Social Video: Put Your Business in the Social Spotlight
by Liz Plachecki
Remember when you had to lug around a video camera to capture priceless moments on film to be replayed at graduations and birthday parities for years to come? From ones that rested on your shoulder to smaller hand-helds, the traditional video camera is becoming a thing of the past in an age where every new smartphone is equipped with a high quality video camera and enough memory to store hours of digital video. So, why not use this marvel of modern technology to bring your brand to an even wider audience?
Incorporating video into a social media strategy for your business is fairly straightforward: shoot video and post it online. Here are three popular platforms you can use to get your video out to the masses.
There’s no getting around it – if you want the largest possible reach, YouTube is the answer. After Google, YouTube is the #2 search engine in the world – the world! From tutorials to cat videos, the varied content on YouTube is informational, entertaining and more. Regardless of your business’s niche, you’ll be able to find a home there. Create channel for your business and upload your videos, categorizing and tagging to make them searchable to others looking for the information you’re sharing.
Instead of being a place just to post video, Vine is a mobile app for iPod touch, iPhone and Android devices used to capture and post videos that are six seconds or shorter, as well as a short caption and/or hashtags. On first glance, it may be difficult to see how Vine videos can be effective components of any social media strategy, but the extremely short time frame forces people to maximize every single second and communicate messages succinctly.
Since videos on Vine play on a loop until you move on to another, one of the most popular techniques is to create a video in which the end flows back into the beginning. When creating a seamlessly looping video, be aware of the placement of any moving objects to ensure that they end up in the same location where they started.
Of course, it’s important to be aware of the service’s limitations and the need to use the six seconds wisely. Talking with a social media strategist to discuss whether this platform is worth pursuing for your business is a good idea. If you’re ready to jump in and create an account, remember not to force videos – it can take some time to get the hang of Vine and how to portray what your business has to offer in six-second video-bytes.
Another option similar to Vine is Instagram’s new video option. As of June 2013, users see a video camera icon when they use the app to capture a photo. Hitting that button allows users to capture up to 15 seconds of video, then choose from 13 filters, employ a stabilizing feature and select a cover frame. Captions and hashtags can also be used on Instagram videos.
Plus, don’t forget to share your videos on your other social media channels! Facebook is a great place to showcase your new content, as well as Twitter, Google+ and possibly LinkedIn. And, all three of the above-outlined platforms have capabilities for you to easily push your content to other social media channels, with some features, like hashtags, carrying over.