• Communications

Who’s Watching Your Video?

The most important factor to consider when you choose between posting your video to a branded YouTube channel or your organization’s video content management system (VCMS, or “business YouTube”) is your intended audience.

Remember – the best video in the world has no value if the right people can’t see it. By the same token, video that would be exceptionally valuable to your employees may create an exceptional headache if unintentionally made public.

You can think of your audience in three groups. Whether a video is intended for each group or not will help you decide where you should upload it.

  1. Your employees (and other people internal to your organization). With this audience you can share more sensitive information. Transparency in communications and openness in teaching best practices will actually help them better understand your organization, their work, and how to do the best job.
  2. Your public (customers and non-customers alike). With this audience you should be more deliberate. Depending on your brand you may still have fairly informal communications with this audience, but you certainly wouldn’t want to inadvertently give away anything that wasn’t yet ready to share or released sensitive information.
  3. Your halo audience (partners, prospects, vendors, and anyone else not in your organization but with whom you work regularly). Thoughtfulness is key. Transparency and openness will help you get better results with these partners, but you may not want to share anything and everything your employees would see.

As you can see, flexible options for privacy settings will be critical in making sure your videos are seen by the right audience – and not by the wrong one. So how do YouTube and VCMS providers approach privacy?

YouTube Channels:
YouTube channels are public by default, and cannot be made wholly private. Any channel you create on YouTube will be indexed by Google and can be returned in search.

Likewise, videos uploaded to YouTube are publicly shared by default. If left public, anyone would be able to search for and watch your videos, as well as like, share, and email them with their own networks, and even embed them in their own blog posts or websites – however they see fit.

However, although YouTube channels cannot be hidden, every individual video you upload can be. YouTube offers two non-public settings: private or unlisted.

  • Private videos can only be seen by those people you invite to view, up to a maximum audience of 50.
  • Unlisted videos are also not searchable, but are viewable only by those people with a direct link to the video (although bear in mind anyone with the link could share and reshare it however they like, even with people you didn’t intend).


Video Content Management Systems (VCMS)
A VCMS is generally pre-set to be securely accessible within your organization. Most VCMS providers also allow users to restrict specific videos as well as collections of videos to only share with a subset of the company (e.g.: your team, your working group, or just you).

Sharing outside options differ for each VCMS provider, but most incorporate some means to share video with external audiences. Options range from generating direct links to the video content that can then be shared, enabling embedding so video may be placed publicly on other websites, social networks, and blogs, and optional partner-level permissions that allow designated “halo” level audience members to open access to a restricted version of the video library.

What Should I Choose?
The key difference to consider when uploading your video to either YouTube or your VCMS is that on your video content management systems your video will start at a private, secured setting and must be made more open, whereas on your YouTube channel your video start as first as public content and must then be locked down to be made private. What’s right for your video will depend on its target audience.

Want to know more about your options for storing your business video online, and how to choose between your YouTube Channel and your corporate YouTube VCMS? Download our new white paper, “A YouTube Channel vs. the Corporate YouTube: A guide to designing a policy to help your business choose the right place for your videos” today.