One of the questions I get asked a lot about successful blogging is about how crucial of a role video is going to play in blogging. There is no getting away from it…video is a large part of the future of blogging, but most bloggers are struggling to figure out where it will fit into their plan and future growth.
I used to work as a post production video editor in Atlanta, so here is my take on online video and its impact on the blogging world. Of course…these are just my opinions so you need to apply these how you see fit to your blogging, but…for the most part…these are pretty universal truths as things sit right now.
Video, Blogging and Making Sense of it All
As a blogger, video should be in your future if you are not doing it already. There are certain things that video does incredibly well that benefits a blog greatly in the long run. There is a reason that you even see bloggers just sitting in front of a camera talking. While some people might think, “wow…that is boring…there is not much going on there”, it does fill a necessary void in the social media atmosphere that can not be denied.
Now…there are also some things that blogging can not do in the current technological environment and we will take a quick look at those aspects as well.
Don’t Be Scared Of Video
Before we get into the nuts and bolts of blogging and video, if you are not utilizing video in your blogging now because you feel like it is too complicated or out of your reach…do not be scared of it.
- It is not too expensive.
- It is not too complicated.
- And you can get started today.
One of the biggest barriers of entry in video production for bloggers is that they perceive it as too expensive. For under 200 bucks, you can be up and shooting in HD with a Kodak Zi8 (that is what I use for blogging) and the software that comes with it is fine for blogging! Video in blogging is actually better the simpler it is, so if you are worried about having to produce complicated Hollywood style productions…forget about that. Simple cuts and simple titles that anyone can do is perfect for producing video for blogging and actually converts better.
So if you are letting the fear of video keep you from integrating it into your blog…do not worry. It is far simpler than you have it laid out in your head, and the cost of entry is drastically lower than it used to be several years ago.
Note: As a reference…to get the same quality output online as we do today…we used to have to spend over 5 grand. Have to love the way technology progresses these days.
What Video Does Really Well and Why You Should Use It
Ok…now that your fear of video has all but escaped you (or you are already using it), let’s take a look at what video does really well in your blogging.
1 – Social Media Traffic and Spread
With video, you get in the eyes of a completely new audience with YouTube, Vimeo and the other video sharing sites. YouTube is one of the largest sites in the world, don’t you want to tap in on some of that action?! Of course you do…but the only way is by submitting some video. By putting a simple title screen at the front and back of your video with your blog name and url, you are able to pull more potential subscribers to your blog from an outside source. You are also giving them a preview of what to expect with a personal touch.
2 – It Gets You Up Close and Personal
As I hinted to in the last point, video brings the ‘real you’ into your blog. You can put up as many pictures as you want, but until you put up some video of you talking, that personal connection is never really there. You readers want to connect with you and video is one of the best ways to do that outside of knocking on their door and shaking their hand. Video brings you into their home through a computer screen. That is worth its weight in gold as you continue to try to get that connection.
3 – Video Stimulates The Senses
Every one of your readers is stimulated in a different way. Some love reading text, others kill to look at your pictures and some will fall in love with your videos. It is your job as the blogger to stimulate as many different kinds of readers as you possibly can. By introducing video into your offerings, you are guaranteeing that you are going to connect with the readers that want to engage with that kind of content.
Example: With my product reviews on Bike198, I am able to not only show my readers what the product looks like through pictures, but how it actually works! Can you see the power with that model? I am able to bring that product into their senses using every method possible outside of them touching it themselves. Video makes that possible.
What Video Does Not Do Well and Why It’s Not the End All
Video…just like text or pictures…is not perfect. While you might think, “wow! If it is that great, I’ll just switch completely over!”, but you do need to know several things about incorporating video into your blogging before you run off to change the world.
1 – Video and Google/Other Search Engines
While video can show up on the first page in organic search engine results for high competing keywords…remember this…that search engine visitor is getting sent to YouTube and not your site. As of this point in time, Google and other search engines do not directly spider your embedded content outside of pictures and text. So when you embed that YouTube video on your blog post, Google basically doesn’t see it. That means all of those video only posts you publish are going to have a hard time ranking well unless it is on really low competing keywords.
2 – Not Everyone Can View Your Videos
A lot of your readers digest your blog at work, so if you are just putting up video, you might lose a lot of readers who can see YouTube due to it being blocked or can’t hear it because they do not want everyone around them knowing they are not working on what they are supposed to. Just having video (or just audio for that matter) can heavily decrease your target audience because of this.
3 – Yes…There Are Still People On Dial Up
I find it hard to believe too, but there are still people that live on dial up and large video files are out of their reach unless they want to wait an hour to see what you have to say.
How To Get Around Videos Shortcomings
So…given these shortcomings of video on your blog, how can you get around them and still incorporate the latest in blog gold on your blog? It is pretty simple really.
Provide Your Readers With The Complete Package
When you post a video review, video content and other related video posts, provide your readers with the complete package. In that same blog post that you want to display video, also provide a text version of the blog post that either summarizes the points in the video or directly transcribes what you were saying. This allows people who do not want (or can’t) to watch the video to digest your content in another manner. It also provides you with the text necessary for search engine spiders to see what the hell you are talking about.
Much like I do with my interviews with transcriptions, you have to keep in mind every single one of your readers when you publish a blog article by providing multiple outlets for engaging with the content.
Video is in your future as a blogger, but utilizing it correctly is your key to success.