Internet video has a secret weapon to drive video views, and it’s a tool that nearly anyone can take advantage of.
Sure, the word sounds unsexy, but just add some text to a video and voila! It returns higher in search, it’s found more easily — and oh, yeah, advertisers can better target video ads to content.
The use of metadata in premium content is likely to rise in the coming months as broadcasters prepare to meet the September 30 deadline to include the same amount of closed captioning in online video runs of TV shows as they do in the on-air broadcasts, as mandated by the 21st Century Communications and Visibility Act.
Aside from the obvious and vital role of closed captioning for accessibility of programming, there is also a business benefit in closed captioning. Content optimization platform Ramp has said that the use of tags and transcriptions in Web video can drive engagement rates anywhere from 40% to 300%, according to an interview with Beet.TV.
What’s more, that same metadata, text and information that accompanies a video can also be mined for ad targeting, so that marketers can better match the content of video with the products being peddled. Better tagging can also boost video SEO, which leads to more views.
As an example, Fox Sports used Ramp’s tools including video sitemaps, video SEO and video tagging and transcription to help drive a doubling in search traffic in the first four months following launch, with topic page traffic rising 23 times.
Sony’s Crackle.com weaved in metadata to improve site search, including for video, and to refine closed captioning. The result was a 25% growth in search volume in the first six months, and a doubling in traffic from search engines to video and image landing pages.
Ramp said in a white paper on compliance with the 21st Century Communications and Visibility Act:
Transcripts can also be mined for concepts to power SEO-friendly video landing pages, Video content is weighted much higher than text content by the major Web search engines – a fact that is a reflection of the growing interest in rich media on the Web. This means that not only are SEO-friendly Web video pages much more likely to be found if they have transcripts, they are much more likely to appear on the first page of a Web search result. This is a reality that is critical to monetizing content online.