How To Choose An Online Video Host That Works

If you want a short answer to the seemingly complicated question of which of the three main video hosting companies to use for your promo video then here it is: ALL THREE OF THEM.

More details needed?  Below is a breakdown of the top three video hosting options you have for putting your video(s) on your website.  

And yes, you should put your videos on your website.  Don't just put them up on YouTube and forget about them.  Make sure that anybody coming to your website will be led to your videos and isn't taking a trip off to YouTube to watch them.

Speaking of YouTube, let's talk hosting.

YOUTUBE is the ONLINE GIANT

It's the second largest search engine on the web.  It gets 1 billion individual visitors each month, and it has 100 hours of video uploaded every minute.  

So you'll forgive them when your videos don't get watched or don't show up in targeted searches and nobody seems to care about them.  

Put your videos on YouTube knowing that people do YouTube searches all the time.  If somebody puts your full name or the name and geographic location of your company into a YouTube search, then something appropriate needs to come up.  

You might not be interested in building an epic online channel like some YouTube megastars have done, and that's not necessary, but it is important that you have a channel, with a link to your website, some decent "channel art" and a couple of videos about your company and which provide useful information to your potential buyers.

VIMEO the ARTSY FART

So Vimeo is the place to be if you're an artist. This is where video artists hang out.  This is where indie musicians post their sexy indie videos.  This is where young and hip NGOs post their videos.

And the great thing about Vimeo is that if you've made something unusual, or ballsy or super artsy, people do care, and if you add your videos to the right groups then people will watch your videos.  

You can have one video on YouTube and one on Vimeo, and in 4 weeks 1000 people will watch it on Vimeo, and on YouTube nobody but your mother has seen it.  Strange but true.  

Story Envelope's videos have been viewed by people in over 92 countries on Vimeo, in the past two months.  

Also there are some useful business things you can add to your Vimeo videos.  You can add clickable links at the end of videos, or have more of your videos pop up, so that people can watch multiple videos on the same player from within your website.  

Vimeo also provides beautiful high quality picture.  Many people argue that Vimeo has the best picture quality of all the hosting options.  

WISTIA the YOUNG GUN HUSTLER for SMALL BIZ

Wistia is best for a company or a project that requires or desires a specific action to be taken before or after the viewing of a Wistia-hosted video, and that expects people to be watching their videos on a computer, not a television.   

With Wistia you can choose to create a piece of scintillating must-have content, then require e-mail opt-in before giving them the video. 

You can also have a screen pop up after the video that captures e-mail addresses for you.  It literally gives people a box to type their e-mail address into from within the video player.  

Wistia also creates video content and blog content that is very useful for small business owners. They actively serve the community that pays for their service in a way that goes beyond just video hosting.  

And just to clarify, unlike YouTube and Vimeo which have searchable video libraries made by the public, Wistia does not.  The only searchable Wistia library is their own learning centre.  This means you have complete and utter control over how your video is viewed.  

So to sum up, if you've got a video, feel free to put it on all platforms.  

If you want to capture e-mails, make Wistia your priority, and use it as the way to embed your video(s) on your website.  

If you want to appeal to an artsy crowd, especially an elite artsy crowd, make Vimeo your main video host.  

And if you want the masses to come running, or at least to bump into you accidentally at some point, then put it on YouTube first.    

As a side note, Vimeo and Wistia both have free hosting options, so if your cash flow is an issue, don't feel like you can only use YouTube.