Videos have drastically changed how people consume content over the Internet.
Today, videos are a huge part of a company’s marketing and branding strategy – and it will continue to grow bigger. Cisco VNI predicts that internet video will account for 79% of global internet traffic by 2020 – up from 63% in 2015. That’s too big of a market to lose.
Globally and locally, creative agencies use native content to advertise products and services – founded in belief that the internet’s audience rapidly consumes content through videos. As opposed to traditional advertising, the audience is likely to click through on interesting video concepts and thereby engage with a sales pitch unknowingly. Companies like The Smart Local, for example, harness on their audience of hundreds of thousands of viewers for their series Singaporeans Try to market products like traditional Chinese medicine.
Sales pitches are being made to you everyday through videos, whether you like it or not. With prospects of monetising your Youtube content, creators are pressured to produce higher quality content more frequently. With enhanced technology, access to videos have also skyrocketed – what used to take hours of download or buffered streaming can now be viewed within seconds with minimal lag. Let’s put the days of being disconnected (when someone calls your home phone) way behind us.
As a video creator, how can you compete in this oversaturated environment? Production value aside, one of the keys to keep your videos bubbling on the surface (rather than sunken at the bottom) is to place emphasis on your search engine optimisation strategy. Here are some ways to maximise SEO for your videos in order to lock in viewership for your content or marketing campaign.
Content is king
The expectations for production value in video content is high, and you can no longer get away with a shaky camera and low resolution videos unless that somehow aligns with the message. The demand for video content has grown so much that it has influenced how search engines categorise a site as valuable. In fact, your SEO ranking factor is heavily influenced bythe mere presence of videos on your site.
As long as consumers continue to search for and are drawn to video content, it will continue to be a crucial factor in your SEO ranking. So don’t skip out on the quality of the content that you produce because truth be told, you’re being rated on it by the search engine.
Snip the script – but keep the transcript
Videos are a visual tool that can communicate in streamlined ways compared to say, having to write out everything that you need to (e.g. background, context etc.). The method of presenting the information in a given visual context can resonate strongly with your audience, without you having to say much as part of the script. Well-paced, punchy videos mean your audience absorbs the content quickly and are more likely share the video with their peers.
In order to maximise your SEO, however, consider including a transcript of the audio portion of your video. The transcript increases the searchability of your video and it is more likely to pop up as a search result.
YouTube as your hosting platform
Youtube is the 2nd highest trafficked site on the web, serving as the 2nd largest search engine with a social network bigger than Facebook. With Google having acquired YouTube, it is not far fetched to assume that improving your SEO on YouTube itself can enhance your visibility on the Google search engine.
The straight forward answer to this is to host your site on YouTube, which is great for tapping on the YouTuber community to build your fanbase and to collaborate with the other content creators. There is a lot to learn from the rise and fall of others and YouTube is perfect for that.
Bonus point, the barriers to entry are much lower for YouTube – so embedding your videos on the site can boost your overall SEO.
Optimise your metadata
Meeting the basic requirements just won’t cut it. Your video will rank hire and garner more views if metadata is optimised. This means paying close attention to your video titles and descriptions – encouraging click-throughs, including keywords that match user intent and featuring attractive thumbnails.
There is a science to all the click-bait mechanism that you see on YouTube and you best be learning it. In addition to encouraging more viewership, these factors actually improve your SEO ranking by itself.
Do your research
As with any other creative venture, you need to understand your audience. This means gathering data and statistics on their choices on digital platforms. One way to do this for videos is to gather information on the targeted keywords that appeal to your audience. Do a simple Google search for these keywords, see if they pop up in the Google search results on the first page and look out for the companies that are promoting their products and services as a solution.
This is just a simple, straight forward example. More sophisticated methods of data analytics definitely exist and you should gather sufficient research before and after producing your video to understand how you can improve on the next iteration.
The search results visibility also put you on an open market, your competitors can view your content just as easily as you can view theirs. This means that you might be producing videos with the same keywords, but you can up the quality of the production so that viewers are more likely to click on your video over someone else’s. Each video is a step forward and your research is part of the journey.
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