there to make.  Being a perfectionist can really be a Bit$$ some times!

However, in updating my site and in working with another venture soon to be launched – SMBsocial (more on this in a future post) I came across some really good…ok EXCELLENT information, that I had intended on using as a base for some video Tips here on Virtual Interactive Systems. In fact I am still working on them.  Then I got to thinking, with a lot of people home for the Holidays…..and with many doing last-minute Christmas shopping…..what a better way to let you know about some of the BEST RESOURCES for you to learn about and to Share with others. After all that’s a lot what Holiday’s are for –  sharing with Family and Friends right ?

Even better, is that this information is in the form of Digital Downloads that are FREE!  Yep you heard me FREE.  This content is FREE just for an email address. It comes from the folks at Dummies….You KNOW the extremely Popular Dummies Brand  wileyowned by Wily Publishing?dummies

It gets even better…the Authoritative Figure in this Freebie is non other than the Team at Limelight Networkslimelight networks

This is so good not to share. They have NOT one but TWO (2) FREE Books in the Dummies Format that you can down-load  RIGHT NOW!

The first book is Online Video for Dummies – This just came out recently and is “chock full of the best tips for becoming a true STORY TELLER in today’s online video venues”.

That’s Nine (9) full chapters in the famously easy to read and comprehend style, that has made the Dummies format famous for years. I can tell you personally that out of this book, I have at least (20) Pages Bookmarked for REFERENCE …..and I am pretty knowledgable about Video and Video for marketingonline video for dummiesg….that’s how well written and up-to date this is!  …

Now that I have your attention….There is a second FREE offering from the same team at Limelight…. Digital Presence for Dummies

If you didn’t know it…”Digital Presence” is THE buzz word for 2014 and any Business that wants to stay competitive – especially in the SMB community NEEDS to READ this.

Digital Presence for Dummies

Now how about an applaud and a shout-out for the guys behind these (2) excellent books. Jason Thibeault and Ryan C. shout-outWilliams.

Oh and before I close this out…..let me remind you….that the Online Video book….is really a BOOK too…and for the small price of sharing your MAILING address….they will send you the real BOOK for FREE too….. Now That’s an AWESOME present…..to yourself or a friend.

Now you have Two Great Sources of information to ramp up your Business in 2014…..and you can read them during your Holiday down time so no one can call you a Dummy, when it comes to Video Marketing and your Digital Presence.

Solutions Summit a Hit


Greetings to fellow attendees of the Solutions Summit 2013 from Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.  We hope you enjoyed and got as much out of the Summit as we did?  Mr. John Reardon of Info Trends  provided the opening Key Note address with some interesting statistic’s regarding Paper Consumption, that is the uncoated variety often used in copiers and printers.  With the ever increasing usage of Tablets and Mobile on our work forces and digitization of our society on a Global scale, the usage of printer/copier paper has actually declined significantly over the last several years. As a direct result Image and Printing firms…have seen a concurring decline in their services.PGA national Palm Beach

On the bright side of this, is the increasing demand and need for Document Scanning, Storage and Management Services associated with our ever increasing reliance on archived data. Whether that data is from your own storage systems or some type of cloud systems, storing and accessing the information will be the key indicators of success as the work force continues it’s adoption of Mobile computing platforms.

Another area of discussion was along the lines of increasing BPA opportunities (Business Processing Automation).  As many of us know this is huge in the health care sector and will provide additional opportunities in the market to merge services with one vendor vs. multiple to gain efficiencies, decrease costs of operations, maintenance and ease of use for the end user.

So where does Virtual Interactive Systems fit into all of this ?  True we are not in the office equipment industry, but we do have a big leg up in the business process segment. That segment deals with those of us that attended the Summit.  One of the vendor sessions from LMI Solutions hit on it quite amicably. That is “the Marketing of your firms” to get you better known among your peers, current clients and potential future clients by showing how you are an Authority in-your realm. This starts with updating your presence on the web. If your site is an old static site where you have relied on the old sales funnel model, then it’s time to update and stay abreast of the times. Times have changed and as a result the linear sales funnel we all knew has gone away. The increasing customer centric involvement brought on by Social Media Marketing and wide adoption by consumers, means you  have to change or risk your sales margins erode and get picked off by your competitors that were early adopters within the Social Media paradigm.

As a result Virtual Interactive is in the midst of a huge transition our selves. Video has morphed in multiple delivery platforms, avenues of creation and our old model of business has changed too. We still create compelling stories for our clients with video but it’s so much more than old infomercials were in the past.  As such we have huge changes coming to this site. We have been actively working with clients to update their sites to more robust Content Managed Systems, but neglected ours for some time. So Virtual Interactive is splitting into (2) Groups. SMBsocial (launching later this month) will work with clients to develop and build out a custom Branding Platform across all the major Social Media Networks that will of course include video offerings from Virtual Interactive. VI will continue to focus  on the broader aspects of video production for our clients, telling extraordinary stories, but we will also become an aggregator or source of referral for all things related to video.  This site will be undergoing huge changes within the next week to 10 days, so be sure to check back and see what we are doing.   More to Follow!

Year End in Review

How time has gone by this year. As I am creating this post, I realize I have been very negligent to my once very high reader base. One of our main goals for 2010, will be to create more content to better help those wanting to include video and or social media into their business plans for the New Year. So what have we been doing and why have we not “eaten our own dog food” as the saying goes ?   Well the main reason is we have been creating content for clients and helping them gain community communication channels by co-developing Social Media Managed platforms, with video as a core tool. Our proudest accomplishment over the last 7 months and the chief reason for our negligence on posting here has been our involvement with a nonprofit organization, Operation Hug-A-Hero.  You can read our Press Release posted on the Fast Pitch site entitled Nonprofit OPERATION Hug-A-Hero gets Social Media Makeover.

We wish everyone a safe and Happy New Year, and look forward to a wonderfully creative 2010. We will be revamping the Virtual Interactive web site to better bring news and advice so that Small Business owners will have the tools they need to succeed in the new media realm.


Thomas Townsend
Virtual Interactive Systems
Tampa, Florida

Why Fortune Companies are embracing Social Media

dma_logoThe 2nd week of June the Direct Marketing Association’s (DMA) Social Media Council (SMC) released their first-ever Social Media Survey.

The goal of the Social Networking Software Survey was to obtain industry awareness of how Social Software is being utilized today, as well as to get an understanding of future internal and external social media strategies. However, what they really were after was learning just how mainstream this going Social phenom has affected larger companies.

They surveyed over 3,000 companies in April – May 2009. This included close to half of the Fortune 100 companies. What they discovered during the process was that large companies are embracing social media,with about 40% of the respondents indicating they currently had social media trials underway.

Additionally they found that:

  • Over 70 percent of companies surveyed are already using external social networks for collaboration purposes.
  • Almost 60 percent of the survey respondents think social networking can have a high impact on brand awareness.
  • Of the top emerging technologies, companies surveyed believe external social networks have the most potential value to their respective organizations.
  • More than 45 percent of respondents believe social networking can have a high impact on capturing customer insights.

So as a small to medium business owner (SMB), this means that you need to really take a serious look at including Social Media in your marketing strategy, if you are not already doing so.  You can pretty much guarantee that your competition is! [Read more…]

The buoy in this economic storm is Search Marketing


In a new research report from E Marketer Inc, Web retailers and other online marketers will be spending much more time and effort beefing up their search engine optimization efforts over the next several years.

Search Marketing-buoy

In yet another report, this one from the Internet Retailers new search engine marketing survey, some rather interesting survey results revealed that more retailers are investing in search engine optimization as the economy worsens.

Moving forward through the severe recession, 55.3% plan to increase spending on search engine optimization to achieve better natural search results.

These numbers clearly show that retailers are turning their attention more to optimization to improve natural search results than focusing on getting the best keyword mix in paid search.

eMarketer’s report also indicates that 2009 spend will likely hit $14.7 billion and by 2013, total U.S. search marketing advertising will reach an estimated $23.38 BILLION, with marketers spending more on search engine optimization … [Read more…]

YouTube redesign outs User Generated Content


Is  UGC  (user generated content) headed for the digital dustbins  on YouTube ?

If you’re a small or medium business and have been running the do it yourself approach on Video promotions, your ROI (return on Investment) which at present may be  equal to the time you have invested in producing your clips and uploading them to YouTube, is fast approaching its end.

YouTube has been a great way for those without the skills or tools to get their content noticed, as well as some premium content too.  However, there is still a ton of plain old garbage that is uploaded to the site in mass quantities every day.   As a result YouTube is continuing to lose bucketfuls of money on the increasing bandwidth that it forks out every month.  Since it’s owned by Google, the share holder and investment community won’t stand for it to continue to bleed without some way turning down the spigot and eventually getting to a model that earns a profit.  Enter the new deals with corporate clients with the likes of Disney, CBS etc and now add to that the ubiquitous larger banner ads that are running on most of the USG content these days.

It appears that YouTube in many ways may want emulate Hulu that offers premium content that is professionally produced.

So what’s a small business owner to do?  Well I can say that adding video as one part of a Social Media Management Campaign can have a beneficial and lasting impact with recurring benefits to your bottom line.  For about the cost of a Yellow pages add we at Virtual Interactive Systems can pick up where a YouTube video leaves off. Now is the time to give professionals a serious look and discover what you’re missing.  Oh, you can call the folks that run the outdated and out modeled phone book.  They even do video ads that can only be observed on their site.  We know because we have done a few projects for them before we found out just how bad a business proposition it turned out to be for their clients.

If you want to get your business and or products noticed with a lasting and recurring theme that promotes you across the entire Social Media Spectrum then do it right and call us today for a FREE CONSULTATION.

DIVX Exit’s Stage 6 and Disney Enters Stage 9



Another month and another change in the video landscape. Last week I received an email from the folks over at the video sharing site Stage 6 (that was run by DIVX) informing me that they were shutting down operations the end of February. With the flood of new video sharing sites on the ever expanding landscape for User Generated Content (USG) it was inevitable that DIVX would shut this service down, as it was not a money maker at all. So no surprise here. Effective March 1st former users of the DIVX site are now redirected via a link to VEOHwho who has assumed most of the clients from DIVX, that is the ones that did not move their content some where else.

In a totally coincidental event with interesting timing was ABC’s DISNEY company making the formal announcement of their foray into the online video scene with the advent of STAGE 9. Where DIVX and DISNEY differ is that DISNEY is going after full on BROADBAND content vs. the USG format that DIVX embarked on. Disney is also developing projects for full series created specifically for the broadband video markets. In this respect they can achieve monetization via add revenue just because of who they are and what they will bring to the table.

I think this year we will see a lot more firms move away from the basic garage made, USG ,YouTube type of video entry, and will see the filed morph into more professionally done video projects. The cutesy stuff on the USG sites is just that. It has not made much money for those users or for those that have created the content. If the companies that host the content are to become profitable they will all need to adopt some form of add revenue policy. This means that in order to attract advertising dollars, the quality of the content will have to increase. That is were firms like Virtual Interactive Systems based in Tampa Florida, come into play. We are working with Small to Medium Business to add video advertising content to get their products and services discovered in their local markets and beyond to even international exposure.

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Video Sharing Landscape changes as LiveUniverse buys Revver

Video Sharing Landscape changes as LiveUniverse buys Revver

BradBack in January I wrote about the perennial favorite (REVVER) of many web Video enthusiast, and mentioned that they were going through some tough times that indicated a change was in the wind. Well the wind has now settled and as of Thursday the 14th of February REVVER is now part of Brad Greenspan’s LIVE UNIVERSE family. It also appears that the final numbers were quite a bit higher than originally speculated. Numbers being mentioned were closer to $5 Million dollars, and all though the final purchase price is still a closely guarded secret it appears that both sides were happy with the outcome. The folks over at NewTeVee covered the Revver story rather well and today they released a follow-up article discussing the options of continuing with Revvers business model. It will be interesting to see how the landscape evolves for us content creators in addition to what happens to the add base home front, now that Brad has three horses in the stable with: Revver Video, LiveUniverse and LiveVideo to contemplate?

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Video Sharing sites and your business

Video Sharing sites and your business

So you know about You Tube and Google Video and maybe three or four other sites that will let you post your videos for free?. Now let’s ad to the mix with the Social Networking sites like MySpace and Facebook to name a few and soon the numbers start to swell to over a hundred. These sites are often categorized into different arenas based on usage of the content and the services they provide such as user generated, video sharing web sites, video sharing platform / white label providers and web based video editing.

The landscape on these sites continues to ebb and flow like the tides and as the New Media Generation continues to evolve, new names will pop up and some businesses will be swallowed by the larger video fishes of the media ocean. Some will survive, as You Tube was purchased by Google last year and thrives. Some will die and some will morph into other businesses or be bought and merged into existing service providers.

Last year’s big buzz of course was You Tube…..right now all the talk is centered on another shake-up in the developing video sharing sites. One of the originators of the user generated content form Revver Video may be going through some changes.

It appears the Revverhad an executive shake-up in December 2006 that resulted in two of its three co-founders, Ian Clarke and Oliver Luckett, along with some of the support staff, leaving. There is speculation now regarding the site’s well being and it is being fueled by the rumored departure of their CEO Steven Starr. This could very well signal trouble for the video-sharing site. Some have even speculated that Revver would be taken over by Live Universe. “Los Angeles-based LiveUniverse is run by MySpace founder Brad Greenspan. Though its flagship site is the somewhat obscure LiveVideo, the company would add Revver to its network of video sites.”

Revver has had problems with attracting the kind of traffic that You Tube enjoys. It is one of the first sites that took on the revenue-sharing model. Will it be able to continue in its current model if it continues to lack in traffic or if its CEO departs?

With the recent inclusion of ad-sharing revenue models, this year will prove even more difficult for video-sharing sites to compete with the like of You Tube. Guba is another video-sharing site that has seen some execs leave, in this case to start their own video-sharing site and .

Whatever the outcome, you can be sure that Virtual Interactive will be right in the thick of things.When it comes to promoting your business or products, Video Sharing Sites can add real buzz to your business with very little impact on your bottom line. The key here is keeping track of who does what and when in the over all landscape of the Web 2.0 , Social Networks and New Media world. You can rest assured that when it comes to any thing Video related we are on top of it. This is the marketing edge that separates us from our competitors and that our customers have come to expect and where we will consistently deliver on.

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