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Friday, October 1, 2010

Can YouTube be used to help you market your ag. business? Part I

As I read through the many email newsletters I receive each morning, it sure is apparent that topics pertaining to social networking, for beginner or experienced users, occupy a fair amount of space in each piece I read. A good deal of attention is given to social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook, but an agricultural business should consider the benefits of using YouTube to inform, reach, and build relationships with consumers.

Why use YouTube? Since many people are “visual”, this tool may better help convey benefits and features of your goods and services compared to “still” images that are just two-dimensional. Also, based on statistics, YouTube, in terms of “revenue and audience use,” is projected to increase 51% between 2009 and 2013 and in audiences between ages 18 and 34 (http://www.mediapost.com/publications/?fa=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=112137).

What is YouTube exactly? YouTube is a website where viewers can watch programming such as movie trailers, clips, and full episodes of news programs, special interest shows, and videos that amateur videographers create. Videos can vary from less than a minute to over an hour in length. Viewers can find videos by:
• looking through videos arranged by pre-determined categories (e.g., How-to & Style),
• entering keywords into the search box (e.g., gardening, grilling vegetables), and
• clicking on links for related videos.
Viewers can also create a YouTube account and “subscribe” to “channels” that are specific to the source/person who posts the video (e.g., Garden Girl TV) or topic (e.g., how to make wine). By subscribing, viewers receive weekly emails that alert them when a new video is posted to their account.

Check back next week where I’ll describe how YouTube can be used for marketing goods and services.

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