Presence of Mind
Here's an excerpt from a podcast proposal I wrote over the weekend - kind of a summary of some of my observations on how video can foster a web presence. The company I was writing for is Autodesk, a software company. So it's rather brand-centric:
Answering the question “How do I create a web presence?” requires you to develop a reciprocal relationship with your customers on the web. Recent eye movement research has shown that as certain methods of web advertising become more common (banner ads, google ad bars on the right of the page, etc.), regular users develop “inattentional blindness “, seeing through the branding and focusing on the information, entertainment or tool they seek. This phenomenon becomes increasingly problematic as more and more advertising dollars are directed to the web.
The only sustainable solution is to offer a better deal for your customer than traditional advertising - integrating your brand into content that has value for your customer or his/her online community. In the television market, entertainment companies produce content and brand owners advertise. The web offers an incredible opportunity to turn that model on its head – leveraging your brand to create valuable content for your customer. The forward-thinking strategic entertainment strategy you employed on television with the Design:e2 Series can give you a critical edge online, and at a lower price-point. And once you have established that relationship with your consumer base, the web provides incredible tools to grow that relationship over time.
But success in the evolving web society depends not only on the content you offer, but also where you put it. Unless you are in the business of creating web traffic, relying on your website to reach your customers is like building a store on a dirt road and asking them to find it. A more effective strategy is to use new syndication technology to spread your content across the web in places where traffic already exists and deliver it directly to your customers. It is critical to expand your definition of “web presence” to emphasize content that lives throughout the web and interacts with your users.
In the brick and mortar world, your reach is limited by geography, in traditional media, it’s limited by access to channels. On the web, the limitation is the overwhelming number of choices your customer has. The real revolution in our web experience has been the evolution of tools that allow users to organize themselves and the content they consume into natural niches. Building a web presence requires you to offer content that appeals to the niches you want to target, and to place that content where the members of your niche community can find it.
PHOTO: Passing Lane, 3/11/06