If you do a video query for “Ab Ripper PX90″ on YouTube you will not find the actual footage of the abdominal workout. Since the real workout is copy written, it cannot be posted due to legal ramifications such as copyright infringement. Instead there are video responses posted.. In these “responses” people giving either video confessions about how the workout changed their lives, or their own demonstration of this workout. Such responses, make up a phenomenon known as a YouTube Video Parody. YouTube gives users a platform to post their original media but also welcomes a flood of responses.
Media teams are beginning to take advantage of this impulse for reactionary posts on YouTube. Musicians and politicians have developed a way to communicate with their fans through this concept. Groups like the Rolling Stones and The Republican Party are using YouTube as a way to gather public responses to their issues.
The Rolling Stones are the first band to have an entire page of YouTube dedicated to their music. This site was launched at the same time that the Stone’s documentary was released in theaters. The website, [http://www.youtube.com/livinglegends], is a hybrid press kit. It has successfully promoted their movie through short film previews and discussions on the documentary. The website is also a useful tool to answer questions from their audience/fans.
YouTube video technology has a strong potential to lend itself to developing other dynamic press releases. For example, in the case of the Rolling Stones, they are using YouTube as a way to interact with fans. Rolling Stones enthusiasts visit the website and upload questions to Keith and Mick in video format. According to the statement by the band, the Rolling Stones promises to answer the best questions personally. Fans will receive “subsequent footage of the Rolling Stones available to watch exclusively on this new YouTube channel.” All fans will be able to watch the answer to these questions. Such an interactive conversation will help create more of an interest in the documentary, as it is a film discussing the lives of these performers.
This concept of personal video Q&A is the first of their kind. Likewise, the Rolling Stone’s website was the first of its kind to appear on YouTube. The appearance of this premier video technology, hi-lighted by the Rolling Stones, ushered in a new program of YouTube called “Living Legends.” This web hosting service is a YouTube/MySpace hybrid where bands are welcomed to upload their videos and use similar technology to interact with their fan-base. If this same premise is applied to advertising companies, it could be possible to allow each company a place on YouTube where they could create a promotional page where they could endorse their product, person, or service in a more three-dimensional way. Advertisers could also create a situation where they can receive feedback from the target audiences that they are trying to reach.
The element of video feedback can be priceless for companies looking to create an easier interface with clients. Even the Republican Party is capitalizing on this principle as a way to reach potential voters. The Republican debates are all logged on a YouTube site. If users visit the Republican Debate page they will see original clips of people, average citizens, asking questions to politicians. The site also contains footage from the debate, featuring the answers to such questions.
If video questions can reach Republicans and receive answers, this same technology can get answers from anyone! The YouTube video question is fertile ground for an ideal Public Relations endeavor. If corporations made the decision to employ video technology, customers could upload Frequently Asked Questions to message boards. In response, the business could post a video response. People could better ask questions and demonstrate problems that they are having with a product or service. Also, the queries could be better addressed from a more human angle as opposed to an impersonal blog post.
Video technology is hardly arcane. Many computers come equipped with a camera installed into the monitor. There is video technology on cell phones, most digital cameras, and of course webcams. Companies would be missing out on a large, competitive public relation’s project if they were to ignore personal video, the fastest growing trend on the Internet.
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