YouTube is the biggest and most well known video hosting and sharing website on the market at the moment, with millions of videos uploaded and viewed every day. Content is posted by businesses, bands, and celebrities through to amusing home videos of pets doing daft things. Whatever you are looking for you can probably find a video of it on YouTube.
From a business point of view YouTube has always been a great place to host and promote company videos, whether a slick professionally made video showcasing your services or a demonstration of how to use a product. Some clever marketers (with big budgets) can seed a viral campaign from YouTube, reaching millions of potential customers as the content is shared over and over again.
So why are we exploring alternative video hosting websites?
Well, the biggest isn’t always the best in our opinion. When looking at business promotion videos there are some limitations to using YouTube:
Advertising – YouTube has turned into such a money making machine, there are ads before, during and after anything you may want to watch. Some may not mind waiting that 3 seconds before you can ‘skip’ the advert. BUT from a business point of view: If you embed your YouTube video onto your own website, you cannot control the ads that come up after your video has finished. So, even when placed on your own website, the video finishes and then shows all of the competitor companies and products on the screen afterwards. Not good and there is no way to control this.
User Interactions – YouTube is a free posting platform, where users can post comments without any approval process. The viewers have the final say in supporting or rejecting the video content and the business offer. Whilst we live in a world where we expect user interaction and reviews on everything we buy online, there is the control for a website owner to remove the work of ‘trolls’. YouTube do try to manage this situation with their community guidelines, but with so many videos and comments being added daily, it’s hard to police.
Account Suspension – There seem to be numerous cases of account suspensions from YouTube, in some cases people have not adhered to the community guidelines or may have posted something inappropriate. Whilst all this sounds good, there are many account suspensions that occur for no reason and you then lose your account forever.
So with these points in mind, here are some alternative video hosting sites to consider:
In a nutshell, Vimeo concentrates on quality over quantity. It’s the place where you are more likely to find artistic creations made by more serious film makers. You can upload and store your videos on Vimeo, or you can share the videos with others by Facebook, Twitter and other social channels. There is also a lot of creative help available to help make your videos look great.
The basic package/account is free but you will be limited to just 500MB per week of storage. So depending on the volume of videos you want to store on Vimeo, this basic level might be fine. The plus account is just £49.95 and you get 5GB per week of storage space. Full details of the packages are here.
The great advantage of Vimeo is that it doesn’t put adverts before, after or during your videos, so in the case of someone wanting to embed a Vimeo video onto their own website, it can be played without adverts, set to loop and a whole host of other creative ideas added.
Similar to Vimeo in many ways, Vzaar touts itself as a video hosting site specifically for businesses. Providing lots of help with creative additions to your videos so that you can design them to fit with your brand. You can add multi lingual subtitles for example and a host of other creative elements.
Initially you start with a 30 day free trial but after that you choose from a range of packages that will suit your bandwidth needs. The cheapest package is just £16 per month and you get 250GB of bandwidth and 100GB of storage. You can find the package information here.
Vzaar is also clutter free from adverts, enabling you to embed to your own site without any nonsense.
This is another hosting website that is specifically designed for businesses, with analytical tools, heat maps and engagement graphs to enable you to gather statistics on your videos performance. Wistia videos are also watchable from within a tweet and work flawlessly with HTTPS.
Interactive text options further boost accessibility and data capture tools can feed straight into your email marketing tools. You can be in complete control of the security of the videos, including how and where they are seen.
You can start with the basic package for free which allows 3 videos to be uploaded, they will contain the Wistia branding though. You can trial any of the other packages before starting to pay. The cheapest is $25 per month and enables 25 videos to be hosted. View all of their package options here. Wistia also doesn’t play adverts alongside its videos.
There are many more alternatives to YouTube than the three detailed above, however for any business looking to find a secure host for videos, these are the three serious contenders.
Depending on the amount of video you intend to use for your business and the amount of help you require to make the video look good will determine which one you choose. Wistia will certainly give you the most in terms of working with a digital marketing strategy that can be fully monitored. If you are looking for something simpler to just enable you to embed your videos onto your own website or blog then Vimeo is brilliant for that.
Need help with your Video or Content Marketing?
Give our team here at All Things Web® a call on 01793 766040 if you would like any advice on how to use video effectively as part of your content marketing strategy.