SMX East Video Search Marketing Beyond YouTube

By Paige Payne | Oct 9, 2009
More Articles by Paige

Session three for day two October 6th, “Video Search Marketing Beyond YouTube” – This “Pumping Up YouTube” session focused on the most popular video search service, but it’s not the only one. This session looked at other types of video search marketing opportunities out there. The Moderator for this session was Kevin Ryan, Chief Marketing Officer, Webvisible. Speakers included: William Leake, CEO, Apogee Search: John McWeeny, COO, TurnHere; Eric Papczun, VP of Client Services, Performics; Avi Wilensky, CEO, Promediacorp.

Kicking off the session William Leake began by pointing out the explosive growth in the total number of online video as well as competition of hosts. He used Google, the leader in online video hosting, to illustrate his point. When you look at Google’s historical percentage of total market share for video hosting over the years, you’ll find it has dropped. Not because the number of videos they are hosting has decreased, but because the number of competitors in the market has increased.

William went on to talk about the two basic options for putting video online; one can either post video or host video. The major benefit of posted video SEO is that the existing traffic already exists on popular hosting sites. Hosting your own videos allows more control over various SEO measures which help the videos to rank for your site.

If you are a business trying to decide which method is right for you, William and the rest of the panelist recommend that you host the video on your own site before posting anywhere else. When posting to your own site, it is important to keep the following video-specific SEO tips in mind.

  • As for site structure, be sure to use unique URLs with one video per URL.
  • Be sure to use embedded players and never pop ups.
  • Include metadata (in file)
  • For the videos themselves, be sure to offer multiple formats. Different engines search for different types of video (include keywords in filename, and in URL)
  • Follow general SEO principles for optimizing title, meta, H1 tags, etc.
  • Definitely include contextually related links to article and other videos
  • Consider publishing captions and/or subtitles
  • Remember it is about sharing- enable comments, include social bookmarking tools, allow visitors to subscribe to your videos, let viewers grab your embed code easily

Once you have everything in place on your site, that’s when you want to reach out and post your video elsewhere, don’t wait for search engines to find you, be proactive and submit your online videos to video content sites.

John McWeeny added to the importance of online videos with rattling off a few statistics of his own:

  • How 25 billion videos were viewed online in the month of August
  • For the total number of search queries performed, a video search site ranks number two:
  1. Google
  2. YouTube
  3. Yahoo!
  • A video is 50 times more likely than a text page on the same topic to appear in Google search results.

John added how, like traditional SEO, interesting content does matter in order to be effective in achieving your desired goal. Be sure to create good, valuable, interesting content. Many people are not currently optimizing their videos for SEO so take advantage of the opportunity.

Eric Papczun was third to speak. He started his presentation by playing a compilation clip entitled “The Most Popular Videos of All Time.” He then used examples of the clips in the video to discuss what he felt was important for success with online videos. Much of what he said overlapped with the other two who spoke before him. However, a few things stood out such as how people want to be entertained first and foremost. If people don’t watch it, it serves no purpose.

Be sure to showcase your work; pick a compelling thumbnail that is relevant. Use advertising with tools like the one offered by Yahoo! Rich ads, YouTube, Google Click to Play. These tools will provide you valuable insight with the corresponding analytics reports they offer.

Take the future consideration into account when examining the coming potential of the online video market. Things like faster 4G networks for mobile devices and increasing functionality.

The last presenter for the session was, Avi Wilensky. Avi discussed some particular ways he has been able to leverage video for link building purposes. In  doing so, he has been able to achieve high rankings in competitive spaces.

He discussed a particular instance when his agency used a link-bait strategy and was able to get client ranked on the first page of SEO results for the very competitive keyword, “auto insurance.” At the time, this term in AdWords had a CPC of roughly $32.00. Linkbait, by definition, is a way to capture links form across the web. For this they ran a promotion, releasing an unorthodox video of Avi sitting on a toilet in his birthday suit with a a computer in his lap singing the SafeAuto theme song. At the end of his performance he challenged viewers to a created their one theme song and submit it for a chance to win some sort of contest.

While this may be an extreme example of grabbing a customer’s attention, it did create the right viral effect with people posting the link all over the web. Avi ended by suggesting that if you are in the market for finding ideas for what will go viral in your industry, try using a site that specializes in video contests in order to come up with the creative for your company’s very own contest.

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