Earned distribution, like owned, is free. You have relatively little to lose using it other than time and effort, but unlike owned and paid, the payoff can be drastically more unpredictable. From SEO efforts that boost your search presence, to building relationships with influencers you’ve never met, you never quite know what your ROI will be — it can be enormous or it can fizzle to an end. But don’t skip earned distribution altogether! Take a little more time to think strategically about which earned channels will help you accomplish your video goals.
Social Sharing and Comments: If you're on social media, you're probably familiar with sharing and commenting. Social shares and comments are good indicators of how relevant your content is with your target audience. If a viewer watches your video and takes the time to share it with their network, you probably created a great piece of content. Social shares are also important because the more times your video is shared, the more it'll be viewed. If your goal is to reach a lot of people, social shares is a good metric to track.

Your iPhone might do a great job of focusing on the subject when you take photos, but when it comes to video the camera will continue adjusting and re-adjusting as you move around the scene. To solve this problem, lock the exposure before you press record. Hold your finger down on the subject of the video until a yellow box appears with the words “AE/AF Lock”.

If you have lots of connections on LinkedIn and you're not really posting on there, start immediately. You can reach a large audience, especially when your posts go viral. This is a great place to convey the entrepreneurial journey. Talk about your challenges and tell stories. The more effective your stories, the larger your potential reach when you go viral.
Professional cameras, like DSLRs, give you fine control over the manual settings of shooting video and allow you to achieve the shallow depth of field (background out of focus) that people rave about. While they're primarily used for photography, DSLRs are incredibly small, work great in low light situations, and pair with a wide range of lenses — making them perfect for video. However, DSLRs do require some training (and additional purchases) of lenses.
Begin with a review of your existing video content. Which formats and topics have you covered, and which have you missied? What's working and what isn't? A thorough audit will help to pick out the strengths and weaknesses of your current videos and suggest areas for improvement. Check out our blog post for a guide to conducting your own video audit.
Create a content plan that outlines how many videos you’ll make, what type of videos, and where you’ll share them. This plan should include a wide variety of video types from case studies to interviews, testimonials, educational videos, etc. According to the Nonprofit Marketing Guide, “the most popular video for nonprofits is storytelling about participants or supporters with 60% of nonprofits creating them.” The second most popular videos are fundraising appeals, which one-third of nonprofits produce.

Video marketing strategies are nothing new. Just like you wouldn’t create a commercial and buy airtime during the Super Bowl without researching and strategizing, you shouldn’t create a digital marketing video without first doing the proper research and creating a plan. Your video marketing strategy will ultimately be what guides you — your budget, your timelines, your production processes, your conversion metrics, and more. So getting this written down and finalized should be step one of your video creation process.

Finally, revenue that comes from delighting your customer should be easier to track since you already have a purchase on file. You’ll likely have a user profile for each customer or some form of contact information from them — every return visit won’t correlate to a new sale, but tracking their behavior will give you a good idea of how many return visitors convert. Then apply this percentage to the number of return website visitors and you’re set! Hopefully, your sales department will also have a good idea of how many first time buyers purchase more than once.
You or your team can develop the videos themselves. If you plan to develop videos on a regular basis with a low budget, this may be the best option for you. However, if you do this you still want to ensure that the videos maintain a level of quality – even if they’re amateur productions. Spend some time researching how to create great video and consider taking a course that can provide you with additional insights.

Social sharing is one of the simplest forms of earned distribution. It often happens organically, but you can encourage social shares by getting the ball rolling. Set up a schedule to post your video content from your corporate and personal accounts on every social channel you’re active on. Send a private message to friends and family to do the same. If you know anyone in a related field or industry, make sure they share your content, too! Though it’s not the best method, you can even incentivize shares by creating a contest or giveaway through an app like Rafflecopter.


The benefits of a planned marketing strategy are numerous. Business owners often rely solely on their intuition to make business decisions. While this informal knowledge is important in the decision-making process, it may not provide you with all the facts you need to achieve marketing results. A marketing strategy will help you define business goals and develop activities to achieve them.
×