Factors to Consider When Choosing a Video Platform
Jul 20 2022
Video was once seen as an expensive strategy only used by large companies with deep marketing budgets. But now, everyone from professional videographers to smartphone users can create high-quality videos to be used in professional marketing campaigns.
Just as there are several ways to create marketing videos, there are nearly as many ways to store and share video assets. In this post, we’ll cover the different factors to consider when selecting the right video platform for your company’s needs.
Video’s Impact on Marketing Metrics
Video is not only a dynamic and visually interesting way to interact with target audiences, it’s also an effective engagement and conversion tool. A recent HubSpot survey found that “86% of video marketers say video has been effective for generating leads.” Consumers appear to agree on video’s effectiveness: 84% report making a purchase or subscribing to a service after seeing a brand’s video.
A few more statistics of note:
- Over 70% of sales reps report that video has increased response rates in their sales outreach.
- Research from Biteable shows that 74% of marketers believe video has a better ROI than static images.
- Vidyard’s State of Video Report says, “93% of sellers, marketers, and customer experience reps report that video converts the same or better than any other content form.”
Because video will continue to play an important role in a well-rounded marketing strategy, choosing the right platform is essential.
Platform Selection: Factors to Consider
Today’s video platforms offer a range of features and capabilities, so it’s likely that more than one platform can meet your needs. Outline your overall business goals and the role video plays in reaching those goals. What will help your team determine if a video is successful? What would your ideal video campaign accomplish?
It can be easier to answer these questions after contemplating the following factors.
Like most digital tools, there are both free and paid video platforms. Paid platforms like SproutVideo and Wistia offer tiered plans ranging from free to price-on-request with more features (such as embed options, customer support, privacy functions, etc.) added at each price tier.
The biggest benefit of using a free hosting plan is obvious: it’s free. YouTube, for example, offers tremendous exposure at no cost. However, it’s possible (perhaps even likely) that someone viewing your video will be served an ad for a direct competitor, so keep that in mind.
Campaign Goals and Key Metrics
Video marketing strategies should have different content for awareness, engagement, and conversion campaigns. The campaign goal also helps to determine the ideal platform for the video. A free platform with a large audience could be the best route for an awareness campaign; however, you might need different features further down the funnel. In that situation, a paid platform featuring CRM integrations for more targeted, bottom-funnel campaigns would be ideal.
Finding the right combination of platforms is essential because together, they’ll likely provide every important metric your campaign needs. Some of the most important metrics to look for in a video platform include:
- Total views. Who are your videos reaching?
- Average watch time. Are people watching the full video, or dropping off?
- Clickthrough rate. Are people engaging with your videos to learn more?
- Demand generation/conversion. Is the video moving people through the buyer funnel as intended?
Relying on platforms like Facebook or YouTube is good for broad reach and engagement. In fact, HubSpot reports the average engagement for an Instagram video is 24.25 comments and nearly 1,100 likes — pretty impressive! YouTube offers an especially good way to reach a huge audience then retarget to specific customer segments by easily linking to your business’s Google Ads account.
Ideally, full-funnel video strategies should pair YouTube with an additional platform to zero in on lead-capture and conversion opportunities. In addition to creating customer audiences for Facebook, Instagram, and Google for remarketing purposes, some paid platforms offer in-video CTAs and lead capture, providing data for proper attribution and ROI measurement, which can help you create more economical future campaigns.
Strengths and Weaknesses
In addition to considering where your target audience currently spends their video-viewing time and the best way to reach them, there are other important factors to compare when selecting the best platform:
- Storage size
- Embed options
- Maximum file size
- Download options
- Lead capture abilities
- Interface design
- Customizable branding
- Analytics monitoring
Paid platforms also tend to be geared more toward marketers and less toward content creators. This is important because in many cases, you do get what you pay for. Vidyard found that companies using “intermediate or advanced analytics typically offered by enterprise video platforms are much more likely to report the return they’re getting from video is improving.”
Video is increasingly popular and necessary for successful, innovative digital campaigns. The right platform (or combination of platforms) can provide the right tools for video strategy success.
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