Incorporating Video into Your Digital Marketing Strategy
With the proliferation of mobile use, it’s no surprise that video content is becoming more important for businesses, as part of their marketing strategy and are reporting greater satisfaction in its results. The statistics are equally impressive. Case in point:
5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every single day
28% of smartphone users watch a video at least once a day
92% of shoppers say visuals are the most influential factor affecting purchase decisions
Using a well-thought video marketing strategy, brands can reach people right at the very start of their customer journey to purchase.
Reasons Why You Should Use Video in Your Marketing Strategy
Even though many of us consume online videos daily, there are still many businesses who aren’t using videos as part of their digital marketing mix. A few highlights on why you should start incorporating them:
- Video marketing is one of the most effective types of content for online promotion. Research found that it is great at driving conversions – 84% of consumers have made a purchase after watching a brand’s video. Consumers like it because it’s easy to digest and accessible to anyone with internet access – both to watch and produce.
- Video content is as prevalent as ever. For the last few years, major social media platforms have been facilitating its growth. Instagram first introduced videos of maximum 15-sec in length, which was later lengthened to 1 minute. With the incorporation of IGTV this year, businesses have found a new way to connect with their customers.
- Video marketing fosters engagement by catering to mobile users since smartphones have become an integral part of our lives. Mobile optimization has literally (and figuratively) taken over the digital marketing scene. Social videos generate 1200% more shares than text and images combined.
- Versatility of form and content can be named as one of its most striking advantages. By leveraging on the power of both sound and image, video format has the capacity to create a long-lasting impression and impact the audience greatly.
- Advances in technology contribute to the adoption of videos worldwide. High resolution and quality videos become more accessible and widespread with the use of smartphones. The image and sound quality get better every year. Having said that, the concept behind the video and knowing how to appeal to customers is more pivotal than the actual visuals.
The same rules that apply for written content marketing apply for video marketing – concentrate on the value that you’re providing for your customers. It helps to centre your video around the story, not the sale. Always consider the (what, where and when) in video marketing best practices.
Tips in ensuring the efficacy of Video Marketing
- Evaluate what kind of content to create. Firstly, identify your target audience, consider your business objectives (get traction, deepen brand awareness or increase conversions?) and decide the best type of content that would interest, problem-solve or entertain them. With the variety of video content available, decide if you’d like to do a scripted, impromptu (live) or an ephemeral one. Boost SEO using captions for auto-play and keep the video silent if it’s meant to be posted on a landing page.
- Decide which platforms to use based on where your target audience typically hang out (e.g LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram or YouTube). Craft the video length based on the platforms that you’ll be posting on and the information your audience craves. The recommended ideal length for videos posted on social media platforms is – Instagram: 30 seconds, Twitter: 45 seconds, Facebook: 1 minute and YouTube: 2 minutes.
- Consider when to post as timing matters for social media postings. The best time to do so is whenever your audience is most likely to see and engage with your content. A well-timed post can lead to more likes, comments, shares and click-throughs. This varies depending on your industry and your specific audience, of course.
Although videos have long been used by brands, the evolving landscape of digital marketing has given us new uses for this medium. Here are some ways you can use video as an effective part of your digital marketing strategy.
1. Boost Your Social Media Engagement
A video, if executed well, can reach a large audience and generate a significant number of shares on social media. In my opinion, one of the best examples of a brand video that went viral is Dollar Shave Club’s 2012 ad. In the first three months after it was posted on YouTube, the video earned 4.75 million views — mostly thanks to social media shares, according to Entrepreneur — and to date, it has over 26 million views. The unique thing about this video’s massive reach is that it doesn’t involve outlandish plotlines or dramatic cinematography. It’s just effective brand storytelling that helped the brand raise awareness about its product’s unique selling points.
Another excellent example of a video that went viral is Poo-Pourri’s “Imagine Where You Can Go.” With this ad, the company found a very authentic and funny way to talk about a taboo subject and got more than 13 million views on YouTube.
I often encounter business owners who want to make videos just for the sake of going viral. But your ultimate goal should be to entice your target audience to engage with you. This means making videos that appeal to your market, regardless of whether or not they’ll go viral.
Think about some creative ways to attract the interest of your target audience. To define your target market, analyze the personal data of your current customers. Use analytics tools (e.g., Facebook Analytics), evaluate the target market of your competitors and, most importantly, test different types of ads before you publish any videos.
2. Improve Your Search Ranking
Google’s algorithm loves rich content — websites that contain a mix of text, photos and videos, for instance. In my experience, adding videos to your content can get your website a better position on search engine results pages (SERPs) or featured as a rich snippet, which can increase your visibility. And when more people share your videos, it helps you get more backlinks. Relevant backlinks are among the most important SEO ranking signals.
Videos also give people a reason to stay on your website longer. When they stop to watch a video on your page, your dwell time increases. And dwell time has the potential to influence your SERP ranking. Although Google has yet to confirm whether dwell time is a ranking factor, it does have SEO benefits. The search engine rewards content that is timely and relevant. And the longer a user stays on your page, the more likely it is that they found your content useful. This sends a signal to Google that your website is worth ranking.
Don’t forget about the SEO aspect of your videos themselves. Make them more search-friendly by optimizing the meta tags and transcript. Insert your targeted keywords in the title, description and transcript. Also, check the transcript for typos and grammatical errors. You want to leverage the caption feature as much as you can since web crawlers are still text-based.
3. Improve Your Website’s User Experience
I communicate to all of my clients the importance of using videos to improve website user experience. Videos are often the best choice for presenting complex, unfamiliar information to visitors. Consider creating video tutorials and manuals, for example, to show your customers how to use your products.
Keep your videos short to make them user-friendly. And to accommodate impatient consumers’ need for speed, make sure your videos load fast. Compress your video and convert it to HTML5-supported formats to decrease the loading time.
4. Enrich PPC Campaigns
Videos can make engaging ads for your pay-per-click campaigns. They appear on the Display Network, YouTube or on other sites. Those posted on partner sites, or out-stream ads, extend your reach beyond YouTube, allowing you to tap audiences in their online hangout spots.
Google has more video ad formats, including non-skippable in-stream ads and bumper ads. Social media platforms, like Facebook and Instagram, also let you post video ads.
The crucial element of PPC video ads is targeting. Choose a platform or website that matches your target market, business and the search intent of the user.
I’m not being hyperbolic when I say that online videos present a huge opportunity for businesses to get creative with attracting and pleasing their audiences. Regardless of where you choose to post your videos, make sure that your message is persuasive, useful and relevant for your target market.
Increasing internet penetration, better infrastructure and adoption of mobile internet (4G and now 5G) are driving video consumption in Asia Pacific and it is here to stay. With the introduction of ephemeral videos in social media platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok, there is a rising interest among the younger generation to post fleeting and novel video content. It makes perfect sense for brands to jump on the bandwagon sooner, rather than later.
Credit: Getty Image