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As I create more videos and have more discussions with online video talent, the conversation seems to move many times to finding the optimum hosting and distribution structure for video. I want to make sure my viewers never hit a dead end and can easily find other videos to view from the series. Since at least half of my videos are business-oriented, the idea of putting them on YouTube and hoping for the "viral effect" is not attractive. Earlier this year I wrote about the online video market here in NYC and I see it continuing to expand today.
Currently I am using Viddler almost exclusively for my videos. I like Viddler because their player allows for in-stream commenting and their upload function is easy-to-use. I find the uploading function on YouTube to be absolute crap, can’t they even offer an upload status bar?!? For the purposes of this discussion, we will only discuss pre-recorded video content and not live services (Mogulus, Ustream) or mobile video streaming (Kyte, Qik, Flixwagon).
I get the idea behind services like TubeMogul which put your content everywhere and I will probably look at doing this as well. But it’s critical from my standpoint that you select a video sharing/hosting partner to work with in which you can build your video brand. This means that the player that’s used on the video creator’s site remain consistent over time. Some video content creators are being paid to use services and I see this trend continuing as the video creation market expands and hosting networks fight to get out of the commodity business.
There are a number of indie video stars on the scene today. I’ve selected Justine and Gary Vaynerchuk to use as examples with regards to how they use various video hosting networks for their videos and shows. When I check out Justine’s Web site, she seems to use YouTube as her first choice and it’s clear that this strategy has helped her with growing her brand. Justine has over 18,000 subscribers on YouTube. These subscribers drive massive views to her videos. She uses Viddler as well for some videos and all of her videos are distributed there as well. Gary Vaynerchuk at WineLibraryTV uses Viddler for the main player on the site. Gary also has a distribution deal with Revision3 which publishes a shorter wine show on Revision3 and other video hosting providers including YouTube.
There are more options than ever for video hosting – from the most basic YouTube through working with distribution partners like ForYourImagination who can produce, record and package the shows. Viddler, Vimeo, Veoh all sit in the middle and I’d consider blip.tv a "show" distributor.
Below is the setup I have been considering for the videos I create on CN. My goal is to find the best combination of:
- reaching the largest audience
- using the best technology
- using a player with good usability for the viewer
- outside distribution to as many sources as possible
- tracking and analytics
- ability to monetize the videos over time — either with cpm views or finding a sponsor
These are videos I shoot of product demos and also include our interviews like the one we shot with Dina Kaplan last week. I am looking at using blip.tv for these videos. blip.tv can offer me a gallery player to allow viewers to watch any video they like. blip.tv also has an advertising network and also works with shows to find sponsors. This is very attractive to me – especially in the beginning. blip.tv will also distribute the shows to iTunes which could work relatively well for creating loyal viewers.
These videos include the Twitter Song and How to Effectively Quit Blogging. I see continuing to post these videos on Viddler because the interactivity and community there is a perfect fit for these videos.
I’d love some feedback on my thoughts and suggested video network usage for CN. What am I missing in creating the right mix? The next mission is to get a better video setup and move away from my tiny Canon Elph to something a bit more professional.
Editor’s note: I am not paid (nor have I been) for using any video service to-date.