Let me ask you something. When was the last time you clicked on a static banner ad while browsing your favorite website? What about an AdWords ad that was displayed during your last Google search? I’m sure it’s been a while.
Consumers are becoming immune to these types of offers, as they have been bombarded with them daily for several years. They have learned to tune them out, which is why it’s imperative that CMOs become familiar with video marketing — which has been described as "the most ubiquitous marketing tool" — and implement it into their strategy quickly.
The folks at Lemon Light put out a blog post this past April aptly titled "60 Video Marketing Stats You Need to Know in 2018." Here are just a few highlights:
- Digital video marketing is a $135 billion industry in the U.S. alone.
- Of businesses using video marketing, 76% reported an increase in traffic due to video
- When video and text are both available on the same page, 72% of consumers prefer video to learn about a product or service.
- Videos in email have been shown to increase click-through rates (CTR) by over 96% on the first introductory email.
- Explainers, product demos, and how-to videos are the most common videos produced. (more on this particular kind of video in a second)
The above stats highlight the fact that video marketing is one of the most effective forms of online marketing right now with several ways to leverage its powers to help drive brand awareness and sales. Some of the most effective ways to leverage video right now include:
- Long form. This particular form of video marketing just got a whole lot more interesting with the recent announcement of IGTV, Instagram's new long form video offering which allows all IG users to post videos of up to 10 minutes and those with over 100K followers up to one hour.
- Live streaming. When you have a consumer on the other end of your live stream, you have 100 percent of his or her attention. This is the perfect opportunity to build trust and introduce special offers. Facebook and Instagram provide excellent opportunities to broadcast live right from a smart phone, requiring no additional equipment investment.
- Video funnels. Rather than a long email funnel sequence, split-test video funnels. The consumer is more likely to watch a video than read an email. You can really leverage personality to push the viewer through the conversion funnel.
- Explainer videos. Video content is captivating and can be extremely effective when done right. Look at what Dollar Shave Club was able to do with their first video. It caused the company to go viral overnight, and undoubtedly contributed to the success that led to a $1 billion acquisition. To date, the video has more than 25 million views on YouTube.
Here are four tips to help CMOs successfully leverage the power of video marketing.
1. Determine what video platform is best aligned with your goals.
You can’t expect to net amazing results simply by uploading video content and randomly publishing it across different channels. You need to find platforms that are best aligned with your goals. If you're simply looking to give your audience an inside look at your operations or to build relationships with key members of your team, then Instagram and Facebook live streaming is both convenient and effective.
If you're an online clothing website, for example, and want to highlight new arrivals, then growing a YouTube channel full of targeted subscribers will give you an audience to market to on a regular basis.
“Finding the most effective video platform for your particular business and focusing all of your effort into amplifying that presence is key. For us, instructional how-to videos are more effective that live-broadcasting, making YouTube the platform with the most potential. With YouTube, you can also benefit from organic traffic when you include it with your SEO strategy,” explains Peek's Floor Co.’s VP of sales and marketing, John C. Stacy.
2. Understand that you don’t need to incur high production costs to be effective.
Don’t assume that creating video content is going to require expensive equipment and editing software. You can get started with nothing more than an iPhone or an inexpensive point-and-shoot camera.
For live broadcasting on Instagram and Facebook, a smartphone will work just fine. If you're going to invest in building a YouTube channel and plan on creating a regular video series, then something like the Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II is a great affordable camera, found on Amazon for about $650.
You can even edit clips from your phone using several available apps, and for more elaborate editing, Apple’s iMovie is great free editing software that will easily handle your needs. There is absolutely nothing stopping you from creating video content immediately.
3. Identify measurable KPIs for your video effort.
Launching video marketing campaigns are useless unless you can measure the results. Every campaign is going to have Key Performance Indicators that will help you determine whether or not a particular campaign is working or not and what it’s responsible for generating, in terms of measurable results.
It all comes down to results, just like any other marketing campaign.
"You need to know how many leads, and eventually, how much revenue, video marketing is responsible for," advises Alex Cortez of Island Sotheby International Realty. "It’s important to track different platforms and split-test results. Setting up goals in Google Analytics and using UTM parameters will help greatly.”
You'll want to test video in different stages of the conversion process. Some brands might see the best results using video in the beginning to help demonstrate a product, while other brands might see better results using video to close warm leads towards the end of the conversion funnel.
4. Craft the right message for your target audience.
Let’s circle back to the Dollar Shave Club video that I mentioned earlier. Its initial target audience was 18- to 34-year-old males who wanted the convenience of razors delivered every month. They knew this audience would respond well to humor and a viral video.
Now, a company targeting middle-aged women to sell them health supplements may not want to use the same angle. That type of humor wouldn’t be a good fit, and the message wouldn’t be effective. In order to reach your target audience, you must know them inside and out.
You aren’t always going to know what your target customers will react best to, so be prepared to split-test several message angles. Clip the weak performers and expand on the ones that perform well.