One of the services we specialize in is video podcast production. There are a gazillion ways to get your video podcasts viewed and distributed online. Some of the more popular sources include Brightcove, PermissionTV, Revver, Veoh, YouTube, and blip.tv. (note: it’s blip dot tv, not bliptv dot com). It’s actually a good idea (if you have time) to use as many of these sources as possible (we use Veoh, blip.tv, and YouTube for my wife’s video podcast, Real Women Scrap TV, mainly because she had so many requests for YouTube versions of the video, and Veoh allows you to simultaneously post to Veoh and YouTube). The more places you can get your videos seen, the better. But, most of us smaller companies don’t have the resources to do multiple posts. So, if you had to stick with one, blip.tv is one of the best. The Wall Street Journal’s technology writer Walt Mossberg praised it highly, and last year it won the Webby Award for “Best Broadband Site,” as well as the Webby’s “People’s Voice Award.” For the purposes of this article, I’ll use the blip.tv video podcast channel we created for WPPI as an example (see photo above).
What is blip.tv
blip.tv is a video distribution service that allows you to post your videos, free of charge, for the world to view. It is designed for producers of original video podcasts, but many video producers use it as a source to post all of their video content (e.g. personal projects, client videos, etc.) If you fall into the latter category, don’t use blip.tv to post anything that you intend to be private. Everything you post on blip is totally public and searchable on their website. Uploading to blip.tv is simple. One screen is where you enter all the information: title, description, tags, etc. You can upload your on thumbnail (what people will see when the video is playing) or it will create its own if you don’t upload one. You can set the “licensing” rights for the video, which dictate your rules for how others can share the video.
You can upload files in any of the primary file types like QuickTime, Windows Media, Real Media, or Flash. blip.tv will then convert that file into a Flash (.flv) video as well as generate the code to post that video on your blog or website. The compression quality blip uses is significantly higher than what you see on YouTube, and with blip, you don’t have to have any of their branding on your video. If you upload a .flv file, it won’t create a new one, it’ll just use the one you upload. This is a good alternative if you want more control over the compression quality of your video.
What I also love about the service is that it maintains your original uploaded file, as opposed to most other services where once your uploaded video is converted to Flash, you can no longer access the original file. This is great if you want to give your viewers options. Or, if your computer crashes and you lose your original file and need to get it back.
Multiple Distribution Methods
The other thing I love about blip.tv is that there are so many ways you can post videos uploaded. If you are familiar with HTML, you can get the URL code information for the location of your uploaded videos and post your own code. Here’s an example of that (click image to play):
But, if you’re a video podcast producer, where all the videos in your account are related (e.g. a series), you’ll want to use the “show player” code. This will generate a flash video with player controls that allow you to access other videos (or episodes) in your blip.tv account, share the video with other, grab embed codes, etc. Here’s the same video using the show player code:
blip.tv also allows you to cross post to most popular blogs, MySpace, Facebook, Flickr, AOL Video, Yahoo Video, and more.
Too much to tell
There’s just way too much to tell about blip.tv to include in this blog. I suggest you peruse their site to get more info. But here’s a short list:
- Statistics on each video (e.g. where most views come from, how many views, which browsers, daily viewership, etc.)
- Advertising: generate ad revenue with your videos by adding ads from your own advertisers, or a pool of advertisers blip.tv has already tapped. You split the revenue with blip.tv.
- iTunes Store podcasting (more on this in my next installment)
- Cross posting to blogs and other social media networks
- Multiple video format support
- Support video sized up to 100 mb
- Slick player interface
- Easy to use
In my next installment, I will discuss how to use blip.tv to post to iTunes. Until then, happy posting.