Video Is Oxygen

Every day I get asked a version of the same question -- from clients, friends, job seekers and headhunters: “How should I use video?”

It used to be a hard question, but now the answer is crystal-clear. 

Video is like oxygen. 

Period. So, how do you use oxygen? You use it all the time, everywhere -- while you sleep, while you travel, while you’re at work. While you’re with your family. 

Video is the connective tissue that makes the web ubiquitous, it crosses boundaries, time zones, languages, and knowledge level.  

Video is the great global communicator and connector.

So much so, that we soon won’t call it video any longer. It isn’t that video is vanishing. It’s the opposite.  Like oxygen, you don’t think about it -- it just "is."

So, here are five surefire ways to wrap your digital arms around video and make it an organic part of how you connect with consumers, partners, and the mobile web.

1. Speak truth to your community.  Video is about authenticity, not glossy, packaged, top-down truth.  Don’t be afraid to share, engage, respond, and interact. 

Video at its best elicits reactions, and that engagement is rocket fuel to build trust and connections. Put yourself out there, and you’re going to surprised at how the authenticity pays off.
2. The web is fast -- and slow To quote the philosopher Ferris Bueller:  “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

There’s nothing sadder than a relevant piece of motion media that hits my social web 24 hours after the digital world has moved on.  So either be relevant, and topical, or find a topic that you can own by being first.  Look for an issue, an idea, a conversation. The future of digital thought leadership is going to be in motion media, so why not be leading the charge? 
3. Short is better than long. I know, ever since Max Headroom showed us the future of blipverts, I’ve resisted the magnetic call to shorter media. It’s not just that our attention span is shorter (it is) but our devices are smaller (phones rather than desktop screens) and our behavior is ephemeral (tinder for content)  So, get with the program. Turn three-minute stories into :45 seconds.  Use, sight, sound, motion, text, emojis. Tools that communicate in three dimensions connect, and reach a connected reader/view using what is now expected digital relevance. Just do it.
4. Punch through the noise with relevance. Getting people's attention requires you to have something to say -- and to say it with passion and forceful intention. You’re in the palm of your audience's hand. Touch them and they’ll respond. Whisper or wander from the point, and they’re moving on. 
5. Try new voices and tools Have you done a podcast yet? If not, why not? Are you answering consumer questions with quick video tutorials? That’s what they want.  How about 360 video walk-throughs? The tech isn’t the barrier, it’s fear.  Have you invited your readers, consumers, partners to send YOU video of their experiences?  Wouldn’t you love to see those authentic testimonials and experiences? 

Video is the universal language of the net. Best learn how to speak it, as it’s a new language brimming with possibilities to connect communities, brands, and conversations. 

Take a deep breath.  Video is oxygen.  It’s breathing new life into our conversations, our learning, our experiences.  

Just to emphasize that point,  I made a video.  If you watch it here, see if it gives you a stronger, more memorable version of this post. You might event want to share it with friends and co-workers. That’s great, too. 

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