Welcome to the last in our series of How to make a Web Video. We previously covered the various stages of making a web video, how to plan and film it, and the various stages of Post Production. So now you have a web video what do you do with it? I am sure there are plenty of production companies telling you that web video is the next big thing in marketing and quoting statistics at you. They are right - web videos are incredibly powerful tools and if produced correctly can earn you a lot more customers than you thought possible. We made a video ourselves all about the power of web video. However, a web video won't achieve any of this unless you know what to do with it.
Making the Most of Your Video
Here at Candle & Bell we always advise our clients on the best way to proceed and help them make the most of their web video. The following are a few points to consider and some advice on how to get the most juice out of your video.
Hosting and Accessibility
Hosting a video yourself can be complicated unless you have technical expertise. To host yourself involves knowing how to set up a front-end player that will function on as many devices as possible (such as flowplayer) as well as setting up the back-end storage and video delivery. It isn't enough to place a video onto a website in the same way you would an image. The video will need to be hosted in multiple formats and delivered by something called a CDN (Content Delivery Network) in order to stream instantly to your visitors devices.
One of the most important aspects to bear in mind is that mobile and web technology is advancing at a frightening pace so choosing a platform that works on all platforms and devices will be crucial to the success of your video marketing campaign.
Due to the complexity of hosting video, many people opt for third party video hosting, and there are many to choose from. Before making this decision you must consider if you want your video to only be displayed and playable via your company website and other authorized places or on other locations and websites too in order to reach the biggest possible audience.
There are many hosting providers that focus on a tailored experience and have numerous options allowing you to control who sees your video, where they see it, and exactly how it's presented. Brightcove and Ooyala are just 2 of the many. Alternatively there are video sharing websites with huge communities that specialise in reach and ubiquity but potentially sacrifice branding and distribution control like Youtube, metacafe, Veoh, and to some extent, Vimeo.
- Is the purpose to increase awareness of your brand or company?
- Do you want people to watch your video and visit your site?
- Are you concerned about bandwidth costs?
- Are you fine with having a simple player (like the youtube player) or is it important to you to have a fully customised player?
- What is the length of your video?
- Is the quality important to you?
- Is your video entertaining that it would gain a high amount of views on sharing sites?
- Is your video product specific and best used to drive traffic to your website?
Once you've evaluated all your options, considered your target audience, and the purpose of your video that you outlined when planning your video you should have a clear understanding of what your publishing strategy will be. Here at Candle & Bell we offer our clients to the option to let us host their video for them but this might not suit every campaign so be sure to discuss your strategy early on in the process.
There are many small elements that can go a long way to increasing the effectiveness of your video.
- Branding: Make sure your brand name appears in your video. It is easy for a video to be shared, embedded or ripped on sites other than Youtube. If you've added your brand name and logo into the video then it ensures that all your information travels with your video.
- Descriptive file names: Do not name your file video_1. This is not useful and will not help it show up in search engines. Just as you use SEO in text and names for your images, naming your videos something meaningful will help with search engine results.
- Call to action: A strategy used time and time again to great effect is posting a teaser on a video sharing site and posting a call to action at the end that directs the viewer to your website. 'For more videos like this' 'why not watch the full series' are common phrases used to encourage the viewer to go to your website.
- Information fields: If you're asked to fill in description or title fields that make sure you do so using your keywords. Video search is very similar to web searching so don't leave any box blank as this is how video sharing sites find your video.
- Set up a profile or channel: If you intend to use video as a primary marketing channel then taking the time to set up a profile and channel on a video sharing site will help promote your brand and gain more traffic. Organise your content carefully and use keywords to describe your channel and company. Spending time interacting in these communities will increase brand awareness and improve your visibility.
- Content: If your video is posted on your site having relevant content around the video will help with SEO and also create a more enjoyable experience for your website visitors.
- Video Sitemaps: Submit a video site map to Google and you'll have a better chance of showing up in Google search results.
Understanding the web video making process right through to the end will be invaluable if you want to maximise your video's potential. By way of a re-cap, remember to plan and understand the purpose of your video; hire a competent company and/or crew to execute the video for you; and decide on an effective strategy for hosting, sharing, and displaying your video on the internet.
Candle & Bell is a limited company based in Newcastle Upon Tyne. We produce explainer videos, animations, and videos for the web, promotional, and corporate use. Contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org