FINDitKC sees future in business video directories
Two years after launch, FINDitKC today features videos of more than 200 local businesses.
Instead of scrolling through customer reviews or relying on internet ratings, imagine meeting the chef of a new restaurant before you choose to dine or touring a spa before you book a massage.
Thanks to FINDitKC, a startup focused on creating a video directory of local businesses, Kansas City area residents have the opportunity to preview a business before stepping foot inside its door.
Launched in January 2011, FINDitKC today features video profiles of more than 200 local businesses, from restaurants and shopping venues to hospitals and real estate agencies. Local businesses pay the FINDitKC team to create and implement promotional videos for the site's directory, complete with company background, contact information and menus.
"The whole point of our website is that you don't need to visit nine different places," Kansas City freelancer and FINDitKC’s co-founder Chris Olsen (right) said. "It's all there: menu, photos, videos, address, maps. All of that's in the listing."
Olsen came up with the idea after he became frustrated that the videos he was producing for clients of his independent production company weren't being properly optimized or effectively directing viewer traffic.
"I love Google to death but you get really frustrated as a consumer," Olsen said. "Our hope is to be that resource for people so that when they go to Google, they find our website, find our restaurants and get hooked."
In 2013, the self-funded startup hopes to expand its staff of nine full-time employees to include a larger sales team. As the site continues to grow, Olsen believes that the organic traffic created from the site helps local businesses become far more accessible.
In order to obtain a listing on FINDitKC, businesses sign yearly contracts and receive new videos annually, monthly or even weekly in a growing number of cases.
"A lot of our people sign up for their first video and they become addicted," Olsen said. "Because of the SEO and the way Google optimizes now, videos are just going crazy."
Olsen said he owns more than 200 domain names for potential FINDitMedia expansions, from San Francisco to New York City.
Though one of the company's goals for 2013 is to "eyeball new markets," Olsen said his team won't be rushing into video directories for any new cities.
"We're still very much interested in expanding our presence in Kansas City," Olsen said.
Credits: Screenshot from finditkc.com. Chris Olsen photo courtesy of FINDitKC.