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New Media… Endless Possibilities!

By David Saxby, Alberta

An electronic brochure, a presentation tool, an electronic catalogue, a demo video, a voice clip, an interactive training program, a customer survey and more — all in one format?

New media technology (or multimedia) gives speakers endless possibilities, whether delivering a presentation, a marketing tool, an educational system or a customer measurement device. And, your clients can view it at their own pace which gives you an advantage in the market.

The added benefit is you can involve all of the viewer’s senses (the exception being smell…so far). Everything can be delivered in a convenient format too; either a CD ROM, a mini CD (the size of a regular business card), an Internet Web site, an Intranet (internal corporate internet) or on a laptop computer.

Presentations on Powerpoint (and even more sophisticated programs) can be saved as a "projector" format (self-contained) so neither you nor your clients require the proprietary software to view them.

Promotional literature, workbooks and other print documents can be stored in a ".pdf" file format (Adobe Acrobat software) so any computer can view and print from the files. You don’t have to have the font style or the graphics on your computer. The file is self-contained and adaptable to any computer operating system. To include pictures, ".jpeg" or ".gif" files can be stored in a minimum file size (for example, a 5-1/2 x 7-1/2 file could be as small as 50k) and viewed or printed from almost any computer, again with no special software requirements.

Even video clips can be stored in files the size of a single photo (e.g. a 30 sec. clip could be 300k) using file formats such as "avi", "Quicktime" or "Real Player". Plus, they can be played back with reasonable quality, even on a full size computer monitor. Sound clips can be stored in a similar size as a ".wav" file or in one of several other formats. Software to create a number of different file types and formats is available via the Internet or in a computer store at a very minimal cost. If you don’t want to do the work yourself, hire someone to build these files or have them design an entire multimedia production for you. The cost is reasonable compared to printing brochures or producing/editing a video. And turnaround time is often faster.

Recently we worked with a Toronto speaker to produce a CD ROM of video clips taken from a training video he supplied. We loaded the clips onto a CD so he could use them in conjunction with his Powerpoint presentation and deliver them from a laptop computer. It took under a week to produce the CD and have it on his doorstep. As a speaker, delivering this presentation in the traditional way would have necessitated a video player, a TV or projector, overheads and the list goes on. Making arrangements for such equipment can be time consuming and generally more expensive. Some of the distinct advantages of new media are:

· ease of traveling with less equipment
· faster searching for short clips
· lower production costs and shipping expenses
· convenient client viewing—at their leisure
· easy client access to print your material - as they need it
· simplicity, just insert the CD ROM versus "finding" the video player

And the most important advantage — multimedia is still perceived as new and has a novelty factor from a marketing perspective. In the near future, technology will give us palmtop computer systems (credit card size) which will offer more information and delivery capability than the average desktop computer today. I’m not certain that smell will be a part of new media but the possibilities for speakers are endless. If you are looking to penetrate a market, new media can be the edge in the battle for the mind of the customer.

David Saxby is a keynote speaker and seminar facilitator on the design and delivery of successful presentations, strategic marketing communications and creative problem solving. Spark Communications Inc. 1225-13 Ave SW Calgary AB R3C 0T2. Phone: (403) 244-7450. E-mail or visit

See also:

Get a Digital Life: An Internet Reality Check
World Wide Web Marketing (Review)
How Sources magnifies your Internet visibility

Get the Internet working for you
Resources that will help you get the most out of the Internet
You, Sources, and Getting the Most Out of the Internet
The Sources Select Online Story
Video News Releases
6 Tips for Writing a Successful VNR
Keeping Current