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Old August 19th, 2007, 11:26 AM   #1
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Viral Video Marketing Strategies

While everyone knows it's easy to post a video on YouTube or Google Video, I'm finding little in the way of resources to develop a viral marketing strategy beyond "make an interesting video." While there are companies that claim to be "experts" in the field they, of course, reveal little about their practices.

In my case I'm working with "low budget" candidates for public office so the strategy may be different than for a product though but it would be interesting if we posted tips here that can range from political, product, news, doc/film viral marketing as well as other types I'm not thinking. of.
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Old August 19th, 2007, 11:35 AM   #2
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Viral political candidate tips

Google search for news stories with comment fields that mention candidate and/or opposing candidates and post comments with relevant video link. The best time to post is right after a story breaks so one can be near the top of the comments field.

Search for news stories about issues important to the candidate and post comment with video link.

Search for blogs using the same criteria as above and again post comments/links to video.

I can certainly add more detail but I thought this would be a start.
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Old August 19th, 2007, 04:33 PM   #3
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Hi Craig,

I recently watched a panel on this topic by the Producer's Guild of America. They had almost nothing to offer. They noted that falling digital equipment prices have democratized production. The web in general, and YouTube/etc in particular have democratized distribution. The piece that is not democratized is marketing and promotion.

This is good and bad news. Because getting the word out costs real money, we can use our popular videos to earn ad dollars. But how do we grow the chicken (or golden goose) without first paying for eggs? It doesn't make sense to spend thousands of ad dollars to try to gain an audience - and then sell ads worth hundreds.

One thing for sure, any strategy needs to be a "one click now" prospect. I handed out about 100 Fliers for our 48-hour film last week. Each had a Colonel Crush - Fresh Films Weekly card attached (see link in signature below), and I've seen no bump whatsoever. So, even with the perfect audience, and one of the top films of the night (says me), people don't take action if it's not simple and not NOW.

BTW, the current events angle is a great idea. I'm convinced that the key is to get people to mail links to friends. From there it has to be compelling enough for people to forward to the next circle of friends.

Great thread, BTW. Hopefully, we will get many more responses. This is an important topic for any filmmaker to get their stuff out.
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Old August 20th, 2007, 05:27 AM   #4
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Great thread, BTW. Hopefully, we will get many more responses. This is an important topic for any filmmaker to get their stuff out.
Not sure if this is what you mean by marketing but there are things like Digg which I hear is quite good at promoting sites.. There is also stumbleupon, I signed up the other day to check it out...
I just stumbled Colonel Crush, I am not sure if it brings much traffic with one stumble but maybe you could check how many hits you get from stumbleupon!
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Old August 20th, 2007, 09:41 AM   #5
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CNN and linked blogs

Finding outlets to get viral video seen.
I note that at the bottom of many CNN news stories there are links to related (and apparently independent blogs) that have comments about the news story. One might post video relating to such stories on such blogs. Some of the blogs are moderated. I'm also not sure how genuinely "independent" these blogs are.

Last edited by Craig Seeman; August 20th, 2007 at 02:57 PM.
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Old August 20th, 2007, 10:08 AM   #6
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"Viral marketing doesn't work. Tell everybody you know."

We're still in the early days of internet video. It's still barely watchable, though getting better all the time and infinitely more advanced than it was ten years ago. However, I am interested in longer-form narrative feature length stuff (and have tried to be viral by releasing clips, trailers, teasers etc). As ever, the "youngsters" skew the stats by being the main consumers of all the rubbish. What happens when these folk want food for thought? Or is Steve O skimming his cornea all the entertainment anyone ever needs?

To rely purely on being viral is a big mistake. Somewhat paradoxically, word-of-mouth is the best promotion money can't buy ....
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Old August 20th, 2007, 11:45 AM   #7
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I just stumbled Colonel Crush, I am not sure if it brings much traffic with one stumble but maybe you could check how many hits you get from stumbleupon!
Thanks James!

I haven't seen anything from the stumble link yet, but I'll keep watch and let people know.

I've spent some time looking for forums that discuss videos on the net, but I haven't found much. I'm interested in producers who release content regularly. That includes people with active channels on Revver and YouTube, as well as people with dedicated sites like ColonelCrush.com, AskANinja.com (though it's more of a vlog than a series/drama), BuddyJackson.com (Hi Barry!), SanctuaryForAll.com (what a budget!) and so on.

Are there any other regular producers that people would like to highlight?

I believe that people with regular video releases can benefit from linking up. If twelve people release five minutes each on the web, that's only as much content as a single one hour TV show. And face it, TV would never have succeeded with a single weekly show. It needs a critical mass.
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Old August 20th, 2007, 03:13 PM   #8
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Mike, Gosh I hope you're not serious! I believe over half the USA households have broadband connection now. There's a good reason why YouTube is so popular . . . popular enough to be the basis for a Presidential debate.

Longer form narrative is still on the newer side on the internet because of the long buffer times required for progressive download though. Certainly one can market a feature film with online trailers.

I believe YouTube actually does have one "feature film" they've allowed online as an experiment.

"Mouths" come from MANY PLACES including blogs. Hence the importance of this thread.

How does one market video virally? It IS a form of word of mouth and does require, like many other marketing forms, to get those lips flapping (or clicks happening on the web).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Peter Reed View Post
"Viral marketing doesn't work. Tell everybody you know."

We're still in the early days of internet video. It's still barely watchable, though getting better all the time and infinitely more advanced than it was ten years ago. However, I am interested in longer-form narrative feature length stuff (and have tried to be viral by releasing clips, trailers, teasers etc). As ever, the "youngsters" skew the stats by being the main consumers of all the rubbish. What happens when these folk want food for thought? Or is Steve O skimming his cornea all the entertainment anyone ever needs?

To rely purely on being viral is a big mistake. Somewhat paradoxically, word-of-mouth is the best promotion money can't buy ....
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Old August 20th, 2007, 03:18 PM   #9
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James, when it comes to Digg and Stumbleupon how does one get listed and crease ranking?

My own site shows it's been hit by a Stumbleupon search (my web logs analytics show this) and I have no idea how I wound up there. I've seen stuff links to my video on Digg too but how does one improve the number of Diggs and is there value in that?

In other words how does one increase viral views in those environments?

One can always toss stuff up on the web and see what happens but that's not proactive marketing. I'm trying to find out what activities and strategies people use to generate more views.

Quote:
Originally Posted by James Watt View Post
Not sure if this is what you mean by marketing but there are things like Digg which I hear is quite good at promoting sites.. There is also stumbleupon, I signed up the other day to check it out...
I just stumbled Colonel Crush, I am not sure if it brings much traffic with one stumble but maybe you could check how many hits you get from stumbleupon!
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Old August 21st, 2007, 02:37 AM   #10
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One of the classic marketing gimmicks is a contest. The key is to tie it into a PR strategy. You can typically get three articles:

MarketCo Announces Annual Contest

MarketCo Contest to be Held this Weekend at Local Parade

Joe Blow Wins MarketCo Contest - Prize to Double Next Year

Newspapers like annual contests, because it's predictable content, and it presents drama and a feel-good story.

So... How do you tie this into a viral strategy? If I want to win, maybe I AVOID forwarding the information to my friend network. It increases my odds - unless the contest winner is the one who brings in the most traffic. (You'd have to verify that it can't be hacked with a bot though.)

And don't forget this headline:

Crazy Web Developer Starts Wacky Advertising Campaign
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Old August 21st, 2007, 07:50 AM   #11
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James, when it comes to Digg and Stumbleupon how does one get listed and crease ranking?

My own site shows it's been hit by a Stumbleupon search (my web logs analytics show this) and I have no idea how I wound up there. I've seen stuff links to my video on Digg too but how does one improve the number of Diggs and is there value in that?

In other words how does one increase viral views in those environments?

One can always toss stuff up on the web and see what happens but that's not proactive marketing. I'm trying to find out what activities and strategies people use to generate more views.
I have never tried digg but I have installed stumbleupon, You sign up for an account and install a browser plugin.
When you are surfing the net and you come across a website, video, forum or even a thread in a forum that you like, If you want to you can rate it and you can also review it.. Rating a site is as easy as clicking a thumbs up or thumbs down icon on the browsers toolbar... On the toolbar there is another button that says "stumble"
and when thats pressed you are taken to a random website that has been rated by stumbleupon uses. The more its rated the more it is sent out when people press stumble!
When you sign up to stumbleupon, you can state what sort of websites and what general stuff you are interested in and they are the types of websites that you get when you stumble!
LOL Well thats how I think it works, I have only had a few looks at it since installing it but thats what I gather...
So I guess someone has stumbled upon your site and given it a thumbs up and thats why you see links from there!

Hope that makes sense!
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