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The Little Kid on the Ukulele Drove Me to SEARCH

Posted on | June 30, 2010 | No Comments

Driving to work this morning the radio almost drove me off the side of the road when the car in front of me stopped suddenly.  Distracted, I was singing along to a rendition of “I’m Yours,” a popular Jason Mraz song sung by, well, at that point, I wasn’t sure whom.  I was actually listening to someone who appeared to not know the words to the song.  Unfortunately, I only knew some of them and was relying on the Mraz-wannabe for the rest.  Obviously, that wasn’t happening.

By the time I got to work, the tune was jailed in my head and I knew I wouldn’t get a thing done until I set it free. I had to find out who this person was. Luckily the radio announcer had given me a clue – five descriptive words – essentially, a long-tail keyword (Click to see long tail SEO infographic) …


YouTube: I'm Yours (ukelele)

Off I went to deposit the keyword string into the world’s second most popular search engine: YouTube. And there he was:  a young Asian boy on ukulele who had the chords down perfect, but who obviously had no idea what he was singing.  Don’t get me wrong, the song is cute to listen to, but the visual component puts it right over the top. This heartfelt rendition of “I’m Yours” went viral within the office in just a few minutes and who knows where it went from there. (At this writing, the number of views = 21,835,809.) This, of course, is what you want to happen to YOUR videos.

Even without the radio announcer’s keyword tip, I might have found my target with a combination of other keywords: I’m+Yours+Mraz+kid, etc.  But the fact is: the little kid on the radio drove me to search, which got me to thinking…

What Drives You – or Your Customers – to Search?

If you’ve been watching my Ennect and Elliance tweets (What! You don’t spend every moment of your day reading my tweets?), you know I share search tips off and on.  I’m not a search specialist, but I’m convinced of the power of search. And I sometimes listen in on conversations among the search gurus at Elliance, who are convinced – along with the rest of the world – that search is the first step in the majority of purchases.

And to that I say – again – but what drives search?  In my case, it was the need to have my curiosity sated. (In Maslow’s hierarchy, I suppose that falls under “knowledge and understanding needs.”  I’m obviously still struggling to reach the “self-actualization” top of the pyramid.)

What concerns me is that many companies focus on search terms and miss the real reason people use search:  they have a NEED.  And needs can be driven internally or externally, which means companies can do things to activate search.  What?  Well, there’s a whole list of things: media coverage (PR), email marketing, marketing events, surveys, advertising, word of mouth, social media, and radio – just to mention a few.  I just interviewed someone who’s keyed into parents’ needs for quality TV programming for their children. She uses Ennect Sweeps to help activate interest – and search — for her organization’s mission.

My need today was stimulated by drive-time radio.  Here’s my multi-million-view question for you: What are you doing to stimulate your buyers’ needs?

Click here to see the ukulele kid’s video on YouTube.

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