Video on Your Insurance Agency Website, Part I

16thJul. × ’08

There has been a steady and growing interest in using video on insurance agency websites. There are lots of options and services available, and the cost of adding video ranges from virtually $0 to several thousands of dollars. Choices can lead to pitfalls on one hand, or increased traffic and conversions on the other. To help insurance agents avoid the former and capitalize on the latter, I’m going to start a several part series on using videos.

Part I – A Few General Tips

1.  Don’t be gratuitous. Make sure your videos add some value, and are not merely commercials. Commercials are something we endure in exchange for free television programming (although the proliferation of paid cable and Tivo has meant we endure fewer and fewer commercials, even on TV). On a website blatant commercials can be counter productive, irritating visitors and leaving a bad impression. Infomercials can be OK, just be mindful of the balance of value vs. self-promotion.

2.  Leave your website visitors in control. Videos that launch automatically, especially on the home page – no matter how cool they seem at first blush – are frequently viewed as unwanted intrusions. Videos can add real value, but let your site visitor decide if they want to switch on a video or not. Nothing is more irritating than listening to iTunes, Pandora or Rhapsody while surfing the web and suddenly some audio starts talking over the music. Many companies with well-established web presence have tried and discarded auto-launch video, and virtually no established retail or service-oriented websites foist videos on site visitors today. For proof in an insurance context, take a look at the arch-nemeses of independent insurance agents: Geico, Esurance, and friend-foe Progressive. They all have video options, but none launch automatically. There is a reason for that.

3.  Before you post a video to your site, have a clear objective for the video. Do you want to keep visitors on your site longer? Do you have certain conversion goals like more completed quote forms or phone calls? Maybe a video will have a support role for a check-list or article. That’s OK too. Just make sure your video(s) has a real job to do, and where possible, measure whether it is doing that job or not.

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