The power of user generated content, what makes them viral and how marketers can use online videos to enhance brand recall was the topic of discussion at the Google workshop organised at Goafest 2010.
"Charlie today has become a brand in itself. There is a separate website where every possible snap shot of Charlie and his brother are on display. There are blogs, calendars and Charlie T shirts as well. This is a unique example where user generated content gives birth to a brand," said Varma.
Varma also put forward the example of the famous Numa Numa video, which is again quite a rage in the e-world. Less than three months after its release, it had been viewed more than two million times on the debut website alone.
"Online videos can actually make your brand an overnight success," said Varma, "provided it meets the basic requirements." The first requirement is that of quality content. To bring home his point, he put forward the example of BooneOakley, which has created an interactive YouTube video that is essentially a full agency website from portfolio right through to the contact us page. "One needs to create content that entertains and inspires viewers to check out more of your stuff."
He added, "Once you have created a cool content, you have to ensure that it is easily accessible. If viewers like your work, they would like to refer to all your works and your recent updates. For that, you need to put all your online and offline stuff together in one hub. After this, one needs to measure the success of the campaign so that he can impress his clients with facts and figures."
According to Varma, it is high time marketers started taking the medium seriously. "There have been misconceptions like viewers do not like to watch long videos and keep flipping them - which is not true. Had this been true, people wouldn't have watched four hour long IPL matches on YouTube. Our researches show that the attention span of viewers is higher while viewing online videos than watching TV as here, he chooses the subject," he said.
However, the single biggest incentive for marketers, said Varma, would be the ever increasing number of its visitors. For YouTube alone, 13 million unique visitors get added every month.
Further, the quality of videos has also improved over time. Also, there is no primetime for online viewers and it is equally popular across SEC A, B and C.