Review sites can be a great source of information with reviews from actual customers or feedback on a product, service, or type of business. However, a general trend is that a website owner develops and promotes a review site; Some have real information while others may have artificially generated data. In some verticals, competitors will create false or bogus reviews for their competition.
The problem that exists with some review sites is they turn out to be a form of online extortion for businesses that show up or get listed. Once a review site gains some traction in a particular market or niche, they are typically marketed to the businesses in that niche under the auspices of pay, or you won’t be able to manage or contest anything negative that might show up as a review or rating.
With the advent of review and rating sites and the growth of social media; a new industry call Online Reputation Management has been created. Companies that perform reputation management services will work with various rating, review or social media sites to bury or remove negative online information.
Has your business been unfairly characterized or slandered on a review or ratings site? Share your story with our readers below. Have you dealt with a review or ratings site that wanted you to pay before you could negative information about your company?
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If you have not seen the Wedding Dance Video (click link) it’s another great example of how well viral video and / or viral video marketing can work. This Minnesota couple probably had no idea that their very creative and fun wedding entrance dance would garner over 9 million views in just one week.
You never know which video, funny or creative moment will capture the hearts and minds of the entire planet. We are no longer talking about local, regional, or even nation-wide reach. Viral video marketing can reach the entire planet.
As in the case of Evian, the French mineral water bottler, they probably had no idea how fast their Evian roller babies / roller-skating babies video would reach a global audience at over 8 million views as of this post. Look at all the free promotion Evian received before they spent a single dollar on tv advertising. Viral video can generate tons of free traffic to your product or message. So before you throw in the towel on your Internet marketing efforts be sure to dust off that camcorder and try something creative.
Viral video can be extremely powerful and is just one example of why you should consider video to help promote your business online and offline.
11/22/09 – JK Wedding Dance Video Update: As of Nov. 09 the JK Wedding Video has been viewed 32 million times. You never know what video creation you come up with might go viral. Get out that video camera and start recording.
This article is not a recant of my previous position on third party video hosting or video sharing such as YouTube, Revver, Google video, etc., but it is a modification on how third party video should be used. With that being said, third party video will almost always reach a larger audience than video that you host on your own server / website.
Here’s why I’ve modified my position slightly on third party video; The other day I received a call from a customer in shock when the office manager looked at the video for the first time. When the YouTube video completed it displayed some “similar or relevant” videos at the bottom of the clip. One clip was some guy zoomed in on his arm-pit trying to simulate someone sticking a finger in a rectum. They were mortified as a medical practice that a potential patient or client would see something completely unrelated to their practice.
While YouTube does allow you to turn this feature off, it doesn’t hide unrelated video content if the person clicks through to YouTube. Third party video does have a place, but I’m not sure the best place is on a website where you are trying to control what your visitor may or may not see.
Negative Factors – Video Sharing Services:
- No control over what other videos your visitor or potential customer might see
- Third party video gives your visitor an opportunity to click off of your website
- Potential loss of a customer due to click throughs.
- Potentially exposing your customer(s) to illicit, provocative, racial, or insulting types of video content.
Unless YouTube, Revver, or some of the other major third party video hosting sites can better control the definition of “relevant videos” and what a user might be exposed to, I would say that each business needs to evaluate how it uses third party video hosting and whether or not the video placement is the right option for your specific website.
For my customer in particular I will end up making the video self hosted.
What negative experiences has your business experienced by using third party video hosting such as YouTube, Google video, Revver, BrightCove, DailyMotion, MySpace, Vimeo, etc? Share your opinion with our visitors.