Is it Still a Great Marketing Video if No One Watches?

Last fall I made a series of pretty good library marketing videos, about some of the folks who make the library work.

I tried to make them fairly tight – less than a minute and a half long – and anecdotally entertaining. In general, they got a good reaction.

But despite posting them on our blog and sharing them effectively all over fb and twitter, they didn’t get the numbers of views I’d expected.

Why didn’t my videos get more traction? I don’t know for sure, but here are my thoughts:
Library users are READERS, more than they are watchers?
Library users don’t care about the people who make the library work? Or more likely, they’re too busy to watch videos about us.
Also, Library users don’t come to our website to watch videos (we don’t offer streaming video).
Unlike ads on TV or commercial sites, where the viewers has to opt out of watching, potential library video viewers have to opt in.

This leads to questions about placement:
Should our videos autoplay on the front page of the web site?
Is the library website even where we should be promoting our videos?
Since we cant afford to pay for our PSAs to run during the Superbowl, or any TV at all, where can we autoplay them?
And about content:
What can we make library advocacy videos about, that people will actually want to watch?

My “next step” thoughts are:
1. Content: Create satellite and teaser videos on library programs that people are already interested in attending.
2. Placement: Play video as “previews” at library events.

With this in mind, on Tuesday I’m meeting with two guys who were heavily involved with the DC punk scene, to brainstorm a mini-documentary slide show video. The plan is for this marketing video to act as a combined preview and added content for this year’s Arlington Reads program.

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