No matter what size your business or what niche you’re in, you’ll need to take social media video marketing seriously. Though it’s not the only tool in your social media toolbox, it definitely is a major one. The ability for a business to tell its story and engage its audience is a powerful sales tool, and video is helping to tell better stories.
Video content can help businesses reach 4 specific goals:
1. Web Traffic
Social media video content is an effective way to drive traffic to your website. Video content continues to grow and drive the internet. It plays an integral part of the online social lifestyle. Demand for social media video content is continually growing on social channels like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and especially YouTube. A successful social media video campaign will include a CTA (Call to Action), the most popular being “Visit our Website”. Other CTAs include “Learn More”, “Sign Up Now”, “Book Now”, or “Shop Now”.
Gaia.com is an online resource that streams videos about alternative health, yoga and inspirational films and documentaries. This brand knows the benefits of using video on social. Their video on Facebook had 248 shares and 6.3 M views with a clear CTA to visit their website to learn more.
When social media videos showcase your brand and tell your story effectively you connect and engage with your audience. When that video content is not only worth watching but also worth sharing, you increase your audience reach.
Canadian Tire™ successfully showed its support for the Canadian Olympic team during the summer 2017 Olympics with this inspirational video that only subtly shows its product: tires. It turned out to be one of the most viral videos of 2017. It just goes to show that your businesses’ story is not just about showcasing your product. It’s also about the things your company believes in and supports.
3. Brand Awareness
More and more brands use social media videos to tell their story and give their brand personality. It’s that personality that followers want to see, and what makes your brand stand out from the crowd. Recognition is a key element to your product’s story.
Taking a similar marketing approach as Dove™, Always™ came out with this video as part of their “Like a Girl “campaign. They used a powerful message of empowerment for women to gain attention and respect for their brand. Their campaign went on to win numerous awards including an Emmy.
4. Generate Excitement and Educate
Leveraging the power of short social media video content by creating instructional how-to videos, showing off a new product from every angle, or simply using text to tell your product’s story creates interest and excitement while getting your message across. If you create content that’s both informative and useful, you’ll create trust in your brand, and a set of loyal customers.
Today’s Parent shows off an easy Ikea™ hack using one of their products in this cheerful video with a “Back -To-School” theme so relatable to families that want to avoid the common entryway clutter.
Are you looking to optimize your digital marketing strategies using video? Contact us today and let’s get started!
You know that video assets are a powerful way to connect with individuals on social media and beyond. But, what if you’re targeting businesses? While the business-to-business world has yet to embrace video to the same extent as B2C, there are strong reasons why B2B marketers should use video as well.
Research by Google shows that 70% of B2B customers watch videos on their path to purchase. Video tutorials, reviews, and advertisements have become a main source of information for researchers and stakeholders in the purchasing process. Leveraging these channels is a way of leading them towards a purchase at all different points of the B2B buyer’s journey.
Video Supports Long Sales Cycles
One of the significant differences between B2B and B2C marketing is the comparative complexity of the B2B sales cycle. In fact, a report from Marketing Sherpa suggests that over a third of B2B sales occur a full seven months after the initial customer inquiry.
Why is the B2B sales cycle so long? The most common reasons include:
- The purchase is just one of many priorities competing for the customer’s time and attention.
- The decision can affect many people within an organization, thus requiring careful thought and research.
- There are various stakeholders involved over the course of the purchasing process.
In many cases, converting B2B customers requires you to nudge them continuously towards the finish line. Closing the deal can require many more touchpoints than the typical B2C transaction.
Video marketing can support the B2B sales cycle by nurturing potential conversions at different points along the funnel. Initially, a short video can increase a customer’s interest in the product or service; longer videos can then cover the topic in greater depth.
That’s what Microsoft is doing with its new video campaign for Office 365 for Business. The featured video on their YouTube channel serves as an Office 365 elevator pitch. From there, interested customers can find video tutorials and product reviews that give them more reasons to buy in. Microsoft’s channel has something for buyers at all different points in the journey.
Video Boosts Your Other Digital Marketing Efforts
Closing a B2B sale online means hitting the customer on multiple fronts, including SEO (Search Engine Optimization), blog content, and social media. These efforts can all benefit from the addition of a video marketing campaign.
Here are just some of the ways video boosts other forms of digital marketing:
- Social media users are more likely to engage with video than any other kind of content, and on Facebook, video content reaches an average of 135% more people than photos.
- Marketing emails with the subject line “video” can increase clickthrough rate up to 300%.
- Including the word ‘video’ in a blog title can increase the number of people who click.
- Adding video to a web page can significantly increase its search engine ranking.
- Well-optimized YouTube videos can rank at the top of Google search results.
Point is, the reasons why B2B marketers should use video go beyond the returns generated by the video campaign itself. Great video content bolsters your web presence as a whole.
Personalized Videos Can Target Different Buyers
When video marketing was expensive, businesses had to target large swaths of customers at once to get the most out of their budgets. But the decreasing cost of video production gives you room to produce niche video campaigns for specific buyer personas.
Lenovo uses this strategy in the “Users Happen” campaign, which targets a number of relatable pain points in a hilarious, over-the-top way. You don’t have to be an IT manager to recognize a “power user” like Jane or a loveable dope like Chad.
Video Advertising is Growing on LinkedIn
Last year, the primary B2B social network started allowing users to upload native video files. So far, it’s been a success, with people finding expanded reach and greater engagement on LinkedIn through video. Now, LinkedIn is finally expanding the privilege to businesses with options for video ads in LinkedIn sponsored content.
LinkedIn’s deep advertising audience options will make it easier than ever to get your video content in front of your ideal customers. You can target existing email contacts on LinkedIn customers, or discover new potential customers by targeting a job title, industry, skillset, or company name.
Video Can Make Boring Stuff Shine
Face it: a lot of B2B transactions fall into the realm of what most people would deem boring. But that’s only because they haven’t seen it through the right lens. There’s a story behind every B2B transaction, and with video, you can bring those stories to life.
Take Slack, an inter-office messaging platform that means to replace such arduous tasks as ‘sending an email’ and ‘asking the person next to you if they have an iPhone charger.’ To date, this seeming-boring software has generated over a million views with its “So Yeah, We Tried Slack…” video campaign.
Another great example comes from Schneider Electric, a company that makes automated electrical systems. Not only does their imaginative “Butterfly Effect” campaign demonstrate the benefits of their product, it tells a triumphant (and hilarious) tale.
In Short: 5 Reasons Why B2B Marketers Should Use Video
- Video marketing can reach customers at all different points in the B2B sales cycle.
- Video can support your SEO, social media and blogging efforts.
- Video is cheaper than ever to product, allowing you to target niche buyer personas.
- LinkedIn lets you zero-in on specific kinds of customers with video ads.
- Video marketing can bring great stories to life, even in traditionally ‘boring’ industries.
We live in a time when all it takes to make videos is a smartphone and an idea. It’s incredible. Imagine how different our view of history might be today if our great-great-grandparents had been filming their daily lives a hundred years ago.
For businesses, the proliferation of online video presents unprecedented opportunities to connect with customers anywhere in the world. Video stands as one of the top ways people consume content online. By the year 2020, it will account for 80% of all consumer internet traffic.
Along with dedicated video sites like YouTube, all the major social media sites now serve as native video platforms (LinkedIn was late to the game when it joined in 2017.) Videos can also be embedded directly on a company website.
With so many ways to leverage video, it can be hard even to know where to start. Here, we focus on the major social media platforms. These video marketing tips will help you learn how to use your video assets to their fullest potential in 2018.
The Importance of Video Marketing in 2018
Gone are the days when you needed a script, a camera crew, and a budget to make high-quality, engaging videos. But don’t be fooled by the lucky few that go viral. It takes a lot of planning and behind-the-scenes work to make your video content succeed.
Small businesses often question whether video marketing is worth the time and effort. If you are looking to connect with customers online, the answer is a resounding yes. Studies show that most consumers would rather watch a video about a product or service than read about it. People are more likely to consume and engage with video than any other kind of content, and on Facebook, video content reaches an average of 135% more people than photos.
From an SEO perspective, video can be an enormously powerful tool. Well-optimized YouTube videos can rank at the top of Google search results, especially for instructional content like How-To’s. Videos that perform well on social media can be a generous source of social signals. And if you do happen to go viral, you can expect to get a torrent of backlinks to your site (look at what happened to the Dollar Shave Club when their launch video struck gold.)
How to Use Your Video Assets
If you know how to use your video assets, they can significantly boost the reach of your marketing efforts online. Implementing the following video marketing tips is a great way to get started.
1. Optimize Your Videos for Mobile Browsing
Social media is primarily a mobile activity. People between the age of 18 and 34 use mobile devices for social 78% of the time. To reach these users, make sure your video content translates to the tiny screens and fast pace of mobile browsing. Bold visuals and a clear message are essential.
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube have all introduced vertical video formats so users can watch without rotating their screens. If mobile users are your target, craft content that fits this taller frame.
2. Use Custom Thumbnails
Thumbnails are an art in and of themselves. A compelling thumbnail image can make the difference between another ordinary video and a huge hit.
Look at popular videos in your niche and note the kind of thumbnails that generate the most clicks. Is it big text and bright colours? Tantalizing product photos? An influencer’s head shot? Spot the trends and borrow them for your videos.
3. Have a Strong Start
According to Facebook, 47% of the value in a video campaign comes in the first three seconds, and the first 10 seconds amount to 74%. It is in those crucial moments that viewers decide whether your content is worth watching.
Most videos on social media AutoPlay by default. You can use this to your advantage. Start the video with a hook: a compelling question, an exciting scene, or an offer they can’t refuse. Just be sure to deliver on the promise in the rest of the video!
4. Show, Don’t Tell
This is one point where social media best practice diverges from that of a video-based platform like YouTube. On social media sites, most videos AutoPlay without sound; as much as 85% of all video views on Facebook occur on mute.
Whereas YouTube is both an aural and visual medium, social media video marketing weighs heavily towards the visual. Your video’s story must unfold primarily via images and on-screen text. It’s not that the sound is irrelevant, but when it comes to social media, you should assume your viewers will not hear it.
5. Know Your Platform
The above tips will help you understand how to use video assets across various platforms. However, when it comes to a broader video marketing strategy, each platform will call for a different approach. Facebook has a different tone and audience than Twitter, for example. Optimizing videos for YouTube requires exploring the platform’s search engine algorithm.
Keep in mind the purpose of each platform when deciding how to use your video assets. If you plan to invest heavily in one site over others, tailor your content to match it.
In Short: How to Use Your Video Assets
- Optimize for mobile browsing. Chances are, your audience will be watching on a 2×4’’ screen.
- Use custom thumbnails. Learn from successful competitors in your niche.
- Hook viewers in the first three seconds. That is where most of your value is.
- Assume your viewers are not Create content that resonates on mute.
- Tailor video to your platform of choice. Understand how different sites have different audiences and a unique tone.
YouTube is the second largest search engine on the internet behind Google. If you are not utilizing this medium to share content about your brand, you are missing out on a massive marketing opportunity.
Video is an extremely rich medium that generates high user engagement. According to Hootsuite, 70% of marketers plan to use social videos in the next twelve months. Video makes up 60% of online content, and Google reserves space on the first page of results for video related to search queries.
The positives of the medium are endless. However, before you jump the gun on creating a new video, check out these optimization tips to make sure your hard work lands on the right eyes.
As with all social marketing efforts, content is king. Previously, YouTube ranked the validity and quality of a video based on the number of views. Now, the length of time a user watches a video is what primarily determines its rank. The more captivating and quality your content, the better it ranks.
Aim to make your content engaging, entertaining, informative, and shareable. Staying on top of trends and focusing on valuable content will get viewers to watch longer.
There are few practical things that will encourage longer views. To start, give a summary or thesis of your video in the first few minutes. People stay longer when they know exactly what they are about to watch. Longer videos always rank better than shorter ones, so aim to make every video at least five minutes long.
The highest ranked videos on Google are How-To videos, reviews, tutorials, fitness or sports related videos, and funny videos. You can help your video succeed by capitalizing on these already high-ranking content styles.
The title of your video has a big impact on SEO. Incorporating keywords into the title phrase will significantly increase its ranking.
Titles are max 100 characters, so be as descriptive and accurate as you can. Keywords should be at the very beginning of the phrase – the closer to the front, the better. Be as specific as possible and include niche keywords into your title.
For consistency and increased SEO, use the same keyword optimized phrase in the name of the video file itself. Be sure to separate each word in the file name with a hyphen
YouTube cannot always read and comprehend the audio and visual content in a video. Instead, the algorithms make sense of the video using its description.
Don’t make the description a company plug. Write unique, descriptive and keyword-rich content that explains what your video is about. It can be up to 980 words long, so take advantage of this space – it is there for a reason!
Include the keyword you are trying to rank for in the first 25 words, and include it 3-4 more times throughout the description. This is an essential place to rank for long tail keywords.
The description is also an excellent place to add URLs that link to other content you have produced. Always add a link to your website, specifically to relevant content such as a blog or another video. Add a call to action that encourages viewers to click-through. You should also include links to your social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter. This will provide easy access for a viewer to look at your other content and networks.
Tags are what make your video discoverable on YouTube. To improve ranking, classify and associate your video with tags that are related to your target keywords. YouTube allows 500 characters in tags, and you should fill the space with anything that is relevant to the video. Don’t just describe the video with tags – describe the problem your video solves.
Don’t be afraid to create tags specific to your brand. Tagging your videos with that keyword will help promote them in the sidebar and view next card. Tags are the easiest way to categorize your videos. You should take full advantage of them!
Language and Closed Captioning
Adding closed captioning to your video is also a great way to increase optimization. Transcribing and uploading closed captions gives YouTube access to exactly what is in your video, providing information in multiple formats which can aid varying needs and preferences. YouTube also offers translating functions, which should be utilized if you are trying to reach a specific target audience.
The thumbnail provides a small preview image of your video. This is a great way to catch a browser’s attention and drive them to view your content.
Thumbnails should be bright, captivating and interesting. Try using bright backgrounds, contrast and outlines, text, and a logo or brand. Strong emotions and close-ups of people making eye contact can also catch a viewer’s eye.
Call to Action Card
Although viewer retention is the biggest factor in YouTube’s ranking system, user engagement comes in close second. The ranking algorithm considers a video’s comments, the number of subscriptions directly after watching, shares, favourites, and likes.
The best way to achieve this kind of engagement is to directly ask viewers to engage, but a call to action card can also be effective. For the last 10 or 20 seconds of the video, insert a card that has links to social media channels, other videos, and the subscription button through the overlay function.
Check out YouTuber Grace Helbig’s call to action card below as an example.