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Make or buy

December 21st, 2005

Internet video can get confusing fast

As I’ve heard myself saying a lot lately
"It’s 1994 all over again."

1994 was the year the web really took

It was a very exciting time, but it
was also incredibly challenging.

There were no clear pathways, but
there were thousands of voices screaming
"This is the way to go!"

The opportunity that Internet video
represents is going to be huge. There’s
no question about that.

If there is a question, it’s about how
you can take best advantage of it. 

— The #1 most crucial question for you
to answer to insure success in this field

If you’re a serious direct marketer, you
probably already own a book written by
Dick Benson. He’s the guy who most people
agree was the world’s most successful direct
mail promoter.

If you don’t have it, I’ve put a link at
the bottom of this issue for you to order

Benson said that one of the three most
important things he learned over his
50 + year career in marketing was this:

"Make only that to which you bring a
unique quality and buy everything
else around the corner."

This philosophy allowed Benson to create
and operate print newsletters that had
hundreds of thousands of paid subscribers
with just himself and one other employee.

— What does this have to do with
Internet video?

The current crop of Internet marketing
‘hot shots’ call it ‘outsourcing’ as if
they invented the concept, but the fact
is smart business people have always been
strategic about what they make and what
they buy.

The reality is we’re all outsourcers,
some of us are just better at it than

For example, I doubt that you personally
fabricated the chips in your computer.
I’m also pretty certain you’ve never mixed up
a batch of ink to write a letter either.

Instead of "make" you chose to "buy."

Here’s the rule again:

"Make only that to which you bring a
unique quality and buy everything
else around the corner."

— With Internet video teamwork will
be more important than talent

There are lots of things you can do well
singlehandedly. Writing for example, and
designing web sites.

But there are many activities where
teamwork is what’s necessary.

Have you ever watched the credits for
a movie or TV show and seen how
many people were involved in a
given production?

Creating and using video for the
Internet does not have to be a Hollywood
production and there are some ‘down and
dirty’ tools that let you do it solo, but
if you’re serious about taking full advantage
of the Internet video explosion, here’s some
million dollar advice from a seasoned media
revolution veteran (me):

"Invest time in finding other people to play
with. Don’t try to learn it, do it, be it
all yourself."

Here’s some concrete advice specifically
tailored for:

– video makers
– web masters
– marketing consultants and
– business owners

* Advice for video producers

If you’re already a video producer, start
making friends with as many savvy web designers
as you can.

Don’t try to become a webmaster at this
point in your career. The world already
has millions of them. Your job is to find
one good one that you can work with happily.

Your hook: "Mr. Webmaster, I can create great
video for your clients’ web sites."

* Advice for web designers

If you’re already a capable web designer,
think twice before you invest in a closet full
of video gear.

Odds are if you’ve gotten to this point in your
life without catching the video making bug
there’s a good reason for that.

Stick with what you do best and make friends
with local video makers.

Your hook: "Mr. Video Maker, I can put your
clients’ work on the Internet."

* Advice for marketing consultants

Do you really have the time, energy and
motivation to master two separate disciplines,
video making and web design?

Maybe you do, but I bet you will make a lot
more money faster – and have a lot more fun
doing it – if you’ll hunt for existing video-web
production teams to work with. 

Because we’re so early in this trend, such
teams are as rare as hen’s teeth. But that’s a
good thing.


Because when you find a team, you’ll have
something practically no one else has.

Imagine the power of being the only
marketing consultant on your block
who can flip a switch and produce
smart Internet video sites for clients.

Your hook: "Mr. client, I can create
web promotions for you that will
instantly put you ahead of all your

But what do you do if you just can’t find
a great video-web production team to work

Make one.

Be a matchmaker. Bring a video person and
web person together. Show them the potential.
Enroll them in your plans.

Do it now while the supply of such folks
is extremely limited. 

My guess is that for a few years at least
demand for video-web production is going to
swamp supply and it will be very lucrative
to be on the right side of the curve either
as a provider or contractor. 

* Advice for business owners

I saved the best for last.

I think you already get the idea that
time and money invested in finding a
video-web production team probably
makes more sense thany buying a closet
full of new gear and trying to learn
how to use it.

Remember Dick Benson’s rule:

"Make only that to which you bring a
unique quality and buy everything
else around the corner."

It could be a royal pain trying to
find folks who can turn your marketing
ideas into real live Internet video
sales promotions… but when you find them,
you’ll have a marketing weapon that will
leave your competitors in the dust.

You may have to put such a team together

All I can say is that if you do it now,
it could be worth a fortune to you.

The history of business is packed with
stories of entrepreneurs who created fast,
massive success for themseles by being the
first to exploit a new medium.

It happened in radio, it happened in TV,
in happened with infomercials, it happened
with the Internet, and it’s going to happen
with Internet video.

Business success – in any field, at any
time – always goes to the best business

And the best business people know two things:

1. How to strike when the iron is hot and

2. How to make smart decisions about
"make or buy."

Next issue: "Talking heads"


P.S. If you want to read a very wise book about
how to create a marketing business with maximum
impact and minimum overhead, including illustrations
of the "make or buy" philosophy at work, check out:

Subscribe to the System Internet Video Marketing
Newsletter by going here:


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