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Does Your Website Need a Video Host? Exploring vdoLife.

I got a nice email recently from a company in Ottawa called vdoLife inviting me to check out their product.  They specialise in creating video hosts for website.  I’m pretty ambivalent about this technology; I love video as a communication tool, but I’m concerned that this type of ad/promotion might end up being the late night infomercial or the "Intergalactic Proton Powered Electrical Tentacled Advertising Droids" ad of the Internet.

vdoLife has a couple of interesting examples on their site.  They have also posted a news clip about their product. I can definitely see the application on training or support sites, but are there applications for video hosts?  How would such a host work on an ecommerce site?  Should every company’s customer support section include a video host as an option?

I’m quite interested in your thoughts on this.  What applications do you think this is appropriate for?  Would you use it on your site?

If you’re reading this in the feed or via email, I’ve installed the sample vdoSpokesperson on One Degree.  She doesn’t automatically activate, so you’ll have to click on her to watch her in action.  I’ll leave her up for a few days to give you a chance to check it out and share your thoughts.


  1. CT Moore
    CT Moore June 19, 2008

    I’m a firm believer in ecommerce sites using video to increase conversions, and have even blogged about it ( But something like a video host? It wreaks of infomercial. I suspect that something like this would turn off a lot of consumers because it would be seen as an oversell.

  2. Paula Skaper
    Paula Skaper June 20, 2008

    Ugh – this reminds me of that annoying commission salesperson that accosts you as you walk through the front door of most retail outlets. Irritatingly chipper and painfully intrusive.
    I’m a big believer in video on websites, and the video host could have some application with a more sophisticated implementation. The examples don’t blow me away though.

  3. Rob
    Rob June 23, 2008

    Done straight up, this would be hella hard to pull off without being really obnoxious or cheesy.
    I can see it working better as a funnier or more ironic thing, though. Say, Apple making John Hodgman clips available to vendors; he’d be begging them not to click through to, f’rinstance, the new iMacs.

  4. Kevin Bidner
    Kevin Bidner June 24, 2008

    I think this technology warms up a website with the human touch, and giving the site some pizazz over the usual HTML pages out there. Sure anything involving people can be ‘cheesy’ if it is done in a tacky way, but no reason it can’t be done with class. It will definitely add some badly needed ‘sizzle’ getting attention in a nice and provocative way.

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