Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Free Information In The Internet Age: How Can You Compete?

September 24, 2010 by  
Filed under All Posts, Special Interest Video Biz

Man looking at computer

Can you compete with all the free videos?

Although the internet has radically changed the way we can market and deliver videos, with the advent of YouTube and other free video sharing sites, this new internet age does bring some new challenges.

One of the challenges that many content creators face, if they sell books, music or video, is increased competition from all of the free media that is now available on the internet. It’s like a huge library at everyone’s disposal. This may leave you feeling it’s not worth it to produce a video if you’re concerned that no one will buy it because they can find the information out there.

My feeling is that although free information is much easier to get nowadays, good, solid and trustworthy information is still hard to come by. Spend some time searching for a solution to your immediate problem and you’ll know how hard it is to find. I was just in that situation last week when I couldn’t get any information on why a plug-in I downloaded didn’t work. Would I have gladly paid for a video tutorial if I found one? Yes!

The fact is, people will still pay for well-presented and organized information they value from a source they trust. So if you have a great idea for a video, recognize this new environment in the wireless age and up your “game” to compete with the free information.

Research your topic first

Before you begin it is imperative that you spend time researching to find the topics where information is freely given. If people can find the same information on that topic for free, they will probably not buy a DVD. So if you’re thinking of producing a DVD on a topic such as that, you probably won’t make any money. Here is where some time spent researching will really save you money and life energy.

For example, if your video is on how to use a Flipcam, chances are the internet is filled with free web videos on that topic. However, if you are an expert on using Quickbooks to grow your business, you may have a product people will buy.

Higher production values will pay off

If you’ve been to YouTube lately, you know that at a price point of $0, many of these videos are not very good. Some of these free web videos are downright unwatchable in my book. While a lot of the information given doesn’t need to be delivered as a feature film quality, it does have to be watchable to keep people watching it in order to get some good out of it.

In producing your videos, you need to differentiate yourself from these low quality productions in order to charge a price. Focusing on higher production techniques in your videos doesn’t mean you have to go out and spend a lot to get top of the line camera equipment or hire professional videographers. Learning about some simple lighting, audio and camera techniques will put you ahead of the game and justify your prices.

Offer more in-depth information

There are many free web videos made that will only give you part of your answer leaving you to search some more if you aren’t given exactly what you need or want.

Many of these videos are made as part of a marketing strategy. Smart marketers develop a series of free educational videos to share partial information to not only establish themselves as an authority but also to entice the viewer to visit their website in order to convert them to a customer.

If viewers know they will get much more deeper and extensive information they need and want, they will pay. They recognize the investment in reliable information and time.

Price itself increases value

People also value what they have to spend money on. So the fact that some information is free, makes it questionable in some people’s eyes, especially if it is highly specific or complex information.

For example, I was looking for training on how to implement a specific social media strategy in my marketing efforts. Upon searching Google and YouTube, I did find some of what I was looking for however, it was very piecemeal and at times outdated information. I was left feeling more disorganized. So I purchased a training series from a reputable source and not only learned what I needed to know, I saved time, found out more strategies and because there was support offered, was able to ask questions to some things that were perplexing me.

Free information is not be always better information. There are many, many customers in this internet and wireless age who value good information and will gladly pay for it. The great thing about the popularity of YouTube is that it shows people continue to find video one of the best ways to learn, especially if they need to be shown how something should be done. Use this knowledge to your advantage.

These are just some of my thoughts. How do you see all these free videos affecting the future of videos for sale? Do you think the industry is doomed or do you see people will still pay? I would love to hear your thoughts so please leave your comments below!

Next post I’ll continue my thread on producing and selling special interest videos and address the question, “what topic should I choose for my special interest video?” Sign up for our RSS feed to get the next post in this series!

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