I’ve been listening to an increasing number of audio podcasts and video posts in the last 12 months, branching beyond the books, magazines and printed PDFs (and occasional PDF I read on my screen) and a thought came to mind:
If you are a marketer are not going to where your leads/prospects/customers are coming from or going to, you could be putting yourself out of their traffic loop, and ultimately the monetization loop.
If you are a merchant or affiliate and primarily using the text channel – articles, blogs, social networks like MySpace, Facebook, and even text ads on Google AdWords, MSN Adcenter and Yahoo! Search Marketing, are you leaving yourself out of the traffic loop if your best prospects are walking around consuming their media on iPods?
Here’s a brief rundown of my media consumption:
Text: – newspaper, magazines, books, PDFs, text blogs, email -Ã‚Â I am usually sitting in front of my desk, in front of my computer when consuming text-based information. A large part of it has to do with being tethered to my computer.
Even though I have a laptop (actually 2 now…) and there’re a number of Wi-Fi zones around, and even though I have an Apple Touch, I haven’t inculcated the habit of accessing the Internet while I’m away.
I guess I could Twitter while I’m in a bookstore or just walking around the mall, but it’s just not been a priority.
Maybe if I was a lifecaster (a la Truman Show) like Justin “iJustine” Ezarik, ubiquitious internet access would be a boom (Sam Harrelson AKA “Minister of Social Media” and I had a great discussion about the “cloud” for this week’s upcoming Friday Podcast).
But I’m not, so you might not see as many twits or the 4-5 blog posts you’d notice from the “ProBloggers” out there.
Audio: Given that I’m primarily a visual person, the audio channel is something relatively new to me because I find I don’t process information as easily when it’s audio-based, rather than visual-based and printed in a book or can be viewed on-screen.
I have started listening to audio though, like the Shawn Collins-Jim Kukral-Sam Harrelson-Lisa Picarille Geekcasts (thanks for the mentions of “WhoIsAndrewWee” on the show, guys!).
But audio is not a “dedicated” medium for me – I’m usually clearing email, sort out files, cleaning my desk, checking my snail mail, sorting out paperwork while the audio is playing in the background.
I guess I have developed my awareness to the extent of being able to note down URLs, copy them onto a piece of paper and checking them out later.
The one great thing about audio is that it’s very much tied to a portable device – whether it’s an iPod, an iPhone, a smartphone or PDA with MP3 playback capability.
If you aren’t maximizing your downtime, by loading up on your knowledge -Ã‚Â you could very well be idling yourself into irrelevance.
Whether you’re driving, working out, or just walking to the store, I think that downtime could be easily translated into some productive “uptime”
Video: Probably the next best thing to physically being at an event or spending time with someone is being able to catch them on video.
The affiliate blogosphere has been abuzz with why more marketers aren’t already using more video in their marketing efforts.
In my opinion, it takes time to put out a frequently updated product like Jim Kukral’s The Daily Flip. – At least an hour goes into the conceptualization, shooting, editing and posting of your video (even if it’s a 5-10 minute segment).
Figuring the “video stuff” out poses a technology-based barrier to entry from having master software that isn’t the most user friendly, to being able to work out the mechanics of streaming.
The other barrier in my mind is that the search engines are still at the rudimentary level of indexing such videos. So if you were there at the early days of meta tag and keyword tag stuffing to get ranked in the search engines, you could try out similar shenanigans with tag stuffing with videos too. (I don’t think you’d do much good for your reputation though…).
What will it take for the Internet to go boldly beyond text to embrace audio and eventually video?
If we progress beyond DSL and cable modem-based broadband technologies to Fiber-to-the-Home where 1000 mbps speeds are a very real possibility.
Is 2008 going to be the year that video kills the tv star?
It’ll be interesting to see, but one thing’s for certain, if you aren’t already going to where your leads and prospect are, you could very well be left in the dust.