Blog Posts by ' Justin Foster ':


VCC TV: Taking a second look at auto-video


VCC TV: Taking a second look at auto-video

It’s been a while since the last VCC TV episode and with the holidays fast approaching it is once again time to kick into high gear.  This go around, we are re-examining an emerging trend in video commerce we’ve touched on before: auto-video.  Auto-video, which I’ve also referred to as “artificial video,” is the practice of taking product metadata displayed on your site (e.g. price, description, ratings & reviews, related products, etc) and featuring this information in a visually appealing slideshow, often with background music and a human or computer-generated voiceover.  We’ve also included a couple of examples of auto-video …

Creating E-Commerce Videos That Sell


Creating E-Commerce Videos That Sell

The Video Commerce Consortium has just released a new whitepaper, “Creating E-Commerce Videos That Sell,” downloadable here. Included in the whitepaper:

- Conceptual Framework for Creating Videos that Sell
- Understanding Motivation, Simplicity, and Triggers
- Producing E-Commerce Videos that Get Results
- Conceptual Storyboarding Approaches
- Benefits and Drawbacks of Various Video Production Methods in E-Commerce
- Product Video ROI Calculator
- Selecting the Right Video Production Equipment
- Filming and Post-Production for E-Commerce Video
- Common Video Production Questions Asked and Answered
- Placing Videos on Product Detail Pages for Maximum Results
- Product Detail Page Implementation Results…

Conversion rates vs. co-op dollars: mass merchants struggle to find balance with video commerce


Conversion rates vs. co-op dollars: mass merchants struggle to find balance with video commerce

I’ve noticed an emerging trend over the last six to twelve months among specialty and mass merchants with regard to manufacturer video.  The discussion over whether video “works” as a product merchandising tool began to shift away from one centered entirely on improving conversion rates.  In fact, as more retailers discovered manufacturer video content available in relative abundance, they began to view video as more than a simple conversion enhancing tool.  Now, some retailers see video as a new source of revenue unto itself.  What’s behind this behavior change?  Nothing other than the almighty co-op dollar.

Manufacturers have long paid …

Call for interviews – “State of Retail Video in 2009″


Call for interviews – “State of Retail Video in 2009″

I am embarking on a project for the VCC – a new whitepaper/research paper focused on the state of retail video in 2009. The focus is on video content as opposed to placement or channel – e.g. what video content “works,” and what doesn’t. In addition, we’ll mostly focus on on-site video as opposed to syndicated video or channel-specific uses of video in e-commerce.

If you’d be willing to contribute to the report by interviewing with me for 15 – 20 minutes, I’d like to learn about what’s working for you, what’s not, etc. You and your company can remain

Silverlight vs. Flash – which is best for video commerce?


Silverlight vs. Flash – which is best for video commerce?

I’ve noticed more people asking me about the relative merits of Flash vs. Silverlight for e-commerce video, especially since the release of Silverlight 3.0 in July.  I am not a technical expert on the differences between Flash and Silverlight, so I won’t expose my ignorance here by pretending otherwise.  Besides, a simple Google search reveals no shortage of Flash v. Silverlight comparison reports for the curious.  Smashing Magazine’s writeup is one of the better ones.  Read it here if you’re so inclined.

For most executives in e-commerce, my general read is still that the battle between Flash versus Silverlight comes …

Using video SEO to get online video discovered: a video commerce perspective


Using video SEO to get online video discovered: a video commerce perspective

Earlier today, I finally got a chance to watch a presentation co-delivered by ReelSEO Founder Mark Robertson on the subject of video SEO.  The presentation was originally delivered on July 30, 2009, and I’m sorry I missed it.  The amount of relevant, insightful information pertaining to the state of video and SEO you’ll find here is the single best amalgamation I’ve seen on the topic to date.  Browse the PPT below, and follow on with commentary as the findings pertain specifically to the video commerce industry:

- Search engines today still rely primarily on video metadata to classify and display …

Are video .GIFs used in email marketing campaigns really video?


Are video .GIFs used in email marketing campaigns really video?

Last week, I co-presented a webinar on the State of Video Email Marketing in 2009 for my non-VCC gig with Liveclicker (see embed below).  Here’s the webinar in its entirety, in case you’d like to pull any charts/stats/graphs/takeaways:

We spent a large portion of the time in the webinar discussing video .GIFs. What’s a video .GIF, you might ask?  Well, it’s basically an animated .GIF file that looks like video in the end user’s email client.  You can see an example here, here, and here. There are some important elements of video .GIFs that make them different from standard animated …

How can private label retailers produce high quality video for reasonable cost?


How can private label retailers produce high quality video for reasonable cost?

One challenge I’ve noticed repeatedly over the last year in the video commerce industry is just how much harder it is for private label retailers to grow their video programs relative to mass merchants.  Mass merchants are often able to lean more heavily on their suppliers to produce video content, which means obtaining that content is often simply a matter of creating solid processes around video content curation and ensuring the business terms for acquiring content make sense.  Private label retailers don’t have such a luxury.  For companies like LL Bean, Gap, Crate and Barrel, J Crew and others, video …

What do YouTube’s new moves re: click-to-buy overlays mean for the video commerce industry?


What do YouTube’s new moves re: click-to-buy overlays mean for the video commerce industry?

You may have heard late last month YouTube announced it would allow content owners to include their own customizable overlay links on their YouTube videos for the first time.  Note this is different than the overlays which content owners could previously opt to place on their videos that allowed YouTube to target which links appeared.  The big disadvantage of that program for online retailers was that e-commerce companies don’t benefit by allowing 3rd parties to advertise in their videos – the last thing anyone wants is to use a video that consumed precious resources to produce or acquire to …

CommerceVideos.com: Profiling eCommerce Video Shopping Experiences


CommerceVideos.com: Profiling eCommerce Video Shopping Experiences

We’re pleased to announce the launch of CommerceVideos.com, a new blog dedicated to profiling the video shopping experiences of leading online retailers.  The blog launched without much fanfare on May 27, 2009.  As opposed to the Video Commerce Consortium blog here at www.video-commerce.org, which is dedicated to video commerce thought leadership, inquiry, and video commerce best practices, or VideoRetailer.org, which is concerned primarily with video commerce industry developments and insights, CommerceVideos.com is concerned only with reviewing and critiquing how different online retailers are implementing video.  Already, three different online retailers have been profiled: JC Penney, B&H Photo/Video and …

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