Uncovering The Power Of Youtube
YouTube is the world’s fastest growing website, with 100 million YouTube videos being viewed per day and traffic increasing by an eye bulging 75% just last month. For those not in the know, YouTube is a video clip hosting site where anyone can upload and tag a video clip for others to watch and share with friends. In many respects YouTube is the video equivalent of Napster except of course that YouTube is legal. YouTube is believed by many to be at the forefront of a new video revolution on the Net. This is precisely what Google believed back in November of 2006 when they paid a whopping $1.65 billion to acquire the site. At the time of purchase YouTube was less than two years old! Most of the content on YouTube is an advertisement in some form — whether on purpose or not. While it might be a slight exaggeration to say that “most” of the content on YouTube is advertising, much of the widely seen content is indeed some kind of advertising.
For an internet marketer looking for more cost effective ways to generate traffic, the equation is very simple: user generated content + personal contextual reputation index + community aided classification + profile based targeting = A cheap vehicle for creating a viral flow of traffic to your website. Some user submitted videos have actually managed to break the one hundred million views barrier! This fact is made even more amazing when you consider nearly all of these videos were created next to nothing. Granted, all of the super viral videos seen on YouTube have been comedy and shock orieneted, but they still reveal the incredible traffic potential of creating an interesting video and submitting it to Youtube. Remember that on the Internet, it’s about traffic, traffic, traffic. If you have traffic, you will be able to monetize it one way or another. YouTube now gives you the almost unparalleled opportunity to create avalanches of traffic to your website on a shoestring budget.
The key to harnessing the power of Youtube’s gigantic traffic flow is creating and submitting viral videos. Six or seven years ago the world at large did not know (or care to know) what viral marketing was. But now there are college programs that teach courses in viral marketing and the term “viral marketing” is pretty much a buzz word that makes you sound like a hip insider when you say it, kinda like bloggers who use the term sku when talking about the Xbox 360 Elite. Creating and submitting a viral video to YouTube is not as difficult as you think, although it can be a little consuming. Always remember that with viral marketing you work once and reap the rewards on autopilot.
If you are interested in creating viral videos the first thing you should do is grab a digital camcorder and a copy of camtasia. You can purchase a quality digital camcorder on eBay for less than $100 and a copy of camtasia will set you back less than $20. The key to creating a viral video is making something the viewers will want to pass on to their friends and family and this usually means that the video has to be either completely hilarious or extremely interesting. Let me give you an example. Recently omovies.com did a spoof of Paris Hilton’s arrest and made it into a music video. Within just a few weeks the video was being broadcast by television stations all over the world and was seen by tens of millions of people. Therefore, rather than creating a blatant advertisement and submitting it to Youtube, make a really unusual or interesting video and insert your web address into the video. Thats it. You’ve now created a potentially viral video that will pull in traffic to your website on autopilot.
I should also point out that YouTube has become a prime destination for copyright infringement as many of the videos uploaded are video captures of copyrighted material originally shown on television.
The biggest problem for YouTube is that we all know that copyrighted content is the largest draw for the majority of YouTube users. YouTube conducted an analysis of the videos in its system that are over 10 minutes long and found that the majority were full length, copyrighted videos from tv shows and movies. The copyright battle came to a head last month when Viacom, after unsuccessful negotiations with YouTube, ordered the company to remove more than 100,000 copyrighted clips from its site, including popular snippets of “Chappelle’s Show” and “The Colbert Report.” Without a doubt, the copyright infringement problem at YouTube is significant, and the company is trying to address it. Depending on the outcome of Viacom’s case against Youtube, we may see some very serious changes to Youtube’s submissions policy in the near future. If worst comes to worst, YouTube may even go the way of Napster, with no more free downloads, no free sharing, and pretty quick resulting demise due to legal problems.