So you’ve created a great corporate video highlighting all of the benefits to using your company / product and you’re ready to share it with the world. Time to upload it to Youtube and share it with all of your fans and followers on social media right? Well kind of, but there’s a whole lot more you can do to ensure that you’re video maximises it’s full potential, reaches new audiences and converts your video’s viewers into leads and sales.
Video production can be a large investment for many companies so I’ve done my best to breakdown some key points to consider when producing an effective video marketing and distribution strategy for your corporate video.
Where to Upload Your Video?
Choosing the right place to host your video content is extremely important, not only is this going to affect the way your video is watched in terms of context and quality, but more importantly its going to impact Google’s search results when people are looking for content relevant to your video.
We know that Google likes to provide it’s users with high quality, original relevant content and when used correctly video is the most engaging, effective and information-rich medium that you can use to deliver your message, therefore it will often rank videos higher than text articles in search results. As a side-note, using Google’s structured data these search results will appear as rich-snippets which are proven to increase CTR, I’ll go through this in a little more detail later.
The upside to this is of course that having a corporate video for your business is going to effectively raise awareness about your product or service by ranking higher in search results, however if you’ve embedded the video on your website from Youtube it will almost always display the Youtube link as opposed to the page in which it’s embedded on your website.
The negative impact of this is that achieving conversions from Youtube can be extremely difficult and far less effective than having potential clients watch the video on your website – an area in which you can fully manipulate to provide simple call-to-actions and additional information necessary for making a purchase or enquiry.
Self-hosting, Video SEO Services
This is still a hotly debated area as with many aspects of SEO – opinions can vary and there are often no hard and fast rules, however in the last 12 months I’ve noticed many large websites and companies making the move from using Youtube to self-hosting video in addition to services such as Wistia, leading me to believe that many of the top SEO specialists are seeing the potential for video hosting alternatives to Youtube and Vimeo embeds.
However self-hosting content can bring up a number of issues:
“All I get is a black box where your video should be.”
“I’ve tried watching your video, but it’s buffering really slowly then stopped.”
“Your video content isn’t working on my mobile device.”
Not to mention that without knowledge in areas of video compression, web design and video SEO you’ll be unable to achieve a high-ranking video results anyway. However, all is not lost, there are video hosting sites like SproutVideo and Wistia that make the process of Video SEO and marketing much simpler.
So what are the benefits to self-hosting and sites like Wistia? Most importantly the page in which your video content is hosted won’t be in direct competition with your own website – meaning your webpage with the embedded video will rank higher than the location in which it’s hosted. In addition to this, the best third-party hosting sites also offer simplified Video SEO tools with handy monitoring statistics giving you the ability to fine-tune your calls-to-action and evaluate your video’s performance.
Google doesn’t have the ability to read video like text, at least not yet anyway. So there is a number of steps you need to take to ensure your video will appear in search results. Firstly you’ll need to create a Video Sitemap letting Google index each of your specific pages that contain video, within this sitemap you have the ability to add important information about the video such as a thumbnail, title, description, tags and video location (whether it be self-hosted, or on Wistia/ SproutVideo. You can do this for embedded Youtube videos as well to improve your website’s on-page SEO).
So there are a number of alternative hosting strategies to consider, but this isn’t to say that you shouldn’t upload your video to Youtube as well, the more places you can market your product / service online the better, just make sure that you use the self-hosted/ SEO’d videos wherever possible eg. blogs, social media, marketing emails. To ensure you’re driving the maximum amount of traffic directly to your website where you can more easily convert viewers.
Video Marketing Tools
Another benefit to using specialist video hosting sites like Wistia and SproutVideo is the marketing tools they provide, adding call-to-actions using interactive elements at specific points in your video will encourage viewers to visit your site or complete an action, and has been proven to be a really effective conversion tool.
These websites offer this service make adding, monitoring and altering them a much simpler process than through monitization on Youtube – with the additional benefit of being able to provide a link to any page on your site as opposed the limitations of just linking to your homepage. However, this does come at a price (especially if you want to use all of their features), it’s worth discussing the distribution plan in detail with your video production company early to see if they can provide this service within their production costs.
Creating Video Content for different Platforms
The context in which you’re video will be viewed should be carefully considered and the content tailored towards each platform. Worthwhile video production doesn’t come cheap, but depending upon the project much of the expense can be for the production side of the process, therefore you can maximise your investment by using all of the content filmed to it’s full effect. It’s important to think about your different marketing outlets at the beginning of the project and include the following post-production suggestions into your brief.
Social media is obviously an extremely powerful, free marketing tool for your business to exploit – but it’s definitely worth considering how sharing your video is going to generate leads and sales. With so much video content in people’s timelines it’s easy for viewers to get distracted or simply watch your video and scroll down to the next item without taking any action.
As we’ve already discussed it’s much easier to convert viewers once they’ve clicked through to your website – a really effective strategy for using social media to gain traffic to your site is to create much shorter edits for social sharing 6 – 20 seconds (dependent upon the content and length of your final video). You can then use these shorter videos as trailers for you content to hook in viewers, through the addition of engaging call-to-actions you’ll be able to provide a quick and simple way for viewers to travel directly to your site where they can watch the full video.
Another effective method in promoting your business is through incorporating videos as part of a blog post – the most powerful way of doing this is to answer a particular question a potential client may be searching for, a really helpful blog with SEO’d video will stand a really high chance in ranking for individuals researching your product or service.
Search Appearance – Rich Snippets
Finally, rich snippets are a great way to improve CTR from Google search results. With the correct structured data you’re able to have a video thumbnail appear alongside your websites search information which creates a much more eye-catching link when placed alongside other text based results.
I hope some of the above suggestions are helpful to ensuring that you’re able to market your corporate video effectively, as with all SEO practice it’s always safer to make alterations gradually to your website, preserving your current rankings, we’re currently in the process of moving all of our video content from Youtube to Wistia. In addition to the advice we already provide, we’re also going to be offering video production packages that include corporate video distribution, hosting and marketing options to all of our future clients, allowing them to achieve the maximum returns from their video marketing investments.