This guest post is by Ryan Critchett of iMobileRescue.
We all know that video blogging is a powerfully effective tool for business lead generation, but does everyone have what it takes to execute on it?
We can all get in front of a camera, hit record, and start talking about our products and services … but will it entertain people?
Is entertaining people, while indirectly informing them of what your business offers a good strategy for video business blogging?
I’d say, yes, everyone has what it takes, no, not all content will entertain people, and yes, entertainment with a bit of indirect promotion is a solid way of generating business from video blogging.
The business: RMC Tech
RMC Tech is my tech repair company. I started the company in 2011, after having been immersed in the blogosphere and social media for years. That gave me the edge.
I’ve always done videos on the web and lucky for me, I’ve gotten extremely comfortable in front of a camera. So, jumping into the tech repair industry, I had to take what I knew about video blogging and social media, and apply it to business.
Besides building iPhone apps, our core service is iPhone repair. People break their phones all day long and it’s normally in the form of a cracked screen. When they need it repaired, our service is an exact market fit.
But just having the skills to rip apart an iPhone and replace the screen doesn’t really do me any good. The next step is letting everyone in America know not only that I can perform the service, but that they can trust me.
The strategy: video blogging
What solidifies trust more than people actually seeing your face and hearing your voice? Not much! Video blogging is a goldmine. It’s second only to actual face-to-face communication, which is one of the ultimate binding points between consumers and businesses.
So here’s what we did. Every iPhone I repaired, I would keep the damaged part. Everyone keeps saying that storytelling is a precious art and if used correctly, can really help a business reach people. So I decided to put the two together.
I created this series called iGraveyard. The iGraveyard series is simply a two- to four-minute video where I display the broken iPhone part, and tell the story behind how it got damaged.
These things get run over by trucks, people drop them off cliffs, and I just recently had someone accidentally drop a power tool on one of them. People love to hear about these kinds of things! It’s helped my business tremendously to extend the reach of our offering.
Our iPhone service is now nationwide, and we’ve been able to penetrate new markets, through the use of video blogging and social media. People know we do iPad repair. They know that if they’re in Chicago, we’ve still got their backs. The web’s reach is endless.
Here’s one of our latest videos, so you can see what I’m talking about:
Entertainment + silliness = trust
A great equation to build trust is simply making people smile, or feel good, and to show your human side and be a bit silly. Everyone, at some level, can appreciate that and for me it’s worked wonders in spreading the word.
You have to think, “how can I spread awareness on what my business is while not directly selling to people, and be a bit entertaining while I’m at it?”
You have to tap into your creative reserves, ditch the conservative mentality, and understand that you’re not dealing with conservative people. You’re dealing with human beings. They’re all a bit crazy and silly at some level, they all love being entertained, and your mission is to reach them through emotion.
The critical step of exposure
Having your creative, entertaining content may not be enough in and of itself. You have to get it in front of people, right? You have to find a channel to reach your market.
Real, live people are on Twitter. All (almost!) of those people you see in your Twitter streams are real, just like you and me, and in many cases spend an appreciable amount of time reading the Twitter stream and interacting with people.
The mission is simply to socialize with them. Find people, through the search function in Twitter, who are talking about things similar to your industry. Reply in a playful way, not in a salesish way.
I know, I know, this doesn’t convert to business right away. Of course it doesn’t. If you want to convert business right away, find a good traditional marketing platform, pay a boatload of money, and do some push marketing.
Social is different. You’re building long term awareness in people’s minds about what you do. You’re solidifying trust points with potential customers all around the world, and in your markets and if you have the community skills to “work the room” as they say, it has a powerful potential to contribute to your bottom line.
It’s the perfect forum to support your creative video presence.
Noise-makers create results
The great part about cranking out a lot of good content and making a lot of noise is that you have a great chance of being picked up by other people who are interested in what you’re doing.
Recently, a pretty large Pennsylvania Business Journal picked up on some of the social interaction and business operations I was engaging in and decided to write a nice piece about it. Everyone who read that article was in my target market: people with iPhones.
So not only are you creating awareness, creatively through entertaining but informative content, but you’re also increasing the probability that news, media publications, and other interested parties get involved in what you’re doing.
That’s what entrepreneurs do. 2012 is the year of the entrepreneur. It’s the year of the web marketer. It’s the year of the blogger and creative video blogging for business is a powerful tool in spreading the awareness that could take your blog, and business, to the next level.
Are you using creative video blogging to boost awareness of your business? Share your thoughts in the comments.