No, video marketing is not just for the tech-savvy – Video marketing is for everyone

Ari_videographer_FBKWith 6 billion hours of video being watched each month on YouTube, there is bound to be someone out there, interested in what you have to say or sell.

The cool thing about YouTube is that it transcends borders and budgets. In fact, you can come up with pretty awesome videos with a touch of creativity and a good sense of humor. No matter how far-fetched your product or how uninteresting it may seem to most, YouTube is sure to find you an audience.

Not confident about that?

How can YouTube help me sell, a professional eye massager?, I hear you ask.

Well, a lot more uninteresting stuff has been sold with great success in YouTube.

Take, Blendtec©.

The company started its Will it Blend?” series of videos when then-new Marketing Director George Wright decided to shoot a video of its team’s testing operations and posting them online. With a $100 budget, Wright invested in the basic supplies and convinced CEO Tom Dickson to blend up a few strange things on camera. And so he did. In his first video, Tom asked the now infamous “Will it Blend” question and proceeded to blend an iPhone 3G. Did it blend? It sure did!

186 videos later, Blendtec’s retail sales reported a 700 percent, with its YouTube site reaching over 700,000+ subscribers and winning the .Net Magazine’s 2007 Viral Video campaign of the year bronze Clio in 2008 (Interactive category) for their interactive efforts.  Overall, the Will It Blend? series has accumulated more than 100,000,000 hits, and it doesn’t look like it’s going to slow down any time soon.

Well, so much for blenders.

How about something even less interesting, like shavers. How much can you glamourize a plain, old shaver?

Believe it or not. A whole lot.

Michael Dubin, founder of Los Angeles-based Dollar Shave Club, stepped into new territory with his almost nonsensical script and his irreverent “Our Blades Are F**king Great”slogan.  Michael and his team told us a story through a visual narrative with the brand/product as a thread in the talking point.  Only forty eight hours after the video debuted on YouTube and $5,000 later some 12,000 people signed up for the service. Besides some Google ads, the business had not invested in any other form of marketing. Three months after their great debut, it racked up 4.75 million views–thanks in large part to shares on social media sites. Today, over 15 million people have watched Michael and his team.

So, to answer your question – can you sell a professional eye massager on YouTube?

Without a doubt.

Even with a small budget, YouTube lets your customers see you, hear you, and connect with you. It’s the best place to bring your business to life.

How much does an interruption cost you? – Seven apps that will force you to focus

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This week I’ve written approximately 60,000 words – blog posts, auto-responders, company descriptions, website copy, social media posts, video scripts, eBooks and more. To make matters worse,  I had to switch from copy in Spanish to copy in English and vice versa

Don’t ask me how I’ve done it. It all feels like a blur.

One thing is for sure. It’s damn hard.

No, I’m not talking about the writing. I love it!

What drives me insane is how every five minutes my whole body begins an orchestrated attempt at surfing on the Net without asking for my permission.

It just goes ahead and does it.

My hand automatically wonders to a social media page or another, or somehow I get this urge to search for the latest in MH370, or for one of Tony Abbott’s latest blunders or for a post on adorable talking dogs.

So to get through the 60,000 words I had to submit this week, I had to pull out all an arsenal of tools to prevent myself from getting distracted. I thought you might find them useful as well, whatever your endeavours.

Obtract is an extremely clever app that helps you identify your main distractions. When your mind craves them and wants to access them, Obstact creates complicated intellectual obstacles to access them. The only problem is that for those who love intellectual and math tasks, it can become a new form of procrastination!

FreedomIf online distractions kill your productivity, Freedom could be the best 10 dollars you’ll ever spend.

Selfcontrol, a free and open-source application for Mac OS X (10.5 or above) that lets you block your own access to distracting websites, your mail servers, or anything else on the Internet. Just set a period of time to block for, add sites to your blacklist, and click “Start.” Until that timer expires, you will be unable to access those sites–even if you restart your computer or delete the application.

Cold Turkey, an app that will temporarily block you off of social media sites, addicting websites, games and even programs!

Unstuck, is a free app for iPad owners, with a very interesting concept, which helps you to figure out HOW you procrastinate and what exactly you do to avoid doing tasks. The app helps to figure out what type of procrastinator you are and suggests ways to deal with it.

MeeTimer is an add-on for the Firefox browser and is a perfect app for self-conscious people. It doesn’t block anything, but instead just calculates the time that you spent on every single website throughout the day and gives you all the statistics, including percentages of your time spent on specific websites. It is designed to make you feel guilty about all the wasted time on the “wrong” tasks.

Anti-Social is a program which will block all social websites. It’s quite nasty – it only lets you bring them back if you reboot your computer.

Stop Disctrations is a simple app for Windows that just blocks your worst enemies! An alternative app, which runs on Google Chrome, is called Procrastinator.

Gmail Now Supports Cherokee, Its First Native American Tribal Language

 Reblogged from TechCrunch:

Click to visit the original postGoogle just announced that it has added Cherokee as Gmail’s 57th supported language. While Google has continuously expanded its language support for Gmail and its other services, this marks the first time that Google has added a Native American tribal language to its repertoire.

Google, of course, isn’t doing this because of the large number of Cherokee-speaking Gmail users who are demanding support for their language.

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Cherokee online to encourage younger generations to use a language that would otherwise be soon lost. Good stuff.

The $20 ad campaign: small businesses find alternatives to Google AdWords

Tere Rodriguez:

Did you know there is a world beyond Google and Google AdWords_ Yes, there is hope for Jo Citizen wanting to advertise online.

Originally posted on paidContent (old):

Gerald Gorman, who runs online businesses like Lawyer.com, pays Google (s goog) $100,000 a month to place ads near search results and on Google’s partner sites. While the ads have proved effective at attracting customers, their growing price tag has led Gorman to look around for alternatives.

In the past, Gorman would have been out of luck. That’s because, despite the internet’s rapid growth, most small and medium businesses had few viable online ad options beyond Google or Bing. This is changing, however, as upstart ad companies tap into new publishing tools and social media to offer effective online campaigns for as low as $20 a pop.

In Gorman’s case, he laid down $1000 on two such companies, Outbrain and Virurl, and was delighted with the results. While he pays as much as $10 for a customer to click on one of this Google ads, he found he paid 8…

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Transhumanism… The Shape of Things to Come?

 Reblogged from Stories by Williams:

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“Your mind is software. Program it. Your body is a shell. Change it. Death is a disease. Cure it. Extinction is approaching. Fight it.”

-Eclipse Phrase

A lot of terms are thrown around these days that allude to the possible shape of our future. Words like Technological Singularity, extropianism, postmortal, posthuman, and Transhuman. What do these words mean? What kind of future do they point to?

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Can you imagine a “post-mortal” future where death, scarcity and the many problems we face today are no longer an issue? Would such future be sustainable? Storiesbywilliams discusses why such a trend might be desirable or even inevitable.