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Hosting training videos: What's the best solution?

More businesses are looking to host their training videos online, to make education and onboarding easier and more convenient. There's no shortage of video hosting solutions, and almost any can fulfill the basic purpose of making videos available to a widespread global audience.

So why not just upload them to YouTube? After all, it's basically free to use.

YouTube can be used, but it's far from an optimal solution. For most businesses, a professional-grade Learning Management System (LMS) is going to be a better option. An LMS offers more options and features that are needed by modern training programs, without the drawbacks of YouTube. Most of the time, that makes it worth the extra expense.

Why a LMS Is Better Than YouTube For Training Programs

1. Training-specific metrics

While YouTube does provide a feature-rich dashboard, the features and metrics are based almost entirely around two things: increasing viewership and reach, and boosting ad revenue. These are not necessarily the metrics a training program is going to want to track. Trying to get any specific information on viewership, course completion, and training effectiveness will be almost impossible.

2. Ability to track individual users

A modern LMS allows you to track each individual user, and follow their successes and failures. Beyond monitoring their progress through a course, and tracking test results, a good LMS also allows for customized individual curriculum. For example, you can offer certification programs which require completing courses A, B, and C. YouTube doesn't have any functionality like this.

3. No concerns about censorship or copyright claims

As a public platform, any content uploaded to YouTube is vulnerable to outside interference. Certain topics are quasi-banned on YouTube, and virtually any use of film clips, music, etc, is vulnerable to DMCA take down claims - even if the usage would be considered Fair Use under copyright law. Some bad actors even deliberately abuse the DMCA reporting system to take down videos maliciously.

For most businesses, this is an unacceptable loss of control. Especially when most LMS systems have guaranteed up times and other methods of protecting your work.

4. Links data to your other analytical systems

A modern LMS can 'talk to' and share data with any number of other database and data-analytics systems. YouTube includes some features along these lines, but is nowhere near as robust, making it difficult to include your training programs in larger-scale analytics.

5. You can still mix-and-match

Finally, it's worth mentioning that choosing between an LMS and YouTube isn't a strict either-or proposition. You could easily take a few videos you think are best suited for public consumption and put them on YouTube, then use them to funnel interested viewers towards your private LMS for more detailed information. In this way, YouTube can be leveraged as content marketing, even as you use the LMS for your professional training, certification, and onboarding needs.

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