Guide to Video Marketing

Learn practical tips on how to elevate
your video marketing efforts.

Here’s what we’ll cover

What is video marketing?
Getting started with video
How to build a video marketing strategy
Types of marketing videos to create
When & where to share your videos
Getting started with video SEO
Video for demand generation
How to measure video marketing success
Connecting the dots: video & marketing
Companies finding success with video
Start Reading

Chapter One

What is video marketing?
What is
video marketing?

What is video marketing?

Video marketing is a strategic marketing approach that involves creating and sharing video content with the goals of attracting, retaining, and converting a defined audience of viewers.

Many marketers know they should be using video strategically, but often create video content simply to check off a box. In reality, video marketing is all about using video creatively to achieve your business goals.

Views alone don’t define video marketing, which is why it’s best to focus on what you’re trying to accomplish from a marketing perspective (the message) instead of developing a strategy around video itself (the medium).

If you feel like your video marketing efforts aren’t paying off, it might be because you’re treating the video as the means to the end. That’s a no-go!

You can’t deny the perks of embedding video on your site. Having embedded videos can boost your search engine visibility and even encourage visitors to spend more time on your site. But, there's more to video than measuring views and search results. Using video right on your site can actually help you build a more human connection with your audience and earn their trust. How?

Well, the storytelling powers of video can help companies connect with their audience in authentic and meaningful ways, which is one of the reasons so many businesses have turned to this tactic. When your business needs to be memorable and stand out from the crowd, video marketing can be a great differentiator.

Chapter Two

Getting started with video
Getting started
with video

Now that we know we've established the importance of using video—here's how you can get started.

The thought of creating your first video can be intimidating—we know! But believe it or not, you can make a great video today, using tools you already have, in just a few hours. Really! Even Spielberg had to start somewhere. Check out the resources below to get your feet wet and build video-making confidence.

Now that you’ve got some ideas flowing, here are a few additional resources to help you craft a professional video—without a ton of fancy equipment or a production team.


Determining the background (a.k.a. backdrop) for the scripted on-camera lines of your video will have a huge impact on how your story is told. Plus, strategically choosing where you shoot your video and what’s in the background can actually save you a ton of time in post-shoot editing.


If you’re a video producer or marketer, you know how hard it can be to make a video by yourself. You might be asking yourself, “How do I set up my camera? How do I make sure the shot’s in focus? How do I not sound flat on camera?” These are all tricky questions that can stop you from creating your next piece of content. If you have an idea, these tips will help you create the best video possible.


Bad audio can ruin even the best video footage. So, to create the best experience for your discerning audience, you'll want to make sure you have the right microphone for the job. Like an article littered with typos, loud background noise and fuzzy voices suggest inexperience and distract from your message.


If you follow some basic lighting principles, you can get impressive results from even the cheapest of lighting kits. This is great news for businesses with smaller budgets or folks just starting out with video.


Okay, so, you’ve shot your video. You’ve done multiple takes. You have some B-roll. Now what? Editing can seem like a complicated part of the video process. In this guide, we’ll break down some basic editing theories to help you turn your raw footage into an awesome video that matches your vision, no matter which tools you decide to use.

Now that you’ve recorded your first video, it’s time to find it a home. Before you run over to the nearest and biggest hosting platform (cough, YouTube, cough), you'll want to nail down how you want to use your videos, first. Not all video hosting platforms are created equally.

From the example above, YouTube can be great for improving video discoverability but not so great for providing an uninterrupted video experience or for capturing leads. YouTube is owned by Google and is designed to keep viewers deep in the YouTube universe. Have you ever noticed how many ads and related video links you encounter on a YouTube video? How likely are your video viewers to get distracted by other content that isn’t yours? More food for thought in the video below.

Wistia Embed

YouTube Embed


Choose wisely! Read more on the differences between Wistia and YouTube.

Chapter Three

How to build a video marketing strategy
How to build a video
marketing strategy

  1. Awareness Stage
  2. Consideration Stage
  3. Decision Stage
  4. Retention Stage
The Marketing Funnel

Like we mentioned before, video is just the vehicle—your marketing strategy should be the engine that drives your message. To make an effective video, you'll also need a great marketing strategy behind it.

Before you start making your video, it’s critical that you understand your marketing funnel and determine your primary goal from the start. This will help you keep your content focused and will make the success of your video much easier to measure.

We like to focus on four specific areas of the marketing funnel: awareness, consideration, decision, and retention.

Having a clear understanding of your marketing funnel and how you want to use video to enhance that experience will make it easier to set realistic goals that align with each stage.

Now that you’ve identified where your video fits in the funnel, it’s time to set some goals. Competing metrics and goals can be confusing, so we recommend setting up some “SMART” goals before you get started: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-related.

Video Marketing example goals

Needs work
Increase our lead volume
Looking good!
Increase the conversion rate of our PPC campaign landing pages at least 10% within six weeks by incorporating video.
Once you’ve landed on the goal of your video, it should be a lot easier to narrow down your focus on what type of content to create to serve that goal. We’ve written several in-depth posts on specific strategies for creating video content that supports your product, brand, and more — check ’em out!
Ideally, you should structure your video strategy so that creative tasks feel less overwhelming, and more like a key component of an already thoughtful marketing plan. Leave plenty of room for testing and analysis, so you can replicate the aspects of a strategy that works for your business — and leave other tactics behind.

Chapter Four

Types of marketing videos to create
Types of marketing videos
to create

Once you’ve nailed down your video marketing goals and strategy, it’s time to focus on the video content itself. While you may be brimming with ideas at the start of your video journey, it takes more than initial excitement and momentum to keep producing fresh, consistent content. If you’re in need of ideas, we’ve got you covered! To get started, explore these examples of essential videos for small businesses.

Explainer videos

If you don’t make any other video this year (though we’re confident you’ve got what it takes), start with a product explainer video. Think about the last time you surfed around a company’s website and thought to yourself, “Is this business even legit? What the heck do they do?” This is the last impression you want to leave on a site visitor or potential customer, which is why a product explainer video is the first video you should make.

Testimonial videos

Some businesses tend to shy away from collecting testimonials, and who can blame them? The task can feel scary and intimidating, and ROI is difficult to predict at the outset. But what’s so great about testimonial videos is that you only need one or two solid ones in your catalogue to see the difference they can make. Start by interviewing some of your long-term customers that have seen tangible results thanks to your product, and share those videos on a prominent page on your site.

Company story video

If your small business has a particularly interesting background, company story videos are the way to go. How did your business get started? What was your motivation for starting the company? By featuring the friendly faces of your teammates, you can make your prospects feel right at home. After all, people are buying more products and services based on emotion rather than logic, which is one reason why appealing to a visitor’s psyche is so important.


If you’re looking for more ideas, check out this list of 15 types of video for every business.
Making your first video can be a little daunting. But when you know the type of video you’re making, where it will live, and what format it will appear in, it’ll feel less like you’re wandering around a dark room by yourself.

Chapter Five

When and where to share your videos
When and where
to share
your videos

Now that you know what type of video you want to create, the next step is clear — getting people to watch your content. In order to have any results to measure, people need to know your video exists. By building a distribution plan, you can ensure that at least some views, visits, and conversions come through the door every time you create something new. Read on for the best channels and best practices for promoting your video content.


Your own website is the perfect spot to showcase all of your great video assets. In addition to driving traffic to other platforms (like Facebook), you can also build brand affinity and drive direct leads right on your website. From demo videos to testimonials and more, check out all the different ways to embed videos on your website—including your very own branded video channel.


Video marketing doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Check out 12 ways to promote your videos on a budget!
Distribution is the vital last step in the video marketing process. Making sure the right people see your content is a critical component of effective video marketing. Experiment and analyze how your videos are performing on different channels to get a better understanding of what types of content work for your business and where.


New to testing?
Dive right in with our guide to getting started with A/B Testing.

You’re halfway there! Need a break?

Download the guide and finish later.

Chapter Six

Getting started with video SEO
Getting started with
video SEO

When it comes to using video on your website, different platforms serve different purposes. When you upload videos to hosting platforms like YouTube or Vimeo, you’re giving away all the SEO-power that drives viewers back to your website through search engines. And depending on the goals you laid out before creating your video, putting your video content on YouTube could actually have a negative impact on your results.

Search engine optimization is an important part of many content marketing initiatives, and video is no different. If you’re using Wistia, we’ve got a few handy built-in tools to help you rank for your most prized keywords.

Wistia automatically optimizes your videos for search engines, which means your videos can rank better, attract more viewers, and get you more site visitors, without any extra work. We do this by injecting JSON-LD into standard video embed. Wait, what?

If you’re not sure how to use Wistia to get the best results—don’t worry! We’ve got some basic video SEO tips to help you become a search engine champ.

Use video captions

Learn more in this post on 9 Tactical Video SEO Tips


Want to make sure your video can show up in search?
Head to and enter the URL of the page where your video is embedded. If the page appears with a video thumbnail, you’re all set!
Remember—just because your video can show up for video results doesn’t mean it necessarily will. Google considers several factors when presenting search results pages, including site authority, prominence of video on the page, and whether or not Google thinks the query should return video results—to name just a few. Video SEO is just a larger piece of your overall search engine strategy.

Chapter Seven

Video for demand generation
Video for
demand generation

Video is a powerful tool, but we all know that teamwork makes the dream work. If you use Wistia, you can connect your Wistia account with the marketing automation platform of your choice. Then, capture leads directly from your videos and automatically pass viewing data to your CRM. Then score, segment, and assign leads to your sales team. Voilà!

Wistia integrates with three of the largest marketing automation providers—HubSpot, Marketo, and Pardot. Dive into the specifics of these integrations and how they can fuel your funnel.


Wistia and HubSpot have been in cahoots since 2015, and the relationship between marketing automation and video just keeps getting stronger. You can now get more out of your video events, audience segments, and lead information than ever before. Read the guide to see how the new features can work for you.


Want to get started using Marketo and ultimately improve your sales funnel? This guide walks you through the key features of the Wistia-Marketo integration and even provides some use cases from other companies about how they’ve made the integration work for them.


Supercharge your B2B marketing automation by bringing the power of Wistia to Pardot. Capture leads with your videos, then automatically pass detailed viewing data into Pardot to score, segment, and assign your prospects.

Don’t currently use Wistia? No problem. Look for a video marketing provider that offers similar integrations to boost your video marketing efforts.

Advanced tips and tricks:

Want to learn even more about turning your videos into lead generation machines? Check out these posts on how to get started and ways to succeed:
Just because these integrations and customizations make your videos work harder doesn’t mean you’re creating more work for yourself. By getting to know your marketing automation, email, and video platforms well, you can get the most leads out of each video with minimal extra effort.

Chapter Eight

How to measure your video marketing success
How to
your video marketing success

Once your videos are up and running and views are rolling in, you’ll need a way to measure and analyze the results. If you can’t learn from past wins and losses, you won’t know what changes to make. We happen to know quite a bit about video analytics, and we’re happy to share that wisdom with you! Let’s dive in.

Top video marketing metrics and the goals they measure

  • Use view count to measure reach
  • Use engagement to measure quality
  • Use social media to measure word of mouth
  • Use play rate to measure relevance
  • Use site metrics to measure user experience
  • Use comments to measure community
  • Use resonance to measure sentiment


Learn more in our full Guide to Video Marketing Metrics
Once you’ve got a solid grasp on the fundamental video marketing metrics, it’s time to dive into some more advanced topics. Below, we’ve compiled a few intermediate to advanced resources to help measure audience retention and video return on investment (ROI).

Understanding audience retention

Who’s sticking around to watch your content, and why? In this guide, we examined one of our own support videos to uncover why some viewers stay and others leave. We break the video down into three sections — the nose, body, and tail — and explain what might be happening when engagement drops off at each stage.

Free Google Analytics tools

Many marketers turn to Google Analytics to learn more about how their campaigns are performing. Wistia’s Google Analytics integration consolidates all of the most important video metrics in one place, so you can see how your video content contributes to your overall marketing strategy. We’ve also put together a few GA shortcuts, including a video tracking dashboard and an easy way to create segments that reflect video ROI.

Using video marketing data

In order to make sure you’re getting the most out of your videos, you should always make sure to incorporate video data into your other marketing data. We suggest going about this in three ways: tracking video events as part of your website analytics, comparing leads from different sources, and scoring leads for your sales team. When you put video data in context, you can see how video ROI really stacks up.

Understanding how your videos are performing is key to making better content and reaching your marketing goals. The sooner you learn how to leverage your video data, the faster you’ll be able to move people through your marketing funnel and grow your audience.

Chapter Nine

Connecting the dots: video and marketing
the dots: video and marketing

Now that you’re up to speed on the types of video to make, where to share them, and how to analyze your results, it’s time to go beyond the basics and get even more out of your content. The way you can do that is by combining the power of your content and the software you already use and love.

If you’re a Wistia user, don’t miss some of our examples below on how to pair Wistia and other marketing tools. And if you’re still new to the video game, we hope you’ll be inspired by these advanced use cases and start thinking about where you’d like to take your video marketing strategy in the future!

Top Wistia integrations

Marketing Automation

What makes a lead “good”? And when is the right time to move a prospect from a lead to a marketing qualified lead to a sales qualified lead? While there’s no cut-and-dried answer, migrating all of your marketing touch points into a single source of truth can help connect the dots.


Great video production and great video hosting go together like peanut butter and chocolate; they’re just so much better together. While you might have a dedicated internal or external team on the video production front, there are also simple solutions available to do the heavy lifting for you.


The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese. Sometimes, working smarter, not harder, is the best approach—and Wistia makes it easy to get more done with our productivity app integrations.

Email Marketing

Ready to see your click-through rates soar? Send your lists engaging and hyper-targeted emails featuring stunning videos with just a few simple clicks.


Data is at the heart of any good marketing campaign, and video data is just as important as data from any other channel. In fact, video is one of the most trackable content mediums.

We just listed our most popular integrations—but they’re far from everything. We’re always adding integrations to make Wistia more helpful for marketers. These apps may be just the thing your team is looking for, whether it’s the email provider MailChimp, the task-automation app Zapier, or analytics tools that you can add instantly to your Wistia dashboard. Be sure to check out our full integration page to start connecting the digital dots between your existing tools and platforms.


Optimize your workflows with these Wistia Integrations
No marketing tool is an island. When you harness the power of integrations, you’re optimizing your video content and smoothing out internal and external processes — not to mention staying ahead of the competition.

Chapter Ten

Companies finding success with video marketing
Companies finding
with video marketing

At Wistia, we’re strong advocates of the “show, don’t tell” marketing principle, so we wanted to share some examples from businesses that are doing video marketing right. Learn the what, why, and how behind these awesome marketing videos, and start applying some of these proven techniques to your own video marketing efforts!


Moz’s Whiteboard Fridays is the stuff of online marketing legend. For almost 10 years, Moz founder Rand Fishkin and his team have been posting a video every Friday of Rand explaining an SEO-related topic (like Google’s RankBrain algorithm) in front of a whiteboard. As simple as that may sound, the content is always educational and delivered in a compelling way, as this video proves.


Music and video have gone hand-in-hand since the first music videos started hitting the airwaves in the early ‘80s. But just as they’ve come a long way from the days of garish lighting and grainy images, so has the music industry’s use of video to connect with enthusiasts and consumers alike. For Pyramind, a San Francisco-based music production school and studio, video is more than an outreach and awareness tool: It’s actively driving potential students and customers their way.


Even in today’s video-saturated business culture, it’s rare to see a company that uses video effectively in almost every way possible. But Bizzabo is different. Video has been their mainstay, whether it’s for tutorials, product demos, customer testimonials, or content promotion. And with offices in New York and Tel Aviv, the company looks to video as a way to boost company culture and morale.

Sometimes the best way to learn how to make a great video is to watch a lot of videos. We’ve gathered examples on our blog, but you can also do your own analysis. Write down what you like about a video, or read about your favorite brand’s processes to make your next video even better.