Video Search: Can You Live Without It?

With YouTube climbing into the second position in terms of search engines, you can't avoid videos these days. What is your company doing to stay on top of the video market?

Many companies are experimenting with filming company events and trying to build contests around video submissions. One of the most fascinating uses of video is the Zappos TV blog. Some of the antics are hysterical and drive a ton of attention.

This type of practice can be very beneficial. However, if you put too many rules around what can be shot, you lose most of the value of the social aspect. Remember: no one will watch if your videos are too clinical. If they're less fun than a root canal, I assure you, it won't hit.

Company events can be a great place to start; this can give a human feel to your company and allow people to express themselves. I wouldn't recommend this for the stiff, attitude-rich companies that are usually based in Los Angeles, as this may cause many problems down the line.

Contests for the greatest use of your products can be a ton of fun as well. Not only just in the selection process, but the idea building in general and how they can be promoted.

Make sure the prize is worth winning. If your customers typically don't travel too often, it could be a fun trip to come visit your offices and take a tour. They can receive their prize in person and on video, a simple method for increasing the value of your contests.

Make sure to distribute your videos to your current and new customers, whether via an embedded window within your checkout thank you page or sending around e-mails to your regular customers. The constant exposure of video can be very beneficial in terms of bringing back repeat customers, as they become interested in what's new and what's going on. It's important that the content is updated and the message is consistent -- otherwise, they will lose interest in coming back to the site to see what else is going on.

It's possible to monetize the traffic as is comes in over time by offering specials and deals where the video is placed. There is software that can embed clickable ads in the videos that you can use for other promotions as well. Make sure they aren't annoying and too time-consuming to avoid losing the readership by abusing the rapport you have with your clients.

Use a beat or a tag line that is easy to remember. This is the main reason why companies use jingles and stay true to them, whether it's in a hold jingle on the phone or a consistent tag line in their television commercials. The idea isn't how to make money with the video, but how to attract a loyal following that won't disappear over time.

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About the author

Aaron Shear is a partner in Boost Search Marketing, an enterprise-level global consulting firm. Offering expert advice to many of the most trafficked sites around the world. Aaron has been optimizing websites since the late 90's, and has provided hundreds of businesses with countless top SEO and SEM returns.

Previously Aaron was the Global Director of SEO with Shopping.com, an eBay Company. At Shopping.com Aaron spearheaded the global optimization efforts of Shopping.com, Dealtime and Epinions. Prior to that, Aaron was the CTO at SEO Inc., where he spearheaded optimization efforts with clients such as IGN Entertainment, VEGAS.com, Sierra Trading Post, Sony Motion Pictures, Archer Daniels Midland, and Alliance Business Centers Network.

Before becoming an SEO Aaron worked at Inktomi, as a Technical Account Manager, where he learned SEO from the creators of the search engines first-hand. Aaron's primary responsibility was managing client relationships such as MSN, IWon, Hotbot and HP to name a few.