Creating value from online video

Traditional TV broadcasters are rapidly migrating to online video.  They are commissioning for online alongside TV, using the web to build audiences for broadcast shows, enhancing searchability using tags, and charging for archive access.  But how can publishers create value from original video content when they lack the broadcast channel and often the production skills?  How can they justify the upfront investment?  At the AOP summit last week, publishers like Cnet showed that there is a way to create value from original video; here are some tips to get you started:

1. Consider partnerships

Investigate bringing in third party content from services like videojug to build volume.  Or partner with experienced broadcasters to acquire the skills to create more bespoke content, or even use their back catalogue.

2. Choose simple formats

If your video production skills and your editorial team’s presenting skills are limited, concentrate on short-form how-tos, demonstrations and product reviews.  These are easier to create and appeal to specialist audiences.  Your own events – or relevant third-party events – can generate appealing content.  Your Horse used its own event, Your Horse Live, to create seven top-rated videos of Carl Hester’s dressage tips.

3. Drive traffic through outreach

Use social media (You Tube, vimeo…and the rest) to promote your video content outside your site and drive traffic back.  This was a successful strategy for motorcyclenews. Cnet claimed to even use competitor sites to promote its reviews videos.

4. Be creative with ads

Video content must satisfy users, but remember the needs of advertisers as well.  Some advertisers may fund new original content, such as car reviews on parkers.  Many new video ad formats can generate exceptional click-through rates –  InSkin claim that some of their formats achieve 16% CTR – which can only improve ad rates.

5. Build long term user engagement

All agree that video helps build user engagement and time spent on site.  This was my experience in specialist markets such as golf, photo, cars and equine; it’s also one of the reasons CBS interactive (owner of Cnet) creates 50 videos a month.  If your content is timeless this can build into a great asset, and you may well discover that your editorial team has hidden talent.

So even for publishers without a strong video track record, there is a strong case for building video content on-site.  If you know of any good examples of creative use of video, please comment on this post.  Do also join the Specialist Media Network on Linked-in for more articles and comments on this topic.

Carolyn Morgan’s consultancy, Penmaen Media, creates practical digital media and marketing strategies.  If you are considering how to build video content on your site, please contact us for an inital discussion.