Glenn Pingul, a friend of ours, and the VP of Marketing at Mixpo, wrote a great post this week on iMediaConnection.com that offers some great general advice and tips to help with video search engine optimization (SEO). Glenn offers some general advice that help with online video marketing tactics and offers some background with regard to specific campaign results that they have observed at Mixpo.
Here are some general concepts that will help with Video SEO.
1) Relevancy, Relevancy
Just like offline media, the more relevant your message, the more likely it will be effective. It is important to maintain relevance not online in the video but in the information that surrounds it. The more relevant, the more likely your video will perform well in video and univerasl search results.
2) Keyword Strategy
The more specific, relevant, and focused, the better. The world of online video is in the nascent stage. However, as the world of online video grows and as more and more users utilize video search discovery to find online video content, longer tail search terms will become more and more effective.
"For the condominium marketing client, we tracked the keywords people typed to actually locate the video ads. We saw long tail terms like "old historic Seattle buildings with condos for sale" return video ad landing pages toward the top of universal search results."
3) Video Duration
There is no limit to how long you your video content can be within search engines. As long as your video is useful and contains keywords that are relevant to the content, viewers will watch your video, regardless of the length.
"We have deployed video ads for numerous clients and have consistently found that viewers routinely watch more than 60 percent of an ad once they click on it, regardless of length. If content is useful, people will watch it -- and will stand a better chance of finding it."
4) In-Video Text
In addition, Glenn reminds us that it is OK to deploy relevant in-video text. As video search algorithms improve and deepen their understanding of video content, textual content within the video will also become a useful tactic to boost your video ad within search results. Video search enines like Blinx, Google, and others are begining to rely on image, object, speech, and text recognition technologies. While it is currently most effective to focus on textual content surrounding a video, it will become more and more important to focus on in-video content in the near future.
5) Duplicate Content & "Carpet-Bombing". Glenn points out that although many would encourage video content producers to post their video on as many video sharing sites as possible, this has been a tactic that has become less and less effective over time as search engines work to deploy strategies that combat and identify duplicate content. Duplicate content in the world of textual web pages is considered in a way to be spam and search engines currently utilize various techniques to identify, penalize and filter duplicate content. SEO professionals have known for some time that unique content is key - "content is king." The same is true of online video. In its early stages, this was a tactic that works, and at some level still does. However, as search engines mature in identifying duplicate video content, this will ultimately become less successful tactic.
"Several months ago, we would see our client's videos stacked on search results pages because of all the sites we'd submitted to. We're seeing less of that today, which is ultimately a good sign for consumers."
6) Relevancy Vs. Viewership
Not only is it important to focus on relevant keywords for video search rankings, but relevancy also increases the likelihood that your video will be viewed in its entirety.
"Less relevant video advertisements tend to lose viewers in the early part of the video, often with high abandonment after less than 10 percent of the video."
7) Test & Optimize
With online video in its early stages, it is important to continually test and optimize your video content. The game will continue to change as video search providers mature and utilize new techniques for ranking and indexing online video. Generally speaking, those video content producers that focus on relevancy and who "stay true to the consumers" will continue to realize positive results with regard to online video rankings amoung video search and universal search results.
It is the search engines job and mission to provide the best content for its users. If you assist search engines with this task by focusing on relevant content rather than techniques to merely dominate search results, you will ultimately maintain high search rankings.