This is the first post in a series about video. This post will explain why you should have video on your website, but later posts will cover more technical issues–ways to create video and post it on your WordPress website.
Regarding the actual inserting of video in WordPress, I still haven’t worked out what I consider to be an ideal solution, although I use video a lot. I’m looking at several possible solutions. If you have one, please let me know by writing a comment!
The image on the right is just an image, not a video, but you can click it to go to my home page where you’ll see the actual video.
What is video?
That sounds like a silly question, because everyone knows what video is, right? But when you start trying to add video to your website, you’ll see that you need to know some technical details.
For the purposes of putting video online, you’ll be dealing with one or more file types. Here are some of the more common formats:
- MP4: This format is often used online because it is highly compressed.
- WMV: A common Windows format, developed by Microsoft. Because it isn’t as easily played on all platforms, it is becoming less common.
- MPG: Another common format, often used for downloadable movies.
- FLV: FLV stands for Flash video. Flash is an Adobe product. FLV files play on most computer platforms, but not on all phone/tablet platforms.
- AVI: A common format created by digital cameras and camcorders and good for computer playback, but files are not very compressed. It was developed by Microsoft.
- MOV: MOV is also called QuickTime format and is very common. Some cameras and camcorders output this format. It was developed by Apple.
Video files can be very large, so they are usually compressed. The software the compresses them, and then decompresses them for playback, is called a codec. There are many codecs available, and if a viewer who doesn’t have the right codec may not be able to view a video.
Why should you use video?
Why was TV more interesting than radio? Why was radio more interesting than books? The more media uses all the senses and the more realistic it is, the more fascinating it is.
As a social entrepreneur or solopreneur, you need to make a personal connection with your website visitors. You need to engage them. Video accomplishes this MUCH better than text or audio. Video is as close as you can get to in-person contact with your audience.
As you browse the Internet, note which sites have video and how it engages you. This is what you want to achieve. Video is powerful in its ability to enchant your visitors and potentially turn them into subscribers and customers. Text doesn’t even come close.
And then there’s YouTube. People LOVE to watch videos and that has made YouTube the 2nd most popular search engine. Here are some astonishing traffic statistics from YouTube:
- Over 800 million unique users visit YouTube each month
- Over 3 billion hours of video are watched each month on YouTube
- 72 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute
- 70% of YouTube traffic comes from outside the US
- YouTube is localized in 43 countries and across 60 languages
- In 2011, YouTube had more than 1 trillion views or around 140 views for every person on Earth
Marketers have found that video is much more effective in making a sale compared to text. That doesn’t mean that they don’t use text; they use both. But omitting video means losing sales.
Video will enhance your credibility.Most people don’t have websites and don’t know how to add video, so it seems very professional–assuming that your video doesn’t look amateurish.
What if I don’t look good on video?
Many people are uncomfortable showing themselves on video, but most people can give a good enough impression for a minute or two. The video doesn’t have to be long.
And not all the video needs to be of you. You can show how a product works and even use PowerPoint slides to convey your message.
The rest of the video posts in this series
- Part IIa: How to create a video of yourself
- Part IIb: Using PowerPoint
- How to add video to your website–Part III: Editing
- Adding video to your website–Part IV: Insert the video
What is your experience with video?
Do you like to watch video? Have you used video successfully? Leave a comment to share your experiences!