Video is a pretty powerful media. Think about the difference between reading the Rodney King incident in a newspaper, versus listening to the story on the radio or watching it on television. Clearly, the video had the greatest impact even though it was filmed by an amateur with a standard video camera who just happened to be there when the incident took place.
Well video technology has vastly improved over the last few years as has the bandwidth available to move it around. As we have seen on the consumer side with sites like YouTube, anyone with a camera or even a video capability on a cell phone, can make a video, upload it to a site and have it available for the world to see.
At the same time, people like Robert Scoble at Microsoft began using video to tell the story about what was going on at the company. A key element was that he just walked around and interviewed people about what they were doing. It wasn’t scripted, no storyboards, special lights or expensive video equipment. He just filmed a conversation and put it up on their site where tens of thousands of people tuned in and watched.
Now, just a couple of years later, Scoble has moved on to Podtech.net where he focuses his time on blogging and his video blog, the Scoble Show. As a result, we now can watch video interviews with well known people like presidential candidates, captains of industry, tech gurus, etc. Check out the 40 minute interviews with Bill Gates sitting around a table talking with five blogger/tech writers or Michael Dell at a panel session during CES, or John Edwards on his plane talking openly about his candidacy and views.
I think from here, we will begin seeing more video used in every day business; everything from new ways to introduce products, to customer service applications that show how things work or how to fix something, to a platform where any business leader can express his or her views.
I think we will begin to see classes from all types of institutions available via video casts. It will no longer be necessary to spend upwards of $100k to produce an infomercial, just grab a camera and begin filming.
I think that 2007 will be the beginning of video expansion into business with many of the uses still to be defined.