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How to use social media to increase the audience for your corporate video.

An article produced for Skylark Media Group

The use of video sharing websites is nothing new, the one dominating the net worldwide is without a doubt YouTube. With more than 2 billion views per day, it’s easy to see why. We’ve all done it, looking for something in particular, we go to the site, looking for a how-to video or conducting some research on a company or product, and before we know it we’re watching a clip of the talking cat.

One way of solving these distractions is to use a business only sharing site – the yellow pages with video – an online directory for local and national businesses. Many times on the Skylark blog we’ve highlighted the importance of video on a company website. But we’ve yet to discuss the importance of a video sharing site. Uploading promotional video, client testimonials and product news has endless benefits to the business and its potential clients.

But why is video sharing better than just video on your site?

Although nowadays an essential, a company website can only do so much in the way of attracting new business. Most of the time, a site is only reached if the client already knows about you but would like to know more, or if you have found a way to appear high on a search engine results page. But conventional search engines can also present a problem when getting your business seen and heard. A user may have to trawl though a number or irrelevant search results in order to find what they are looking for. Most people who use search engines do not look beyond the first page of results before moving on. If your website is relatively new and you are just beginning to increase the traffic to your site, you may not rank on the results list until page three. By which time your potential customer could visit your competitor.

This is where the online video sharing site comes in, by categorising and moderating all content so that it makes a browsing experience as simple and enjoyable as possible. A company profile with links, contact details and, of course, video can be added. Similar to Youtube, a user can leave comments and questions – allowing for not only potential custom, but also networking opportunities with industry partners and a chance to check out the current competition. Some sharing sites are industry specialist and others are open to different business types but are multi-channelled, dividing each industry sector.

Features can include screenshot previews of videos, description of the content and user submitted video ratings. All of which enhance the viewing experience. The best sites have a large library of good content.

The current market

Living.tv is a front-runner hosting a selection of online video. This site also displays previews of local businesses in each county across the UK. The home page will ask you to select which area of the country you want to search within. The layout of the website makes it very easy and efficient to locate a particular service in a single area. These two national online services represent the online video sharing sites as an advertising and information centre for different industries.

Current Video options

Dedicating a part of your own website to company video and uploading your content to a sharing site are two ways of getting video views.

Trade magazine for the Signage industry, Signlink, has come up with a way to combine the two, Brendon Perring, Signlink Editor said: “We saw a gap in the market for the Sign industry and that was video. Many of the companies we work with and feature in the magazine produce video and a number of our readers who work in the industry come to us with questions, asking how to use particular products. With our site, they’re questions can be answered, they don’t have to ask us directly and they don’t have to go to a company show room.”

SignlinkTV organises the site by categorising the industry sectors such as digital signage, trade-shows and master classes. It also offers the usual comments box and company information.

However, SignlinkTV offers more than just company video for the signage community, Brendan explained: “We didn’t want it to be a site where we have no interaction or input. Other sites tend to lose momentum after a launch and become almost like ghost sites where there is lots of content that has been uploaded but nothing is recent, therefore it’s not being viewed.”

Brendan continued: “We see it as a value added service for our readers, our advertisers and the sign maker. We will also be producing a video cast by me. This is in-house news, including the top five stories in the industry that week. This aims to bring people back to the website on a repetitive basis, it will keep the content current, fresh, and also encourage more uploading from outside sources.”

If you’re considering creating a company profile and uploading video to a sharing site, the key thing to remember is that the site must be regularly updated by its creator. “It’s the cool factor with these sites, popularity. Our key aim is to push return visits and for that you need to update all the time,” said Brendan.

“A way we are doing this is with sign7news. Soon, we will be creating bespoke video ourselves. Firstly we will be creating short news packages and informative pieces of outside companies within the signage industry. Outside professional video production companies will be brought in for this,” he continued. We will also be creating a weekly video cast, presented by myself and including the top 5 industry news stories. This will keep current content flowing into the site. We see this as a value-added service for our customers.”

The new sharing site will be linked to the original company news website Signlink.co.uk, driving traffic to all of the companies online services.

Remember – any uploaded video on sharing or a company websites is a reflection of your business and what it has to offer. Therefore your video must be interesting, information, stand-out from the crowd and produced to the highest quality. Please email Jo Haywood, director of Skylark Media if you’d like to have a chat about the best way to showcase your skills to your market.

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