Actors – Stop using YouTube.


Speak with most people and their ‘go to’ platform for sharing videos and showreels is of course YouTube. If you don’t mind the adverts and the promotion of other people’s videos, then it’s fine. BUT, if you’d like to seek out a superior (and still free) alternative, then read on, and I’ll give you mi opinion on how you can sneak ahead of your acting competition by using Vimeo.

First, I should say I’m not getting paid in any way to promote Vimeo. I simply use them as a service and pound for pound, Vimeo offers the best range of functions to help you promote ‘you’ – not adverts for foot cream, other people’s cat videos or your acting competition. In the entertainment business as a whole, keeping control of your individual ‘branding’ is key. Don’t allow it to be eroded for the sake of a few changes.

So, here are mi 7 main reasons why I prefer the Vimeo service over YouTube:

  • It’s quality init. Vimeo is accepted as a much better quality visual platform. It’s used by all sorts of creative professionals for this reason. When you upload a video, it plays smoothly and visually looks sharp. The better your video looks then the better you look – right?
  • No adverts. There are no adverts on Vimeo, and you can even remove the Vimeo branding, so the video is all about you! This is important because people can get easily side-tracked. The last thing you want is for a director to end up watching funny vines when they’re supposed to be watching you do your thang!
  • Till death us do part. A bit tekkie but bear with me. When you upload a video anywhere on the web it gets a unique funky address – you know the one…http://wibble wibble wibble dot com. On Youtube, once you upload any video, like a showreel, if you want to update that video with a new one, the new video gets a new wibble wibble wibble address. So, you now have to update every video link, on every site you’ve ever listed that video. Plus, any company that promises that “We’ll keep your details” now has a link to your old showreel, and there’s nothing you can do about it unless you keep sending new links. With Vimeo, you can replace the original video file on the original funky address. Silly thing, but this means you can keep updating your showreel (or video) and it’s always in one place AND it’s always up to date.
  • Open sesame! If you upload a video but only want to show it to certain people, with Vimeo you can limit who sees it, by making the video private with a password. So, if an agent wants to review your showreel they can do it privately. For a fee, you can also set up dedicated review pages. These pages allow the people you’re working with to make notes on the video all private and confidential like!

OK, These are some slightly technical bits, but honestly, they are important and should you need to use them, they are really simple to master and very useful in day to day use.

  • It’s nice to share. On Vimeo, you can allow people to share and download your video. So, if you’re stuck without a USB drive you can give the editor/director/agent your Vimeo link and they can download the video directly. This saves hours organising file transfers and all that yukky technical stuff! This is now a Youtube (paid) Premium feature.
  • Motivate your viewer. Let’s say when someone watches your showreel, you want them to visit your Spotlight page. With Vimeo, you can create a ‘Call to action’ at the end of your video, which will automatically re-direct the viewer to your Spotlight page. Aside from being cool, this motivates people to find out more about you. If this seems a step too far for you, then you can make the ‘Call To Action’ an email link, so the viewer doesn’t have to bother finding your email they click on the video screen and voila!
  • Get in bed with embed codes. This is about as technical as I want to get but, embed codes make it easy to place your video on any webpage without downloading/uploading or top loading. You just copy a line of text and add it in the right place. Then your video will appear on that page, in whatever size you want it to be. Again, if you change the video (see number 3) this link also updates automatically.

OK, the pain is over, no more technical shenanigans. But I hope you can see that there is a viable to good old favourite YouTube. Like filmmaking itself, branding is all a matter of control, make sure people see you at your very best.

As always, I hope this post has been useful and if you have questions or comments then send ‘em over.

Written by Mark Alexander Todd



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