Ahh yes, evaluating software. The most thankless errand an employee can be sent on.
Seems pretty simple on the surface, but when you get down to it, there are typically about a dozen decent solutions to choose from no matter what problem you’re looking to solve.
The most frustrating part about evaluating software, however, is understanding the differences between them, especially when some of the options are seemingly… identical.
This leads us to how we got here today.
As a platform consultant for IMPACT, I help clients and members of our community figure out if they actually need to add a tool to their tech stack, and if they do, which one to go with based on their needs.
Because IMPACT is a HubSpot Elite Solutions Partner, most of our clients are on the HubSpot platform in some capacity and the next form of software they typically invest in is video hosting.
As a HubSpot customer, the options for video integrations are limitless, but one tool, in particular, stands out because it’s baked right into your portal: HubSpot Video: powered by Vidyard.
Without a doubt, the next question I get is is: “What the heck is the difference between Vidyard and HubSpot Video?”
So let’s unpack everything you need to know about these two seemingly identical solutions.
First, what is HubSpot Video?
Ok this may seem a little backwards, but this is easiest if we start with HubSpot Video.
If you have HubSpot, you’ve likely seen this pop up in your portal and wondered what exactly it does.
HubSpot Video is a free sales and marketing video hosting solution powered by Vidyard. It is designed to get you started using video if you use HubSpot Professional or Enterprise Marketing Hub, Service Hub, or CMS Hub and helps ensure that video playback is fast and smooth on all your website pages, landing pages, blogs, and emails.
Think of HubSpot Video as a feature-rich version of the existing Vidyard free tools that were made especially for HubSpot customers.
For the Marketing Hub, most notably, you get to host and embed up to 250 videos in your HubSpot file manager for free. While this doesn’t sound like a big deal, it most definitely is.
Most companies charge hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars per year to host and embed this many videos on your website pages, landing pages, blogs, and emails. Even Vidyard itself charges for embedding.
HubSpot and Vidyard are giving this way for no additional cost to users.
Plus, you have the ability to add your HubSpot calls-to-action and forms directly into the video and then build lists and trigger workflows based on the engagement. This further integrates video into your marketing efforts allowing viewers to convert and become leads when the mood strikes them.
What’s the catch? These videos must be embedded on HubSpot pages and emails. If you want to embed the video anywhere, you’ll have to pay, but more on that later.
HubSpot Video also extends beyond just marketing applications.
For Sales Hub users, HubSpot Video unlocks the ability to quickly create a 1:1 video right from a HubSpot contact record so you can follow up with prospects or walk through a proposal and send it all via email.
In the Service Hub, you can reply to a ticket with a video just like you can with the Sales Hub. Additionally, you can use some of your 250 free embeds to add a video to your knowledge base docs.
To get started with HubSpot Video, simply go to the file manager in your HubSpot portal and opt-in to the integration with Vidyard.
The activation of HubSpot Video adds all the features I just outlined directly to your HubSpot portal, for free. This activation also creates a linked Vidyard Free portal for you at Vidyard.com.
Ok, so then, what is Vidyard?
If you’ve spent any amount of time researching video hosting platforms you’ve most likely come across Vidyard at some point.
Vidyard provides video technology for marketers, sales teams, internal communications, and corporate learning that enables users to record, share, and track videos all from one tool. It is one of the most well-known video hosting tools on the market today.
One of the biggest differentiators for Vidyard is that it is one of the only video solutions that uses cookie tracking to attribute video views to a specific contact. This means the person watching your video does not need to have a Vidyard account for you to capture engagement information, a common pitfall is that is found in most comparable solutions like Wistia or Vimeo.
Another important difference between Vidyard and the competition is that they allow for unlimited recordings and unlimited uploads to all account levels. Even free users can upload unlimited videos as long as they are shorter than an hour.
This means you can store all of your videos in Vidyard for free, but how you share these videos is limited. These videos can be shared 1:1 with a link but cannot be embedded in a webpage, landing page, blog, or email.
Most video hosting companies charge for storage on a per megabyte basis, so this can be extremely affordable and scalable for businesses of all sizes and budgets.
But HubSpot Video and Vidyard can also work together
Ok, so this is where things get a bit confusing.
So far, we’ve talked about HubSpot Video and Vidyard as two separate things, but they can work together by upgrading your Vidyard account.
To be clear, HubSpot Video is a free-only option, it can’t be upgraded. While both HubSpot Video and Vidyard free offer a ton of features, they don’t have everything. If you want more features, that happens on the Vidyard end and under a different pricing structure than the normal Vidyard-only pricing.
If you do upgrade, this adds features to your Vidyard account, not HubSpot.
As a HubSpot user, you have two options for a Vidyard upgrade:
What does Vidyard Teams offer?
Teams is the lowest plan available to... well, teams… who want to get more out of their video strategy. You don’t have to have HubSpot to get something out of this plan. At the sticker price, this plan comes with three seats, but individual seats can be added on as necessary.
First up, sharing and embeds
The most common reason HubSpot Video users upgrade their Vidyard portals is to unlock the ability to embed videos outside of HubSpot.
If you want to embed videos on any platform (think: WordPress) other than HubSpot, upgrading to Vidyard Teams gets you 50 external embeds included and you can add to that number as needed.
Upgrading your Vidyard portal also allows for link sharing so you do not need to host a video on a HubSpot page or any public page in order for someone to see it.
This is particularly useful for salespeople who want to send a video to someone on a branded sharing page.
Without upgrading, you cannot share the videos in your HubSpot Video account with a link and videos appear on Vidyard-branded pages.
Data and analytics
Upgrading to a Vidyard Teams account also comes with analytics perks.
With HubSpot Video free, you can only see video view count and video retention on the specific HubSpot page it is embedded on.
Upgrading to Vidyard Teams shows you how that video performs overall and gives you a look into how your entire video library performs as a whole.
You’ll gain features like viewer heatmaps that show how users are engaging with your video and insights like device type, geography, unique views, total views, and video click-through rates.
This helps you understand who is watching your videos and how effective they are at keeping a viewer’s attention.
HubSpot Video Free allows you to add HubSpot CTAs to your videos in the way of a basic button with text and URL. You are also limited to only adding one per video and it will appear either at the very beginning or very end, of the video.
Upgrading gets you access to customizable, full-screen CTAs or banners that can be inserted into a video at any point of the video, and you can add multiple to each video.
You are also able to gate a video so that a viewer would be required to fill out a form in order to watch the rest. This enables you to use your content as a source of lead generation.
Features sound great, right?
As we mentioned earlier, however, when you upgrade Vidyard this does not make information or features available in HubSpot. If you do want that kind of integration, you need Teams+.
Teams+ is what Vidyard offers that could be considered an “enterprise” tier specifically for HubSpot users that unlocks enhanced custom actions and events, and integrations.
Every feature we just reviewed for Teams is also included in Teams+, but what else is there?
Adding the HubSpot CRM integration to the mix turns a typical Vidyard Team package into what they call Teams+. The integration is only possible with a paid Vidyard account.
The integration puts all of the contact-level view data right in HubSpot and shows exactly how much of a video a contact watched, right on the HubSpot contact record.
As a comparison, HubSpot Video Free will only tell you when a contact watches more than 5% of a video and will add an event to the activity feed that says the video has been watched, but not how much.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but if you desire more video analytics inside your HubSpot records, upgrading to Vidyard Teams+ will get you there.
Lastly, the integration unlocks access to lead scoring and automation based on how a visitor interacts with a video.
As for automation, for example, with an upgraded Vidyard account, you can create a list of leads who viewed 75% of the pricing page video and send it to a BDR to prospect. Trigger emails in a workflow to all viewers who watch 50% of the homepage video.
Given how critical video is in mastering digital sales and marketing, using video views and engagement in a lead score is paramount in understanding who’s engaged and who is ready to talk to sales.
Custom actions and events
Teams+ gives you access to customizable HTML in your Vidyard experience.
The things you can do with custom HTML are limitless so here are some common use cases for this. You’ll also gain access to embedding scripts from third party tools like HubSpot’s calendar and Drift chat widget so you can give your videos a conversion point with tools you are likely already using.
How much does it cost to upgrade?
Vidyard Teams costs $300 per month, typically paid annually, and includes three seats. All additional seats are $40 per month, also typically paid annually.
Vidyard created a special package just for HubSpot users called Teams+. This package includes everything in Teams, plus the HubSpot integration.
Teams+ costs $600 per month, typically paid annually, and includes three seats. All additional seats are $40 per month, also typically paid annually.
As you may have noticed by now, comparing Vidyard to HubSpot Video can get confusing. So here is the bottom line.
If you’re already (or plan on becoming) a HubSpot customer, you don’t have to choose!
HubSpot Video is a free alternative to Vidyard Free that comes with alot of perks for HubSpot users, but if you want to do more than just use your videos within HubSpot, it may not be the best thing for you.
In those cases, consider upgrading your Vidyard account to a Teams or Teams+ package if you want more HubSpot-specific functionality.
It is important to note that if you go through this process and build out everything on HubSpot, and then one day decide HubSpot no longer fits your needs, you can off-board from the free HubSpot video service with absolutely no technical issues.
You will likely need to expand your Vidyard subscription to accommodate the influx of hosted content because you will lose the 250 free hosted videos. But nonetheless, this does not mean you are beholden to HubSpot.
If you have any HubSpot Professional (or higher) Hub, create your HubSpot Video account for free right now and get started adding video to your digital sales and marketing right away!