First it was strong written content, then it was killer podcasts and now it’s video. The web and specifically blogging is still in an infancy period and for that reason bloggers tend to jump from one type of medium to another in terms of how they present their content to readers.
The truth is while video is great for supplementing a post and podcasts can be taken on the road and to various other locations there’s still no substitute for the written word.
Using video as part of your content creation won’t kill your blog, however if utilized incorrectly video can become an annoying hindrance that drivers users away. Let’s take a look at several ways video can kill your blog.
1. Posting Only A Video
Check out videos on Yahoo (known for posting video only posts lately) and read all of the complaints for users who don’t want just a video. While a first hand account of an accident or other visual event may help your story it’s not the end answer. The reason for this is simple, many users today are not sitting at screens where video viewing is often easily accessible. For example a mobile user in an area with slow network connectivity doesn’t want to sit around and wait for your video to buffet, however if you have written an article supporting that video they can at least read the entire story or at least the major points you choose to report on from the video.
2. Writing Poor Content To Support The Video
So you’ve made the jump into video+written content creation, however if you’re heart isn’t into the written portion you’re going to end up with unfocused, keyword lacking content. Remember that search engines haven’t quite figured out how to index words spoken in a video yet which means your video does little good if you still don’t do your keyword research homework and figure out what keywords and long-tail keywords best fit your content.
3. Placing Video Before Your Content
Here’s a little trick that will help your “on-site” time average. Write really great content and then sprinkle in video as required. If a user does see a video at the top of your post and then views that video there’s a good chance they jump off your site and onto the next story before bothering to read what you’ve written. It’s that whole idea of “I’ve seen the movie, why bother reading the book now.” However if a video appears in the middle or towards the bottom of a post the reader may feel there is more to the story and choose to view the video. I personally like to lead into videos through text. For example I might say “here’s more information:” then show the video. Even if the video only showcases a tiny bit of new information it will provide my readers with reason to continue.
4. Posting Poor Quality Video
If you write breaking news stories sometimes poor quality video (smartphone videos, shaky handheld amateur videos) is your only option. However if you run a “how to make money blog” and you create your own videos they should be of decent quality to showcase your production skills. A cheap HD camcorder can be purchased for around $200 these days and they offer your readers better audio and picture quality. Remember video is suppose to engage your readers just like text based content and therefore it should be clear, concise and well thought out.
5. Posting Video On Every Single Entry
When visitors to my various web properties pay a visit I want them to read as much content as possible, this allows me to receive a unique visitor while also pushing up my pageviews and pushing down my bounce rate. If you post 10 minute videos on every single post you create however there’s a good chance a reader will find your content a bit to long and you’ll end up with a bunch of comments that read “td;lr” (too long didn’t read). I find it funny that the “didn’t read” comment comes up on VIDEO posts but the point is well taken. Remember that video is meant to show readers something they need to see or to engage with them occasionally on a level of contact they don’t normally receive from blog creators.
The underlying trick to using video so it doesn’t kill your blog is simple, remember to present written text to your readers, use videos when it makes sense to do so and don’t overuse videos since viewing them isn’t always a simple option for your readers.