Involver: Taking Online Video to the Mat

Online video has been an increasingly hot topic for nonprofits this past year. As fortune would have it, I crashed NetSquared's Net Tuesday meet up while breezing through San Francisco last week. Involver's team of online video demi-gods presented new case studies from Save Darfur and Kiva.

Involver (think "engager" not "revolver") offers an intriguing platform with the goal of "making video marketing accessible to all." The company has essentially widgetized videos. It's one thing to simply embed a video (an ubiquitous feature for most video networks). Then there's Involver shooting the moon, making it "stupid easy" to share and grab, take action and subscribe through their supported videos. Their demo video is a good example.

Involver's Nikki Serapio (who disclosed previous work with Save Darfur), named the problem with video.

  1. Distribution: Getting it out there

  2. Engagement: When presented the right way video is instrumental to taking action

  3. Tracking: Which video viewers are the true enthusiasts who can be engaged?

Involver_Nikki From the company's website: "Our current self-serve end-to-end platform is the starting point for any marketer planning to create a video campaign for social networks. We let companies build, launch, promote, manage and monitor video campaigns that reach millions of social networking users with the greatest opportunity to convert viewers into customers. [Image credit: Involver]

Building shareability and calls to action into a video = easy engagement.

Using the Involver platform for a few months, Kiva.org garnered video 160,000 video views, 66,000 of which were organic.

  • The average number of times each campaign member asked friends to watch the video: 12.7

  • Number of people who added the Kiva video to their Facebook profiles: 1,400.

Creative incentives = more word of mouth.

Save Darfur established a points-based incentive program for their video campaign (e.g., 10 points for passing on a video, 5 points for submitting a photo.)

  • They found that the people who were forwarding videos, getting points and leaving comments were the same folks who helped offline.

  • It helps that people tend to care about what others are doing - with thanks due to the meandering, nosey ping-filled feeds of Facebook.

The point, as Nikki aptly puts, is to make a video immediately shareable so it's easy to evangelize.

Similar groups offer platforms for cause-focused videos. Involver's is the first seamless mechanism I've seen that allows you to bundle more than the regular grab and share features of a video widget. Take a look at CauseCast and DoGooderTV (from See3) for more options.

This is a cross post of my September 16th post on The Buzz Bin blog.

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