Video content has become extremely popular, with countless benefits to affiliate marketers. In this blog post, content publishers can learn how to build a video content publishing strategy, including production tips, SEO insights, and video best practices.

People love video content. With eMarketer projecting that over 80% of internet users watching at least one online video a month in 2017, and HubSpot noting that 90% of shoppers say video content helps them decide a product to purchase, video content is as much of an opportunity as it is a priority for affiliate marketers in 2017.

For content publishers, this medium can be an exciting area to get involved with. Whether you’re a new content publisher in the network or a veteran who’s looking to expand their content offering, this blog post is designed to help you get started with preparation, SEO strategies, and best practices.

Getting Started

– Don’t Just “Wing It”: Yes, people love authenticity. And yes, nothing is more authentic than the “we’ll do it on the go!” type of attitude people can have. Live video is becoming popular for entirely that reason. But “authenticity” also doesn’t mean going in blindly and having no idea of what you want to say about a topic, or the points you want to make. Whether you plan on doing live video broadcasts or recorded videos, prepare yourself with an outline or script of the topic you’re covering, the points you want to make, and what you want people to have learned by the time they finish watching. This will help your video stay focused and ensure you get to the point. Your audience will be thankful for it!

– Keep Your Content Ideas Fresh and Fulfilling: Think of your video content as a meal you’re serving to your visitors. They have so many different content producers and videos to choose from, and they chose yours in the hopes that it will be original, interesting, and leave them feeling fulfilled. In order to accomplish this you won’t want to create the same videos and have the same talking points as everyone else – you’ll want to separate yourself and provide your visitors with perspectives they can’t find anywhere else! Keeping your content fresh is key, so be sure to focus on key trends and find a talking point (a perspective, some insights, or other knowledge) that your visitors won’t get anywhere else.

– Be Disciplined: Video content is hard work with a lot of steps, from script writing and filming, to editing and optimizing. Strive to be disciplined in your content creation for video. Doing things like creating a workflow schedule and a content calendar can help you stay organized and focused on what you need to be doing, when you need to be doing it, and when it should be done by.

SEO Tactics

– Hosting Videos vs. Embedding Videos: The first rule of building an SEO strategy with your video content is to understand a fundamental but often overlooked rule: self-hosted videos and embedded videos are two different SEO beasts. If you have a blog and are able to host your own videos through a video player on the site, that will score far better for SEO purposes. However, because many may not have access to this, publishers opt to publish their videos on YouTube and use an embed code to place the video somewhere in their content. This is a fine method, but from an SEO standpoint, not nearly as effective.

– Use Tagging on YouTube Videos: With so many people hosting their videos on YouTube, the Google-owned video site makes it fairly easy to optimize your videos through tagging. You can tag a video in a few areas: title, description, and even specific keyword tags. Utilizing this properly can ensure your video is discoverable to the people who will want to watch it. Be forewarned, though: much like with webpage tagging and SEO tactics, spamming tags will hurt your videos performance.

– Include a Transcript: A great best practice to keep in mind for videos is to include a transcript of what is said in the video. This is important for any video, regardless of where it’s hosted, but can help drive viewership and improve your videos performance for its greater accessibility.

Best Practices

– Keep Videos Relevant: One of the best ways to find success with video content is to keep the videos you produce relevant. Video production is not something that’s quick and simple – it takes a lot of time and effort. Make sure those efforts are in the right place by keeping your videos focused on topics your audience is interested in hearing about.

– Use Visuals: This might seem odd since we’re talking about videos, but keep in mind that before a video starts playing there are a few visuals that a user may come across. For example, they might find a thumbnail image in a YouTube search result, or they might see a captured image from your video in a Google result about the topic. Use visuals that are relevant to the topic at hand, informative (such as title cards), and interesting to look at. Doing so will avoid users getting frustrated with your video thinking it was about topic A when really it was about topic B.

– Social Signals Matter: A YouTube channel and a blog won’t get it done alone. If you want to spread the word about your videos then one of the best solutions is to hop on social media and join the conversations people are having about the topics you’re creating video content for. Participate in the conversations, share your thoughts, and then share your video. Remember: social media can feel like a party, and nobody likes the person at the party who just wants to promote themselves and not hear or talk to anyone else.

– Get the Length Right: How long should your video be? Easy: as long as it needs to be to get your point across effectively and clearly. Filling a 3-minute video with 2 minutes of self-promotion (“be sure to subscribe, comment, and like, and also be sure to follow me on social media…”) is a quick way to ensure people stop watching your videos early – and not come back. Videos are ranked by how long they’re watched, and if people are dropping off because you didn’t get to the point fast enough (or spent too much time explaining something) your video performance will suffer as a result.