How’s your online marketing game these days? Are you blogging, sharing, commenting, liking? How about pointing and shooting? Well, if you’re not making videos as part of your content marketing strategy, you could be missing out. While text content is still a great thing to produce, you can really round out your marketing and engage customers in a whole new way with visual content. So if you’re thinking about breaking into video marketing, how should you start, what kinds of videos should you consider, and what are some things to think about when creating high quality video content?
The Why and How of Video Marketing
Getting started with video marketing can feel a bit daunting, and might seem like more trouble than it’s worth. But it’s not! Consider this: according to former Facebook, Google, and SpaceX executive Dex Torricke-Barton, “More than 80% of traffic online is video traffic, as the content people want has changed from text to images to videos and now live streams.” Not only that, but 80% of viewers remember what they watch, with half of them taking action afterward. And 90% of users say product videos are helpful in making purchasing decisions.
Those are pretty powerful statistics, and they might convince you to get started with video marketing. So what are the first things you need to think about when planning your video content? First of all, remember that consumers want content that’s immersive on a visual level and tells a compelling story. What they don’t want is a sales pitch! That means to create effective videos, you should:
- Start with your customers – Don’t start by thinking too big, and aiming to reach those millions of people watching millions of hours of video content every day. Focus on your existing customers, what they want to know, and what you can impart to them. Don’t worry about your numbers at first, worry about who is watching, and about building a community you can engage with (and don’t forget to do so regularly).
- Get the tone right – Consumers can smell a sales pitch from a mile away, and if you get your approach wrong, you could lose 20% of your viewers in 10 seconds. Yikes! But taking an educational approach can help; in fact, customers are up to 85% more likely to buy your item after watching an educational or “explainer” video about it.
- Be creative – You need to engage your audience, and videos featuring talking heads just ain’t going to do it. Tell a story, use humor, add animation, try a longer format that immerses the viewer, or a super short punchy video that sticks with them. Just make sure that you keep in mind your customers’ wants and needs, and entertain them while addressing those wants and needs.
- Keep it short – There is a time and a place for longer videos, but in general it’s best to keep your videos to 2 minutes or less. Like we said, a fifth of viewers click away from videos within the first 10 seconds, so you don’t want to make them feel like they have to make a big time commitment to get your message. And studies show that 2 minute videos tend to get the most engagement.
- Stay focused – If you’re doing shorter videos, it’s usually best to stick with one or two messages so you don’t overwhelm your viewers. If you want to make multiple points, make multiple videos, and link them – you could end up getting customers hooked on each installment!
Types of Marketing Videos
So we know that video marketing is a powerful tool, and we’ve looked at what you need to think about when getting started with your videos, but what are some of the specific types of effective videos you can make?
Want to show off a new product? Video is a great way for you to “show and tell” for your customers. You’ll have the opportunity to simplify anything that seems complicated about your product, while building enthusiasm, and highlighting the benefits of your item. For these types of videos, you should create a sense of how your product can make the customer’s life better, and inspire them by showing how your product fits into their lifestyle (or an aspirational lifestyle).
Explainer animation videos
Need to explain something complex or new about your business, product, or service? An explainer animation video is a creative and engaging way to educate viewers, and this type of video means that you can create locations, characters, and props that would be difficult in the real world. With animation, you can break down complex ideas in a fun way, and much more quickly, so you don’t lose your audience.
What better way to get people to spend more time on your website, engaging with your content than by embedding videos on it? And you know that the longer customers spend on your website, the more likely you are to get conversions! Consider using videos embedded in your website to give customers an immersive glimpse of your products that they would normally only get by visiting a store, or an engaging video that invites your customers to explore your services.
There are a whole lot of people out there on YouTube looking for videos on how to do whatever it is they’re trying to do. You can become a thought leader in your industry, or customers’ go-to person for a certain topic if you create fun and easy to follow instructional videos. You can also highlight how your product, service, or business can be of even further help.
Sometimes the best way to convince new customers to get on board is by showing them how satisfied your existing customers are. Testimonial videos from happy customers can highlight what they like best about your business, and will often feel more authentic, since they come from a third-party. After all, around 90% of customers say they trust testimonials just as much as personal recommendations! Add to that the powerful and engaging video format, and you’ve got a winning formula.
Tips for Creating Quality Videos
One last thing before we leave you to planning and creating your marketing videos: a few tips on how to make them look and feel more professional. After all, a crappy video is probably not going to do you all that many favors when it comes to bringing in customers. So, as you create your videos, consider the following:
- Sound quality – It might sound funny, but viewers are more likely to forgive bad video quality than bad sound quality, so use a good microphone and run a basic noise-removal filter on your recording.
- Lighting – Paying attention to lighting will make even a low-quality camera produce a better video, so look into either an inexpensive lighting kit, or just stick some desk or ring lamps behind you to get the effect you’re looking for.
- Editing – Instead of filming in one long shot, use the jump-cut method, which means your video will be made up of dozens (or hundreds) of short little clips pieced together to make a whole. This will keep the video moving along, and keep viewers more engaged.
We would say that video marketing is the future, but that future is already here. More and more customers want to see video content, so the quicker you get in the video marketing game, the better! With a little bit of thought, and a little time and effort, you could even make an engaging video on your phone that ends up bringing in more customers than any other content strategy you’ve tried. So get your director’s hat on and get shooting – and let us know how it goes!
Co-written by Joanna Bowling