SES panelists offer tips for video search optimization

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CHICAGO -- If Internet users cannot search and find your video, it does not matter how good it is, top search marketing executives told attendees at the Search Engine Strategies Chicago Conference and Expo here.

The executives were participating on making online video easy to find at SES' "Video Search Optimization" panel on Dec. 4.

"It is important to start with a plan," said Jon Leicht, Web marketing manager at Intuit, Mountain View, CA. "Decide what information you need according to where you are submitting."

Mr. Leicht said creating a Meta toolkit for developers is wise.

The keywords that are selected should be descriptive of the video content, and file naming is critical, he said.

"Bandwidth is less important these days and so is file format," Mr. Leicht said.

Like regular Web site search, each video search engine is unique in submission.

"Video search is the future," said Eric Papczun, director of natural search at Performics, Chicago. "Right now MySpace.com holds to top slot in share of video stream, with 20 percent. Yahoo Video and YouTube are not too far behind, with 11 [percent] and 9 percent respectively."

Mr. Papczun said that YouTube is in the lead with a 33 percent share of traffic.

Fifty-four percent of Internet users consume video online and 72 percent watch news videos online, further emphasizing the importance of producing findable video content.

"Video consumption is moving from television to video sites and eventually search," Mr. Papczun said. "Now is the time to optimize your video asset."

There are some roadblocks along the way, however.

For example, the lack of simple, consistent taxonomy for producers to use, he said.

Mr. Papczun also said that search engines are too dependent on the text from video-corresponding Web pages.

Video and text should play together. For example, CNBC.com does a nice job of surrounding with text content, said Gregory Markel, founder and president of Infuse Creative LLC, Fountain Valley, CA.

Mr. Markel said he sees more and more video-based results in the search engines.

If one was to search for car video on Google, not a single car manufacturer's site will come up in the search results. Instead it returns a Google Video result.

"I want to stress the importance of watermarking content, as it is good for free branding," Mr. Markel said.

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