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October 11, 2006

YouTube & associations have much in common

By now you've heard that YouTube has been acquired by Google for a gazillion dollars. What you might not have thought about is that associations and YouTube have similar business models. Watch this YouTube clip for more of my thoughts.



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6 comments:

Nick said...

You are totally right - in fact, the whole 2.0 phenom is going to cut some fat out of the association market. Suddenly, people are paying tidy sums for the unique benefit of access to self-selected groups of people. And the people are happy to participate - as long as they get something in return.

Zachary Wilson said...

The difference is the masses. YouTube appeals to anyone and everyone. An association market is very niche and thus infinitely smaller than the masses they are appealing to.

Are you suggesting that each association hasn't reached it's critical mass?

Ben Martin, CAE said...

@ Zach: To answer your question, yes. My point is that associations have been employing the user generated content model for decades, but the top 10 associations combined probably wouldn't be worth a $1.65 billion buy-out. Is YouTube's success, relative to the association industry's, due to a larger "mass" or better execution, or something else? I don't know. I'm still trying to sort it all out.

Rick Johnston, CAE said...

The Virginia Farm Bureau has a number of interesting video clips available on YouTube and I expect many other associations will eventually realized the added benefits of hosting at least some of their videos there.

Zachary Wilson said...

Yeah, hosting video elsewhere is so critical. Why use your own bandwidth when you can use somebody else's?

I'll tell you what the problem is Ben, associations don't have the scale that a service like google or you tube or myspace has. I would be willing to bet the summation of all association out there would not reach the traffic that myspace, google or youtube gets on one day. The critical mass just isn't there.

Fred Simmons said...

There was a time when I thought a site that aggregated all Association-related and syndicated content would be valuable. Gammel shot me down stating that it might be hard to really leverage all the different content/topics/interests to any betterment of the entire community. Now, could a single association use myspace, youtube, blogging, podcasting, etc to create really passionate members, like those other communities have? I think so, but its really about demographics and technology-adaption. There's also the I'm-just-wasting-time factor of YouTube. "Do I watch SNL clips or a committee learning session?"