When consumers can’t actually see and touch the product, the concept of a high-quality portable artificial putting green takes some explaining. Video is one way to help sell complex products online, so Buyaputtinggreen.com, an authorized dealer for Tour Links greens, has nearly 40 videos up on its site to explain product features and illustrate frequently asked questions-all shot at the retailer by Dave Barlow, the president of the company, with a video camera. The videos play immediately when a site visitor reaches pages on which they’re posted.
“These aren’t complicated videos-it’s just Dave, in front of the camera at his company with a product,” says Scott Madlener, executive vice president at video technology provider Performance Communications Group. “It’s almost like a town hall feeling, and the assurance of quality comes across because of the video.”
To get the videos up on the site, the videotapes went from Barlow’s camera to PCG, an online marketing services technology firm that has developed an Internet-secured application technology platform called ISAT, which delivers multimedia applications to web sites, e-newsletters, banner ads and other online venues in a secure environment.
PCG manually digitized the tapes and posted them into its ISAT video management system for distribution on the site. The ISAT platform also provides an automated authoring system, allowing site operators to connect their web cam or camcorder to their computer so the system can capture, digitize, host and post the video-for use on a web page, incorporation into other digital assets, or to be e-mailed out individually.
One of the metrics tracked by the reports generated by the ISAT platform is how engaged visitors are on the sites or other online venues where the videos are viewed, and to what extent video lengthens site visits. Madlener says that of 100,000 visits tracked since the videos launched on Buyaputtinggreen.com in the middle of last year’s first quarter, the average site visit included about 5 minutes of video viewing. Across tests as well as the actual experience of other clients using the ISAT platform, adding video to text on average doubles the length of time visitors remain on a site, Madlener says.