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Online video guide for small businesses: Part 4

creating video and hosting itIn parts 1-3 of this blog series, you learned about creating videos for your small business without breaking your budget. Assuming you now have your videos (or plans for them), what should you do with them? How do you post them online, and once you do, how do you promote them?

The first question you should ask is: what is the purpose of your video? This is a question that should be answered before creating the video, but you also need it now.

If the objective is to generally raise awareness about your brand or company, then you might consider putting your video on YouTube. It’s the world’s second largest search engine (after Google itself) which is both a good and bad thing if you want to get noticed.

If the videos are intended as product reviews, how-tos, to close sales, or to build credibility (there are many other things you could do too, use this as a guideline) then you probably want to host it on your site using an online streaming service.

Why?

When you host on your site there are many advantages. First, you get all of the SEO value (assuming you optimise them). That means when people look for “how to abc with xyz” the search results for your video directs them right to your website. Once they are on your website you have a captive audience in a sense (as long as they stay on your site).

When you host on YouTube, a visitor will see your video, plus a bunch of other ones as recommendations. They might like your video, but get distracted by the latest talking animals or movie trailers. So they may forget about it by the time they are done looking around YouTube.

When they watch the video on your website, they see your content, your marketing, and your calls to action. They still may not convert to a sale or lead, but at least you had a better opportunity to get the conversion.

The second reason to host your own videos is so you have more control over the viewing experience. When you use a service like PlanetStream you’re able to customise the player to match your theme. You can also have better control over the quality, formats, and viewer experience from every device. I’ve often clicked on a search result to see a video, been taken to the website and then received a message that the video can’t play on my device. This usually happens with YouTube embedded videos. If I click on the little YouTube logo I am taken to there where I can watch the video just fine. But once a visitor does that, you’ve lost them just as if you sent them to YouTube in the first place.

YouTube is free of course, but just because something is free doesn’t mean there is no cost. It’s worth considering that the cost of lost business is greater, potentially much greater, than the cost of hosting your own videos.

The PlanetStream player is supported on all devices and browsers, so you’ll never lose someone because the video isn’t playable on their device. And the price for hosting is extremely reasonable, even for small businesses. We’re always happy to answer any questions you might have, and explain the benefits specific to your situation. Call or chat with us today and see how hosting your own videos can help your business.

Oliver Burt

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