Paul Sanchez — biker, video junkie, PR machine, blogger, and maddman — has started an 8-wishes “tag chain” thingy. He’s asked me and other bloggers to post our 8 wishes and pass along the task to others. Parenthetically, Paul’s first wish was granted, as he recently interviewed Kinkos founder Paul Orfalea.
So let’s be clear that if I really had 8 wishes, they’d be focused around my wife and family, world peace, end of poverty and injustice, etc. However I’m focusing these strictly on online video.
- Amateurs develop niche audiences that can economically sustain themselves. That’s what this blog is about. Many of us make videos for fun, but would love to jump into it full time. Currently there are really only two ways to do that. Develop a tremendous following such that advertising (via sites that share ad revenue) sustains you. This is proving to be very difficult so far. The alternative is to develop serialized content and attract one or more sponsors. We’ve done a couple videos for Mentos (Sneaking Mentos into Theater and the recent Team Mentos with MediaMogirl). It would take a lot of these to cover my mortgage, but it’s a good start.
- Online video channels will compensate creators. If you had asked me a year ago, I would have almost guaranteed you that community would form around sites that shared ad revenue. This isn’t happening as fast as we all hoped. YouTube does not share advertising with creators, and sites like Revver, blip.tv and Brightcove are only effective if you have your own audience. None of these sites draws traffic like the big boys. Metacafe has both ad sharing and traffic, but it’s fierce competition to get seen.
- Advertisers will hasten their shift from interuption marketing to engagement marketing. Instead of building campaigns that push product, I hope they’ll more deeply engage in social media. The EepyBird Coke deal is a great example. Coke paid the comedic duos, and then drove views via Google Video. Advertisers are starting to realize that the the 60-second spot is dead, and they need to let go of scripted messaging to be viable in a demand-driven content world where they can skip ads.
- Online video accessible via any box. I hope that in 2007 we see more power to the explosive collide of television and online video. YouTube and Revver have deals with Verizon, and there is no shortage of models that bring online video to cable, television, media centers and portable devices. The more this happens, the easier it will be for content creators to find audiences and audiences to find niche content.
- Niche channels form. There are many of us that create content that is not necessarily mass market. But there are groups of people that love specific niches. YouTube facilitates this connection via subscriptions. In the past week I jumped from 400 subscribers to about 1200 on YouTube and these are people that have self-identified as being interested in my style. Others can RSS my content, but there’s no easy way to turn on the boob tube and surf some of my videos. I hope there will be soon.
- The letter V will be removed from the alphabet. You have to have a stretch wish.
- The networks will support an online-video show. This will provide mainstream visibility to online-video creators that have interesting content but can’t sustain their own show. We’ll see an SNL-style show that features an assortment of short clips from regular content providers. I want to be one of ’em. Remember how the Simpsons got its start as a segment of The Tracy Ulman show.
- My 8th wish is for 8 more wishes. Is that allowed?