I’m a big fan of Twitter. I love it for the flow of information. It’s a great tool to measure the “pulse” of your industry. The amount of idea and knowledge sharing keeps me glued to my TweetDeck screen throughout the day. But what I love most about Twitter is that everything is in short, sweet snippets. I’m an addicted speed reader. I need short bursts of data or I’ll be distracted by the million-and-one things I have to accomplish in my day.

So with this in mind, I found myself frustrated after deciding to click on three interesting blog post links off Twitter last week. All three posts had a short intro blurb and then an embedded video. I understand the power of video – I really do – but in this context it annoyed me. It’s pretty hard to scan and jump to an area of the video that really holds my interest. I can do this with the written blog post. It’s impossible to highlight and copy the portion of the video that I would really like to forward to a co-worker. I can’t grab a piece of that video and blog about it myself providing a quote from the original post. I managed approximately 1 minute into the first video (because I really wanted to hear about the subject) and then something took my attention away. Returning to video, I found it frustrating because it was hard to find the spot I left the video at, so I just gave up and re-watched the first minute, only to get pulled off again by an impromptu meeting. I gave up and didn’t even bother watching the other two videos.

Because there is so much information flow on Twitter, I find myself by-passing any video blogs. It’s a rare occasion when I will sit through a 3-5 minute video during my work day.

This got me thinking about your intranets. I suspect your employees may feel the same way. How many employees will sit through a 5 minute weekly video blog of the company CEO talking about corporate initiatives? Videos do have their place on the intranet, but (in my humble opinion) they should be used in very specific circumstances like video tutorials and how-to’s, or something with entertainment value.

So if you are contemplating adding video blogs to your intranet, consider how your employees will interact with that content. Yes it’s cool; yes it’s oh-so-web-2.0. But is it practical? Does the use of video support the goal of the content? Will people sit through it and benefit?

Some tips to consider before breaking out the Flip video camera

  • Keep it short & sweet – do a series of 1 min clips instead of a 7 min piece
  • Add humor if you can
  • Be engaging
  • Ask yourself: will this video deliver the message more effectively than written words
  • Remember! Videos are not searchable – written words are

What do you think? Is the use of videos on your intranet gaining (or losing) ground?

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