OK, so you’re the proud owner of a shiny new explanatory (explainer, demo) video – but what now?
Where should you host it?
There are actually two places – but three options…let me explain.
The three options are:
It’s important that your video be hosted on two of these platforms.
Flying in the face of most production companies, I’ll tell you that you have to host your video on YouTube – It’s a no-brainer. It’s free and it has enormous search volumes. It is the worlds second largest search engine, so it’s likely that people will search for your content directly on YouTube.
Yes it’s likely that your excellent content will be surrounded by junk, links to kittens, idiots and ads, but not being listed there would be like not being listed in the phone book – it looks suspicious.
Now, with that said, I don’t recommend using YouTube to embed your video on your website or social media. The player options are limited and you can’t remove their branding. More importantly, the data metrics and thumbnail options (the thumbnail image is the still image that is displayed before someone chooses to play your video) are poor compared to Vimeo and Wistia. So, you need to make a decision as to which of those two providers is going to fit your needs best.
Let’s take a look at them…
Vimeo PRO – $199 / year
Yup, you’ve got to pay for this one. Although Vimeo does offer a free hosting service, it is only for non-commercial content. So. if you want to use them to promote your company, you need to go with their PRO option or run the risk of having your content removed.
That said, the price works out at just over $16.50 / month, and it’s an investment well worth making.
As opposed to YouTube, the Vimeo embedded player offers a far superior experience. Crucially, it is ad-free and won’t try and make visitors leave your page.
The service supports HTML5 video playback and allows you to optimize video for viewing on mobile devices.
Also, the player can be branded with your logo and allows you to select a custom thumbnail image. The thumbnail is really important, studies have shown that optimizing this can significantly increase the number of people who choose to watch your video. By customizing your thumbnail image, you have far better options for enticing people to press play.
Finally, and possibly most importantly, Vimeo offers detailed viewer metrics that help you understand how viewers are interacting with your video. This gives you more options that YouTube when it comes to understanding how to optimize website content or future video projects.
Wistia – from $0
Wistia also offers an awesome service. Now, although they offer a free option, it doesn’t offer as much as their paid services. For one thing you can’t customize the player with your branding in the free option and you are limited to hosting only three videos (But it’s still worth checking out if you are on a really tight budget).
To get the full benefit of Wistia’s service you should begin with their “Starter” package that is priced at $276 / year ($23 / month) and work up from their if you require more storage or bandwidth.
As opposed to Vimeo, which was originally designed for non-commercial content, Wistia is a full-out commercial hosting service and that shows in some of the services they offer.
You can fully customize all aspects of the player, including custom branding and thumbnails – there is no danger of viewers seeing ads or being re-directed to other websites.
Importantly Wistia offers probably the best video data metrics of any video hosting provider. You can see viewer numbers, view length, when viewers stop watching and have a “heat map” that pinpoints which sections of your video are engaging viewers most.
Also, an exciting addition to Wistia’s list of tricks is it’s integration with email campaigns. This makes it easy to extend the reach and exposure of your video and get exact metrics on how it’s affecting your targeted customers.
Finally, Wistia offers to automatically produce a “Video Sitemap” file that you can use on your webpages. This helps Google better index your video’s content and improves your SEO rankings.
So what’s the best option between the two? You’re going to get excellent service from both of them, but I have to admit I lean more towards Wistia. Their commercial credentials and focus make them more in tune with what businesses really need when it comes to video hosting. Also, their clean and customizable player is a perfect frame for any video, giving it that final professional touch!
Of course, if you’ve still got any questions, feel free to get in touch with us and we can help you find the perfect home for your Explanatory Video!
Kenny Simpson is a Creative Producer at ExplanatoryVideos.com
If you would like to have an explainer video produced or would like more information, click here to drop us a line and get a FREE CONSULTATION and QUOTE.