If you run an online business, you must tap into the wealth of opportunities that abound on the internet and video marketing comes as the most recommended of all. Apart from the number of people that watch online videos, the reasons why these people watch the videos is of utmost importance. Posting a marketing video on your social media channel or website only means that more people can engage with your product or service. But you may want to know why video marketing is particularly essential for your business. Yes, video marketing creates several opportunities for business growth.
- An average American owns about four digital services and the same individual spends approximately 60 hours a week consuming online content
- More than 50 percent watch a video from start to finish in less than 60 seconds
- An internet user will spend about 90 percent of their time on a video site
As more consumers in the United States are trying to take advantage of convenience shopping since tablets and smartphones create a vast opportunity for the marketability of brands. Are your consumers or target audience in different places? Videos foster an immediate bond between consumers anytime and anywhere. When you are asleep, and your staff are unable to attend to queries, an informative and entertaining video will fill in the blanks. Therefore, your video must have the qualities of emotional engagement, lest you risk losing potential customers and influencers.
- Appealing videos stand the test of time
- People like amusing and outrageous videos
- People love good humor
In the e-commerce industry, you will see product video catalogues, and these are strategic videos that boost the rate at which customers add items to their baskets and proceed to checkout. There are several types of videos and more than a hundred types of video production. They can be as expensive and sophisticated as producing professional video campaigns for the Super Bowl or as basic as using a smartphone. A good video must be consistent with the business objectives. Thus, ensure that you understand video marketing metrics. Highlight your goals and benchmark video marketing throughout the campaign.
Reasons to use video marketing in your online business
Many infographics show how videos will influence online businesses in the near future. The power of videos means that the future is already here. Marketers are consistently tapping into the goldmine, and it calls for a complete revolution. Wyzowl, an animated explainer video company, people new to the industry may think the name is a typo, statistics show that video content marketing strategies cut across about 70 percent of businesses in the present day. 82 percent of that number believes that video marketing is the secret ingredient to their business success and total business strategy. This consensus and more are influencing the rapid progress of businesses, and soon, videos will attain new heights in the globe. The trend is completely backed up by 83 percent of users who have proven that video marketing is responsible for their excellent ROI.
Without a doubt, the latest addition to the promotion arsenal is video marketing. While there may be a few doubting Thomases out there, promoting your business with videos is worth your consideration for many reasons. And a simple question to ponder is: does video marketing exhibit promotional potentials for your business? If yes, do you have the needed resources to pursue video marketing in your online business?
Video marketing is an irrefutable boon. Not only because every Tom, Dick, and Harry follows the trend, but because it is a profitable and versatile venture for digital marketing enthusiasts.
1) Videos drive conversions and sales
Probably everyone knows now that videos can generate significant revenue. Every time you add a video to a product on your landing page, you boost the chances of that product selling by 80 percent. Regardless of the video category, you can be confident that the product conversion will be massive. Similarly, videos affect the direct sales of products. Recently, another survey showed that 74 percent of users, after watching a brief video about a product or service, bought that product or service. Why, then, would you refuse an efficient video marketing strategy?
Let’s think about it. The effect of videos on sales and conversion is certainly not surprising. We know that our vision, more than other senses of perception, is most dominant. Our brain is entirely capable of processing visual images. Now, if pictures boost business success already, you can imagine the effect of moving pictures on the business.
2) Businesses witness high ROI with videos
Let’s get more excited. More than 80 percent of businesses yield a high return on investment (ROI). Although video production is quite an expensive venture, the anticipated benefits and profits are worth the try. Even as online video editing tools keep emerging and improving, you can expect better affordability of these services, even when you contact professional video marketers. Let’s not forget that our smartphones are capable of stringing together creative and decent videos to propel newly started or tightly budgeted business. Great news! Your video doesn’t even have to be near-perfect in the beginning, before you can publish and share them. What matters the most is the content of the video. Another study proves that users are entirely turned off by videos that don’t offer concise explanations for products and services. It simply shows how important it is to invest in a professional video marketing service for targeted results.
3) Videos build customer trust
The foundation of sales and conversions is trust. Hence, you should strive to build trust with your consumers by putting out good videos. Content marketing itself is carefully built on trust and the creation of long-term relationships. Don’t focus intently on selling. Instead, churn out the useful and interesting information for the consumer’s use. The Executive Director of Schaefer Marketing Solutions mentioned that a new era of marketing demands less content and more ignition, less traffic and more trust, and people in the loop who steadily spread and advocate your content.
Videos are all-encompassing. When you upload a video, you ignite the emotions of the consumers as much as you engage the audience. And when it comes down to elite consumers, YouTubers (vloggers) are often the most powerful people that can promote your business. Thus, you must take video marketing as seriously as content marketing.
You can also foster trust with promotional videos. Some consumers have admitted that they are always skeptical about making purchases due to fear of being defrauded or cheated by the seller. After all, in an era where you get to pay for a product or service before delivery, extra care is needed in identifying legitimate sellers. Compelling marketing videos can present your products interactively. This sense of individual approach is the reason that 50 percent of consumers admit that videos drive confident purchases.
4) Google is a fan of videos
When you share your videos, consumers spend more time on your page or website. More prolonged exposure builds trust and signals prominent search engines that your brand represents excellent content. Moovly says that if there is a video on your page, you are 53 times more likely to be listed on Google search pages. Since Google acquired YouTube, the rate at which videos places you on search engine pages increases.
You can adopt SEO strategies by optimizing videos on sites such as YouTube. Start by writing fascinating descriptions and titles for the product or service. Then, you may add a link that directs users to your website to purchase your products or services. This is a perfect call to action that helps the consumer take further steps. To encourage your target audience, you shouldn’t forget to explore several interactive video options.
5) Mobile users prefer video content
About 90 percent of mobile users spend a lot of time on their phones exploring videos. The third quarter in 2013 saw a rise in mobile video views, earning an increase of more than 233 percent over time. Also, YouTube showed 100 percent in video consumption annually. Since people are generally fans of a good watch, smartphone users are increasing in high numbers, and the video audience rises in response. Google shows that smartphone users are 1.4 times more likely as desktop viewers and two times more likely than TV audiences to gravitate towards brands that share video ads and content.
As mobile videos grow, it means that brands must pay attention to the personal user experience that people gain on smartphones. For instance, provide a better choice in video content consumed by your audience.
6) Video marketing explains the product or service at a glance and with a few words
If you are launching a new product or service, you should create an exciting video that shows ‘how-to’. An explainer video, for instance, can influence buying power and 98 percent of users approve of this. Now, 45 percent of businesses feature explainer videos on their sites to drive engagement. 83 percent of those businesses proved that the explainer videos were quite useful.
Need to explain a difficult concept? Animated videos are the way to go. Animations break down concepts better than live videos or texts. Besides, many minutes of watching boring people explain an intricate concept can be draining. But with animations, you can blend nostalgia, entertainment, and simplicity in one video. The foremost goal should be the adoption of an active process. Nevertheless, there are a few pre-production steps which can uniquely position your video among hundreds of others.
7) Video engages every type of buyer
While videos are simple tools for learning, the laziest buyers attest that they are also straightforward to consume. Our lives, today, have shifted from reading text-heavy product descriptions before making purchases when you can watch a 15-second video and get more information on-the-go. Every customer seeks value for purchases made, meaning that it is quite preferable to see the product in action. In that case, you may adopt video preference in your content marketing strategy.
Video marketing captures a broader audience, as can be seen nowadays since it ensnares lazy buyers. Thus, you may want to target both the eyes and the ears of the potential buyers. This gives you a competitive advantage and indeed, doubles power over competitors.
8) Video fuels social shares
Michael Stelzner, at the 8th annual Social Media Marketing Industry Report, mentioned that more than half of the population of social marketers had reliable video marketing strategies in 2015 and an estimated 73 percent of the respondents launched the same strategy in the following year.
We will remember that social media channels are sporadically infusing video platforms too. Facebook, for instance, launched Lifestage (for teenagers), Live Video, and 3600 Video. Meanwhile, Instagram launched Instagram Stories, and 60-second videos on their platform, and Periscope on Twitter is not left out. Not forgetting YouTube, the second most popular social network is also making waves.
In a social media context, video marketers care to include more emotions than facts in their campaigns. As such, 76 percent of users often shared a video with their friends if it proved entertaining. Thus, the rational way to gain social shares is to create engaging videos on your site. Indeed, emotions do not necessarily translate to ROI, but social shares influence traffic and, by extension, affect ROI.
What are your business needs?
- Do you want to develop a strategic search engine optimization technique?
- Increase brand awareness?
- Are you struggling with customer engagement?
- Need a faster way to reach both potential and existing customers?
- How do you intend to communicate your brand story?
- Identify your target audience
- Determine what your target audience cares about
- Do you have a meaningful concept that can be made into a video?
- How many videos will work in line with achieving your goals?
- What style of content can you adopt for your communication goals?
The types of video you choose are determined by the message you are trying to convey. Different purposes birth different genres of videos. It means that you must understand your audience’s needs before you launch a creative process, and you must address the missing links in your existing content. Are your target customers in need of demo videos or ‘how-to’ commercials? Do you need customer testimonials? Is your company in need of an image video?
Most importantly, conduct qualitative research on competitors and find out what they are doing for their audience that makes them so indispensable. Necessarily, you may be wrong to choose what resonates with your audience if you don’t try to understand them first. If done correctly, a creative and well-crafted message makes up for the budget deficit. If you already have a team, write a script as a team, since your employees will be your first experiment.
Steps to consider before working on a video concept
- Streamline the focus and topic
- Recruit a professional video marketer consultant
- Iterate your content for the next few months (preferably 6 to 12 months)
- Build a sustainable strategy
- Repurpose your video – consider the technical requirements of all platforms including your website and other social media channels
Although marketers are adopting videos to drive business success, that alone will not suffice. In your business, you must have a cohesive strategy that includes every type of relevant content and getting the most out of the video requires that you share it methodically.
The elements of video marketing
Like how friends nurture their relationship, video marketing offers online businesses a unique chance to impact positivity, which builds trust, brand awareness, and engaged communities. The key to developing and implementing a successful video marketing strategy is in the following elements— design, personalization, usefulness, personality, storytelling, share worthiness, and real-time amplification.
1) Visual imagery
The design element of visual marketing cuts across many industries and companies, some exceptional and the rest merely striving. Talented artists and photographers are hard to find these days, for sure.
Video marketing explores content personalization on every platform. Those days when you could spray the same content over myriads of platforms are gone. Instead, use the special features of each social media platform to foster storytelling and engagement. General Electric is a perfect example of a brand that continually adopts one-of-a-kind strategies for video marketing across several platforms. Whether you are on YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, or Pinterest, content is not continuous, but consistent across science and innovation themes. One of the unique approaches of the brand, General Electric, is widely varied on Pinterest, which showcases several boards. Since the goal of the company is to inspire power, the board titles as expected are “Mind = Blown”, “Badass Machines”, “GEInspiredMe”, and more. You will also find a humorous “Hey Girl” board, which features crisp Thomas Edison-inspired pick-up lines.
2) Make yourself useful
Online businesses are doing the most by leveraging the strength of every social media platform to stay relevant. Unfortunately, you will need more than ‘personalization’ to brag about useful content. Social listening will help companies remain relevant by uncovering trends and key themes for creating visual content. Social listening also bridges the gap between companies and consumers by helping the former understand what drives consumers and prompts several actions— engaging, sharing, or purchasing.
Whole Foods is a company that tries to meet and exceed the expectations of its consumers by always churning out useful content. The company alone has more than 500 social media accounts across local and national store levels. Local stores develop content about the latest offerings, latest happenings, and handles visuals across Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook. The national-level consumes the benefits of Pinterest. By the way, most people will likely not expect a grocery store to offer value with mere recipe content. However, the brand has become a Pinterest leader because of its ability to co-create.
Natanya Anderson, the director of social media at Whole Foods, shared some fun facts about the company during the Visual Voice panel at SXSW 2013. Anderson leaked a company strategy that Whole Foods would, for every pin, repin five things from followers and accredit the content to the right source.
In the aspect of co-creation, Whole Foods brings experts of different subject matter to pin relevant content. As a result of that, Pinterest generates traffic to recipes on the company website through the other social media channels of the brand. Anderson also mentioned that as of 2015, the then 110,000 Pinterest followers would generate 15 times more value than Twitter and Facebook combined. For instance, spaghetti squash, a popular recipe on Pinterest, was repined about 70,000 times, thus driving up to 50,000 views to the recipe on the brand’s website.
3) Be Human, as much as possible
Video marketing, apart from being utterly useful, performs better when you infuse the human element. Being human is more about being a friend than a mere corporate entity. A friend possesses a personality, shares experiences, values the friendship, and understands there is a time for play and time to be serious. Being human means you won’t put up a video that merely states ‘buy this now.’ Instead of hitting the nail on the head (going straight for the sale), you might want to think about how an individual will analyze and recommend your product to people in their circle. You also want to evaluate and learn the ways of popular influencers, who are in the habit of producing marketable content about their brands. In research, you will discover that trust comes, not only from their strong reputation but also from the way they share product packages.
You should reach for the gold, take a break from what people have to say about your company, and understand their other concerns. Learn what interests and causes make them tick and try to discover their motivations. For example, your customer base might be passionate about fashion or entertainment. So, you may craft content around fashion shows, runways, fabrics, and more. This is a strategic move because consumers aren’t hopping on their gadgets to get the news from a company. Instead, they are going online to repost birthday pictures and vacation photos.
Another concept of being human is ‘fitting in.’ Thus, your goal should be in creating visual content that can be considered a ‘pleasurable interruption’ between updates, notifications, and content. A perfect way to expose your human side is to promote the sharing of user-generated content within your community. In #TheSweatLife campaign by Lululemon, the company encouraged fans to share, on social media, how they achieved their sweat life for an opportunity to be featured on Lululemon’s social media channels. By using ‘Olapic’ service, the software that collects user-generated photos across Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, the brand had access to shared content. Naturally, the strategy places Lululemon in the spotlight, and it did so by personalizing the brand so that fans and followers could live in the moment. Lululemon could create an inspiring video but engaging real people who wore their apparel in their videos was the exceptional promotional technique the brand needed at that time. Apart from being relatable, the strategy had people watching how clothing fit on fellow buyers and consumers, instead of regular models. They further used the images and videos to source fitness tips and styling ideas. According to Nancy Richardson, the Vice President of Lululemon’s digital and brand strategy department, the campaign garnered more than 2 million views and 26,000 had participated in the challenge between launching in the fall of 2012 and spring of 2013.
4) Tell A Story
So far, the visual marketing examples are proof that unique visual marketing strategy requires that the use of visuals is as important as the storytelling element of the content. Stories come from different places; whether it’s vital milestones, company values, how consumers enjoy products or services or staying relevant. For instance, the Daily Twist campaign by Oreo was a celebration of the company’s hundredth birthday, where it developed about a hundred compelling pop culture-inspired images. Timely occasions and holidays celebrated in style were the Mars Rover landing, Hispanic Heritage Month, and National Talk Like a Pirate Day. Even though each piece of content differed, the creativity in showcasing holidays and pop culture happenings for a specified time was the necessary ‘storytelling’ element. The campaign won accolades and awards because it redefined business-consumer relationships on another level.
5) Be share-worthy in everything
Like lightning in a bottle, brands and businesses are looking for seamless visual storytelling opportunities to strike a chord with consumers. Coca-Cola says the way to do that is by remaining ‘shareworthy’. The SVP of integrated marketing communications and capabilities at Coca-Cola, Wendy Clark, told Fortune that each Facebook fan, out of more than a billion fans, was only a friend away from the entire Coca-Cola community. Thus, strategic visual content in business would make the fans become the brand’s sales force at no cost. Clark further stated that many brands should consider the customers as personal storytellers if they could imbibe the principle of initial and ultimate audiences by thinking about consumers as storytellers, rather than usual receivers of content. The SVP further mentioned that 80 percent of conversations about the brand was from consumers, and this action opened a window of co-creation instead of continually putting out content.
An exemplary storytelling act by Coca-Cola was the #BestSummerMoment campaign that was hosted across the company’s social media channels and a microsite which prompted users to share their memorable summer moments. Coca-Cola celebrated these fans by sharing some of their content on the microsite and Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter while offering lucky fans exclusive rewards too. During the campaign, Coca-Cola sourced exceptional photos from the fans, including tear-jerking content of newlyweds enjoying Coca-Cola on their honeymoon. Several images were deemed shareable and narrated an emotional story of people which positively impacted the Coca-Cola brand.
6) Live in the moment
There’s quite a stockpile of visual and video content for the consumption of buyers. There is also quite an opportunity for real-time engagement and interaction. When Benefit announced Kate Grant, an Irish model with Down’s Syndrome, as their official model, the brand reminded many just how easy it is to be inclusive and promote customer engagement. Since the announcement, the company witnessed a great spike in engagement and sales. While this is not affirming that Benefit Cosmetics hired the model for selfish reasons, it is a worthy example of game-changing moves that companies can make to reach targets. Developing a robust video and image library filled with shareable content gives the company an edge to consistently add value. The opportunities and challenges are methods to determine the needed content. When you live in the moment, you also extend the content your brand needs. From traditional and wacky holidays to news of the day, and viral memes, there are no caps on the number of topics you can play with. But remember to stick to the company’s values and leverage your strengths. And you do not want to look like you are taking advantage of a tragic event for marketing reasons. For instance, the Boston Marathon bombing tragedy in 2013 caught the attention of the world. Ford Motor Company’s Scott Monty, the head of global social media, tweeted to social media managers that it would be a good time to suspend more posts in honour of the bombing.
The companies who adhered to Monty’s advice and posted heartfelt messages were adequately rewarded, while those who took advantage of the bombing to market their goods lost an excellent following and were dealt a blow to their reputation. A blizzard in Boston in 2013 also highlighted why you need to be timely and less promotional. As people were stuck in their homes, popular sports teams, the Boston Red Sox and the New England Patriots revised their content calendars to focus on people’s tweets, especially on the snowstorm. Wally the Green Monster, the Boston Red Sox’s mascot buried waist-down in the snow at Fenway Park and the New England Patriots’ parade of snowmen fan photos clad in their team gear showed how you could stay relevant without being promotional.