All month our blog series has concentrated on videos and why they are so crucial to any business’ online marketing strategy. Now that we have covered the how and the why of video, let’s turn our focus to the video sharing sites that exist online. There are many apps available and as always, what’s best for you depends on your business’ goals. Let’s take a closer look at some of the more popular ones and how they work.
YouTube is really the site that started it all and the most popular. According to YouTube, over 4 BILLION videos are watched every day. While that number does include a lot of personal videos, it’s also chock full of marketing pieces by various big brands. YouTube is very attractive to users for its large audience and ease of use. With YouTube a business can obtain a YouTube channel and post as many videos as they like. The more videos the better as it optimizing search results through Google, probably one of the best features of YouTube. YouTube was acquired by Google in October 2006 and the videos rank high in their search results. YouTube videos can also be embedded directly into a business website for even added appeal. YouTube is the most used video sharing site by top business.
Vine was the first powerhouse entry into the micro-video world. It was acquired by Twitter in October 2012, introduced in January 2013. A Vine video is 6 seconds in length and can be shared or embedded on all social media. It works especially well with Twitter. Given its 6 second length and looping feature, Vine videos need to be very creative and fun. Vine encourages users to express themselves in a fun, straight to the point manner. Videos can show company culture, product how-to’s or advertise daily deals. Vine is also a good spot for showcasing new products and services by creating teasers for what’s new. Vine videos are perfect for a business that wants to show a more creative and fun aspect to their products, especially in the fashion and food industry.
Instagram launched its video sharing app in June 2013. Instagram Videos are 15 seconds in length, the same as a typical online ad. Instagram users can edit their video and choose from 13 different photo filters to apply to it. Through the filters and frames the videos feel less like ads and more like a video from a friend. Instagram is not just about making a video and posting it, like its photo sharing site, the goal is to make the video feel personal and connect with the viewer. Another perk of Instagram is the ability to pick one screen shot to serve as the video’s cover shot. There is also a stabilizing feature which minimizes any shaky hand effects. Instagram is very popular among businesses for its video length, large audience and personal feel.
MixBit is YouTube’s micro-video answer to Instagram Video and Vine and was released in early August 2013. MixBit was created by YouTube’s founders and lets users shoot video clips up to 16 seconds in length. These clips or ‘bits’, can then be combined into a video that contains 256 clips and plays as a one hour-long video. Video content can also be publicly shared and is actually encouraged. The creator’s goal of MixBit is for users to make more complex stories using other people’s videos. The MixBit app also offers easy-to-use mixing and editing tools that are not found in Instagram or Vine. Some drawbacks to MixBit, for now, are that videos are posted anonymously and cannot be commented on. However, the app is less than a month old and changes are already on the horizon.
There are many video sharing apps available to businesses online. Deciding which one is best for your business involves evaluating your goals and your audience. If you’re looking to provide longer how-to’s in an organized fashion, YouTube is the way to go. Do you have a new product coming out and you want to get your customers excited about it? Some fun Vine videos may be the answer. Are you looking to increase brand awareness and show a more personal side to the business, then try Instagram.