According to comScore, online video viewing in the UK reached 5.5 billion in the UK in February 2010 representing an increase of 37% on the previous year.
Google is the top video property due to the popularity of YouTube which it acquired in 2006 (YouTube accounts for 99.6% of video views for Google sites). Facebook ranked as the fastest growing video site in the top ten making it to number 4 in the most popular list. With 43 million video views, Facebook has increased its video viewing figures by a staggering 205%.
These figures represent a seismic shift in viewing habits where increasingly audiences will be more likely to watch content online than via their television sets. The question for bloggers is: how should they capitalise on this new hunger for online video and what are the major benefits of using video on blogs.
As most bloggers know, it can be quite a trial having to regularly update a blog with fresh content. At some point, even for the most creative, inspiration can simply dry up. This is why video can be really effective as it can provide the stressed out blogger
with new ideas for a post. A good piece of video can stimulate discussion, was it good, bad, funny, sad, did it make you smile, did it make a point? All these are issues which can be explored in a post.
Using video in a post not only gives a blogger something to write about, it can also enliven a post. Describing something with words can be effective but not as effective as showing your reader what you mean. Including a video in a post can emphasise your point and importantly can keep your readers on a page for that bit longer.
Now, this may be a bit controversial as most bloggers I’m sure are simply running their blogs for the love of it, not for the monetary rewards. But for those who want some help in paying their hosting bills, advertising can be a big help. While most bloggers interested in advertising tend to opt for AdSense and put up banners, most have never explored the possibility of video advertising. Videos have a much higher click through than either banners or AdSense and can offer great revenues on well-trafficked sites. Unlike obtrusive banner ads or ugly-looking AdSense, video advertising offers your readers engaging content, adding real value to a site.
Videos offer bloggers a great way to set out their stall and promote their blog
to potentially new audience outside of their blogs. It is so easy nowadays to make a video yourself and many bloggers film themselves doing a review, unboxing the latest gadget or just holding forth on a favourite subject.
By setting up a YouTube channel linked to your blog and posting a video you can encourage video viewers on YouTube to go and check out your blog. The more views a video gets on YouTube, Vimeo or one of the many other video sites, the more traffic will be referred back to the blog. For instance look how many unboxing videos there are out there, each one plugging the respective tech blog that made it.
Finally videos offer blog owners a great way of directly connecting to their audiences. What better way of engaging your readers than appearing on screen and addressing them directly?
As the figures attest, online video consumption is sky-rocketing. Clever bloggers
out there need to embrace video as one more tool in their blogging arsenal to ensure they are giving audiences exactly what they are looking for.
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