What’s the use of a beautiful video that nobody ever sees? Video distribution needs to be a central part of your strategy if you want to get your message out there.
The world’s most popular video platform, YouTube, has 2.3 billion users. As of February 2020, more than 500 hours’ worth of video was being uploaded to it every single minute of every day! 😲
That’s a lot of content…
So how do you make sure that the right people are watching what you’re creating? That’s what we’re going to show you in this blog:
- What is Video Distribution?
- Why is Video Distribution important?
- Video Distribution Best Practice #1: Make the most of your own properties
- Video Distribution Best Practice #2: Video messaging is taking over the world
- Video Distribution Best Practice #3: Social media and other video platforms
- Video Distribution Best Practice #4: Should I look at paid channels?
- Video Distribution Best Practice #5: Get creative…there are no limits!
What is Video Distribution?
Video distribution is that part of your video strategy that deals with where you’re going to publish your content, so as to get it seen by the right audience when they are in the right frame of mind.
You wouldn’t upload a complex webinar about software sales to TikTok, for example. It’s the wrong content for that platform: even if you found the right people, they’re not thinking about work when they’re using TikTok!
TikTok: Massive, but not right for every video!
When planning a video distribution strategy, it’s helpful to think in terms of the “Digital Marketing Mix” concept - which splits potential destinations for your content into three overlapping types: earned media, owned media, and paid media.
A video hosted on your website (owned) that ranks well organically in search (earned) and that you pay to promote on Facebook and LinkedIn (paid), for example, could be in all three categories at the same time.
The best video distribution plan will include all these elements, to capture the highest possible number of relevant viewers’ attention.
Why is Video Distribution important?
Video content is incredibly effective when you get it in front of the right people:
- Video marketing delivers 600 times more return than direct marketing and print together
- 93% of brands report getting new customers via videos on social media
- Video marketing helps 90% of customers make buying decisions
- 74% of prospects given a chance to see a product in action on video will buy
- 54% of consumers want to see more video content from a brand or business they support
- Video boosts recall. Viewers report that they can remember 95% of the content in videos compared to just 10% of text
- 59% of executives would rather watch a video than reading text
- Video thumbnails in emails get 65% more clicks than any other media
- 54% of executives who use LinkedIn regularly share video content internally every week
- LinkedIn video posts get 98% more engagement than other types
- Video testimonials are the single most highly-converting type of content
Shall we go on? 😉
The challenge, of course, is getting it seen by the right people! And that’s what video distribution is all about.
With a lot of marketers struggling to find their audiences, we thought it was time to share some video distribution best practices.
Video Distribution Best Practice #1: Make the most of your properties
So, with an audience of 2 billion people, surely your strategy should start with YouTube, right?
For all its advantages, YouTube has some serious drawbacks:
- Subscriber data provided by YouTube is limited
- Your video will be shown with ads for other businesses
- Far too much competition for attention! Unless viewers are deliberately looking for your video, they’re very unlikely to stumble upon it before they get distracted by a cat meme
No. Your video distribution strategy begins with and grows outwards from your owned media: that is, your website.
Putting a video on your homepage can generate some serious benefits:
- Video results appear in both Google’s main search and image search pages
- If you can get a video rich snippet (by marking up your HTML), you can expect a big uplift in clickthrough (11% according to Elfsight). Bear in mind, paid search ads can’t include video
- Even without a rich snippet, Wistia has found that a homepage video can lead to an uplift in traffic of 53%. Part of the benefit comes from increasing dwell time, which is a search engine ranking factor - although Wistia counsels against autoplaying videos, which slow page load time, mitigating against those benefits
The same goes for including video in your blogs.
Quite apart from the SEO advantages, your homepage is the ideal place to introduce your business in video form to people who prefer to watch than to read.
Landing page video
So you can’t include video in your search ads? That doesn’t stop you from featuring them on the landing pages that viewers of text ads click through to!
Imavex has found that landing page videos, and can increase conversions by 130.5% when they are well-targeted, and engaging enough to keep people on-site for more than 20 seconds.
One of the big psychological drivers in play here is the increased trust that being addressed by a real person generates - so make sure you’re ready to get in front of the camera and talk directly to your audience yourself!
Help Center video
Video distribution is not just about sales and marketing. It also feeds into customer success.
Your help center, knowledge base, resources section - whatever you call it! - can be a great destination for video content. Sometimes a video showing how to solve a problem can be far more effective than a piece of text explaining it.
Embed explainer videos dealing with common customer problems into your help center (or even your chatbot!) to provide more options for users.
Video Distribution Best Practice #2: Video messaging is taking over the world
Video doesn’t have to be a broadcast medium. It’s also a great way to communicate one-on-one.
There are two channels - email and LinkedIn - that are particularly powerful for businesses in this respect, and it’s to those that we now turn.
Using the word “video” in an email subject line can increase open rates by up to 19% and clickthrough rates by 65%, according to Syndacast - while personalized videos can increase ROI on email campaigns by up to 500%.
The trouble is, most email clients don’t support inline video playback. 😠 In fact, only HTML5 lets you send a video “in” an email.
The best way around this problem is to create an animated GIF preview, which is linked to a landing page hosting the video itself.
Animated GIF preview for email video
This is far more eye-catching than a basic link or a still image. And, by taking viewers to a dedicated landing page, you can control their experience of the video more thoroughly than within the confines of email - including adding a call to action.
Sendspark lets you do all of this: film your screen and your webcam; customize a beautiful landing page; create an animated GID preview; and send it out via email. Sign up for free and get started!
And if you're a Gmail user, make sure to install the Gmail video integration to record and share videos super easily.
Not only that, Sendspark makes it easy to share your video content on social media, including LinkedIn.
Use Sendspark to create personalized videos for LinkedIn messaging
Just like with email, a video in your prospect’s LinkedIn inbox will really stand out. Make sure to install Sendspark's LinkedIn Video Integration to record and share video messages on LinkedIn with one click.
Video Distribution Best Practice #3: Social media and other video platforms
Your company’s pages on social networks are a kind of owned media, albeit one you don’t have quite as much control over. Nevertheless, these provide some of the most effective ways to get your content seen available.
Social media video
Video is massive on Facebook - it generates 8 billion views per day. If you want a piece of that action, there are a few things to remember:
- 95% of Facebook traffic comes from mobile devices, so format your videos accordingly (portrait or square)
- 85% of videos are watched on silent, so make sure you subtitle any videos with speech in
TikTok is a video-only platform. While it has a very young average audience at the moment, more and more brands are trying to get in on its explosive growth.
In response to the TikTok challenge, Instagram has also started allowing users to post videos. Both platforms have restrictions on the length of videos you can upload. That means you may need to produce platform-specific snippets of your content to make the most of them.
We’re not saying “don’t use YouTube”.
We’re just saying, be smart about it.
If you duplicate content from your website on YouTube, guess what? YouTube will get most of the traffic, not you.
The best way to use YouTube as a video distribution mechanism is:
- Publish excerpts or short segments from your videos
- End them with a call to action that will drive users to your website
- Provide the complete content on your owned media, where you’re in control!
YouTube is not just for video distribution though. It can also be used for hosting videos. This is superficially appealing, as it’s very easy to post a video on YouTube and then embed it on social media or a website.
But a lot of platforms discriminate against YouTube-hosted content as opposed to native video uploaded directly, and as we’ve already mentioned, YouTube’s analytics leave a lot to be desired.
Video Distribution Best Practice #4: Should I look at paid channels?
Of course! Paid media is one of the three big components of the digital marketing mix, and you’d be crazy to ignore it.
Although you can’t display video in search ads, you can place it:
- In social media ads - This can be very effective, as most platforms give you excellent tools for targeting the right audience. Of course, you have to know how to use them, or else you can end up paying a lot of money for the wrong viewers!
- In native ads - That is, banners, panels, contextual ads, etc on third-party sites that are relevant to your audience. Use retargeting to get your ads shown to people who have visited your properties before!
The downside of paid advertising, of course, is that when you turn off the money, the benefits dry up. So, always use your paid ads to drive traffic to your owned media - never just for vague “brand awareness” purposes. When visitors get there, put them into your video sales funnel.
Video Distribution Best Practice #5: Get creative…there are no limits!
These are not the only ways to distribute video content to maximize visibility. You could also:
- Transcribe video content and turn it into a blog
- Separate the video from the audio, and repackage the latter as a podcast
- Incorporate your video into a live or recorded webinar
- Cut a longer piece down into several shorter segments, or even GIFs
- Use it offline, as part of an exhibition stand display
Video is an incredibly flexible medium. Dollar Shave Club even lifted its famous “Our blades are f***ing great” online campaign intact and used it as a TV commercial!
A video distribution strategy is vital whether you want to use video for marketing, sales, customer success, or pretty much anything online at all!
It’s no good just putting it out there without thought. Your carefully-crafted content will just be swallowed up in the flood of new videos being created every minute of every day and make little or no impact.
But if you use our best practice advice, you’ll become a video aikido master: creating maximum leverage for the least amount of effort! 🥋😉
Video distribution: small effort, big result
Sendspark makes it easy to create or import videos and distribute them across email, social, and the web. Sign up now if you want to start recording and sharing videos for free.