A picture might be worth 1000 words, but Forrester Research says one minute of video is worth 1.8 million words. No wonder video content marketing represents the future. Video is irresistible. It’s dynamic, and multi-sensory. Video does everything text and static pictures can do, and then it does more.
And a billion viewers can’t be wrong. YouTube is the #2 search engine, with 1 billion unique visitors every month. Certainly much of what’s posted on YouTube is hardly business-related, and yet there’s no denying the compelling attraction of video.
Many people prefer to watch a short video rather than read text, whether it’s on your client's website or in their blog. And people have different learning styles. Video literally speaks to those who’d rather see it for themselves. It has a kinetic value that helps people get a “feel” for the subject matter.
You can embed them, link to them and share them. You can use them to generate more leads, close more sales, inform customers and prospects and meet your tactical marketing goal of making the broadest and best use of the multiplicity of channels available.
Consider these stats:
- Video on your website boosts your chances of making first-page search results by 50 times.
- 80% of website visitors will watch your video, whereas 20% will read all your website content.
- 90% of one retailer’s online shoppers say video helps them make buying decisions, and almost two-thirds say they purchase after watching a video.
- Including a video in an introductory email can double or even triple your click-through rate.
And video isn’t just for consumer products. A Forbes study revealed that 75% of executives watch business-related videos online at least weekly. Half of them watch business videos on YouTube, and 65% say they’ve visited a website as a result of watching the company’s video. One real estate firm reports their video ads drive four times as many leads as ads without video.
As marvelous as video can be, it’s not the answer to every marketing need. On the other hand, it has genuine possibilities for every type and size of business because you can use video to:
- Demonstrate things. Explain how to use your product, whether that’s assembling a swing set, accessorizing a new outfit or using your proprietary software.
- Repurpose webinars to reach a broader audience.
- Inform people with product reviews and testimonials. Remember that stat about how many more people purchase after watching a video? Testimonials can be about your products or services or the general experience of doing business with your company.
- Reinforce your company’s branding -- short interviews with staff about why they love working for your firm or a video of your employees volunteering for a community project. Style and culture endear your business to buyers and deepen engagement.
- Invite participation. You already collect comments, reviews, photos, etc. from your friends and fans, so solicit videos from them, too.
Use digital signage to bring video right into your store. Or your restaurant. Or your waiting room. Or your treatment room.
Cinéma vérité is fine, but c*** is not.
How glitzy and perfect your videos need to be depends on what type of business and product you’re promoting. Professionally produced videos look more, well, professional. But if you don’t have a big budget, you can produce your own videos using numerous online tools available or even your smartphone. A selfie video, if you will.
If it’s a tad rough around the edges, your client's audience won’t mind – it humanizes the company, makes them more down-to-earth and relatable. But don’t confuse “rough around the edges” with ragged. If the picture or sound quality on your video is lousy, that says you’re sloppy or uncaring. Not someone we want to do business with. No matter how potentially valuable the content, no one will watch it.
As always, study and learn.
Just because video is hot doesn’t mean it’s working for your clients. Study your analytics to ensure you’re reaching the right audience with the right message. You can see how long viewers are watching, and also the point at which they abandon the video.
Video content marketing is the future. Cisco says 69% of all consumer internet traffic will be video by 2017. More than half of marketers are using video now, and that’s expected to rise dramatically. Will your clients be in on it?