Regardless of industry, scale or location, if you are a small business owner you need to be promoting your company with branded videos. As this Forbes article explains, almost half of internet users watch a video related to a product or service before making a purchase. 64 percent of consumers make a purchase after watching a branded social video. With that level of impact, its importance as a promotional tool can’t be understated. Here is a rundown of the best video platforms you can use to introduce your company to the world.

 
YouTube

With more than 1 billion active users, YouTube is the largest video-sharing platform on Earth. If you want to showcase your brand to as many consumers as possible, YouTube is the way to go. Its benefits include an unlimited quantity of high-quality video content uploads, robust analytics, and a user-friendly interface. Its popularity among mobile users and the ability to add interactive call-to-action messages at the end of a video are also key features. Google owns YouTube so if you already have a Google account for your business, you’re already connected to an entire digital ecosystem, with support.

The biggest drawback of using YouTube is that because of its size, your company’s ads will have a hard time standing out in an ocean of content. Additionally, it’s an ad-supported platform and users don’t get a say in the content of the ads, which may be competitive or even offensive to your business.

 
Vimeo

Vimeo is a video-sharing platform that made its name by being the first website of its type to host high definition clips in 2007. Today, it’s better known for cultivating a thriving community of talented content creators that attracts 170 million active monthly viewers. Positive aspects of Vimeo are that it’s an ad-free platform, features embeddable player customization and in-depth analytics. It also has a premium account option that includes email capture and video production support. Conversely, it has a smaller active viewer base than YouTube and has limitations on the number of videos users can upload. It also charges businesses a minimum $120 a year to host content.

 
Facebook

Although its primary function is not a video platform, there are a few good reasons to host some of your company’s promotional clips on the world’s largest social network. Facebook’s extensive data mining allows small business owners to specifically target their videos to users who will be most receptive to their message. A recent study found that native Facebook videos get shared 10 times more often than YouTube clips and cost less per 1,000 impressions.

Its biggest drawbacks are its algorithms, which effectively will bury videos that don’t resonate with users and counts three-second plays as a view. Also, the fact that Facebook isn’t seen as a premier content hub means that it currently functions better as a secondary video advertising channel.

 
Animoto

Animoto is an ideal platform for small business owners who don’t have much experience working with video. The reason is that it’s also a video-creation platform that gives users access to a host of editing tools, thousands of commercially licensed songs and more than 100 prefabricated video styles. With those features, owners who know nothing about making videos can create quality clips that will appeal to consumers. It’s only real problem is that because of its relatively small user base, Animoto’s is currently most useful as a video-creation site rather than a hosting platform.

 
 
This article was written by Mario McKellop for Small Business Pulse
 

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