You’ve spent time, energy, and money making some great video content for your business. Now what do you do with it? It doesn’t matter how great your videos are if you don’t have an easy way for your target audience to find them and watch them.
What you need is a video distribution strategy. Otherwise, it’s like a cook preparing an intricate seven-course meal without having a plate to serve the food on.
Remember when the only way to distribute your video content was to make tape or DVD duplicates of it, or worse, broadcast it on TV? That was expensive, time consuming, and exhausting. We doubt any of us miss those days. Thankfully, there are plenty of options to quickly, easily, and inexpensively allow your target audience to find and watch your videos.
Choosing a video distribution platform starts with identifying your target audience. Are you trying to reach a public audience, such as your customer base? Or private audience, like your employees?
If you’re targeting a public audience, then chances are you’re trying to market or promote your business and its products or services. That means you need a video distribution platform that will make it easy for people searching the internet for your business or your product or services to find your videos. If that’s the case, then there’s no better platforms than YouTube or Vimeo to distribute your videos. Why? Well, because they’re the largest and most successful video platforms, meaning there are more potential viewers there than anywhere else. And videos distributed on YouTube and Vimeo have a much higher chance of showing up in Google search results, making it easy for the general public to find and watch your video. They both make it easy to embed the video on your business’s website or on your social media pages too. And they’re great for creating a library of videos, so viewers can access and discover more content in your video catalog. Oh, and did we mention they are free?
While YouTube and Vimeo provide a simple way to get a video online to a public audience, many corporations and organizations need greater control over who can access their videos, and how it is presented. For example, it’s doubtful that any organization would want to distribute their employee orientation video on YouTube, surrounded by (or interrupted by) advertisements. Or worse, distribute a corporate communications video about changes in company policy, on a public platform where competitors might be able to find it and gain a competitive edge.
So, for videos targeted at a private audience, like employee training videos (not all of your videos are local to Pittsburgh and need a way to watch the video), corporate news updates, and company case study videos, you need a video distribution platform with extended security features, so you can control who has access to them, and how they are presented. The two major platforms in this category are Wistia and SproutVideo. Both specialize in video hosting for businesses, and have advanced privacy features like password protection, login protection, IP restrictions, and more. They also allow you to track who watched your video and how much of it they watched, so you can see if Scott in merchandising actually watched your video all the way through (like he was supposed to… shame on you, Scott!). And they both have unbranded ad-free video players that can be customized to your company branding, or integrated into your organization’s private site. Pricing varies, but $100-$200 per month would be all that most mid-to-large companies would need to invest (those are bargain basement prices), and they’re both free to try out.
Some of you might be asking, “Can’t I just put my videos on my organization’s SharePoint site? The harsh reality is that SharePoint is rather limited when it comes to video capabilities, and it’s not exactly user friendly compared to the other options out there. Remember, the most important thing is it needs to be easy to access and easy to use! Otherwise, users might not make the effort to watch your videos!
So, whether your videos are intended for a public audience or a private audience, there are at least several options to quickly, easily, and inexpensively get your videos seen by the right people. So, what’s your video distribution strategy? Send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know how you currently distribute your videos, or how you plan to distribute your videos in the future. We want to know!