Zeeshan Najeeb of multi-million dollar eLearning company Dr Najeeb Lectures tells us how they racked up 11 million video views…
At Dr Najeeb Lectures we recently hit a landmark figure: 11 million views of our video lectures. When I think back to the early one-man-and-his-camera days it seems almost unbelievable how far we’ve come.
Because we have such a large global audience (100,000 subscribers – and counting!) it is absolutely essential that we provide them with quality lecture material. Our video lectures are how we make our money, and if they’re not up to scratch we risk losing all of our hard won students.
It’s really, really important that we give our students a quality viewing experience. And this is how we do it…
1. Reliable Video Streaming
Long loading times and lots of video buffering just isn’t an option. Of course, with students all over the world this presents a little bit of challenge since Internet connection speeds vary wildly.
One trick that has worked really well for us has been to use vzaar’s Progressive Download option. This loads the video file ahead of time so streaming is very quick and smooth.
We also find that because vzaar has a global CDN we’re able to reach our students wherever in the world they happen to be. Without a doubt the decision to go with vzaar for our video hosting has been the best we have made for our business.
2. High Quality Content
We know our videos stream smoothly, but that’s only half the story. The content itself needs to be of the highest standard.
In the education industry content really is king and we refuse to compromise. Our video lectures are our product, and we’re proud of them.
Subject Matter Experts are vital here.
And we are blessed with one of the best. There’s nothing that Dr. Najeeb doesn’t know about the medical sciences (and no wonder – he’s been teaching it for nearly 30 years!).
If you’re just starting out I can’t stress enough the importance of rehearsing before you jump right in. It’s a bit of a cliché but: practice makes perfect!
3. Keep It Fresh
Every video we produce contains different material. We try to add value and new insight in each lecture. We never want to repeat ourselves and have our audience lose interest.
Diversity is the key. And we publish fresh content every week.
Of course working to such a tight schedule can be demanding, but we’ve found a few tricks that really help us churn out the videos quickly.
- Keep it simple. When it comes to creating videos, often the temptation is to put all sorts of bells and whistles in. But you don’t need Hollywood style special effects to create a video that engages. Ours are just Dr. Najeeb and his whiteboard – and it works!
- Shoot multiple videos at the same time. Rather than set all our equipment up, shoot the video, then take the equipment down again, we just set up the equipment once and then shoot a bulk load of videos all at the same time. Little things can save a LOT of time.
- Start small and ramp up. Don’t put an unrealistic schedule in place and then struggle to keep up. You’ll only disappoint your students. We’ve been doing this for quite a few years no so at this point we’ve got the process down to a tee; we know what we’re doing, and we do it.
4. Mobile Video
A lot of our students choose to learn when they’re on the go; accessing our videos from their Smartphones and tablets.
Now, I confess: we aren’t video experts. We don’t spend our time worrying about whether a video works on x, y, z device. We just let vzaar handle that part for us.
They automatically detect and deliver html5 video when its needed meaning our videos are compatible with desktop, tablet and mobile (and if you want more technical info than that you’ll have to ask them ;))
5. Video Comments
We’ve found videos are a very engaging medium to use, but we also wanted to give our students a voice. We use Disqus which allows any of our members to leave comments underneath the video.
This has really helped develop a community atmosphere. Our video lectures teamed with student comments kick start lots of relevant and productive discussions: adding even more value to the course.
6. Be Social
To develop that community sprit even more social media is a must. Facebook in particular has been a winner for us (450,000 fans at last count) We regularly run competitions and events and this really helps us to develop a bond with our students.
This not only keeps them coming back it also helps drive new subscriptions as our current students are huge brand advocates and spread the word among their social networks.
7. Act on Feedback
Feedback is important in any business – not just eLearning. We communicate with our members all the time to find out how they feel about our services and how they can be improved.
If we’re not meeting our students needs we’re not doing our job properly and that would have a massive impact on the success of the business.
Our ultimate goal as educators is to help students learn, their feedback is vital to ensure we’re doing that to the best of our ability.
About Dr. Najeeb Lectures: Dr Najeeb Lectures is the world’s most popular medical eLearning course. With the world’s largest library of online medical lectures Dr. Najeeb Lectures provides students with a solid foundation for their ongoing education and career, enabling them to achieve higher grades and enjoy the learning experience.
Interested in learning more about using video in eLearning? Check out vzaar’s video hosting for education platform for more information.