Week fourteen's judging came out for Project Blogger today and the judges, who I know worked very hard on it, decided to post their comments as a video blog. This was interesting to me for a variety of reasons. I had a hard time viewing the comments because my connection was so slow that it took a while for things to even start to load, and by the time it did, my ADD had kicked in big time and I was ready to go chase butterflies or build a rocket-ship, but not to watch a video. However, that was not the main difficulty I had with a video post. The main difficulty I had with a video post was the fact that I am a reader not a watcher.
Now, this is not a surprise to me, or anyone else who knows me. I read everything that I can get my hands on - literally. I read the ads in the Pennysaver, I read the walls in public restrooms, and when I am at home, if there is nothing else handy, I read the back of the cleanser can in the bathroom (I don't use it, but I do read it).
I take great joy in being presented with a wall of words. I revel in the chance to lose myself in a good book, or on occasion, a not so good magazine. I love to read and I always have. I know that the entire world is not like me, but as the recent release of the latest Harry Potter tome and the resulting deserted streets on Saturday following go show, there are a whole lot of folks just like me out there. And, where I happen to live and base my business, more of them are like me than are not. I know my audience pretty well, they like to read and I like to cater to them.
Ines made a comment that said that video blogging was the wave of the future, but I really don't think that is true. I think it is a great component to integrate within a site, much like a virtual tour is a great adjunct to a written description of a property, but I also think that much like a virtual tour, a video post will not work for everyone. And, where blogging is concerned a video post can create more challenges than it can solve.
You can't print off a copy of a video post to look at later when you have time. You can't watch a video blog post in the privacy of your cubicle without everyone knowing what you are up to. You can't easily cut and copy a portion to integrate with your text if you want to quote them. You run the risk of having your sound and your look not agree with your "voice". And, if you decide to do it sitting in your bathrobe, stark naked, with a cigarette between your lips at two in the morning, you may get clients, but I am pretty sure that it won't be your real estate acumen they will be interested in.
A blog, by it's very nature is and should be about the words. It allows the reader to build a relationship with the writer that is deeply personal and, when unfettered by visuals, allows what you have to say a much better chance of being heard when it does not get hidden by how you happen to look and sound when you say it.
We have all heard that "Content is King", but when it is buried under poor sound quality, a bad hair day and a tendency for slower connections to pull the pictures so far out of sync with the audio that everything looks like a badly dubbed Japanese movie, there is little that the best content can do to overcome that.
And, unless my blogging education was sorely lacking, Google and Yahoo don't have an effective way to "crawl" video. They can tell how many times it gets viewed, but I am not sure how valuable that is for SEO. In the time that I have been writing here and on my site Route66Living.com I have seen my content trump almost every picture I have published and almost everything else others have offered as well. It is my content that has gotten me clients and it will continue to do so for a long time to come.
My site is currently seventh on the first page of a Google search if you ask for "Claremont California Realtor" and I got there based not on the pictures that I took with my camera but on the ones that I painted with my words.
Another thing to consider about video versus the written word is that pictures become dated in a nanosecond and words can live forever. Sure, there are some "looks" that are "timeless", but show up just once in a skinny leather tie, a Member's Only jacket with the sleeves pushed up to your elbows and a Flock of Seagulls hairdo and you are dated beyond repair.
And unless you tend to favor trendy phrases like "swell" "neato" and "so's your old man" words don't show their age nearly as quickly as pictures do.
So, for all you watcher's out there, your day may be coming, but as for me and other's like me, I will happily prefer to read about it until it does.
Take care all, help lots of people and have a wonderful day!