We all love going to YouTube and spending hours watching videos of all sorts of things. For mere entertainment and to pass the time away, YouTube quality video is just fine. I don't need to see crisp video of people dancing at a wedding or one of hundreds of thousands of other popular videos that my friends insist I see.
However, for businesses, being able to show videos to your customers and prospective customers that are crisp and stream smoothly looks so much better.
I think of one of those makeover shows. Most of the girls on those shows look pretty good, just like they are. However, when they go through the makeover they look even better, their smile is highlighted, their hair is enhanced, their eyes are more noticeable.
Think of your video in a similar way. The video of your CEO giving a cool demonstration about your latest product looks pretty good on YouTube. However, it could look clearer and this additional clarity, could lead to more sales.
Sorenson Media recently launched Sorenson 360 which is a video delivery network (think high quality video streams) to help business owners affordably delivery quality video to their audiences.
Sorenson Media CEO Peter Csathy helps us better understand the importance of video and why Youtube is not the best platform for business video.
I asked, having videos on Youtube gives a wider distribution and sharing tools. Shouldn't videos be encouraged to be on Youtube?
Consumers and businesses have different needs. For consumers, a free service like YouTube may be the right answer. But free isn’t really “free”, of course. Video quality suffers on YouTube and other similar services. Control is sacrificed, because no customization is possible and your videos are posted near dancing cats and other questionable content.
And, of course, YouTube videos are surrounded by third party ads. Businesses - unlike consumers - absolutely need quality, control and no disruptive third party ads, because their videos are a direct reflection of their business. With a service like Sorenson 360, business owners still get the full power to syndicate their videos all over the Internet and make them viral, but they get to do that on their own terms.
Why should businesses consider using video for their business?
Nothing engages more than video - text and voice simply don’t come close. We are visual creatures, and the impact of video is simply at a completely different and higher level. Internet video can help small business owners build their businesses - and monetize their businesses - like nothing else can. They can better market their products and services with video. They can better showcase and demo their products and services with video. And they can better engage with both prospective and existing customers with video.
Business owners might say they do not have time and it's hard to run their business, market their business and do things like video production. What are your thoughts?
I absolutely agree that time is at a premium; that’s why Internet video must be drop-dead easy. And now it IS easy. High quality video production and capture no longer require expensive bulky equipment - a hand-held camera will do the trick.
But you can’t stop there.
Our new Sorenson 360 video publishing platform, as an example, does all the rest. Our service encodes (compresses) your videos in one step and with our award-winning quality - and then automatically publishes them to our content management system.
Then you can decide - with one step - where you want those video to “live” on the Internet. Sorenson 360 also gives you all the “one click” viral tools to proliferate those videos far and wide. We also do all of the hosting and streaming of those videos and give you compelling reporting and metrics to see how successful your videos are and how viral they have been.
All of this is also now extremely affordable, making online video publishing within reach of all small business owners. In other words, we offer a “soup to nuts” solution - everything in one place, making it very fast and extremely easy to publish videos online.
Sorenson 360 has been reviewed literally unanimously positively - with particular kudos for high quality and ease-of-use. Bottom line - the real question is not whether small business owners should take the time to make and focus on Internet videos. The real question is whether they can afford not to. Believe me, if your competitors aren’t now using Internet video in a big way, they soon will.
What does this mean for your business?
1. Youtube and other video sharing sites are fine and in my opinion are a great lead generator for your business. Someone searching on lawn mowers might find your lawn mower video on Youtube, by searching on Google.
2. On the other hand, showcasing video on your web site or asking customers to view a video, might be done best by pointing to your high quality video on a service such as Sorensen Media, instead of the low quality video that Youtube offers.
3. Youtube has a lot of extraneous advertisements and videos that will show around your video. You could use an embed code and display the video on your own web site. But the quality will still be low.
Ramon Ray is the editor and tech evangelist for Smallbiztechnology.com