According to YouTube statistics, they have over a billion active users. That is approximately one-third of the people perusing the Internet regularly. Everyday users are spending countless hours watching YouTube videos, generating billions of views. It has been stated that as of mid-2015 over 400 hours of user video was uploaded to the popular site every minute. This was a significant increase, up from 300 hours at the end of 2014.
People love watching videos online. But if a business is trying to promote a product or service, traffic isn’t the primary focus. The goal should be reaching your ideal audience with the right message. Cute kids making goofy expressions might earn you a bunch of clicks, but it won’t drive business. An effective content marketing video must reflect your brand’s tone of voice. You should thoroughly understand the goal behind the video ad and what you are trying to achieve.
In 2017, video content is all the rage due to its revenue-boosting potential and powerful storytelling capabilities. This popular advertising medium can not only serve as your prime source of running promotional campaigns, captivating business ideas and exploratory content efforts, video evokes an emotional response through motion, sound and eye-catching visuals, that can help you build a deeper relationship with your target audience.
Videos Add Value
Videos are a very versatile content marketing tactic that is easy to leverage. They can be edited, uploaded and delivered in a multitude of ways. They can provide the following value-adding features:
- You can use either long or short formats, or anything in-between. That means a six-second video may work as well as a full-length film
- Video can be presented as a standalone piece or an ongoing series
- It can be the central focus or a lead into some other type of advertising
- Video content is effective on websites, in blogs, emails, on third-party sites or used in webinars or slide presentations
- Making video part of your content marketing strategy will ultimately improve your SEO. According to Comscore, posting a video to your business site can increase the chance of gaining a prime spot on Google 53 times more likely.
- They can be viewed on mobile devices and desktops
- Video can be easily archived, repackaged and republished for use with other content marketing efforts
- Through live-streaming, they can easily be produced at the spur of the moment through platforms like Periscope or Facebook Live.
- Be instantly and easily shareable on social media networks like Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Like all marketing mediums, video is not always the ideal format for all business content. Sometimes audiences prefer brief written material instead of taking the time to watch a video. A short article requires less time and attention.
A good way to determine if using a video is the right way to convey your message is to ask yourself if sound and visuals are necessary to tell your story. Will anything get lost in the process? It is always good practice to start with a format that requires less time to produce and to consume. If your text content is well received, you may want to consider reworking the message in video form.
How to Make Videos Work
The decision to use video content should always align with your pre-determined marketing goals and set campaign strategy. Video provides a wide range of creative options that can be incorporated into just about any content marketing approach. Let’s look at a few ways video works:
- Video marketing helps drive brand awareness and spark consumer interest: By creating unique and entertaining videos you provide an immersive experience for your viewers. This helps cultivate a pleasurable association with your brand that users will remember.
Steps to make this happen
- Use a short video to raise awareness and education viewers on relevant community issues.
- Show your audience what goes on behind the scenes at an industry event or another business gathering that few viewers would attend in person.
- Make use of all interactive features to enable viewers to actively participate and boost interest through lively engagement.
Leverage interactive features and technologies for your videos to enable viewers to participate in the story as it unfolds. For example, Bryce Harper’s virtual reality experience for Gatorade puts avid baseball fans in the center of the action. Users get to feel what it is like to be a professional player in a major league. This innovation combination of graphic imagery and real action video is fun, immersive and wildly interactive. Fans get to step into Bryce Harper’s shoes and be him.
- Use video to promote insights and thought leadership: Video is the most effective way to convey the right emotional tone. You can’t accomplish the same effect with text. Therefore, so many companies turn to video to educate viewers on important businesses issues and to showcase brand credibility. Here are some ways to demonstrate that your brand is one that consumers can trust:
- Broadcast an open discussion to debate topics of interest to viewers, from multiple viewpoints
- Put together a video that shows how well your company knows it’s stuff and demonstrate what makes your products or service special
- Record your brand’s response to a relevant public relations issue or controversial topic to demonstrate that your company stands for something important.
Due to all the violence and increasing pandemonium that Black Friday brings (as crazed consumers literally tackle each other for the sake of a discount) in 2015 REI took a radical approach. Rather than contribute to the mayhem, the retailer decided to spare their employees the grief and kept its stores closed. The company CEO released a video explaining the decision to opt out. They would rather pay their staff to enjoy time outdoors on one of the biggest shopping days of the year. In 2016, the outdoor gear distributor chose to “#OptOutside” again.
- Help your viewers achieve their goals: Video can be used for much more than building brand awareness. It is a great tool for showing product demonstrations, tutorials, and other valuable resources that your audience needs. Encourage your followers to succeed by:
- Making a complex process much easier to understand with a clear, concise video that includes step by step instructions
- Post how to use a simple hack to solve a complicated problem
- Provide reviews that compare and contracts products or services by focusing on functionalities and key features
Videos with detailed explanations help users get the most they can out of what you provide for them. This is one of the best uses of visual marketing.
Get the Most Out of Your Video Marketing Campaign
With the stiff competition and costs to consider, it is important that you start with a well-planned strategy in place. Video content begins with ideas that are crafted, positioned and promoted with the intent to produce good returns. Make sure what you are putting out is memorable, relevant, engaging and purposeful.
This is a major part of your content marketing strategy. It requires time and investment. Before you begin shooting videos, be clear on exactly what you plan to achieve. What role will video play in presenting your brand to the world? How will you put this plan into action? Figure out how you will measure performance and make smart data-driven decisions. By doing the preliminary work you will make better decisions and your videos will have a greater impact. They will be worth the resources spent.
Also, remember your original goal, every video you make should be done so with a specific purpose in mind. It might be to generate leads, promote brand awareness, or to launch a new product.
It is common for brands to measure the success of a video solely by the number of views. More importantly, the focus should be on what viewers do after they watch the video content. A solid call to action (CTA) should be included, directing users to the next step, a landing page that leads to a possible conversion.
Create Videos that Show off the Brand’s Personality
It is highly unlikely you will attract prospects with lengthy written explanations of why your product offerings outshine the next guys. In fact, it is a big turn-off. Visual marketing content is much easier to digest, it is more shareable and readily accessible to the average online user. If you can incorporate a way to bring out all that is great about your products, the style of your company or staff, in a way that viewers can relate to, you nailed it. No matter what you do, make it memorable.
It is not unheard of for some consumers to make purchase choices based on the personality of the brand. If they love who you are they will trust your products or services. In today’s world of advertising, chances are it will be a great video campaign (or other visual content) that will bring in the most leads. Aim to create video content that will foster a positive connection. If your target audience likes you they will embrace you and what you have to offer, and share the news with others.
Lastly, let me know your thoughts and tips for video content that has helped you. Leave a comment below and I look forward to hearing from you.