It seems that ‘going viral’ is the hottest buzzword in digital marketing these days. Whilst achieving viral status should not necessarily be the primary goal behind creating video content for your brand, it is still a sign that times are changing and that video marketing is the way of the future.
Why You Need Video
As the average consumer’s attention span continues to grow shorter and shorter, it is becoming increasingly more difficult to reach prospective clients through the written word. To avoid estranging potential customers by burdening them with copious reading material, video can and should be used to communicate the central components of your product and/or service to your audience. Video is not only more digestible than the written word, but it is also more instantaneously gratifying; making it one of the more powerful tools in your digital marketing strategy.
However, it’s not enough to simply post a few videos on YouTube and call it a day. You still need to take into consideration traditional marketing concerns to ensure that you are delivering the right message on the right platform at the right time. Your videos need to do more than provide mere entertainment. They need to offer additional value for the viewer by providing information they need to help make a decision about whether or not to purchase a product and/or service from your company, as opposed to one of your competitors.
Dollar Shave Club’s viral commercial is a great example of combining humour and information through the use of video to enhance the value of their brand.
Styles of Video
There are a wide range of different styles of video that you can implement into your digital marketing strategy. Here are a few of the most common:
Testimonial videos give you a great chance to show prospective customers just how much your current customers love your brand. However, it is not enough to simply show clips of people saying that your products are great; this can get quite tiresome, and doesn’t really add value for the viewers. Instead, show people actually using the product and/or service and let them tell the story of how it changed their lives for the better.
Considering the fact that website users are 64% more likely to follow through with a conversion after watching a video, and 90% of users say that their buying decisions are influenced by online reviews, it is not all that surprising that video testimonials are one of the most effective content marketing techniques available to businesses.
How-Tos & Explainers
If there are any complex concepts behind how your product works or unique ways to use it that customers may not have thought of, how-tos or explainer videos are likely to be your best option. Rather than forcing people to read about something complicated, you can explain it to them directly.
Product or Service Demos
Demo videos are great for products that don’t make it immediately obvious as to what they should be used for, either through their novelty, appearance or packaging. In these cases, demonstrating how to use the product can go a long way towards convincing prospective customers of the utility and (hopefully) the necessity of the product. Think of this as somewhat like an infomercial, but more engaging.
People find it much easier to engage with brands they feel like they can relate to. Brand storytelling gives you a chance to connect with your audience on a more personal level. Share the history of how your brand came to be, or perhaps highlight the ways in which your company gives back to the community. Whatever it is, remember to keep the tone light-hearted and fun in order to keep your viewers interested.
Dove utilised this style of video within its ‘Men+Care’ campaign in order to resonate with their audience, and successfully align their brand with family values. Indeed, many of these ads accrued millions of views on Youtube alone.
Using Video across All Digital Platforms
There is so much more to the world of video than just YouTube. To gain the maximum reach possible, it is important that you use video strategically across all of the platforms on which you engage with prospective customers.
Your company’s website is a great location for some of your branded videos. If prospective customers are already aware of your brand, they are likely to come directly to your website when searching for information about your products and/or services. By making the information they are searching for readily accessible via your site, you have a better chance of capturing (and retaining) their attention.
Social media gives your brand the opportunity to connect with new customers who may or may not already be aware of your brand. Because your content can be shared by other users, you can greatly expand your reach beyond what you could accomplish with your website alone.
In the realm of social media, it is important to keep your videos short and concise. Social media users are not there to watch lengthy videos; they are looking for something interesting or amusing to help pass the time.
More and more users are becoming entirely dependent on their mobile devices, using apps to find the content that they need, when they need it. Because of this growing trend, it is crucial that your videos are optimised for display through mobile apps. This means keeping file sizes small so that they can be easily downloaded or streamed without consuming an inordinate portion of the customer’s data package. If your organisation creates a large amount of video content, you may even want to consider creating your own mobile app to make it even easier for users to access your content.
Create a Seamless Brand Experience
One of the most important things to remember when creating video content for your brand is that you need to maintain a similar brand experience across all platforms. For example, if your business is of a more serious and sombre nature, like funeral services, it will seem odd to have videos that are colourful and energetic. Similarly, if your brand sells toys for children, serious videos that focus on global issues would not gel well with your brand. The goal is to create videos that seamlessly mesh with your overall marketing message, and will speak to your desired target audience.
Creating effective video marketing requires painstaking thought and planning, so don’t rush to churn out video content simply for the sake of “ticking the box” on your digital marketing checklist. Take the time to research your audience and think about what they need and expect from your brand. Then, you can develop video content that aligns with the rest of your branding, and will provide the value that will keep viewers coming back for more.