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Why Marketers Need to Look Beyond YouTube for their Video Strategy

tylerLessard 550x310By Tyler Lessard, CMO, Vidyard


As the CMO of a video marketing platform company, I understand that you might feel skeptical when I say that video is now a critical part of digital marketing programs — and that moving beyond YouTube as a hosting platform is becoming a strategic imperative for modern marketers. However, the independent research analysts at Forrester have just published a detailed report on this topic that brings to light some of the key limitations that marketers face with YouTube and what they need to consider as they expand their use of video across marketing and sales.

In their new report, “Market Overview: Online Video Platforms for Sales and Marketing,” Forrester looks at the challenges of scaling video libraries as well as the potential benefits of advanced video analytics and integrations with existing marketing and sales workflows.

Here are some of the highlights:

Hit The Right Audience With The Right Video At The Right Time

Leading Video Marketing Platforms now offer integrations with Eloqua, Marketo, Act-On, Pardot and other marketing automation platforms. This is really important for making sure you serve relevant content to your customers and prospects. It’s one thing to see standalone viewing data on one of your videos, but that doesn’t necessarily help you see whether it was relevant to your viewers.

If you can see a prospect’s viewing record in the full context of your MAP or CRM, you can gain more valuable insights. You’ll know whether they’ve watched previous videos and for how long, allowing you to follow up more appropriately. You can also set rules to follow up automatically based on that data.

Know Whether Your Content Worked

We can all relate to the frustration that comes after posting a white paper and case study. You poured hours of resources into making the words flow just right and getting all the right stakeholders to sign off on it, but odds are you will never really know whether that content led to a conversion. Sure, you can tell whether someone opened the document, but you don’t know whether they actually read it, found it engaging, or whether it prompted them to seek out more information.

With video, marketers can see exactly how much of an asset someone watched. They can see whether they quit after a few seconds, made it to the end or even re-watched parts over again. As Forrester notes, this helps with granular lead scoring, but it’s even more useful for marketers experimenting with different types of videos to see what resonates with customers.

Always. Be. Converting

Video enables a rich experience that other media can’t, and marketers are getting creative with calls-to-action that push viewers along in the buying journey. Email gates are one of the basic examples, and are a pretty non-invasive way to generate a lead. But advanced video platforms now offer the ability to embed robust calls-to-action at the end of a video, including data collection forms from your marketing automation system. We also see, as Forrester notes, the common practice of automatically redirecting viewers to related videos or more detailed product videos and content.

One important point that Forrester makes is around that idea of related videos. Many companies dip their toes in the video marketing pool with a YouTube channel. While YouTube is an important destination site for posting your content, it shouldn’t be the only place. Anyone who has ever watched a YouTube video knows that you’ll be subjected to a lot of irrelevant “related videos.” Marketers need to consider complementing their YouTube channel with a custom-branded video hub within their own company websites where they can ensure “related” content is actually relevant. The last thing you want is for YouTube to suggest a related video that sends your prospect to a competitor’s content.

But don’t take my word for it. Check out what the experts at Forrester have to say.


Tyler Lessard is CMO of Vidyard.