Video Marketing: Optimizing Your Videos For Search Engines

It’s super important to tie business goals to your video marketing campaigns. Whether your goal is driving traffic & conversions, raising brand awareness or encouraging links and shares, will have a big impact on the content and implementation of your video marketing. Phil Nottingham of Distilled gave us his best practice advice at our recent event. vzaar’s Gareth Cadwallader gives his take…

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“A couple of weeks ago, I was really pleased to host an event on The Future of Video Marketing at the Digital Marketing Group of London’s Stationers Livery Company. It was cool to be talking about 21st century digital marketing in a five hundred year old Stationers Hall in the City of London. We had a full hall with about a hundred attendees on a stormy January night.

I’ve been reflecting on the excellent presentations we heard and the subsequent discussion. We were fortunate to hear a great presentation on video SEO from Phil Nottingham of Distilled that really got me thinking…

 

Video Marketing Must Be Loved

Phil started out by making an observation that frames the challenge of digital marketing today. Whereas in its first decade or so, the key feature of the internet was that suddenly marketers had incredible access to everyone and everything, the pendulum has swung; today the internet is increasing characterized by the filtering out of what we don’t want to see.

All the main platforms are giving their users more and more support to keep unwanted content away from them. The implication for marketers is that now, more than ever, your marketing must be loved in order to be viewed.

Phil Nottingham On Video SEO

Three Main Goals for Video in Marketing

I was also struck by the clarity with which Phil set out three distinct goals for video marketing, and the implications for each goal.

Goal 1. Video to generate traffic & conversions

First, he identified videos whose purpose is to generate traffic and convert viewers to customers. This is a core use of vzaar’s platform, so it was of particular interest to me. The main characteristic of these videos is that they work with and within a page.

If it’s true that product pages are effectively your digital sales-force, then the video is a key conversion tool within that page. It’s all about getting higher rankings, higher page views and higher click-through rates.

Phil made a great point that these videos should always be hosted on a secure commercial platform like vzaar and not on You Tube or Vimeo.

Why?

Because for these videos you’re really only interested in viewers who are going to stay on your site and potentially hit the buy button or call the order line. What you don’t want is to spend good marketing money generating traffic for YouTube that you’ll never see again.

Phil reported an impressive statistic from his own research: that less than 1% of the traffic that company’s generate for their videos on You Tube gets returned to their own site.

Video Marketing At Stationers HallGoal 2. Video for brand awareness

Where YouTube comes into its own is for videos that are intended to generate broad brand awareness. This is a very different objective to that of converting views to sales. Three points that Phil made about this second goal for video marketing have stuck with me.

First, he identified two distinct types of video that can be effective in generating brand awareness; what he called ‘hero’ content – this is the stuff you hope will go viral – and unbranded informational content, with no call-to-action, that create goodwill towards the brand.

His second point was that either kind of content needs to relate well to an audience that is relatively unfamiliar with your brand. This is why it’s so hard to use the same video content for multiple purposes: the transactional, product marketing videos are targeted at visitors who are already pre-disposed to consider the product in question, whereas videos serving the goal of creating brand awareness are targeted at people who might know very little about the brand.

His third point was that the key metric for these videos is not views, as such, but user engagement – how many people watch your videos all the way through?

Goal 3. Video for links and shares

Finally, I was also struck by what Phil said about a third goal for marketing videos; to stimulate links and social shares. The challenge here is obviously to create a video that others want to link back to your site.

I really liked the way Phil explained a two-phase strategy for these videos. It can be a real mistake to go out to You Tube too early – again because you want the links back to your own site, not theirs.

At the outset, it’s best if the video is only visible on your own domain, so this is another example of where you need a secure, commercial video hosting platform. Once you’ve started to see the video generate its own traction, that’s the time to go broad and wide with You Tube – but even then, it’s worth tracing those sites who are linking to the You Tube video and encouraging them to link back to your site instead.

From the front of the hall I could see that after Phil finished his presentation the entire audience mouthed ‘Wow’ to themselves. It was a great pitch that I’ve been thinking a lot about since.”

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