How to use video for effective content marketing
18th January 2021
It seems like video content marketing has been around forever, and new apps like TikTok solely rely on it. But surprisingly, video marketing only really became mainstream in 2017, although many early-adopters who jumped on the bandwagon before that time noticed the impact very quickly and continue to lead the way today.
Video has transformed not only how companies communicate with their followers, but how consumers shop, how we entertain ourselves, and how we engage with our friends and families. For brands, the possibilities are endless when it comes to video content marketing. As well as shareable social media posts, you can create FAQs, video email marketing, onboarding videos, how-tos, customer stories, and much more, leading to a more engaged customer base and a more interesting content offering.
But with attention spans dwindling, the digital marketing video terrain saturated and consumers now expecting it from every brand, how do you stand out from the crowd and ensure your video content marketing strategy is working?
It can be easy to find a video concept that works and never stray from it, but you’d be doing yourself and your brand a disservice. With so many video types on offer, as well as exciting new ways to film and edit, it’s important to stay educated, on the pulse, and not become complacent.
Why not explore docuseries or create marketing videos? Have a go at a live video? You could even tap into customer testimonials, or create animated videos. In an arena that’s constantly changing, with new trends emerging each day, brands need to be willing to step out of their comfort zone from time to time and try something new.
By testing, tweaking, and identifying the types of video that do and don’t work for your audience, you’ll be able to inform your video content strategy, and won’t waste valuable time or resources creating the same-old content that will inevitably flop.
According to research, consumers prefer authentic, lower-quality videos over content that’s over-produced and unnatural. However, we believe it’s a balancing act. What works for your Instagram Stories won’t gel with your YouTube audience, and what brings in views on LinkedIn won’t have the same impact on Facebook, so it’s important to tweak your video to each specific audience.
Regardless of the quality of the video and how it’s edited, consumers are looking for authenticity. Even in a polished docuseries, your content can still be authentic, as can the personalities and topics you choose to feature. Take time to discover a balance that works for your company, as well as the medium, platform, and your goals.
Episodic content is what keeps people coming back, time, and time again. While some pieces may be standalone, you should always think about ways to turn your videos into an episodic series - something that has worked for huge publishers like Buzzfeed. While consumers love variety, there’s a reason that they come back to their favorite TV shows and binge Netflix endlessly - they also enjoy comfort and familiarity.
If you’ve worked hard on a brilliant piece of video marketing content, you want to give it the best possible chance of performing well - this is where optimization comes in. Each platform has its own set of guidelines for ensuring video success, such as which video length will work best, or which resolution it should appear in.
Not only will this enable you to play the algorithm game, but it also shows your followers that you know what you’re doing.
You should also check the best posting times on each platform, as well as ensure you have a great thumbnail and your title, tags, and captions are SEO-friendly. If you think your content is worth finding, you’ll put in the extra work to make it so.
Don’t forget to include a call to action to encourage people to perform a certain behavior once the video has ended. It might be heading to your website to shop via a swipe-up link, or asking for subscriptions to a YouTube channel. Either way, don’t leave them hanging.
Accessibility is at the top of our list of video marketing tips for 2021, and for good reason. As well as being concerned with how consumers stumble across your video, you should think about the user-experience they receive while they’re enjoying it.
Your video should be accessible to those who are hard of hearing, have visual impairments, or speak another language, so using captions and transcripts is a must. You can create these yourself, or use external software to make the job easier. Certain platforms, like YouTube, can automatically generate your captions, although they will need editing for clarity.
As well as establishing the types of video you’ll make, along with researching the platforms they’ll live on and who’s watching them, you should figure out what success looks like for you.
Setting goals and objectives around your videos will help you know if your video marketing content is successful. Are you hoping for website traffic, or to increase your engagement? Do you long for new followers or crave a bucketload of views? Video is an ever-changing landscape, so it’ll no doubt take some time for you to establish what success looks like, but you should continually look at your analytics and change up your strategy as necessary.
In order to maximize your video’s chances at success, you need to get it out to as many eyes as possible. Give your video a longer shelf-life by including it in website content, including it in your video email marketing, and uploading it to your social channels. If the video isn’t suitable for certain platforms in its current state, you can create teasers and link to the full video elsewhere.
Continually explore other places to host your videos, such as Twitch, Vimeo, and Reddit - there are tons of communities that are ready and waiting to consume top-notch content outside of the big four.
Did you know that including a video in your email campaigns can increase open rates, click-through rates, and conversions? Don’t forget about it when it comes to your email campaigns, as video email marketing is not to be missed.
We all know that video content marketing is just a part of life now, so if you want to succeed, you’ll need to jump on board and kick off your awesome new strategy with our video marketing tips.
As well as making a variety of content that enthralls and engages your audience, make sure your content is accessible, is optimized for success, and can be seen on as many screens as possible.
Most importantly, be authentic and original, and continually check back on your performance to see if your current strategy is working. If not, tweak and try again.