Video Search looks at how search engines index videos, and explores the unique search engine optimization techniques that can make videos visible in search results. You can find more about video advertising & video content marketing at Marketing Land.

2008 Video Search Year In Review

2008 has had a number of notable milestones in the arena of video search. Here are six landmark events that that have particularly stood out, demonstrating that video search has finally "arrived" as a crucial area for search marketers: YouTube dominates Universal search. In 2008, it wasn't easy to find an embedded video search result that wasn't from YouTube.  This year, YouTube videos clearly had the best chance of appearing in Google and Yahoo! search results. YouTube has received 5.4 billion visitors through October 2008.  While most of these visits didn't come from search, it d [...]

Business Opportunities For Video News Archives

We are about to lose one of our most valuable national treasures: The news archive. Most experts recommend that tapes be converted to digital format within 5 to 10 years of being recorded and estimate the shelf life of magnetic tape at 15 years, perhaps longer if stored at a constant 21 degrees Celsius and 40% relative humidity level.  Even if the archives are preserved under perfect conditions, over time the tapes stretch and lose their signal strength, eventually rendering the media useless.  In conversations with customers over the past few months, I've come to realize just how "reel [...]

How To Get Discovered Through Video Search

You may have heard the story about how the band Journey found a replacement for their lead singer on YouTube. Videos of Arnel Pineda performing Journey covers in the Philippines were uploaded to YouTube by Pineda’s friend in February of 2007. These videos caught the eye of Journey guitarist Neil Schon, who happened to be in the market for a new lead singer. Schon contacted the person who uploaded the videos and was able to obtain Pineda’s contact info. A few months later, Pineda was touring the world as Journey’s new front man. While Joe Six Pack may not be scouring YouTube for a new [...]

Google’s New Metric For YouTube Ads: Brain Waves

The news came across the wire recently that Google has ventured into new territory to sell the value of their ad space and ad targeting on YouTube. Rather than the standard metrics of clicks and conversions Google is selling a new kind of metric—brain waves. YouTube has recently been pushing overlay ads which appear in the lower portion of the window while the video is playing. Since these ads are often used for branding purpose looking at click thru measurements would not give a true picture of their impact upon the advertisers brand messaging. To prove the efficacy of these ads, Go [...]

Giving Them What They Want: Online Video and the Consumer Experience

As we are in the cycle of the presidential election, there have been several high profile examples of how search is influencing and playing into the consumption formula for online video.  Two specific examples demonstrate how search either reinforces the opportunity big media has in capturing their share of the explosive growth in online video, or exposes the risk it poses. First, as background, the pain the music industry has suffered is highly illustrative of the risks of ignoring consumer demands.  After seeing the explosion in file sharing on sites such as Napster, the music industry [...]

The SEO Impact Of Google’s New Speech Recognition In Videos

Google has rolled out Google Audio Indexing for video just in time for the final stretch of the U.S. presidential election. Using speech recognition technology, Google has indexed all the words spoken within YouTube political channel videos. This allows users to find videos that contain their search term and navigate directly to the part of the video where the term was used. Videos can also be filtered by candidate- Obama or McCain. Here's an example: According to Google, the new audio indexing system, called GAudi, uses speech recognition technology to transform speech into text [...]

Video Search Hacks For Checking Competitors

There are plenty of analytics tools available to help you measure traffic to your collection of videos. These range from the straightforward stats supplied by YouTube Insight to the complex dashboards available from TubeMogul. One area where we've not seen much progress is competitor analysis. In conventional search marketing, we have a variety of tools to help us assess the competition. Visibility in natural search results can be measured by that old standby, WebPosition. PPC activity can be mined using aggregators like LongTailAdwords. And for those with mega-budgets, Hitwise offers a bi [...]

Marketing Video Via Paid Search

In my past columns, I’ve written a lot about strategies to get search engine spiders to index and rank video in the natural results. Often, this takes some work and some waiting for the crawlers to get around to your site. But what if you have a video that’s in high demand that needs to get in front of searchers as quickly as possible? You may have noticed the McCain campaign bidding on the term "Joe Biden" in Google paid search. They have been doing this since Obama announced Biden as his running mate. McCain is using the spike in searches for "Joe Biden" as an opportunity to d [...]

Video Search Engine RedLasso Runs Afoul Of The Law

In early Internet days, circa 1996, I had a memorable phone conversation with a webmaster who had put up a site that violated our client's trademark. The webmaster told me, gently, as if speaking the obvious to a child, that "You don't understand man. You're talkin' about law. This is the internet. The law doesn't apply to the internet". Of course he was wrong. We sent a cease and desist order and they ceased and desisted. Now, the saga of RedLasso once again shows that law does indeed apply to the internet. RedLasso was a video search engine in the business of recording TV shows [...]

The Case For Speech-to-Text Analysis In Multimedia Content Discovery

There have been several recent announcements surrounding the application of speech-to-text analysis in consumer search settings. Google announced its Political Gadget, enabling visitors to search the spoken word of content within YouTube Presidential candidate’s channels. Adobe plans to include speech-to-text features in future versions of its video authoring applications, such as Premier. Sites such as WEEI and FOX Sports have been using similar tools to power search and publishing applications for their multimedia archives for some time (disclaimer: my company provides enabling techno [...]

3,000+ Hours Of Olympic Video: Can Search Engine Users Find It?

During the 2008 Beijing Olympics, is streaming 2,200 hours of exclusive live Olympic video, as well as over 3,000 hours of replays. This content is housed exclusively on the NBC site. Users can search to watch their favorite highlights or catch something they may have missed. But can hungry Olympic video fans find their way to this mass of popular NBC content? Like the number of gold medals Michael Phelps will win, this remains to be seen. According to the New York Times, NBC expects to generate $1 billion in ad revenue from their exclusive rights to t [...]

Is Google Universal Search A Walled Garden?

Although Google Universal Search (GUS) is still very much in flux, it's been a part of the SEO landscape for a while now. In that time, there have been some good studies about how often GUS presents video results, and some research into how it ranks videos versus text pages. One aspect of GUS that's been mentioned anecdotally is its preference for videos hosted by other Google properties: YouTube and Google Video. A few explanations have been offered for this behavior: 1) Google Video and YouTube have the largest archive of videos on the Web, so the odds of these two sites having a re [...]

A Visual Dictionary For The Web

One of the most popular vertical search features on the web is image search index. What’s really remarkable, however, is how little has changed in the core technology approach to the indexing of multimedia over the last decade. When I was the head of product at FAST back in 1999, we launched the web’s biggest image search on Lycos with over 50 million images (which seemed like a lot at the time!). The service included many leading edge features including black and white and color image filtering, size filtering, and filetype filtering. The main differentiator today continues to be ind [...]

Having Trouble Getting Your Video Content Indexed? YouTube Can Help

When it comes to embedded video content in search result pages on the major engines, it still seems like the engines have the easiest time indexing and ranking YouTube content, with some other video content occasionally sprinkled in. The engines will likely start including more video results as publishers get better at optimizing their content and spiders get better at understanding it. But for the time being, the best chance publishers have in getting their videos listed in search results by the major engines is to upload content to YouTube. Syndicating video to YouTube not only gives [...]

Video Search Engine Start-Up Yidio Vies For Market Share

The launch of Yidio, a new video search engine start-up, shows that investors feel there is still an opportunity to earn market share in video search. Yidio is a division of 2ten Media and debuted in the beginning of June. The San Diego based search engine indexes content from video portals such as YouTube as well as from media outlets (including CNN, ESPN, HBO, and Fox) and even local TV stations. It already has indexed over 200 million videos as well as 3400 free arcade games. The local TV stations include WPXI in Pittsburgh and WJZ in Baltimore. has a feature that automat [...]

Searching The Web For News Video

Recent data from comScore Video Metrix shows that consumers viewed 11.5 billion online videos in March of 2008, a whopping 64% gain versus March of 2007. This means that 73.7% of the US Internet population is now watching video online. While videos of pandas sneezing on YouTube make up millions of these monthly video views, consumers are also increasingly turning to the Internet to watch news video. But how are consumers finding the wealth of news video content available on the Web? And are search engines playing a major role? DoubleClick Performics, in partnership with ROI Research, rec [...]

Driving Video Consumption: The Key To Capturing Advertising Dollars

In a May 1st post to this column, my colleague Tom Wilde questioned whether direct response or brand marketing would lead the inflow of dollars to the online video advertising market. While both forms of advertising are potentially applicable to what is expected to be a $4B (eMarketer) to $7B (Jupiter) market by 2011, a key question for content producers and media companies is how to capture a meaningful share of these ad dollars. To answer this question, it is useful to understand the key growth drivers and their relative contribution to the anticipated market growth. For video advertis [...]

Searching For “Kitten Videos?” Me Neither

A new survey from ClipBlast! about how people find video content has started a discussion about search and how it relates to entertainment content. In the survey, ClipBlast! asked 1000 online consumers if they had a preferred method for finding video content on the Web. Of those surveyed, almost half had no preferred method, indicating that many consumers either have limited experience with online video, or possibly no experience they could recall. So while YouTube has exploded in popularity, and broadband adoption continues to climb, many consumers simply lack familiarity with this space. [...]

Video Advertising: Branding Opportunity Or Direct Response Platform?

We’ve all seen the stats on video advertising growth. eMarketer suggests $4 billion by 2011 and Jupiter goes as high as $7 billion. As is often the case with these numbers, they are largely a black box, in that unpacking the elements that actually get us there from where we are today are unclear. The core drivers of any online ad business are really threefold: 1) the size of the audience; 2) the engagement of the audience; 3) the quality of the audience. In the case of video advertising, these three pieces are in flux. Let’s break them down: Audience size: Video consumption ha [...]

A Closer Look At EveryZing

For those of you in need of a turn-key, hosted solution to gain natural search engine visibility for your video and audio content, the company EveryZing says they’re the ticket. EveryZing’s solution consists of a suite of products: ezSEARCH, ezSEO, and RAMP. The products are designed to provide users with a powerful multimedia search tool, publishers with the metrics and editorial controls, and search engines with crawlable text-based fodder they reward with higher rankings. At the core of EveryZing’s product is a speech-to-text technology developed by BBN Technologies with $50 [...]

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