How the television medium has advantage over print and traditional media; similarly, the online video also offers a rich, engaging experience. More than the text or even static images! Because people retain 40% more information from watching a online video that from reading a text. Today people are watching and engaging with online video more than ever before due to increased bandwidth, access to mobile devices and other advances in technology. From the entertaining, think cat videos, to the informational, more how to, movie trailers, music videos and other commercials that used to be silly on television, people are getting online video content online. This indicates that people are turning to YouTube with precise, intent-driven behavior. They’re not only browsing randomly or waiting for a link to land to land in their inbox. According to its statistics page, YouTube has more than one billion users; 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute. YouTube is localized in 75 countries and available in 61 languages. Half of YouTube views are on mobile devices users go online to find answers to specific content. This can be in form of text, images, and of course videos. However video is harder to crawl than text. So it’s important to think about how to get your videos discovered, shared, and engage with. Musicians and bands use social video sites to share their music videos, presumably to, in turn; get downloads of the songs on paid sites. Brands use videos to entice users to engage with them. There are channels and shows solely on YouTube and similar sites that at one time only existed on television. In short, online video needs to be a consideration for almost any brand, product or service.
ONLINE VIDEO CONTENT VS. VIDEO ADS
First, let’s look at the difference between video content and video ads. Video content, you know the first videos that are made to in the broadest terms in form or entertain the viewer. When we discussed syndicated articles and blog posts and mentioned that these didn’t necessarily mention the brand specifically, but were meant to be shared and provide value to the user. The same is true here. Video content could include how-to guides, or tutorials, video presentations, educational lectures, much like this one, entertainment, conference talks, industry updates and product reviews and updates, among other things. Video ads, on the other hand, are just that. The advertisers are filmed and formatted for online video use. We encourage advertisers these days to have a online video strategy rather than a television strategy so that those assets can be used across multiple marketing channels. Let’s take a look at going viral. This is important in the area of online video. We can look at ways to help your video content gain momentum by being viral shared online. It’s called viral for a reason. It’s most really controlled and we haven’t figured out the secret recipe, but here some ways to help you build your video chances of going viral.
ONLINE VIDEO CONTENT STRATEGY
Online video has the potential to transmit large amount of information, simply from the imagery portrayed in the shot. After you create your own video, you can use it to communicate in ways that other marketing tools don’t. Which allows you to put your videos target right people.
ADDRESS A CURRENT TOPIC
If you take a current topic and add value to the conversation, you’re topping into a conversation that’s already top of mind. It’s important to meaningfully contribute, through, as forced contribution, that doesn’t fit, likely backfire.
MAKE IT ENTICING
Your title, thumbnail and description should draw the user’s attention.
MAKE IT REMARKABLE
Astonish, entertain, scare, shock, or inform the user. Your content has to have some value for the viewer, and this will encourage the user to share it. The more remarkable it is, the more likely it will be shared.
MAKE IT UNIQUE
Make it unique. The internet is fast paced and infinite. To break through you need to have fresh, new, crazy ideas. Don’t stick to a formula. Be inventive.
MAKE IT SHARABLE
Sharing is the crux of going viral. So your online video needs to be highly sharable. Include tools and incentive to entice the viewers to share your content. Encourage comments, use buttons to share social media, etc.
MAKE IT SHORT
We have a very short attention span, online especially. Make sure you get your message across quickly, and with impact.
Now let’s take a step-by-step look at how to make your first online video.
IDENTIFY YOUR AUDIENCE
First, as with so many marketing assets, it’s important to identify your audience. What do they want and need? What video content are they already watching? How can you get their attention, provide something useful and valuable, and promote your brand all at the same time? Of course, of course, you need market research to help you determine the answer to help you determine the answer to these questions.
PLANNING AND CONCEPT DEVELOPMENT
Once you know who you’re producing the video for, it’s time to concept. What will resonate with your target audience? Is it a one off or part of a series? What is the marketing message you want to convey? Style and tone are of course important here. Once you have your concept then it’s time to come up with a plan to implement it. You need a script or at least an outline. You also need a schedule for the shoot and you need to consider where you’re shooting, what crew is required, whether you need actors, and how many, and what kind. And you need to consider other props and materials needed. It’s like shooting a mini movie usually on a fairly tight budget.
PRODUCING THE VIDEO
Once you have your plan, it’s time to start producing your video. As with any video, you need to get all of the footage you want, then edit it, add any special effects, and make the final product.
CHOOSING AND UPLOADING TO THE PLATFORM
The next step is more specific to digital. You need to choose the uploading platform and upload your video. There are multiple options you can also use more than one. Online videos can and probably should be hosted on your own site or they could be pasted to other sites or distribution channels. If you post your video to video sharing sites like YouTube or Vimeo, it’s easy to embed it in your own site. As with using external sites for your content, think blog posts on social media, there are advantages to posting to external sites. The main one is to get a large audience and drive sharing and traffic back to your site. And you should probably create a channel for your brand to host your videos in one place. This allows users to find all of your content easily on a channel that they are already going to for a video content. You can also add a logo and look and feel for your brand here so it likes really like a branded asset.
You need to make your video easy to discover on the web. Unlike text search, which we covered in the search engine optimization and search engine marketing posts, videos can’t be watched and digested by search engines so they rely on text around the video and metadata. You will need to make sure you have a descriptive video title, a long accurate description. Long for the internet, not long, link. Tags with keywords, categories and comments.
PROMOTING YOUR ONLINE VIDEO
ENGAGING THE COMMUNITY
We also want to engage the community. So, again, allow for comments and questions, and then you have to make sure that you respond in timely manner to them. Take the feedback them into account when you’re planning for new content and online videos. Make you content match to your community.
Finally, we have reporting. As was so many online assets, you can track your online video performance. You’ll then want to analyze and adapt accordingly. It’s a Google company, so it’s no surprise that YouTube provides a robust analytical platform, wherein you can track your videos performance. You can look at your views Geo-graphically, as well as the popularity of your video in a particular region. You can look at how long it takes for your videos to gain popularity as well, and can use this to create new video strategies and tactics.
PROMOTING YOUR ONLINE VIDEO
What are some specific ways that you can promote your online video to drive traffic and hopefully have to go viral? We’ll, let’s take a look. There are several ways that a user will find online video content. First, they may know what they’re looking for and they may go directly to a search engine to search for that specific content. This relies on SEO, or search advertising if you decide to promote the content on Google and other partner sites. So, apply SEO principles and tactics right here. Often, however, users follow recommendations from there’s, through links emailed or texted to them, social sharing services, or social media, such as blogs, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube, this relies on social sharing. People trust recommendations from friends so are more likely to consume content recommended through this social sharing. And then sometimes the user knows exactly what they are looking for and navigates to the appropriate URL directly. This relies on good branding and market awareness. However, this is usually at the brand or URL level. So you may want to have a link to your video content on your homepage or a quick way to be able to find it once the user gets there. Finally, the user could find the online video directly through paid advertising. So, let’s take a look at that.
PAID, OWNED, EARNED
There’s paid, earned and owned media advertising for you. They can all be used to promote your video assets. Paid advertising is just that. Impressions and traffic that you pay a third party for. As stated in the text, in the same way you can do with Google search advertising, you can pay to have your video recommend on YouTube. You’re able to bid on searches, of popular videos, show per-rolls on other videos and have your video content displayed alongside the search results of other videos paid promotions on YouTube are a cost effective and quick way to promote video content, especially if the content is topical. It’s targeted and controlled. For in-stream, you pay only when a user watches 30 seconds or more of your videos, or if your video is shorter than 30 seconds, you’ll pay only if they finish watching the entire clip. For in-search and in-display, you pay per click on your video. This is a great opportunity for brand awareness, coupled with a potentially lower cost. However, some users find this form of advertising highly intrusive particularly in markets where bandwidth a slow and expensive and if may take several seconds for the ad to load before it can be skipped. Some ad blockers block YouTube advertising. There’s a balance to be stricken between achieving your goals and not upsetting the users. YouTube offers several other paid advertising options which are outlined in the text and on their website. You should also be sure to check out the YouTube trends dashboard on their site to stay on top of the most popular videos at any given time. So that’s paid. Let’s drive into owned video promotion. If you are hosting your video content yourself, you can and should still optimize the content around if for the best search opportunities. Remember, this is how search engines will find your content. Make sure that your page title is descriptive, as well as the video title, and the video file name. The text on the page should reflect the content of the video. You can also use speech-to-text software, such as Blinkx or SpinVox, to transcribe the video. The text can then be used in the video metadata. That’s owned, as that’s when you host it yourself and use your own media properties to get it discovered by search engines. So let’s take a look now at earned media. This is arguably the most important media element in videos going viral. You should use social media sharing to make it easy for visitors to post the video on their social networks, aggregators, and blogs. If you have a Facebook page, post it there. If you have a Twitter account, tweet about it. And don’t forget to drive website visitors to your video content. Put a link or a strong call-to-action on your homepage of main landing pages to encourage visitors to view and engage with your videos.
ADVANTAGES, CHALLENGES, AND SUMMARY
Of course, there are both advantages and challenges with using any digital platform. So let’s take a look at the advantages and challenges of online video. The advantages are video engages viewers. Like television in traditional media you get sight, sound, and motion which is probably the most engaging form of media that we can have. Online video grows a social community. You can allow for people to comment and build community right around your video content. You can allow them to share it on their own social sites and therefore create that sense of community around your content. The last advantage that we’d like to talk about is that paid promotion can lead to this organic growth. So you can go on YouTube, you can go on Google and point people to your content, that then can take on a life of its own and become more viral. Some challenges however, are that it must be view-able, entertain, impact, it has to provide some value to the viewer. Otherwise, it’s not going to be spread and it’s not going to have the impact that you want. And learning the ropes here can be a challenge. There will probably be some trial and error here. You have to come up with new and engaging content regularly and this can be more challenging than it first seems. So you will want to come up with a online video strategy and maybe even a schedule on a quarterly or biannually, or annual basis of what your content’s going to be. We talked about this in the content strategy post. And we have to be patient with video, sometimes it can take a while to show results. It’s not a search ad that does get clicked right back to your web site. There has to be some time for it to gain momentum, and to see the results from your online video content.