5 Ways to Get Video Marketing Right
These days, seemingly everywhere you look online, you find video. In less than three years, video has taken the Internet landscape by storm, changing the way users think about and consume online content. The implications for Web-based and Web-enabled businesses are staggering, and represent a fundamental sea change in the ways in which businesses generate traffic, create leads, drive conversion and create community online.
Today, only cost and technical complexity have held back the widespread adoption of video by businesses. And with the recent removal of these obstacles, video is suddenly within the grasp of companies of all sizes. How then, should businesses best take advantage of this emerging media, and how can they deploy it to maximum effect while minimizing the associated costs and overhead? The following are five ways to help you get video marketing right.
1. Don't skimp on quality. It's tempting to use consumer video sites as a free alternative to a commercial solution, but you're unlikely to be satisfied with the results. Consumer sites ratchet down the quality of video as a means of controlling their costs. This helps their bottom lines, but produces an image quality that's suboptimal for business use.
They're also likely to put their own watermark on the video, with a click away to their site, as well as reserving the right to run advertising over or before your videos.
2. Brand is critical. In the crowded online marketplace, brand counts for everything. Make sure your brand is front and center by customizing the video player and uploader software you're using, as well as any other elements of your video solution.
3. Syndication is gold. Most companies understand that search engine optimization is a critical aspect of their marketing strategy. But they often neglect to make sure their videos appear in search engine results. Since most search crawlers can't read Flash tags, the only way to appear in a video search result is to publish your video assets via Media RSS feed. All major search engines then allow you to submit the MRSS URL, which ensures that your results show up.
4. Think viral. Don't neglect viral propagation. Viral reposting of video puts your brand, your watermark, your video and a click to your site all into locations — blogs, wikis, forums, etc. — that you could never reach on your own. Some publishers see that more than 50 percent of their video viewership occurs through viral propagation, making it one of their most powerful means of brand dissemination.
5. Conversion is what counts. Too many marketers think of video in terms of engagement, and not enough in terms of conversion. Until things change in the advertising landscape, video advertisement is unlikely to produce real revenue for most publishers.
It's extremely effective in terms of driving call to action responses, however. As a result, always pair videos with a call to action. Successful video initiatives can pay for themselves in 90 days or less. So this is also a useful yardstick for evaluating video programs.
Video is a powerful form of new media that all marketers and publishers should be adopting. Following these guidelines will help to ensure a successful video experience.