Monday, July 14, 2008

Video Insider: The Inner Psyche Of The Online Video Consumer

The Inner Psyche Of The Online Video Consumer

THIS ELECTRONICALLY ALTERED WORLD HAS become so real that scientists are asserting the behavior of the young generation is so completely shaped by digital technology that it might impact human evolution, transforming the physical brain and the way we think.

On the Internet, relationships -- both personal and commercial -- are either built or dismantled in a split second. Users are reactionary, opinionated, impatient and protective. Marketing messages are hit or miss these days largely because the individual mindset and social mannerisms of the online audience are so widely ignored. Ever wonder what interactions engage them -- versus have them slam the door in your face?

Throughout history, we've communicated our recommendations to the people around us through words, through images, and now by sending digital media. Why do people share video?

They do so because it reinforces and strengthens the bond between the sender and the recipient. When someone shares a YouTube video with his or her friend, there is a subliminal communication taking place: "You would like this because I know you and I'm in touch with who you are as a human being, and I want to provide you with something you'd be interested in."

In the business world, a viewer may send someone a video clip to educate or inform a potential client. He or she is effectively saying to that person, "We are on the same page. We should do business because you can count on me and I'm listening to what you need. You can trust me -- I know what's going on."

When a video clip is received well, it immediately strengthens the relationship. If the video is not relevant or inappropriate, it weakens the bond right there and then. The deterioration of rapport may be conscious or unconscious. Either way, the sender becomes either a resource or a waste of time.

People's behavior online is unpredictable and constantly shifting. They are swift, governed by random tangents and split-second decision-making. The depth of relatedness is minimal, as people are constantly looking for the next best video, the next best Web application, the next best social networking site, and the next best cyber friend. The rate at which new content is developed has led to an intrinsic sense of adventure and discovery, with very little sense of loyalty to a particular interface, or brand.

Users are constantly asking themselves, "Do I like this?" Their behaviorisms exhibit a strong sense of opinion and correlated action. When a user clicks off your video before it's reached the end, they have made a decision: "I'm not interested." "You are boring." "You are not worth my time." From a marketing perspective, it's integral to relate to them as how they want to be known. You must enter their world, be agreeable, be their ally and be what they are looking for. Only then will they listen, chose you, and pull you in.

The entire foundation of winning Internet communication is to build and reinforce relationships with consumers that give you a single moment to do so.

Jessica Kizorek is a partner in Two Parrot Productions and author of "Show Me: Marketing with Video on the Internet."

Video Insider for Monday, July 14, 2008:

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