Video Platform SEO: Do Different Channels Call for Different Strategies?

by Aleks Vizulis on November 07, 2016

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Here's a simple question for you: Should you change your video platform SEO based on the video platform you are publishing on (i.e., Vimeo, YouTube, Facebook Video, Instagram.)? As we've looked into this issue, we've found that people just aren't sure! Since video is becoming an increasingly vital form of content, that's a little troubling. Well, here's what we decided about video SEO after our research: Take a look!

3 Reasons Video SEO Should Stay the Same

After looking at both sides of the argument, we decided to land firmly on the side of "Make Video SEO the same no matter what platform you're going to use." There are several reasons to stick with this strategy, but one of the most important is the nature of SEO itself. First, you've worked really hard on your video SEO for a new campaign. You've been complete, done your keyword research, created text and content for all available forms, and you're ready to go: Why in the world would you change any of that? Good SEO is good SEO! If it's going to benefit you on one platform, it's going to help on other platforms as well. Going back and redoing your SEO when moving video to another platform is just asking for trouble – trying to take back something you've already done well and risking that you'll do it poorly this time. So just leave it the same.

Second, there's the video platform industry as a whole. All these platform providers are busy looking at each other very carefully and noting what sort of features they are all offering. In many respects, it benefits them all to be on the same page – and to approach Google and other search engines on equal footing. Take a look at Facebook Video, Vimeo, YouTube, and other video publishing opportunities, and you'll notice more or less all the same options for descriptions, tags, captioning, and so on. Some platforms may be a little more in depth than others, but they all tend to use the same sort of template.

Finally, there's the time factor. We're all short on time, so anything that helps save a little is a winner in our book. Copying your video descriptions or using autofill forms helps you save a lot of time. Plus, if you keep everything the same, then you don't need to take the time to analyze every new platform that you publish on: You already have all the content that you plan on using, ready and waiting. It's difficult to understate how valuable that is in fast-moving marketing campaigns.

Caveats Concerning Approach: Hey, Sometimes Different is Better

Okay, we're going to push back on our previous point a little bit. There is room for customizing video SEO platform by platform if you really want to. For example, going more in-depth on YouTube is more likely to affect Google rankings, because of Google's affection for its YouTube property. However, changes to the video itself can often make more of a difference than changes to the SEO. Data remains relatively the same across platforms, but the way videos play and act can change significantly. Natcom Global actually has a handy little Infographic explaining some of the major differences in how videos play across common social platforms if you want to take a look. The bottom line is that shifting some features of the video, especially when it comes to length, sound and other factors, can make a different from platform to platform.

Rule Changes Apply to Video Streaming 

We'll end on a note about different video types. Our advice is primarily for evergreen, one-off videos. When streaming video in a live format, the rules change. Here, awareness and engagement are more important than video platform SEO. When you convert the livestream into a long-term video later down the road, then you can worry about SEO. If you are livestreaming, focus on the basics and worry about tailoring for video platforms later on.

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Aleks Vizulis

As operations manager at 21 Handshake, I bring an analytical perspective to the discussion table. My vision is to take projects from 'just strong' to superb. Often you will find me capturing behind the scenes photos in the 21 Handshake office or at a clients location. I play a fierce round of 18 during warm weather and catch me on the slopes during the other months of the year!

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