April 2, 2008, 12:00 AM

Picture this: 1-800-Flowers.com launches a video production company

With Connect 7, 1-800-Flowers.com sees a business opportunity to provide web merchants with a value-added service: video.

Online flowers and gifts retailer 1-800-Flowers.com Inc. sees a business opportunity to provide web merchants with a value-added service: video.

The company, No. 34 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, has formed Connect 7 Productions to produce commercials, corporate videos and original programming.

Connect 7 also sees an opportunity to write and produce video content, including “how to” videos and product profiles, for web retailers. “We are already in the web retailing business and this will be one of our markets to focus on,” says Connect 7 vice president and senior executive producer Bob Nastasi. “We have a lot of experience in the industry.”

The new company’s specific services for web retailers include writing copy and providing other creative, filming, editing, and other post production work. “Due to the expansion of the web and the widely accepted use of new media channels, the demand for content is huge,” Nastasi says.

Video is becoming an important feature more retailers are adding to their e-commerce site. But retailers also are wrestling with particular video-related problems, including if video should enhance or replace rich media and if it’s more effective to produce videos internally or use an outside third-party.

“Retailers have lots of questions about video and where it fits within e-commerce,” Nastasi says. “Many retailers may have an equipment budget, but not for creative. We see a niche in providing both of these types of services.”

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