Retargeter Blog

Lights, Camera, Conversions: How to Get Started with Online Video

Fact: We all prefer to WATCH something rather than read it. [Sorry we’re making you read this.]

Fact: Ice.com saw a 40% increase in conversion rates for products highlighted in online videos. (Internet Retailer, August 2010)

Fact: Web pages with video are 53x more likely to be on the first page of Google. (Forrester Research, January 2009)

With nearly half of America watching online videos (according to Nielsen’s Cross-Platform report), it’s hard to find a marketer who hasn’t thought about incorporating video somehow into his or her campaign.

However, many are left wondering where to start. Do I turn on my web cam and start talking? Do I hire an advertising agency to storyboard the entire concept?

In this blog post, I’m going to provide you with a beginner’s guide to getting started with online video marketing. Even if you are currently using video, it’s worth the read. Or at least a skim.

Formulate a Strategy

You wouldn’t buy a house without knowing how much we can afford, so don’t start thinking about creating a video without having at least some idea of what you will be doing with it.

Here are some things you should consider:

  • Do you want a homepage video to introduce your product or service?
  • Will be you be regularly producing video content?
  • What do you want the user to do after watching the video?
  • What’s the shelf life of the video?

Yes, I’m not saying anything that isn’t already known, but I think it’s worth mentioning. The last thing you want to do is invest a lot of time in video and have the results be undesirable.

Like Dwight Eisenhower puts it “The plan is useless; it’s the planning that’s indispensable.”

DIY or PRO?

Here’s why formulating a strategy is so important: it allows you to figure out whether to do-it-yourself or go with a professional.

Do It Yourself
If you’ll be producing video content on a regular basis, then going the DIY route is probably the best choice for you. Start small and simple to get your feet wet, then invest in some professional equipment. The Sony NEX-5N is a fantastic camera under $1,000.

Many people are also turning to Flip cameras and other convenience-sized video cameras to create videos. Since the price is right and it’s easy to shoot and upload video, these cameras are a compelling option. Flips can be great for capturing customer testimonials and for video-based blogging.

Use a Pro

While the do-it-yourself option is great for engaging your customers, go with a professional if you plan on using the video in any sales oriented campaigns.

Professionals can create a high-quality video that makes your business look great at an affordable rate. But choosing a professional has its challenges as well. Pricing and quality vary widely, and finding a reputable pro can be like searching for a needle in a haystack.

What you’re looking for is someone who has done similar work to want you are looking for. At TurnHere, we can match any custom video request with someone in our global network for videographers. We’ve done the heavy lifting of vetting the work and ensuring the videographers can deliver in a timely manner.

However, you can find some fantastic local videographers by doing a Google search or by looking on Craigslist.

Publish It Everywhere

Sure your video looks amazing on your website, but what good does that do for the millions of people searching on YouTube for information on products and services?

Wait. What?

Did you know that YouTube is the #2 search engine on the web?! That’s right, people are going on YouTube to look for you – not just music videos and kittens.

But don’t just stop at YouTube, put your video everywhere – Google Places, Metacafe, Facebook, etc. The more the better.

Have you noticed that when you do a Google search, you get video results? I’ll repeat it: the more the better.

Don’t feel like uploading to 20 different sites? Use a service like TubeMogul and they’ll distribute the video across the web.

Now go out there and start using video! And never look back.

About the Author

Steve Young is the Director of Product Marketing for TurnHere, where you can get web video production and professional photography easy and affordable.

TurnHere matches the creative vision of our customers with the right filmmakers, photographers, producers and editors around the world and give them the tools to work together efficiently.

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