For all the huge advancements the Internet brought about, it had one curiously retro side effect: It brought text back into vogue. Traditional book, newspaper and magazine publishing might be on the ropes, but think about how much material you read every day: e-mails, tweets, status updates, blog posts — it adds up.
But why? Broadband Web access has been common for nearly a decade. YouTube is 5 years old. Webcams are cheap and plentiful. Why are we still typing everything?
The top story in today’s SmartBrief on Social Media examines some of the things companies could be doing with online video. It can be used for advertising, creating virtual focus groups and enhancing customer service. That last category is especially intriguing to me. Being able to see a person’s face does wonders for your ability to build empathy with that person and have a constructive conversation. Social-media advocates love to talk about the importance of authenticity. Is there anything more authentic than a human face?
My guess is that this incredible authenticity is part of the problem. You want to present a real, human voice for your brand. But you don’t want to leave yourself open to human error. Video is a visceral, immediate thing. It could be only too easy to say something careless that could land your brand in hot water. I wonder if learning to hold your poise on camera will become a must-have job skill for marketers over the next few years, as customers crave a more personal connection with their brands.
Are you using video as part of your social-media strategy? If not, why not?
Image credit, Cathleen Clapper, via Shutterstock