Many coaches have already discovered that video is a great way to leverage their marketing and get more clients. Video allows your prospective clients get to know you and the solutions you offer in a way that is better and deeper than reading an article.
And using video can have the added advantage of helping your website rank better in the search engines. Why? Because Google likes to put popular sites on page one of their results. One of their criteria for “popular” is webpages where people stay for a longer period of time. And great videos definitely keep people on your site longer.
For the greatest success with videos, you’ll want to use some simple but powerful strategies. In this article, I share my top 7 tips for getting more clients using video on your website.
Strategy #1 – Host Your Videos on Your Server
I know it’s convenient to upload your videos to YouTube or Vimeo and then use their HTML embed code to add the video to your WordPress site. But you’re running the risk of having all your videos disappear if your YouTube (or Vimeo) account is shut down.
I think video directories are great, and I want you to use them. Just don’t depend on them exclusively.
I’ve heard numerous stories of marketers who had their social media accounts shut down – including YouTube, Blogger, AdWords, and more. The frustrating part is that they usually have no idea why and have no one to appeal to in order to get their account open again.
It’s better to have most of your videos hosted on your own server. You can easily do this in WordPress with a WP plugin for a video player. There are many free ones to choose from and you can find one that will work well with your WP theme and other plugins.
If your site hosting doesn’t have unlimited bandwidth and get a lot of views on your video, you may want to host your videos on a video hosting account, like Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3). They have really low rates. The important thing is that you have some control over the place where your videos are hosted.
If you do use videos hosted on YouTube or Vimeo, be sure you have a record of which videos are used on which pages. That way if you ever lose your account (for whatever reason), you’ll know which videos to upload to which pages and save yourself hours of work.
For more information on the dangers of depending on social media sites for your business, see Jeff Johnson’s recent article, “Youtube Shut Me Down And I Don’t Know Why Part 1”. It’s very eye opening, and this isn’t the first story I’ve heard on this topic.
Strategy #2 – Use the MP4 Format compatible with iPhones
Many people use their mobile devices, like smart phones and iPads, to watch video from the web. If you’re using a smart phone like the Android or Blackberry, you will be able to watch a large variety of video formats.
However, people with Apple devices, such as the iPhone, iPad, and iPod can only watch videos that are MP4 files in a H.264 video format. Flash videos and other MP4 video formats won’t work for them. So when you’re converting your videos for Internet use, you’ll want to keep that in mind.
Since Apple devices make up a very large percentage of the market, I recommend that you only use video formats that you know will be viewable on the majority of mobile devices. That way you’ll reach the largest market share with your videos – iPhones, iPads, iPods, Android phones, and Blackberry phones.
Strategy #3 – Compress for Faster Loading Videos
How many times have you left a webpage or stopped a video because it was taking too long to load? It’s happened to me more times that I can count in just the last month.
You don’t have any control over what Internet speed your ideal clients have. But you do have a lot of control over how well you compress your video files.
Aim for video that is “good enough” in quality, rather than high quality. That way it will load much faster and more of your prospects will actually watch it.
Strategy #4 – Shorter Video is Better
The shorter the video, the more likely your prospect is to watch it. It’s that simple. Keep the content and message concise, interesting, and to-the-point.
How long is too long? Well, there are no black and white rules, but here are some guidelines. If it’s an introductory video, like on an opt-in page, aim for a video of 2 minutes max. Same time limit for a testimonial video.
If you’re teaching something, aim for irresistible content and give it concisely. Then make it as short as possible. With instructional videos, it is often better to break up a longer topic into several shorter videos than to do one long one.
While most people will watch a 5 minute instructional video, fewer will set aside 20-30 minutes. However, it’s also my belief that when you’re delivering GREAT content, the length doesn’t matter. People are hungry for content that actually solves their problems and gives them the transformation they want.
Strategy #5 – Space Your Videos Apart
I recently visited a coaching site that showed 3 different videos all within a small area of the webpage – all without having to scroll down. Generally, you don’t want to do this. It’s confusing to your website visitor because they don’t know where to look or what to click on first.
And while they might click on one video, it might not be the main video you want them to watch on that page.
You want to space out your videos and content so that you direct your visitor’s eyes to where you want them to look next – and the action you want them to take. That usually means only one video showing on their monitor at any time.
Here are some exceptions to the rule:
- You have a video blog, and your blog page shows a list of postings, each with a video.
- You have video testimonials all together in a tight grouping. This is fine because your prospect knows they will be looking at a testimonial for whichever video they click on.
- You have a video directory site like YouTube or Vimeo.
Strategy #6 – Auto Start vs Press Play
Which is better? To have the video start automatically, or to show the video and require they press the play button.
The answer is that it really depends on your niche. Some people are going to be annoyed by autoplay videos in any niche market. But it can be a really touchy subject for people working in the corporate environment. They don’t want their boss knowing they’re watching your video.
On the other hand, more people will watch at least part of your video when it’s on autoplay.
So here are some guidelines.
- You know your niche better than anyone. What do you think they would like?
- Ask a few of your clients or prospects. What do they prefer?
- Most importantly, test it. See which version gets more people to take action.
- Never autoplay more than 1 video on a webpage. It’s so annoying when 2 videos start at once.
- If you’re going to use autoplay, ALWAYS include an easy to see pause button so they can easily stop it.
Which leads us to the final strategy, number seven…
Strategy #7 – Always Use Control Buttons on Your Videos
In the last year, I’ve been to several sales letter webpages that used a looonnnggg video presentation, but didn’t include any control buttons – other than pause. It drove me nuts.
Remember to use a video player that allows people to pause, stop, fast forward, or rewind your video. I would do this for any video over 2 minutes, and here’s why.
When you’re giving great information, people want to take notes or at least pay close attention. If they can’t rewind the video and they miss something, they won’t re-listen to 5 or 15 minutes over again just to catch what was said. Instead, they’ll leave feeling frustrated and annoyed.
It’s never been easier to use video on your website than it is today with the technology at our disposal. And most of it is either free or low cost.
But to maximize your results and get more clients, you’ll want to use the above 7 strategies with all your videos.
Not sure how to add video to your website? Check out my article “Video Basics – How to Add Video to Your Website”.
Or contact me at 423-463-0003 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for a complimentary consultation.