Why the Google/You Tube Story Matters To You

By now you've seen and heard numerous stories about the Google acquisition of You Tube this week. You know technology news is big when it's the leading story on all the major news outlets. It's so big, in fact, that I'm hearing people talk about You Tube who I suspect didn't know what You Tube was this time last week. The fact of the matter is if someone hadn't heard of You Tube before this week, they know who they are now...even if they don't understand what it is.

Does this matter to your organization?
Yes, and here's why: This acquisition is a major step toward the adoption and mainstream knowledge of online video. This story is bigger than Google or You Tube. What it really signifies is that online video is moving out from the fringes and into the mainstream.

All the hype around this acquisition has just put online video on the radar screens of an entirely new segment of the population that knew little or nothing about it just a few days ago. It's raised awareness to a new level. After awareness comes adoption and in time those who don't adopt will find themselves on the outside looking in.

So now what?
Any organization that was already using online video now has the opportunity to establish itself as a leader and trendsetter. Any organization that was considering using online video may very well pursue it more actively with this new level of attention, and for the people who had never thought of using online video for their organization...well, they will be jumping on board soon enough.

I believe conversations will move from "do you use online video?" to "how do you use online video?" The difference between these questions is dramatic. The first one is solely about using the technology and whether you're "in" on it or not (awareness). The second question assumes you're already doing it and takes the conversation to a deeper level of use, quality, messages, technology, influences, strategies, etc. (adoption).

Where's Your Investment?
So what are you doing about online video? Where's your investment in online video? Don't have a billion dollars handy...ok, try investing in some time learning more about how online video can work for you. Maybe you know enough to get started and just need to make an investment in some equipment. Maybe your organization needs to invest in some personnel (even on a contractual basis) to get online video up and running for your site. Google saw enough long term potential to invest a load of money in this technology (and they even had their own competing service too!) so where are you investing in online video? Google just took care of the big investment...now take care of yours.

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