Have you ever had this experience? You’re a big fan of someone’s blog. You read all her posts, you know her pet peeves, her sense of humor, her favorite books and movies. You know her dating travails, and that her best friend tends to drop by unannounced. You know her job sucks (or rocks). You know what she looks like, too – you’ve seen photos of her, her apartment, her car, her dog (forgive me if this is sounding stalkerish). You think you couldn’t possibly know her better.
Then, one day she posts a video of herself talking. And you’re blown away! “So, that’s who she is!” you think.
I’m all about the words and pictures, but adding video to your blog is a game-changer. It allows you to illustrate your subject in an entirely new dimension. And thanks to the prevalence of smart phones, you no longer have to invest in a video recorder to star in your own webisode.
Traveling in a new city? Pictures are great, but a video of that gondola ride will really put your readers right there in the canal with you. They’ll be able to hear the accordion and the lapping water, and see the ancient buildings glide past and the bridges pass overhead.
Blogging about a new recipe? You can write out in detail all the steps you took and photograph each phase of the process…or you could demonstrate with a live action cooking show.
If you want to show off the great work you did in your garden this year, why not give us a video tour? If you just adopted a new puppy, why not introduce us?
WordPress.com makes it easy to add videos to your site. If you want to upload your own video files directly to your Media Library, you’ll need the VideoPress upgrade. But if you don’t want to spring for it right now, you can embed videos from all of the popular services for free!
For example, say you want to share a video from YouTube. You might think that you should copy the video’s embed code, and for sharing on many websites, that’s exactly what you would do. But here on WordPress.com, you want to copy the video’s URL instead. The URL is what appears in your browser’s address bar while you’re viewing the video. It’s what you’d copy if you wanted to share the link itself.
So, for example, if you wanted to share this video of a baby panda sneezing, you’d copy the URL and paste it on its own line in your post’s Visual Editor, like so:
Make sure that the link is not hyperlinked – if the link is clickable, just click the “Unlink” button in the Visual Editor to remove the hyperlink. Then, when you publish the post, instead of the bare link, you’ll see:
You can share videos from Vimeo and other video sharing services just as easily. The actual method might differ a bit from YouTube, but there are step-by-step directions for each service linked here.
If you want to get a little more advanced, stay tuned! Tomorrow, Cheri will teach you how to use shortcodes to do even more cool things with your video embeds.