Watching something happen with your own eyes is indeed better than reading about it. An image speaks more than words do, but a video speaks even more than an image does.
The popularity of adding videos to blog posts has been increasing tremendously, especially for those blog posts that serve the purpose of tutorials, step by step illustrations. Of course, they are used for other purposes like video clips on entertainment and media blogs, etc.
Adding a video to your blog is not difficult. You can simply embed flash or videos from sites like YouTube or MetaCafe, easily by copy pasting the codes provided by them. WordPress users also have the options to use plugins for taking care of all this. However, how you use videos in your blog posts is important!
Here are 7 Golden Guidelines to use videos in your blog posts effectively:
- Video Inline to the Post: Do not link to a video and expect many of your readers will visit them. The time of any reader is precious and most of them will not like to digg too deep for watching a video. Remember, something about anything from nothing to everything is available on the internet :D. You have to take care of how you are going to make the visitors to you blog stay.Always offer the juicy content right in the hands of your visitors. Embed the videos inline to the post instead of placing the video somewhere else and linking to it with some hypertext. Chances are that people will overlook the link to the video in order to save themselves a few extra clicks and a lots of time.
- Quality of Video: This is a very obvious, yet much overlooked point that you should always bear in mind while adding a video to your post. They should run without pauses. Good quality videos should be used so that they do not stress the eyes and brains of the viewer.
- Dimensions of Video: I have seen many blogs with videos of such large sizes that they literally break the frames of content block! Resize the dimensions of the videos before you use them in a blog post such that they fit well inside the content block. Smaller dimensions also mean quicker loading and thus, save your readers valuable time.
- File Size of Video: Smaller is the file size of the original uploaded (and embedded) video, the lesser is the bandwidth consumption. So try to convert your video to a smaller bit-rate (and hence smaller file size!) without compromising on the quality. Various video converters are available which can be used for the purpose (Some of the Open Source Video Converters are available for Free.)
- Textual Description: Always add a brief textual description about the video you are posting. This is the most effective way of using videos in your blog posts effectively. This will make the visitors stick to your post by developing and holding their interest in your video till it loads.I have explained this aspect in detail in my guest post: Adding Textual Description to a Video in your Blog Post at Another Pointless Blog, and I really recommend you to go through it once.
- Vertical Alignment of Video: Try to align your videos properly relative to the text contained in the post and also relative to the layout of the rest of the blog.When you are using a distinct introduction and an end-note for your post, align the video in the middle of these two parts. Also, when you are going to post a brief textual description about the video, its a good practice to place the video on the top of the text.
- Horizontal Alignment of the Video: The left, right or centered placement of the video depends on the layout of your blog. If you use a 3- column blog that has the content block in the center then center-aligning your videos is the best idea. In case the content block is on the left and the two sidebars are on the right, left aligning the video in the post is the most effective placement strategy. In these ways, the videos will not mess with the sidebars and will be easily viewable, without any distractions.
If you use videos in your posts, and follow these general rules when embedding them… Nothing can stop the visitors to your blog from sticking to you.
You’re blogging, that is not important. What is important is that you blog effectively.