IDL 831: Web Tools For Business – The YouTube Experience

videotubeIn our week two posts, we are reviewing a web-based tool and how it is used in a leadership situation. The tool that I am researching is YouTube. YouTube is an excellent web based tool that allows the user to place videos online. These videos can be on a variety of subjects and viewers around the world can watch them and in some cases interact with them.

Uses in Business Settings

Building an internet presence is very important. If a picture paints a thousand words, then video must surely paint a million. Using YouTube videos allows businesses to brand themselves as an expert in their prospective field (Peters, 2014). Videos allow people to connect with your brand, and through this connection, trust builds. Connections happen when people get to know other people, and YouTube allows this to materialize by allowing a person to show what they can offer. Personal relationships erect based on how a person presents themselves and how knowledgeable they are on the subject matter (Dinsmore, 2012). While this concept finds merit on the idea of two people coming together face to face, the same principles apply with a one on one cyber connection. Thus, Businesses can provide help, be genuine, show attention to detail, connect, remain persistent, make real friends and remain unforgettable all through the YouTube medium. Make friends, you ask – really? Certainly, think about this in terms of subscriptions. When a business connects with a person through a YouTube Video, they can subscribe to that business’ channel; thus effectively befriending the business and the ideologies for which the business stands.

Uses in Funeral Service

I am a funeral director; therefore, my example will give credence to YouTube’s use as a business tool in the area of funeral service. However, these ideas translate to a multiple variety of businesses. A Funeral home could produce video about the benefits of pre-arranging a funeral. This video could provide knowledgeable pre-arrangement advice a unique perspective on how to pre-arrange, and even show the various options available to a family that may not have been thought of previously. This gives potential customers a first-hand look at what the business offers, and a connection to the person in the video; a point of reference that will be the prelude to a face-to-face meeting.

Drawbacks of YouTube for Business

As with any medium, there are drawbacks to promoting a business with YouTube. First, while the medium does allow the customer to get to know what the business is about, it may leave the viewer with more questions than answers. A video may not answer every question that a potential customer can pose; thus, when the consumer searches for more answers the YouTube video may merely serve as a springboard for the consumer to go else ware. In addition, YouTube hosts a variety of videos. Some of the videos hosted by YouTube are less than professional. This means that some consumers might not take the businesses YouTube video seriously. The idea may be repelling to some consumers, and they may seek services from other sources.

Conclusion

Overall, YouTube is a positive resource for today’s business strategy. The business that uses YouTube as a tool to grow their corporation must consider all of the aspects involved. How must the video be made, presented and promoted? All of these things are important when connecting with people. YouTube has been a major source of visibility for many companies, and will be for many years to come.

References:
Dinsmore, S. (2012, April 25). The 7 pillars of connecting with absolutely anyone. Retrieved from Forbes: http://www.forbes.com/sites/theyec/2012/04/25/the-7-pillars-of-connecting-with-absolutely-anyone/
Peters, W. M. (2014). How to use youtube for business. Retrieved from Ezine Articles: http://ezinearticles.com/?How-to-Use-YouTube-for-Business&id=4967718

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{ 6 comments… add one }
  • Irene March 13, 2014, 6:23 pm

    Dear Jay,
    I laughed out loud when I read your section marked Uses in Funeral Service as I thought you meant that someone would show a YouTube video during the service. I was much relieved to see that you would use YouTube as a marketing tool BEFORE the service was held. Good taste prevails.
    My pastor gave up YouTube one Lent. I thought that was funny as I rarely use YouTube. You demonstrate the many educational and business ways for which YouTube can be used.
    What do you think about the copyright usage? Is this a problem for businesses who may have their brands on open space?
    Irene

    Reply
    • Jay March 16, 2014, 8:14 pm

      That would be interesting, although you would be surprised at what brings meaning to some people during the funeral service. We use video tape our services so that people who could not be at the service could be there. It was pretty interesting. Invitations were sent through email, and it was a private situation. Nonetheless, I could see YouTube being an avenue for such activity, as long as it was password protected for those who were invited. As for copyright, I believe that copyright laws protect businesses through whatever medium they choose to advertise. I do not believe that it would be an issue where on YouTube or any other service.

      Than you,
      Jay Prewitt

      Reply
  • Diana March 14, 2014, 6:47 pm

    YouTube offers great opportunity for businesses to promote their products and services. In my review of SurveyMonkey, I included a link to their YouTube channel that contains a wealth of tutorials and explanations. Where I find the greatest advantage of YouTube, though, is in the support of small businesses. As Dr. Watwood explained in his video this week (http://www.screencast.com/t/KGLrPmp64), Web 2.0 allows all users to contribute content to the web. This inexpensive avenue was not an option for business owners a decade ago. An example of a small business owner, who has embraced YouTube for promoting his small business, is a friend of mine, Rocky Mehta, owner of West Penn Hardwoods. His YouTube channel, http://www.youtube.com/user/WestPennHardwoods, provides visuals of his woods sourced from all over the world. A potential limitation of this Web 2.0 concept, where anyone can publish, lies in the danger that the content contributed could be less than professional. However, many other ancillary applications have surfaced in support of Web 2.0 publishing, such as photo enhancers and video editors.

    Reply
    • Jay March 16, 2014, 8:22 pm

      Technology has advance so much in the last 25 years, its not even believable, at times. I often find myself wondering what we will see next as more advancements come in the Internet arena. We have seen, for example the rise of Facebook, then a more business friendly LinkedIn. I wonder if the same will happen with YouTube. Is there a business version in the future? If I were a programmer, this would certainly be an area that I would experiment with through the gathering of information and formation of a prototype. Alas, I am not a programmer, most of what I do takes forever. Still, YouTube is a powerful tool, and I enjoy both contributing to it with my food video blog, appreciatetaste.com, and watching what others do with its powerful format.
      Critically yours,
      Jay Prewitt

      Reply
  • Britt Watwood March 15, 2014, 12:21 pm

    Nice post with some good examples. Playlists are a neat process to link a series of Youtube videos together to create a narrative or process flow.

    You may recall that I used Youtube to send out a short video on Week 2 demonstrating Feedly – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITysCIOsSVo&feature=youtu.be

    What was interesting was that Eileen commented back to me via Youtube rather than via Blueline…which not only is perfectly acceptable but demonstrates the two-way flow of Web 2.0.

    Reply
  • Jay March 16, 2014, 8:26 pm

    Thank you for the kind words. I have used YouTube, and was glad that I was given the tool for research. It gave me the chance to find out a lot of good information about the medium, and I learned how I could use it in future projects. I do recall the video, and it is cool how Eileen used YouTube to express herself and show how technology can bring us together in a personal and professional fashion.
    Critically yours,
    Jay Prewitt

    Reply

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