Matt Cutts gets a cut.

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You gotta love a guy who follows up on a bet by posting a video of himself (below) getting a new hairdo by his fellow office mates on YouTube. It’s even more impressive when you are  Google’s SEO guru. Here’s the bet; Matt Cutts wagered with his team that they couldn’t keep up with an undisclosed turnaround time for a full quarter. Needless to say, Matt lost the bet.

The coiffure began as a chrome logo delicately chiseled into the back of Mr. Cutts’ head, but soon gave way to a full-fledged Telly Savalas … viola! It was an entertaining way to celebrate a milestone in a company; one million video views on the official Google webmaster video channel.  Again, nice work. Now maybe Matt would consider a future bet with the eyebrows included? Just a thought.

Pros and Cons for housing your Video on YouTube.

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Your entire organization is going ga-ga over your hot new instructional video on how to manufacture a better widget without going overseas. Now it’s time to post it on the Internet so you can get it in front of a larger audience and put your brand name out there. Where you post your video is almost as important as what your video says. Do you post on YouTube or do you post on your company website? That’s the big question. Before deciding which route to take, weigh some of the pros and cons to help you decide what’s best for your company:

PROs FOR POSTING YOUR COMPANY VIDEO ON YouTube:

“¢ YouTube instantly allows you to tap into a huge audience. YouTube gets literally billions and billions of video requests per month. How many visitors do you get to your site per month? Probably not nearly that.

“¢ If you’re video is good enough, YouTube may feature your video on its homepage. This could mean exposure to more eyeballs than you ever dreamed possible, which puts a lot of pressure on how good your video really is.

“¢ Youtube has some pretty cool analytics tools allowing you to collect data on who’s watching, how long they are watching, where they live etc. For more info on this subject, click here.

“¢ No need to pay for extra bandwidth. YouTube keeps all videos on their servers which means that videos that suck up bandwidth won’t cost you a dime extra for server space.

CONS FOR POSTING YOUR COMPANY VIDEO ON YouTube:

“¢ You can’t build link juice to your site by posting on YouTube. YouTube gets all the credit. This may change in the future, but for now, they ain’t sharing.

“¢ If people are searching for your products or services online, by and large YouTube entries will rank lower than text-based sites. If your strategy includes Search Engine Optimization (SEO),  you may want to consider housing a transcript of your video in text format on your company site.

“¢ Why relegate your video to just one network? There are lots of other distribution channels out there (although none as popular as YouTube). For more info on other channels, click here

“¢ For more cons, visit “You Shouldn’t Use YouTube for Building YouLinks” on linkspiel.com

No matter which route you choose, know that digital video gives your company additional exposure and can ultimately produce a wider online footprint. Keep in mind that the content of your video is of importance. If you’re doing a viral video, you had better make sure it is entertaining enough that someone will want to pass it around. Make sure that your content fits your strategy for making a video. Digital video can be a big plus if you’re the only business in your industry who offers it. If this is the case, not only will your videos help you rank higher in the SERPs, but you’ll look like a more dominant player in your industry. So what are you waiting for Scorsese? Grab a camera and a megaphone and get ready to roll.

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If you like this post and are interested in getting intelligent brand strategies for your online business, sign up for the The Brandcast Report. You can also follow us on Twitter.

I just filmed a great digital video. Now what?

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As digital video is becoming more and more accessible to Joe Interweb, more websites are adding video to their user experience than ever before. Let’s say you are one of the lucky few who have figured out how to produce, edit and convert an eye-catching video to post, but you’re not really sure what is the best way to get it out there. The most common question we get here at Brandsplat is whether to post videos on YouTube or to keep it housed on the company website. The answer often relies on the strategy for having a video, the size of the company, and the budget. If the strategy is to build traffic to the company site, often times we suggest doing a bit of both by having two versions of your video; a longer format for your site and a shorter one for YouTube. Or, we encourage companies to incentivize a visit to the company’s home site in the video itself.

There are definitely pros and cons for posting your company’s video on YouTube. Check out our next blog for more on this.

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If you like this post and are interested in getting intelligent brand strategies for your online business, sign up for the The Brandcast Report. You can also follow us on Twitter.


It’s official. Google does not use keywords meta tag in web ranking.

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Do you ever wonder how much weight meta tags carry? According to Matt Cutts, not much when it comes to ranking. The reason for this is probably due to spammers who have tried to game the system by packing meta tags into their code. Google, being the number one search engine, is always going to be one step ahead by trying to change their technology so it’s is difficult to game the system. In a recent blog post, Mr. Cutts says that Google uses over 200 hundred factors when it comes to ranking. But he isn’t about to tell us what those 200 things are. In the meantime, he does tell us one factor they do not put much weight in. Rather than hear it from me, click on the video below. Or, if you like reading, visit Google’s official webmaster blog

Brandcasting. Vlog yourself, YouTube yourself, Video yourself. (Part 5 of 7)

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Why spend your precious time hacking away at the keyboard writing blog entries or white knuckling it through original articles when you can video yourself delivering your brand with the flick of a video-enabled smart phone. In the nonstop world of online offerings, video is proving to be the desired choice for attention deficit disorder type consumers. Video is often times effortless for the viewer and entertaining to boot. If you don’t believe me, just check out YouTube the next time you’re trying to figure out how to fold a t-shirt in 2 seconds , or how to piss off a telemarketer . How-to videos are swelling online and may be the reason why Google had the smarts to gobble up the video site YouTube in the first place. In many ways, video content really is in its infancy but is gaining momentum every day. For example, YouTube just recently announced some very powerful analytics tools that are geared to help video gurus get a handle on who’s watching their videos, where they live and how long they watch. Video is a great way to distribute content and can help you discover who is interested in what you have to say and may lead you to uncover hidden target markets that you may have never thought of. Link your videos to YouTube or eHow and have access to millions of eyeballs for literally pennies. Of course the cost depends on how much you spend on producing your videos. But sometimes all you need is a camera and your talking head. Even Matt Cutts, Google’s Search Quality Guru , includes video blog entries along with his written content. Are you shy in front of the camera? That’s no excuse.  Go to eHow for public speaking tips now and you’re on your way.

O.K., that’s it for this week. I’ll be back on Monday with part 6 and finish up on Tuesday with part 7, the final entry on Brandcasting. Have a great weekend and see you next week.

Digitals encouraged to join Traditionals in metrics.

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Young-Bean Song, senior director at Microsoft’s Atlas Institute, has recently posted a directive for online advertisers to take a good hard look at the metrics traditional advertisers use and adopt them in order to sync up with the world of traditional advertising. According to the post, reasons to shun traditional metrics (like Reach, Frequency and Gross Rating Points) fall into three categories: arrogance, fear and ignorance. While current metrics for online advertisers may be powerful and instant, results tend not to be stable and predictable and often don’t make sense in the offline world. Mr. Song goes on to say, “digital folks snicker when they hear advertisers make statements like “TV works” . Turns out, TV does work and there is plenty of quantitative proof that TV advertising drives sales.” It’s easy to want the sexy new shiny thing like digital media to drive marketing budgets, but the truth is, old media is tried and true and still garners most of the media dollars that clients are willing to spend on marketing each year because they know what to expect. Because the digital space is fairly new and often in flux, it’s important to play nice with traditional forms of communication so that marketers can compare apples to apples. Or, you can put all your oranges in one basket and hope the rest of the world follows suit.

Analytics help E-tailers fine-tune offerings.

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According to MediaPost, Google’s director of retail claims that consumers are clicking twice as much on a site before making a purchase. With that in mind, the article suggests that companies should track how customers interact with their sites to gain knowledge on their purchasing trends. Google analytics and other solutions can help E-tailers really understand what is working and what isn’t on a site. The increase click rate may be due to the fact that customers get skittish during the buying process and ask themselves if they truly need to buy that new pair of pants when their old pair will do until the recession is over. But discovering how customers interact on your website is just one piece of the puzzle. It’s also important to understand how they are being driven to the site, what marketing programs are driving them and what the conversion rates from each marketing strategy are. This can be a daunting task for the novice, but is becoming more and more of a necessity for E-tailers who want to maximize profits in a down economy.

The revolution will be televised. And supported by really cool online ads.

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All the data in the world can’t tell you if an ad campaign is responsible for increased sales. The success or failure of any sales effort involves so many factors. It would be impossible to credit or blame an advertising campaign on the data collected. In the fast-paced world of Internet marketing, it is possible to get far more analytic data than we once had to track the results of any online campaign effort. And clients and agencies alike seem to be relying more and more on the numbers and less and less on whether or not it is a good ad. Just because we have more data doesn’t mean we know any more than we did ten years ago. I once heard a creative director at a very large advertising agency tell a very large client that advertising doesn’t make people go out and buy products. The client was dismayed and asked why he was advertising with the agency then. He replied, “The only thing you can hope for is that someone will like you a little more because you just made them laugh or cry.” That’s it! I tend to agree. Any client who thinks a piece of communication is going to get people to remove their rotund arse from a warm comfortable seat and head over to a store with cash in hand is fooling themselves. So why do we have a confluence of analytic tools and measuring methods that are all tethered to sales results? In a recent Adage article, Hernan Lopez, president of Fox Networks and chief operating officer of Fox International Channels said, “the most important factor behind successful TV campaigns was the quality of the creative” .  You go Hernan! He goes on to say that “the industry’s obsession with click-through rates, despite evidence of their small correlation with total sales, results in messages that are rarely entertaining or amusing and are overly reliant on verbal hard sell.” Mr. Lopez believes the answer relies on a creative revolution. As a former creative, I couldn’t agree more. But don’t expect me to move my arse any time soon.