They say a picture is worth a thousand words and that seems to be true in a lot of cases. When it comes to trying to market your product, it is normal to try and create a visually stimulating advert targeted as much as possible to your customer base.
However, these can end up being lacking in some areas and end up being backed up with screeds of text that leave potential customers unsure about what they are getting. Video marketing allows you to give all information to the client in an easy to digest way that they can watch at their own pace. Here are some tips to get you started.
Why Use Videos?
The first thing you may be asking yourself is ‘why should I use video marketing?’ The main benefit of using videos is the amount of time and effort you save on behalf of your customer. Videos get the message across clearly without any clutter and can be targeted based on the type of content you wish to share. If you embed on websites like YouTube, you can potentially monetize your videos through advertising and increase the likelihood of the video being able to scale for use on desktop or smartphone when embedded on your website.
Types of Videos
How you approach video marketing will depend on the needs of your company and what you are trying to sell. As such, there are various ways you can take your videos to ensure they are targeted according to what the customer might need.
1. Product Demo Videos
The most obvious video to start with is a demonstration of your product. This not only shows the usability and viability of the product but helps to give your product some more exposure and build your credibility with potential customers. It also allows customers to see what they are buying without having to come into a physical store which can help manage expectations. This is much better than some still images and lengthy text guides as it engages the attention of the viewer and allows you to get the information across in an easier to digest format.
2. Product/Service Explainer Videos
These make amazing substitutes for lengthy blogs and articles explaining what a product or service is or how things work. A product demo is technically part of this group but in a wider sense you are sharing information that customers should know in a simple, easy to grasp way. This is particularly useful for services where you don’t have a physical product and are trying to sell an idea to potential clients. These can go as far as explaining manufacturing processes, how the product or service can be used to benefit the customer and for eco-friendly companies how your company is staying green. For extra pizzazz, you could look at making these animated with narration that you can then make as engaging as possible to retain the attention of your target audience. If you get the right voice here it can really help, no one wants to listen to a droning monotone unless they’re looking for something to put them to sleep.
The best way to sell to new customers is to show how happy existing ones are. Speak to current clients and ask if they’d be willing to share their experiences with your company and product/service. While written testimonials are all well and good, having someone talk to the camera can give a better air of legitimacy as people feel like they can tell when someone is being authentic more when they can see their face and hear their tone of voice. You end up building more trust with potential customers.
4. How-To Guides
How-To guides are incredibly popular, if you don’t believe me just look at sites like WikiHow or type ‘How to’ into YouTube’s search bar. They are so popular they’ve even been parodied on some channels, and you sadly can see an increase of content farms trying to get into this market. If you are producing a product, like a computer program, you might want to take a leaf from Microsoft and Apple’s book and provide guides of your own on how to use the system from basic commands to more complex work. Using video will help give a visual element to the process that makes the whole thing so much easier and engaging. It also means that you are bringing the traffic to you and not a third party who takes your text guide and makes their own how-to video. These videos can also provide you with large amounts of traffic if you upload on social media and share, bringing in more potential customers.
5. Live Streams
Whether it’s Facebook Live, YouTube Live or Twitch live streaming has become popular online and are a great way to do product launches or limited time deals that allow you to directly engage with potential customers who attend these streams. On top of raising your brand awareness you can start to build a community of potential sales leads and get to know your target audience better. Just make sure you have a moderator or two ready to deal with any trolls that turn up, the internet is great but isn’t all friendly.
6. Company Culture
Whether it’s interviews with employees or behind-the-scenes footage, company culture videos can really build your brand and show customers the kind of company you are. Customers want someone they see who fits their ideals and treats their employees well. Look at channels like Bon Appetit where, before the news broke about pay disputes, they were a beloved channel by many as they built a pseudo-relationship between the customer and employees. These videos create a lasting impression with customers and may be the deciding factor between your company and someone else’s.
Similar to live streams but with a more formal approach, webinars (web seminars) provide a way to share information through presentations and formal Q & A sessions. This is the modern equivalent to the product pitch and is more cost-effective allowing you to share to a large group of people without travelling anywhere. With the right speakers and a polished presentation, you can build trust and authority with clients while helping them to understand better what they are getting from you.
Engagement with Videos
Once you have the videos made it’s time to think about client and customer engagement. There are a few ways to do this.
1. Video Thumbnails
Video thumbnails are the way you draw audiences in, make sure the image is flattering and would make you want to click it. Images of people smiling tend to make people want to click and keeping the thumbnail clear of clutter is a must. Avoid falling into the trap of clickbait thumbnails as they can put people off clicking. The best way to sort out video thumbnails is to see what videos get the most engagement and work from that.
2. Share Video at Live Events
We all must attend conferences and industry events at some point, and it can feel like a drag when you have to spend the entire time listening to the same person drone on. One way to combat this is to break up the presentation with relevant videos to help illustrate the point. It gives the presenter a chance to have a break and the audience a chance to recharge. As such, this makes it the perfect place to share some of the video marketing you have made. Especially explainer videos and company culture overviews assuming they tie into what you are discussing. Just make sure that they are in good shape and engaging or you may just lose the audience. Avoid throwing in a random video from marketing and try and target it to fit with what you are talking about; this too can lose the audience and leave them confused about what point you’re trying to get across.
3. Share Buttons
Share options will already be available on social media and YouTube, but to encourage sharing you should try and include the ability to share straight from your website. This can help drive up the traffic on your site and the number of potential customers who are coming in. Encourage employees, colleagues, friends and family to share the content. It feels a bit off putting but as long as you’re not spamming them with videos to share then this should be ok. They can say no but that’s not the end of the world, you’ll never know if you never ask. This also helps encourage customer engagement, especially for videos of testimonials, where people want to share videos they have been in to their online audience.
4. Connect with Other Marketing Efforts
No one marketing strategy should be implemented in isolation, and video marketing is no different. The videos you produce and share should align with the marketing strategies you are already using and can even be used to improve engagement with some of these campaigns. One big example is email marketing, where including a video thumbnail can increase the number of people who click on the email. It’s free to incorporate and allows you to quickly share information to a sales lead without losing them in an overly wordy email.
5. Don’t Skimp on Costs
It’s worth putting some money into video marketing when you can. Videos filmed on your iPhone may be able to help you get started but if you have the money you should invest in producing good quality videos. No matter what your budget you need to make sure the audio is good quality enough that you can listen to it without issue and understand what is being said. Invest in video editing software and potentially hire someone to work fulltime on this area of marketing. Hire voice actors and artists to create animated explainer videos that provide you with a different flair and take the time to ensure videos are as good as can be. When promoting your videos make use of social media and make sure you target the right audience. It is possible to create a good video on tight budget but there are some things you will need to pay out on in order to see the return of investment.
6. Social Media
Throughout all of this I’ve mentioned social media and it’s important that you have the right channels for you and your audience. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn tend to be the go-to sites to use, and most companies will have some presence on these sites. You can then share the videos here to your audience using custom hashtags and share in any online community based around your industry. It is possible as well to pin the latest marketing video to the top of your twitter feed to help drive engagement and ensure people see it. For product focussed companies I suggest creating your own dedicated YouTube channel and Instagram where you can show these off and share product demonstrations easily with customers. I’ve even seen some companies effectively use TikTok for marketing to teens and young adults through behind the scenes content that shows the working environment and how employees are treated. Make use of the platforms out there that suit your needs and the tools they provide you.
In the end, video marketing is an area you can spend hours looking into and is a worthwhile business strategy to consider. Use what you already know about your client base and target audience, put the effort into the video creation and align it with your other marketing strategies to see an uptick in customer engagement and sales leads. Remember this is not a one-size-fits-all approach, make videos to best suit your companies needs and the needs of the customer. Make sure these videos are engaging and encourage people to click on them. Above all, don’t be afraid to have some fun making these videos and share them on social media for the world to see.