As demand for video increases across all platforms, the presence of quality video content on your businesses website is no longer a luxury.
In 2010, 30 percent of all Internet traffic was video. In 2013, that number will increase to 90 per cent, according to research conducted by Cisco. The audience for video is growing rapidly, so what are you doing to make sure you aren't hitting the gas in neutral?
If you're an entrepreneur looking to develop video content for your company's website, here are 10 tips to for making your presence online most effective:
1. The TV approach doesn't work.
Don't make commercials, make content. People are not coming to your website to be sold on your product or service. They are there to learn more about your business. Once they are there they are looking to qualify your business and would be better served with video content that is informative, not 'selly'. Provide content that shows what your business is all about. What kind of service do you offer? How does your product work? What are the core values of your company? Your goal is to provide the information that your audience wants and to make it easy for them to find.
2. Get your customers to do the speaking for you.
There is no better salesperson than a happy customer. As an entrepreneur you may know your business messaging inside out but you will never be as convincing as someone who has done business with you and loved the experience. If a customer has great things to say about you, why not have them share their sentiments on your website? A video testimonial will serve as the best salesperson you could ever have and will work for you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
3. Optimize your video content for SEO.
The SEO opportunities that come with creating video content is one of the most exciting aspects. As Forrester Research reports, a video that is properly submitted (tags, descriptions) is 50 times more likely to hit the front page of Google when compared to standard SEO techniques. Also, the competition is far less fierce in almost all categories. There is a tremendous opportunity right now for many businesses to own Google page rankings without having to put up much of a fight. If you want to increase your websites traffic, video is the way to do it.
4. Invest in premium video content.
While it's permissible to have a simple, low-budget look for blog videos, a company's above-the-fold main page videos should look and feel professional. You wouldn't have your little nephew produce your wedding video or do the interior design for your office so treat your video with the same respect. When a consumer lands on your website for the first time, you have one opportunity to make a lasting impression. The first video that is likely to be clicked should be produced to a standard that you feel best reflects your business. If it is ill considered and not produced professionally, what is a potential customer supposed to think about the rest of your company?
5. Share other companies' videos.
There is nothing wrong with posting videos that were not produced by your company. Having a blog as part of your website is an excellent way to share information, updates about your company and great video content. If you were to come across a video online that would appeal to your customers, it's likely in the best interest of both your company and the producer of the video for it to be shared on your site. This keeps your site interesting and valuable to your customers. A few things to consider when sharing other people's content: never use someone else's video to directly sell your own product or services (without permission), always give credit to the producer and only use their video to focus on something positive, flattering or informative about it.
6. Be consistent
Staying fresh with your content keeps your site alive. If you want to promote community and interaction around your business, you have to be constantly updating the content of your website. Simple video updates can go a long way. Whether it's a short video message from the CEO or a sneak peek of a new development in your business, if you are known for constant updates with video you are creating a good reason for return visits to your site.
7. Take your customer behind the scenes.
Using video is an opportunity for all businesses to open the doors of their company to the public. Take people through a day at your office. People appreciate seeing what goes on behind the scenes and meeting your team. It's a simple and genuine way to build trust with your customers.
8. Make it shareable.
Access to the entire social network of your customer is one click of a button away.
Use social share buttons to make it easy for people to post your content to their facebook, twitter and LinkedIN profiles or anywhere else you see fit. It's helpful to consider this when developing your video content to assure that the video will make sense both on and off your website.
9. Have video on every page.
You can never assume what page on your site will be the landing page for your audience, so you have to treat every page like it's the homepage. When someone lands on your website, if there's a video present they are more likely to stay. The play button is the most compelling call to action on the Internet so use it to your advantage.
10. Use video as a customer service desk.
Use video to answer FAQ's, give technical support or even provide tutorials on how to use your product or service. A digital customer service desk is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and is more useful to your customer than any manual or phone call can ever be. It doesn't cost any money to run, and it never stops working for you. Most entrepreneurs can't afford to not provide this service.
Dan Demsky is a partner at BizMedia, a digital video strategy and production company that works with brands, agencies and corporations to develop premium video content. Acting as BizMedia's VP, Client Services Mr. Demsky works intimately with companies such as Fujifilm, Microsoft, Air Hogs, Maple Leaf Foods, and with agencies like Ogilvy, Weber Shandwick, Inventa and Mosaic.