Making Library Videos: Who Hosts Your Videos Online?

Once you've made your first library video, you'll need somewhere on the Internet to put it so people will watch.  Nowadays, many folks just upload their videos to their Facebook or Twitter (or other social media) feeds.  That works fine, but we've found that having a dedicated video channel is easier for viewers to find, particularly if they're searching for a video on a particular subject.

We have uploaded our library videos to YouTube and Vimeo.  Both are free, although we do pay $1.99/month to Google for additional storage space (for our videos and blogs, particularly one written by Cauli Le Chat, MPL feline roving reporter, which was graphics-intensive).  YouTube has been our primary video vehicle; we have uploaded 766 videos (at last count), which have been viewed 1,044,246 times (as of today).  Given that we have no marketing or production budget for videos, YouTube has been spectacularly effective in promoting our work at a cost of less than $24 per year.

Other online video hosting sites may present some difficulties for libraries.  For example, Daily Motion has been blocked in several countries for containing content inappropriate for children (our network's child-protection content-filtering software blocks our access to Daily Motion's website).  It does, however, have a worldwide audience. MovAVI has some other suggestions for video hosting sites, some of which may be suitable for your needs.

Of course, a library could use its own website as a video host, but this requires huge amounts of memory and could slow navigation across the website's various pages.  Plus, sites such as YouTube, Vimeo, and those mentioned by MovAVI have their own marketing and promotion strategies for videos they host.  For instance, searching for one of our videos on YouTube will produce additional videos we've made as suggested viewing (i.e., "what to watch next" results).  Most library websites aren't equipped to generate such recommendations.

How easy is it to find our YouTube videos?  Try a simple Google search:  mpl book trailer youtube. See what you retrieve. While you're at it, search Google for cauli le chat.  Your top result should be her blog or her other blog.  It has nothing to do with library videos, but she asked me to mention it. (Actually, in a future blog post, we'll consider how effective library pets can be in promoting libraries.)


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