There is no denying that video marketing is a force to be reckoned with. Younger consumers are now watching more online videos than they are TV.
[easy-tweet tweet=”Used as a content marketing tool, video can increase engagement, conversions, and even sales. “]
But like many marketing trends, video is constantly changing. It requires brands to keep up with popular platforms, tools, and strategies.
Like most brands, you are probably doing video marketing already. But, are you getting the most from your efforts?
Here are 5 pro tips to help you take your video marketing strategy to the next level.
Video Marketing Tip 1: Leverage The Power Of YouTube Ads
If you’ve created a business account, but are not yet using YouTube for ads, this is a good time to get started. YouTube is the new TV in terms of being the most preferred platform for business advertising.
Unlike TV, video ads are less expensive. Indeed, thanks to the widespread penetration of mobile devices, online videos have a much wider reach. This means you can get a greater return on investment.
Let’s look at some interesting numbers:
During TV ads, viewers pay more attention to their mobile devices, with those aged 45 and above looking at their phones 41% of the time. Those between 18 and 24 years look at their mobile device 60% of the time during TV ads.
Survey data shows that up to 94% of consumers have their mobile device in their hand while watching TV.
90% of shoppers say they discovered new brands and products via YouTube.
Depending on your marketing goals and other factors such as budget, it’s easy to start advertising on YouTube. You can use various ad formats including bumper ads, skippable ads, overlay ads, as well as cards and sponsored cards.
Another type of YouTube ad known as TrueView lets you have the best of both worlds. You can maximise your cost per action and increase brand engagement.
TrueView ads are skippable after five seconds but the full ad can run longer. A major advantage of these ads is that you only pay if the viewer watches the ad for 30 seconds or more. This makes it possible to advertise on a budget.
To get the most from TrueView ads, you can optimise either for Action or Reach. Optimising for action lets you add a call-to-action button and a title to your ads. The available goals here are boosting sales, building an email list, or driving traffic to your website.
Optimising for reach is a recent option that allows you to engage a wider audience fast. It requires a reasonable budget and is best for 6 second or 30-second ads. This optimisation option is based on a cost per impression model, so you will pay per 1,000 views.
Multi-Channel is Required
Whilst YouTube is a leader in social video advertising, your brand should be leveraging other major platforms. This includes Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, and LinkedIn for the distribution of branded video ads.
Social video ads are set to grow in popularity as people prefer short-form video content. Figures show that videos shorter than 90 seconds have a retention rate of 59% on average. Those longer than 30 minutes have a 14% retention rate.
The demand for shorter video content and ads is not surprising given the fierce competition for consumer attention. Admittedly, short-form videos pose a challenge for storytelling. But, with some creativity and effective use of technology, your brand can win with social video ads.
Video Marketing Tip 2: Establish Thought Leadership With Live Streaming
Have you made your foray into live streaming yet? If not, you are missing out.
There is a misconception that live video is only for ‘visual’ businesses such as those in the travel, food, retail, or beauty industry.
The truth is any brand can benefit from live streaming. Numerous opportunities are available to leverage live streaming technology in every aspect of your business from customer support, marketing, to sales.
Why should you care about incorporating live video into your marketing strategy?
The average number of video views on Facebook is about 8 billion per day while 82% of users watch video content on Twitter.
What these numbers mean is that live streaming is a formidable video marketing trend for any brand that is serious about engaging and growing its audience.
Here are a few ideas to help you get started with live video:
Record a live product demonstration
If you are looking for customers to buy your product or service, why not show them how it works. Live video product demos help users understand the various aspects of your product. It also encourages them to ask questions immediately. The more people understand how your product works the likelier they are to adopt it. Even better, how about including a celebrity endorsement somewhere in the mix?
Establish thought leadership with live events
Making live streaming events immediately accessible to your audience is a great way to establish trust. It sets your brand apart as the go-to source for industry news.
Online users are eager for the latest and most engaging content and live streaming is the perfect way to meet this need.
Live events can also be in the form of product promotion, aimed at increasing sales. Have a sales offering? Use live video to showcase the best features of your product while allowing users to ask questions that will help them make a purchase decision.
Give behind-the-scenes footage
It is the age of authenticity. Online users are looking to connect with brands in a real and intimate way. This includes interacting with the people/person behind the brand or product.
It comes as no surprise that 87% of online audiences prefer behind-the-scenes online video to traditional television.
Use live video to give your customers behind-the-scenes access to events or a day-in-the-life at your place of work. This is a great way to humanise your brand, which encourages greater engagement and loyalty from customers.
Video Marketing Tip 3: Engage Your Niche Audience With Video Podcasting
In the past few years, many brands have jumped into podcasting to create niche-specific audio content.
While audio podcasts are nothing new, few brands are yet to make their foray into video podcasting.
As mentioned, customers are eager to connect with the person behind the brand (or microphone in this case) and video makes this possible.
Video podcasts are an excellent way to humanise your audio content. It allows customers into your world in a very visual and transparent way.
At the marketing level, it is much easier to incorporate links into a video podcast and to get higher engagement for these links. There are also SEO benefits of video podcasting. This is because you can publish your content via YouTube and optimise the video using the relevant keywords. Naturally, Google ranks video content on YouTube higher.
What’s great about video podcasting is that you do not need expensive gear. If you are already doing podcasts, all you need is a good smartphone camera and you are well on your way to creating amazing video podcasts.
Video Marketing Tip 4: Increase Open Rates With Email Videos
Email is a key marketing tool for many brands but with so many emails fighting for customer’s attention, open rates can easily stall or even plummet.
Are you looking to increase open rates and boost engagement? How about spicing up your emails with video content?
Figures show that you can increase open rates by 19% by including video content in a marketing email. Video can also increase email click-through rates by a whopping 50%.
Instead of sending customers the plain old email they receive from just about everyone, make your marketing emails more interesting, personable, and unforgettable with video.
There are many ways to use video in emails. The easiest way is signing off with a video clip in addition to your usual name signature. This is a great way to humanise your emails and allows customers to feel connected to the person behind the words.
Popular email providers including Gmail and Android still do not support video content so how can you successfully merge email and video? Here are a few ideas:
Still images with a play button– This tactic allows you to essentially attach a static video screenshot linked to a video hosting platform such as Vimeo or YouTube.
Animated GIFs– Animated GIFs are popular with online audiences and for good reason. They are memorable, precise, and deliver the message. For brands, animated GIFs are incredibly easy to create and use along with other content formats including email.
GIF + Static Image– Transform your static image and play button into a GIF. This is a great way to add sizzle to your static play buttons and increase click-through rates for your video.
Video Marketing Tip 5: Boost Interactivity With Social Media Stories
Social media Stories have taken the world by storm, and it is easy to see why. While they are ephemeral, Stories are highly shareable, entertaining, and interactive. This is everything the modern online user wants in a social media experience.
From Snapchat to Instagram, Facebook to Twitter, YouTube to WhatsApp and Skype, brands are using Stories to boost awareness, increase engagement, drive traffic to their website, and expand reach to a specific target audience.
Recent studies show that Stories are growing 15 times faster than the traditional newsfeed with Generation Z and Millenial users preferring Stories to ordinary posts.
What’s great about Stories is that you can explore different content formats including posts, pictures, and the always-popular video.
Don’t know where to start? Start with Instagram Stories. Apart from being incredibly popular, Instagram has amazing free tools to help you create memorable stories. The best part is that you can easily share your Instagram Stories on Facebook or use the content for longer YouTube videos.
Here are additional tips to help you make the most of social Stories:
Use live video
Stories offer a nice opportunity to leverage the power of live video. As mentioned earlier, online users love live video. It’s authentic and real-time, and this creates a strong sense of community and an emotional connection with your brand.
Do remember that live video and social Stories, in general, are an interactive format of engaging your audience. It is not enough to post footage; you must be ready to consistently interact with users in the comments section.
Invest in storytelling
While Stories have that raw and unedited element to them, winning brands are those that invest in creating a narrative that captivates the audience.
There is indeed more to Stories than just posting random videos or images. It’s important to develop a story around your content to convey your brand’s value.
Brands that invest in high-quality Stories see an increase in ad recall and purchase intent. However, be careful not to make your Stories too scripted or too polished. Users still want that element of authenticity. It can be challenging to maintain the balance between quality production and authentic footage but it is doable once you understand what your target values the most.
Encourage user input
Online users no longer want to be just consumers of content—they also want to participate in the content creation process. Stories offer the perfect opportunity for user-generated video content.
So, in addition to creating quality branded videos, encourage users to share their content. Just seeing themselves featured on the Stories section of their favourite brand is a sure way to boost their purchase intention.
Video Marketing Tips
Brands have numerous opportunities to tap into the power of video both as a branding and a marketing tool. However, to win, it is important to understand and keep up with the evolving needs of your target audience.
What remains clear is that users will continue to look to video as the most preferred channel for connecting with their favourite brand. So, whether you want to drive traffic, increase awareness, or boost sales, video should be a strong component of your marketing arsenal.