Agencies should show off their video skills more often

I surprised myself recently by watching the YouTube video of the bride, groom, and wedding party dancing down the aisle to the altar in its entirety.

I surprised myself recently by watching the YouTube video of the bride, groom, and wedding party dancing down the aisle to the altar in its entirety. I wasn't alone. The last I checked, the five-minute video had nearly 19 million views.

There was no commercial objective to the video; the couple just wanted to celebrate the big day in their own way.

Viral video status is also a coveted achievement for brands. Ad Age recently praised Adidas' “digital PR” play for its South American soccer star videos. And user-generated video often factors into brand contests.

But it's not just brands benefitting from the public's interest in video. Corporations are turning increasingly to video to communicate complicated messages. Amazon's CEO appeared in a video to explain its acquisition of Zappos, and when Microsoft and Yahoo announced a new 10-year search partnership, the companies used video as part of their communications onslaught for the deal.

Why then are videos missing from the homepages of PR agencies that know videos are an important part of an overall communications strategy? Recently, I viewed more than a dozen Web sites of top global PR firms and found a video embedded on the homepage of only one: MS&L. At APCO and Ogilvy, there were readily available links on their homepages to their videos, and a number of agencies included a “follow us on YouTube” button somewhere on their site. But most often, there was no video to be found, or one was hidden in some back channel.

Corporate videos help introduce the agency's leadership to current and prospective clients, establish thought leadership positions, show off events and even client work. Video is a quick, easily digestible format that, as PRWeek has learned, can supplement an otherwise text-heavy Web site. Clearly, agencies have revamped their sites to reflect the new landscape to some extent. While blogs, online newsrooms, white papers, podcasts, and Facebook fan page directories are all in wide use, there seems to be an overreliance on many of these text-heavy tools, including PDFs and multiple blogs.

Increased video use would show that PR firms, while fighting for a greater piece of the digital pie, understand the importance of video as a marketing and communications tool. Given that so many firms have already invested in YouTube channels, it shouldn't be hard to pull from those resources to populate their corporate sites.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register
Already registered?
Sign in

Would you like to post a comment?

Please Sign in or register.