In this exclusive interview, we have Antonio Barimen (Digital Media Consultant, Skribe Productions) discussing the intricacies and merits of web video and how it meshes with the social media landscape of today.

Being a seasoned veteran of film and TV production as well as having 15 years worth of experience with developing communities both virtual and online, Antonio has indeed seen, heard and felt his worthy share of the action. Here he talks about how to stand out from the rest of the pack, how to go about expanding your social media horizons through the use of video, and muses about video being an important tool today and how you can optimize and customize it to suit your needs perfectly.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the video are the personal views of the interviewee and and do not necessarily represent the philosophy or viewpoints of their organization or clients.

Transcript of the Interview

Hi, I’m Antonio Barimen and I’m a Digital Media Consultant. Most people online know me as Skribe or skribe Forti. That’s my online name and also my moniker in Second Life and Virtual Worlds. I specialize in online video and virtual worlds hence I have lots of names.

Second Life, virtual worlds and the hype – why aren’t we hearing much about it now?

Mainly because a lot of the hype was exactly just that … it was hype. And it was done by a lot of people who really didn’t know how to make the best use of the medium and as a result a lot of promises were made and a lot of those promises weren’t kept. That resulted to having lots of people lose interest and lots of money because of that. There’s still a lot going on but it’s different … it’s more along the lines of current social media. Building communities and marketing that way … and also using them for training, conferencing and meetings and stuff.

Creating good video: how to stand out

You have to possess narrative … character … and you have to be interesting. But rather than say them in point form, the basic idea is to create an emotional contact with your audience so it’s not just you telling how wonderful you are. It’s about you trying to give something to the audience that they would cherish so that they will pass that experience along to others. It’s not like television since it just “shouts” at you. You have to be smarter than that with online video because there’s just so many more competition out there. Not just amongst other videos per se but from other content like games, etc. Since the advent of social websites, you have a whole stack more of competition so you have to be cleverer. And in that you essentially have to value add and say that “this is something that I want to pass on.”

Producing whitepaper versus video

Why would you do a whitepaper and compare it to a video? They are completely different. One is a study in whatever they are going to do and the other is a way of communicating with your audience. Video, basically, is a way of contacting your audience. It’s a way of marketing and it’s also an investment. I have a tendency of saying that with the visual medium … if pictures are worth a thousand words, video is 25 pictures each in every second. So there are tons of means where you can communicate with your audience and hopefully through them you can create an emotional and impactful attachment to your target.

The question of measuring ROI in video

There are a lot of ways. You can just start with hits and then go from that which for me is a kind of a lazy way. Otherwise what you can do is have URLs that link specific web pages in such a manner that you would know exactly if they come from a video or if they pass it on from another source. Little techniques like that allow you to look at things. That’s a good way of doing it. And then you get stuff like responses (direct or indirect) and you metric them out.

Glossy or DIY? – advice for would-be-producers

On the question of spending … well, I say as much as you can afford. Look, there are always trade offs. If you can only afford to spend a thousand dollars on a handheld video, that you are going to do yourself, that’s ok because that’s what you can manage. But if you can spend two-hundred thousand dollars making it then that’s what you should do. Of course they would have different ROI and different impacts. In several cases you might luck out on a thousand dollar video and you might bomb out on a two-hundred thousand dollar one.

Social media gurus always say “never make a video TOO good.”

What’s a social media guru anyway? I mean, for me it boils down to technique instead. If you use it, it’s all a matter of storytelling and using whatever technique is the best way to achieve your aims. Well in some cases that argument may be quite valid. I can’t recall the name of the video and the brand unfortunately … but just for example … remember that video where they spray painted Air Force 1? That’s a classic. It was supposed to be the “gonzo” kind of video and I think it worked actually. But it probably won’t do as well in other cases you know.

Parting Shots of Wisdom

  1. “Don’t shout”
  2. “Engage your audience.”
  3. “And as I have said always … don’t be boring.”
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