Have you thought about creating videos to promote your business? Video can help your SEO on your website and is an effective way to boost customer engagement. But how do you go about making a video? Sarah Orchard investigates.
Did you know that YouTube accounts for 20 per cent of all visits to social media sites in the UK? It’s an impressive statistic for a site that has only been in existence since 2005, but perhaps even more impressive is YouTube’s status as an internet search engine, ranking second only to the mighty Google.
And as if those statistics aren’t enough, then try these: over 48 hours of new videos are uploaded to the site every minute, and in May of 2011, YouTube reported that the site received over three billion views every day.
My point — because I’m not just singing the praises of YouTube — is that video has become a hugely powerful medium. Dig a little deeper, past the plethora of cute fluffy kittens, extracts from TV shows and stomach-churning skateboarding accidents, and you’ll find that businesses everywhere are incorporating video into their marketing strategies.
Here’s an example. A couple of months ago a friend of mine decided it was time to buy a new tent and intended to buy one that was reasonably priced (okay, cheap!). But she found herself consistently veering towards the Outwell brand — it meant going over budget but she soon figured out how to persuade her other half. How? She showed him Outwell’s website and played him the videos so that he could see all the clever features and understand why it was worth paying more — and, indeed, that her choice of tent actually offered excellent value for money. It’s a perfect example of a business that really understands what information customers want in order to make a purchasing decision and how best to communicate it. Happy campers all round!
Video is known as rich media content and has the power to boost customer engagement, increases the time spent on a site and undoubtedly helps to convert sales. Used cleverly and with a purpose, the inclusion of video can transform any static website into a dynamic interactive site that will attract more and repeat visits.
How you use video will be very dependent on your type of business and the services or products you offer.
Here are just a few ideas for starters:
Making a video is no longer the preserve of professionals (although professionals can produce more sophisticated and polished videos for a very reasonable investment, from around £250 a video). And nor is it a costly exercise. There are all kinds of video sites on the internet that make uploading, embedding and sharing video content incredibly easy. I used Animoto to create the video on my home page and couldn’t believe just how little technical knowledge was needed. Cheap video cameras such as Flip are great for capturing footage and they come complete with all the software you need to edit and upload content.
Search engines love video, so adding video content to your site will increase web traffic. Make sure you use relevant keywords when you title and tag your video and use several video sharing sites to increase links back to your website. So don’t just upload it to your site, put it on YouTube, Vimeo and so on. If your business is included in online directories you can also add video to your listing. And encourage viewers to share and embed your video so that the information is spread virally.
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