Online Video Tips for Small Business (MSNBC)

Get some coffee or program your TiVos, kids.

That video I shot Sunday for MSNBC Small Business (see MSNBC/Amex site) is going on television not the web (glad I didn’t quite realize that when I shot it, or I might have gotten nervous).

It airs this week 3/20/11 at 7:30am EST and will re-air Saturday, March 26th at 5:30am EST. This timing should work well for small businesses and entrepreneurs since they never sleep. And the YouTube peeps? They’ll still be awake from the night prior.

In the meantime, you can check some of the tips I shared with AOL small business, or buy Beyond Viral (Wiley) at your local bookstore or Amazon. And tell your friends at ABC and CBS they should book me. 🙂

Oh- I made an epic mistake on the video that I’m hoping people think was intentional because it’s so blatant. Be the first to notice it and comment below, and you get a free piece of cheese (and maybe an autographed copy of Beyond Viral if I actually remember).

What We Can Learn from Most-Viewed Videos of 2010

What can we learn from the most-viewed “viral” videos of 2010? How are they similar and different from years past?

First, let’s take a look at the run-down, courtesy of YouTube and ReelSEO, here’s the list. YouTube has a new trend blog/website that’s worth bookmarking or RSS’ing: YouTube Trends.

  • The BED INTRUDER SONG! (a news clip turned into a meme with help from schmoyoho
  • TIK TOK KESHA Parody: Glitter Puke – Key of Awe$ome #13 (another Next New Networks hit)
  • Greyson Chance Singing Paparazzi (a 6th grader with Justin Bieber-like cut, featuring shaky handheld camera)
  • Annoying Orange Wazzup (Daneboe’s facial fruit was spurred to amazing popularity in 2010… note that since Daneboe launched Annoying Orange’s own channel early in 2010, the collection has been viewed nearly 400 million times… giving him more views than this entire top-10 list).
  • Old Spice | The Man Your Man Could Smell Like (hey a commercial- see what does the author of Beyond Viral know?)
  • Yosemitebear Mountain Giant Double Rainbow 1-8-10 (the dude trips out seeing two rainbows)
  • OK Go – This Too Shall Pass – Rube Goldberg Machine version (Okgo, the treadmill band does it again)
  • THE TWILIGHT SAGA: ECLIPSE – Trailer (really? a trailer?)
  • Jimmy Surprises Bieber Fan (Jimmy Kimmel is handling his old/new media balance quite well- check out the girl get a visit from Bieber)
  • Ken Block’s Gymkhana THREE, Part 2; Ultimate Playground; l’Autodrome (this is the only one I hadn’t seen- a racing car… snore). Speaking of videos I haven’t seen (even the “Viral Video Genius” can’t see them all), did you see Cookie Monster audition for SNL? If Jim Henson was alive, SNL would be auditioning for The Muppet Show.
  • So what are the common themes?

    1. Nothing sells like a song (most of the top-10 all-time most viewed YouTube videos are songs).
    2. Quirky is still nice — whether it’s manufactured (Annoying Orange) or authentic (Double Rainbow)
    3. Viral is increasingly a symptom of offline popularity (Kimmel/Bieber/Lady Gaga/Twighlight)
    4. The biggest difference between 2009 and 2010 is that professional & commercial content trumped user-generated videos, with only one true exception (the Double Rainbow).
    5. With the exception of Daneboe (Annoying Orange) and Schmoyo (AutoTune the News), none of these really spawned a new person or channel.
    6. Production quality mattered more this year than years past. Which is why we amateurs need to up our game (see my new ShootLikePro blog).
    7. Note that the top-ten list excludes major record labels, or they would dominate list. YouTube has increasingly become a free visual jute box.

    How is this list similar or different from 2007, 2008 and 2009?

    1. Commercials are still the exception not rule. This year’s popular advertising campaign/commercial was Old Spice, and last year it was Evian’s roller skating babies. I referred to the latter in my book as the “exception to the rule” that promotional videos don’t often go viral. Even though this is increasingly true, 2011 to spawn some Old Spice knockoffs nonetheless. Hopefully a few brands and agencies will try a “road less travelled” with better odds.
    2. Both 2009 and 2009 lists had a Twilight trailer. Again- this says less about online video as the fact that the films are extremely popular.
    3. Last year’s “double rainbow” was the quirky “David After the Dentist,” now at 75 million views (that’s almost half of the views I’ve garnered on my entire collection). Hopefully we’ll continue to rally around odd moment like these.
    4. As the medium matures, we’ve seen fewer “quirky” amateur clips than, say, 2008 when we had viralizations like Fred, “Christian the Lion” and ImprovEverywhere’s “Frozen Grand Central.” The memes of 2007 were even more interesting to me — from The Landlord and “Leave Britney Alone” to Obama Girl (Next New Networks) and the South Carolina Miss Teen USA clip
    5. Last year’s kid singing Paparazzi was a more choreographed wedding video (Forever). People love an amateur singer overnight success story (Susan Boyle).
    6. Almost all of the top-10 popped on YouTube. The world’s second-largest search engine remains the most vibrant channel.
    7. The teen factor is still driving views, even if each year offers content for a broader demographic.

    Each year the top 10 most-viewed hits are a smaller percent of overall views… it’s the long tail effect. Finally, do you notice anything missing for the first year in a while? No SNL Digital shorts… or sadly, anything from The Onion, College Humor or Funny Or Die.

    Okay now go buy my book, or tell a journalist to interview me for a delightful year-end segment on viral videos.

    Beyond Viral: Everything About Online Video You Were Afraid to Ask

    Clueless Author Reveals Online-Video Secrets

    So I do this interview at Blogworld not realizing it’s friggin’ Mark Robertson of REELSEO that’s interviewing me. Since the question of video SEO comes up, I mention Mark during the interview, referring to him as the authority on video search-engine optimization… after all he helped with the chapter on video SEO in “Beyond Viral.” Then the interviewer smiles, says “yeah that Mark knows his stuff,” and turns his name badge around. So yeah, I have one of those Alzheimer’s moments where I realize I’m talking about Mark TO Mark. To make matters worse, the camera man was Daisy Whitney’s husband, who I had dinner with before. Missed that too. Jeremy Scott interviewed me via phone… he’s a hoot. So I’m going to remember him as long as… I can.

    I’m lucky I remember my kids names. All three of them. Wait- four.

    How Do I Get Paid to Speak About Online-Video Marketing?

    Hey, readers. I like to share on this blog, and not ask you for help. But I’ll be damned if I’m not stuck.

    I’ve been speaking at industry conferences and corporations, but haven’t figured out how to get paid. Now that I have a book contract with Wiley (tentatively named “Beyond Viral Video: Online Marketing Strategies and Tactics”), I believe I can fetch $5-$15K to speak at companies or events. Heck- I’ve seen my former employers pay $50K for some dopey book author who gave a generic powerpoint for an hour. I’ve got unique knowledge as a marketer and most-viewed YouTube guy, and I love informing, engaging and entertaining audiences.

    Here’s my credentials page I just wrote up (it’s pretty compelling so click here and memorize it). Would appreciate any tips on how to have someone else market or represent me… ideally someone that’s the “go to” firm for corporations needing specialized marketing skills.

    I’m not right for a motivational-speaking firm, but maybe one that companies go to when they need to experts on specific topics like mine (emerging media, video marketing, social media, etc.). For that matter, I’d like to start charging conferences (which I know is tough unless you’re a former CEO or celebrity). Conferences are a nice chance to network and build street credibility, but I’m doing 4 conferences in the next week from Nevada to Canada, and giving away free tips about online-video marketing… Would be nice to get some cash for the time it takes. The free airfare and hotel are nice, but they don’t cover the mortgage.

    And just look at that face? Don’t you just want to pay this guy to get your company jazzed and informed about emerging media, online video, social media, and marketing!?

    Killer Emerging-Media Marketing Speaker & Evangalist
    Killer Emerging-Media Marketing Speaker & Evangalist

    I Proclaim Myself the Stupidest Social-Media Expert EVER

    If you’re planning a conference about social media, and you haven’t got me on the docket then you’re screwed. Because I’m friggin’ hot right now. I was tired of the endless parade of social-media articles… they were repetitive, annoying, and written by people that had no business as authorities on social media.

    So, without saying much about my secret identity as a prolific YouTuber, I published “The Stupidest Article on Social Media Ever.” It’s been Tweeted about, read 3K times, and has landed on a variety of blogs including “Silicon Angle.”

    Snapz Pro XScreenSnapz003

    Dear conference planner, I propose the following. I’ll get up at your next conference, and you list me as a “social media expert.” Then I’ll take on any of the personalities from this video… and just fall apart gradually. Begin with confidence, but then begin to fall apart. Thus spoofing the whole absurdity of “social media” hype.

    Will Knol For Food: A Weird Blend of WordPress, Blogger,, Wikipedia and eBay

    Thanks to MCase (loyal WillVideoforfood reader) for pointing out Knol. This is Google’s answer to or Wikipedia, where you can write about a subject and share in advertising revenue if anybody cares to read it (and is so bored by it that they click the text ads and stop).

    Here’s my knol biography, and I’ve placed a few articles and my eBook inside. I’m not asking you to go rate them 5 stars, but I would like you to remember that Nalts introduced Knol to you (2 years from now, when the term “knolling” is as pervasive as “googling”).

    A Knol (see site) is an “authoritative article about a specific topic.” Anyone can write one like Wikipedia (although you can’t edit them). And readers will decide if it’s authoritative or hog wash (like how we score eBay sellers and buyers).

    Knoling solves a need — we uninformed humans want vetted, credible content.  Google helps us find it sometimes, but we still don’t have a scalable social network infrastructure for weeding out the accurate from the crap. And don’t talk to me about Squiddo, people. There are probably more people using Twitter right now, and the gap from early adopters to mainstream is wider than my ass has grown since I developed spondylolisthesis and a fractured sacrum… clearly caused by my day job (and not those pratfalls you make me do).  

    Of course there’s got to be a “what’s in it for me” for subject-matter experts to knowledge share-  I wouldn’t have knoled my articles this morning just to be nice, or on the chance that these will get views more than my blog. I am chancing on some meager Google adsense revenue. Maybe it’s the next YouTube (which is non trivial) and maybe it’s the next Amazon affiliate program (which is non profitable for me anyway).

    Now here’s the million dollar question. Will it Knol get us indexed better on Google? TechCrunch called this out back in December, and this move put Google further into the content business (which is like being the broker and seller in one). What cracks me up about this TechCrunch article is that it doesn’t point out a similar situation. It’s, um, called YouTube?

    Knol It All ( is already squatted. Puns are the second-lowest form of humor (after sarcasm), though.