Business Resources

Web Video: Promote It and Draw Your Target Audience

By: AllBusiness.com

Video is playing a big part in shaping tomorrow's Web. This is the fourth in a four-part series that takes you from video basics for your business Web site to high-definition success. Part 1 explores the growth of online video and offers advice on whether it is right for your Web site. Part 2 tackles video production, equipment, and planning. Part 3 explores hosting options. And Part 4 offers tips on promoting your Web video.

Once you have produced a Web video for your business, it's time to promote it. There are a number of easy and effective ways to draw the audience you are trying to target.

Begin by asking yourself a few simple questions about what and whom your video targets. Then set a course of action that will allow you to follow a clear and selective path using all the resources available on the Internet.

Press

These days a press release just isn't enough when it comes to promoting your business's Web video. But if you think your video is newsworthy, you might be able to get it picked up by a major news corporation. Of course, you can send press releases to the media for free and hope they see it and use it. But for a little more visibility, PRWeb Direct offers a number of options such as distribution to industry-specific news and blog sites, as well as sites such as Yahoo News and Google. PRWeb Direct also offers enhancements through its Business Wire channel, which provides distribution to newspapers, radio and TV stations, trade journals, and other regional publications. Packages start at $240, which includes the first 375 words of the press release, with an additional charge of $75 for each additional 100 words.

Bookmarking and Sharing

Think your video will be a hit among the millions using the Internet? Use social video bookmarking sites such as Digg, StumbleUpon, or Flurl.com and watch your business's video climb up the ranks. With viral promotion, the more votes you garner from the community the higher your video will appear on results pages. Also, regular bookmarking sites such as del.icio.us and Reddit can help with promotion.

You should also create a clip of your video and submit it to video-sharing sites such as Google Video, Metacafe, and Dailymotion. If you're worried about these sites degrading the quality of the video, you can use just a clip of the video, which is a great way for the masses to get a feel for what you are promoting without hindering the look of the entire project. Make sure to show your Web address throughout the video and any other information in the description area you deem important in order to redirect people back to your site.

Forums

There are numerous business Web sites with discussion forums that will allow you to post a link to your Web site or even the video itself. It is important that your topic and post are relevant to the forum you are submitting to; do not spam message boards in the attempt to gain viewers. It will not work. Rather it will backfire and make you and your business look very unprofessional. Remember that these boards have the ability to spread messages like wildfire. If people get the wrong impression, they may view your business in a negative light for a long time.

Search Engines

Finally, it's time to optimize your video. This may be the most important aspect of the promotional process. Having tags and using very descriptive words will allow search engines to pick up your video and pull it to the top of the ranks. One of the best resources on the Web for promoting video is Blinkx, which offers users a very informative wiki about search engine optimization for videos. Included are some things you should avoid such as pop-up players (they may be blocked by pop-up ad blockers) and dynamic Web technologies. Its best to have your video where users can easily access it, whether it's an RSS feed or a one-video-per-page HTML hierarchy setting, which can be spidered from a root URL.

However you go about promoting your Web video, it's important to keep in mind all the resources and promotional tools available. Use every outlet and you can be sure your Web video will be given the proper chances for attracting the most viewers possible.

AllBusiness.com operates one of the Web's premier business sites, providing practical information and services for business professionals and growing businesses. See more at www.allbusiness.com.

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