The violence that has erupted in the Middle East in the last week in response to a fourteen minute video uploaded to YouTube portraying the Prophet Mohammed as a womanizing charlatan has been stunning in it’s speed and virulence.
More stunning again is the obvious lesson for small business owners when it comes to marketing their business.
- Virtually all of us have the power to upload video to YouTube.com. We carry it around with us in our pockets, handbags, school bags-the mobile phone;
- The “Innocence of Muslims” video took less than three minutes to upload;
- YouTube video channel accounts are completely free-you simply need a Google account to open one;
- Your video can be educational, informative, entertaining, utilitarian, promotional, or anything else you choose.
Video marketing for small business
No, your video in support of your small business marketing does not have to go viral to be effective. If it did, it would clearly be a bonus. But there are many other more prosaic but powerful reasons why you should be using video in your business including
- The lifetime value of one new customer/client for your business
- The opportunity to rank well in both the regular search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing
- The opportunity to rank well in the 2nd/3rd most popular search engine on the internet-YouTube itself
- The search engine optimisation benefits of YouTube videos
- The ease of creating and uploading videos to YouTube and other video sharing sites like Revver.com, DailyMotion.com, Vimeo, Blip.TV, and more.
Don’t be misled into thinking that video marketing for your business should be prohibitively expensive. You do not need professional standard recording or production values.
You need to communicate value to your existing or new customers in a straightforward way which offers a benefit to them and solves their problem or answers their question or shows them how to do something or how to use your product.
White House Requests Removal of Muslim Video
Google, the owner of YouTube, has resisted requests from the White House to remove the video from it’s site although it has temporarily restricted access, of it’s own volition, in Egypt and Libya due to the sensitive situation.
Digital Marketing versus Traditional Advertising
One thing is for sure: if you ever had any doubt about the potential of digital or internet marketing or if you still cling to the notion that the effectiveness of traditional interruption marketing by way of traditional advertising hasn’t been significantly eroded, think again.
If you are not using online video marketing in your business you are missing a golden opportunity.
After Google, YouTube is the second most popular search engine on the internet.
Yes, bigger than Yahoo, Bing, and any other search engine you might use.
Using video to market and promote your business is a no brainer decision for many reasons. Here are 8 of the most obvious ones..
1. Cost of production
The cost of creating, uploading and hosting your video online is very low. High quality smart phones such as the iPhone, Flip cameras and screen capture software all allow the easy and cheap creation of videos to market your business.
Hosting is free or cheap and you can use popular sites like YouTube, Vimeo, Viddler, Daily Motion, Revver, BrightCove, Blip.TV and other video sharing sites.
Or you can choose Amazon S3 (Simple storage solution) which is a cloud based hosting service allowing you to host your videos in the cloud at Amazon and pay cents per download.
3. Video options
The options for your videos are many including
- Demonstrations of your product
- How to instruction
- And more.
4. Video sharing
You can easily, with the click of your mouse, share your videos on popular social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, StumbleUpon, Digg, and others.
5. Add personality
Video is great for giving a human face and voice to your business and building an audience who recognise the value that your business offers and come to know and trust you.
6. Brand Channel
You can easily build a channel to promote your brand at YouTube and avail of the many tools to study interaction, traffic stats, analytics and even edit your video adding captions, calls to action and so forth.
7. Search engine results
According to Forrester Research video is 53 times more likely to appear on the 1st page of the search results than text.
Furthermore video showing up in the search results is three times more likely to be clicked upon than a text only search result.
8. Email marketing
The Oglivy Consulting group have found that an email containing a video is 200-300% more likely to be opened or interacted with than one without.
If video marketing is not playing a significant role in your digital marketing efforts you are losing out and making a big mistake.
The role that top video sharing sites like YouTube plays in the lives of many people nowadays is enormous. Sixty hours of video are uploaded to YouTube alone every minute and 4 billion videos are watched every day.
There are a number of important reasons why you should be using video marketing in your online marketing efforts:
1. Search engine optimisation benefits
YouTube is owned by Google for starters. From an seo perspective a back link from YouTube, with a page rank of 9, is well worth obtaining and it is free once you upload your video and insert a link back to your website in your description.
Properly optimizing your video for the search engines is critically important and at a minimum you should make sure that both the title and description of your video is populated with relevant keywords that you want your website to rank for.
2. Traffic benefits
The YouTube search engine is massive with an enormous number of people searching for and viewing videos on a daily and hourly basis. A well optimized video can tap into the huge number of searchers on YouTube and your video can be displayed alongside related videos when people are searching or researching online.
3. Search engine results page
Google, mindful of the power of video and it’s popularity with searchers, rank videos very highly in many of it’s search results pages and many people, confronted with 9 text based search results and one video result, will opt to watch the video.
Video can also provide an effective method of getting your message to market where text based content can be too difficult or competitive to rank highly for because of the sheer volume of text based results for any given search term.
4. Authority/trust building for you and your business
A good, informative video with a little thought and professional delivery gives you the opportunity to position you or your business as a trusted authority in whatever industry you occupy.
Some of the most evergreen, popular videos on YouTube, Vimeo, DailyMotion, and other video sharing sites are “how to” videos.
If you create an educational video helping your viewer to solve their problem or show them how to carry out some task you have taken a step closer to converting a stranger into a customer.
We have all heard of videos going viral from time to time. Making videos that go viral will not play a significant part in a solid video marketing campaign for the small business owner as they are impossible to concoct or predict.
If you are lucky enough to have a video go viral then that is a real bonus but the principal reasons for a realistic and cost effective video marketing campaign for your small business are those outlined above.
Check out Web Design Dublin videocast on iTunes.
Generate Backlinks, Traffic and New Business with Video Marketing-Special Offer
If you want to
- Get valuable backlinks from YouTube and other leading video sharing sites such as Daily Motion and Vimeo
- Increase traffic to your website
- Build your brand and footprint online
- Build credibility for your business
- Get new customers for your business
- Improve your search engine optimisation
We can help.
For a limited time we are offering to
- Create 3 videos for your business
- Upload to your video channel and if you haven’t got a video channel we will set one up for you on YouTube
- Tweet, Stumble and Digg your new videos
- Distribute all your videos to at least 3 video sharing sites on the internet
- Optimize the title and description of your videos for specific, relevant keywords for your business
- Install your new videos on your website.
Simply use the comment form below or the contact us form at the top of the page to enquire about this service now.
Having a content rich website which contains a lot of video and/or audio files is a smart strategy for a number of reasons including
- Providing great content for your visitors in an alternative format from text only and
- increasing the amount of time that visitors spend on your site which will reflect well in your Google analytics statistic concerning bounce rate.
However there are a couple of considerations you need to keep in mind when you follow this strategy.
Firstly if you simply upload your videos to a video sharing site like YouTube, Vimeo, Revver, Daily Motion or any of the other popular video sites you will be given a nice, convenient video player which you can place on your site to show your videos.
You will just need to grab the code from Youtube and insert it in your post or page.
The problem with this convenient method is that there will be a link to YouTube in the player and once the viewer is finished watching the video they will be prompted to watch related videos..on YouTube. This will obviously take your hard earned visitor away from your site and to either YouTube or someone else’s related video.
It can be difficult enough to attract visitors to your site without then allowing them to leave through a link to an external site that you have inadvertently placed on your site.
Amazon Simple Storage Solution (S3)
A solution that I use for this problem is the Amazon Simple Storage Solution (S3). This is a web based storage solution provided by Amazon which allows you to store your files, video, audio or anything else for that matter, in the “cloud” on Amazon servers.
Once you upload your video or audio to Amazon S3 you can simply place the url to the video stored on your Amazon storage files on your site which solves the problem of visitor leakage. You need to open an account for the S3 service but it is incredibly economical as you are only charged pennies for each time someone downloads or accesses your video or audio files.
You will also need some type of player on your site-for either video or audio or both-but this can easily be created with any of the many free plugins available for this purpose such as Audio Player (aka 1 Pixel Out) for audio and the video player plug in called FLV Embed.
Signing up for an Amazon S3 is simplicity itself and there are plenty of free video tutorials available on the web which will show you all you need to get going.
It will be well worth your while setting up an Amazon S3 account to show your video and audio on your own website as it will remove the difficulty of visitor leakage and allow you to enhance your site greatly with different forms of great content.
Creating a podcast or videocast is a great way to let your visitors or subscribers to listen to or watch all of your videos or voice recordings in one place.
Obviously you will need to create your audio or video files first before creating a podcast. A podcast is simply an RSS feed with all of your sound or video files attached to each post as an attachment.
You will need to store your files somewhere online first (I recommend Amazon S3) but once you have done that you need to take only a few steps.
Firstly you need to set up a free site with Blogger.com which is owned by Google. Once you set up your free blog you will be publishing each audio or video file as a separate post and the title of your post will be attached to the audio or video file.
One important setting that you will need to change when setting up your Blogger site can be found in the Settings tab. You will need to find the formatting tab and scroll down to change the “Show Link Fields” button from “no” to “yes”.
This change of setting can only be done in the older Blogger interface so make sure to switch to it in your Blogger blog if you wish to create a podcast.
Each post will have some show notes indicating what that episode is about and the title of the episode will be linked to the mp3 or 4 file for that particular episode. You must also add the mp3 file in the “Add enclosure link” underneath the post title.
Once you have made a few posts all linking to different episodes of your podcast head over to Feedburner.com and burn a new feed with the Atom feed from your Blogger blog as the source feed.
When you are burning your new feed at Feedburner make sure to tick the box “I am a podcaster” option.
Once you have burned your new Feedburner feed you can then go to the Optimize feed tab, choose Smartcast, fill out your details and this will allow you to submit your feed to iTunes in the correct, acceptable format for iTunes.
You can then submit your podcast to various podcast directories on the web, distribute your podcast to Twitter and other social media sites to generate new visitors and hopefully subscribers.
The submission of your podcast or videocast to various podcast directories around the internet will give you new visitors and back links from a variety of sources, sources which your competition is unlikely to be using which will boost your website’s ranking in the eyes of the search engines.
How to Create a Podcast-Video 1
How to Make a Podcast-Video 2
There are many online resources and websites which will allow you to make videos for your business or any other purpose.
Sites like Animoto, Jing, Screencast-o-matic and free software from CamStudio will all allow you to create your own videos today.
These sites are a great way to get started making video and video can be an incredibly powerful way to promote your business, to educate, to make tutorials, to assemble family photographs into video and so on.
You can also use video in affiliate marketing or to promote your business’s product or service.
See also how to make an online CV or resume to enhance your job prospects.
The bad news is that traditional advertising is expensive and decreasing in effectiveness. Advertising on television was the preserve of big business.
The good news is that now any small business can start it’s own YouTube channel.
Take a look at www.willitblend.com, a website which cost around $1,000 to start and which has seen the ceo of Blendtec, a blender manufacturer in the U.S., blend iphones, ipads, crowbars, running shoes, timber, cameras, and anything else you can think of.
Sales of the company’s blenders increased by 700% and people actually buy dvds of the videos which have been viral video sensations for years. Blendtec’s YouTube channel has over 400,000 subscribers and nearly 200,000,000 views.
And all this started because the ceo, Tom Dickson, noticed that any time he tested a new blender in the factory by putting strange stuff into it (like timber) the people in the factory would stop what they were doing to watch.
The bad news is that not too long ago, the cost of creating, publishing, and distributing a newsletter prevented most small businesses from doing so.
The good news is that now, any business can start a blog within minutes and publish and distribute all the content they wish to new subscribers or existing customers.
Take a look at blogs.indium.com. Indium Corporation is an American corporation which sells soldering materials.
It has no less than 73 blogs targeting the keywords that the marketing communication director identified as important to the company.
He reports that the contact rate from potential customers has increased by 600%.
5 Reasons Why Your Business Needs a Blog/Website
Most, if not all, small businesses would benefit greatly from having a simple website. But many small business owners, sole traders and partnerships are losing out badly because they have not yet embraced the opportunities presented by a presence on the internet.
5 great reasons for ensuring that you don’t miss out include:
1. Silent salesman
Your business website, no matter how large or small, can act as your silent salesman when your business is closed and there is nobody to answer the phones.
Your website works on behalf of your business around the clock every day of the year and is accessible to a world wide audience. And the best part is that you don’t have to pay it a salary and don’t have to worry about sick leave, maternity leave or any of the other problems associated with being an employer.
2. Attract new leads and sales
Your website, if set up and structured properly targeting the key phrases relevant to your business, can attract new leads and ultimately sales to enhance your profits. Provided your site, and it may only be a one page site, communicates your product or service clearly in an easy to understand fashion you will generate new leads and potential customers to your service and/or products.
3. Brand creation and awareness
Your website can play a huge role in the creation or enhancement of your business brand and combined with social network sites such as Twitter and Facebook, you can reach a whole new audience that you simply can not reach through conventional marketing or advertising.
4. Autoresponder marketing
Your site also offers a great way for you to communicate with your existing customers and leads. A good autoresponer series will allow you to build a relationship with your visitors.
We all know that we are far more likely to buy from somebody with whom we have relationship and who we know. Your site will allow you to develop relationships with people and other businesses that you never new existed.
5. Return on your marketing investment
The return on your small investment in creating or having a website built will provide a very generous return on your investment compared to any other form of promotion or marketing you will engage in.
Remember that when people are looking for stuff now they are far more likely to “Google it” than reach for the phone book.
A YouTube channel and/or a blog/website are only two ways you can sidestep the prohibitive cost of traditional advertising and it’s associated thinking.
Other ways of promoting your business include
- social media marketing
- search engine marketing
- pay per click marketing.
The key is to approach the marketing of your small business with an open mind and free of the constraints which you may have faced as recently as 5 years ago.