Businesses wanting to boost sales will use a range of marketing tools, everything from a great website and regular blogging to pay per click advertising and social media.
One marketing approach that has grown in popularity in recent years is video.
With increasingly sophisticated smartphones and better connectivity, watching video on the go has never been easier.
Here we take a closer look at why you should be using it in your marketing mix and what steps you need to get started.
Why is video marketing so powerful?
We process visual information much quicker than anything else. It’s easy to access and we can use it to take in a lot of detail and information in a short space of time. If you need convincing, here are some important stats:
- According to Hubspot, over half of consumers want to see more video content from the brands they follow. Other research shows that social media posts that have video content attached to them generate 48% more views.
- The growth of online video has been dramatic in the last decade. 60% of people would now rather watch video on a site like YouTube than on television.
- According to Cisco, by 2022, 82% of all consumer-led internet traffic is likely to be video.
- If you sell B2B and want to reach the top CEO in a company, it’s worth bearing in mind that nearly 60% of executives prefer to watch video rather than read text.
- According to G2 Crowd, video on social media leads to 1,200% more shares than images and text combined.
- Done well, video can attract up to 300% more trafficand will help create leads.
- According to Conversion XL, having video content could help increase traffic delivered through organic searches by as much as 157%.
Increasingly, video produces one of the best ROIs in marketing which is why businesses of all sizes are giving it a try.
But how does your small business get started? Here are five quick tips:
1. Set your objectives
As with any marketing endeavour, you need to have a plan for creating content. This starts with what you hope to achieve and the more specific you can be the better.
You might start off with a vague objective such as growing your audience but you really need to dig a little deeper than this.
Do you want more people visiting your website? Perhaps you have a Facebook page and would like to see better engagement. Maybe you’re trying to develop a YouTube community and want to create some content for this that will tie into your main site.
Perhaps you want to make more sales. What sort of content is going to work for that? Explainer videos will show what your product can do in bite-size pieces. A video testimonial could give your audience front row access to your most satisfied customers.
The stronger your objectives and the more you understand what you are trying to achieve, the better your video marketing efforts will be. Our advice is take your time over this part of your plan and make sure you think it through.
2. Innovate with your video content
Video can be used in a wide variety of ways. Throwing off the shackles and being prepared to get creative with your content, will make a big difference to the eventual outcomes. Look at what your competitors are doing and see what’s working for them. Don’t just consider the good but the bad as well (you’ll learn a lot from other people’s mistakes).
Don’t confine this research to your own industry either. Look for video marketing ideas that will transfer into your own business arena. Apart from traditional ads, the types of content you might like to try could include testimonials, how-to videos, product launches, webinars to name just a few. You can opt for live content or video animation or a mix of the two. Our advice: Be prepared to try something new.
3. Align with your overall marketing plan
Marketing activity for a business never performs in isolation. Cultivate one coherent approach and, align your video content with all other aspects of your marketing. This should include bringing your video content together with marketing assets such as your brand as well as your unique selling points.
- How does video help you put these across and create the right vision of your business?
- Are the messages in your video consistent with your other marketing activities?
- Is the quality and production value in line with what you want to get across to your audience?
4. Look carefully at your engagement data to learn what’s working best
It’s important to have the right metrics in place from the outset so that you can measure engagement and how your video content is performing. You may find that some videos work, while others are not so successful.
Pick your metrics carefully. People clicking on your video in large numbers may be enough to boost your ego but they can be misleading. If they are not watching your content all the way through, for example, they could be missing the main point of your marketing message.
Metrics like play rate are important because they give you an idea of how viewers are engaging. Other important measures are how much your video gets shared or liked and the comments that are left. If you include a URL in your video that sends customers to your main website or purchase page, how many click through and actually convert is going to be an important metric.
5. Adapt as necessary to plan your future video marketing campaigns
Finally, while these measurements are vital so is the willingness to adapt your video marketing strategy for the future based on the evidence. Small changes here and there can make a big difference:
- Shortening the length of the video may get more engagement and improve click-through rates.
- Adding a call to action at the beginning of the video rather than at the end may have the same effect.
- Comments on your video may give you more ideas as to what customers are looking for, especially if you are producing how-to or explainer videos.
As with any marketing activity, you need to be able to adapt your approach when developing video content. Keep innovating and checking out the competition to see what they are up to and don’t be afraid to experiment with new ideas or approaches. Done well, video can help you build up a useful catalogue of marketing content that will benefit your business well into the future.