23 Oct Why Video is King for Digital Marketers
Video may have killed the radio star, however, it has given rise to a veritable universe of other stars, from Charlie Chaplin to PewDiePie. It’s showing no sign of slowing, as it has seamlessly transferred into the digital world.
Currently, if you tried to watch all the video content that is uploaded in just one second, it would take you two years of doing only that. Not sleeping, not working, just watching video. That is an insane amount of content. How much of that is cat videos?
Given the mind-blowing amount of video that is being produced and consumed by people online, it’s no surprise that brands and agencies have got involved. Marketers have invested bigly (to quote a certain Wotsit-hued world ‘leader’) in video production and promotion. According to the latest Internet Advertising Bureau and PwC report, the amount spent on online video content has usurped banner ad spend for the first time in the UK.
The first six months of the year saw a splurge of £699m on online ads. This equates to an impressive increase of 46% compared to the previous year. In comparison, the banner ad spend fell by 2% to £685m.
Video is the fastest growing advertising method. From its humble beginnings, it now represents 35% of all display advertising spend. This isn’t particularly surprising if you think how long you spend watching videos per day. Over the last three years, this has grown from 51 minutes a week, to over two hours. Being tagged in videos on Facebook really adds up.
Video… Marketing? What?
If you don’t have video marketing in your box of tricks, you could be missing out on a massive amount of exposure and potential business. Did you know 78% of people watch videos online at least once a week, while 55% watch videos on a daily basis?
The glass-half-full way of looking at this is that there are a huge amount of eager recipients for your video content. They are also accustomed to being marketed to in this format.
The pessimistic viewpoint: there is already a vast amount of content bombarding your target audience. This means that you need to work extra hard or spend extra money to stand out and earn decent response rates.
We’re not saying that video marketing is an easy area to excel in. However, it appears destined to grow. Imagine your brand not being on social media now. Exactly. It’s almost unthinkable. The same will soon be said about video marketing in the next few years.
There isn’t just one method of video marketing. Whatever your marketing aims, or industry, or target audience, video marketing can benefit you.
Many people’s first thought when they hear the words ‘video marketing’ are immediately Youtube. However, this shouldn’t be where the thoughts stop. Whilst Youtube is an important platform to show off your content, there are also a wide variety of platforms for you to show off.
Half of the UK’s internet browsing now takes place via smartphones, with the majority of this taking place on social media apps. It’s therefore logical that you should ensure your videos are on a social media platform relevant to your target audience.
- Your Website
Types of video
Video marketing is just like any other avenue in marketing. Content is key. You could produce a beautifully edited video, but if the concept and content is absolute drivel, it will obviously fail.
I’m not going to patronise you to tell you what your business should be marketing about, or what videos to produce. However, if you’re new to video marketing, there may be a couple of types of video you’re not aware of:
Recording a live video can seem like a terrifying prospect for brands. Their very existence is often to portray the fact that they are perfect, polished and in many cases aspirational. Pulling back the curtain and revealing that a brand is comprised of mere mortals who are just like the rest of us can be daunting.
There is nothing more authentic than a live video though. No matter how scripted it is, there’s always the opportunity for something to go wrong. This allows the brand to really show a bit of personality and authenticity. Thanks to smartphones, it’s a piece of cake to record a quick video. This works well to give behind-the-scenes views at events, or to make brand announcements.
Millennials tend to distrust traditional adverts and are sceptical of brand messages by default. Producing sincere live videos screams authenticity and can be an effective marketing tool for the younger demographic. This is definitely a growing trend, with 13% of videos being produced across social media being live, over the past year.
Stories are like old school Facebook statuses, except they are comprised of videos and images. This can be great for a brand to share their experience of an event (or a non-event: a typical day at the office etc.). Stories typically last 24 hours, so are also viewed as authentic by millennial audiences.
Most social media networks now have a stories section with varying degrees of engagement, Instagram -> Snapchat -> Facebook. Be mindful of who your audience is and their preferred platform to decide which networks to adopt.
This is pretty much exactly what it says on the tin. It’s now relatively straightforward to produce eye-catching 360 and 3d video. Whilst this can be truly spectacular, it’s vital that you don’t let the shiny visuals and effects paper over the gaping holes in your content. When producing one of these videos, it’s important to ask yourself whether this video is worth making in 2d. If the answer is negative, you could be on the slippery slope to making the marketing video version of Piranha 3d.
Just… one more thing
Once you’ve got a solid idea for a video, you know how you’re going to make it and how it’s going to fit into your overall marketing strategy. It’s time to think about where you’re going to display it. It’s worth thinking about the intricacies of each location.
It’s also always better to upload your video directly to the platform, rather than simply linking a Youtube or Vimeo video. This is because of ‘native’ video autoplay in a user’s timeline or newsfeed. This means that engagement rates will be higher as users won’t need to go through the exhausting step of clicking on your link.
Approximately 85% of Facebook videos are watched without sound as they autoplay on newsfeeds. Is it, therefore, worth adding subtitles so that all the people covertly skiving in the office can follow the plot of your work?
The length of your video is also a key element of its success. There is a trend at the minute for longer videos on Facebook and particularly Youtube (by long, we mean maximum 2–3 minutes). We’re also seeing this on Instagram. There used to be a theory that shorter was better as brands wanted to get their message across before the audience lost interest and carried on scrolling down their newsfeed. However, now there has been a shift in thinking. If your content is engaging enough, the length is less of an issue.
Having said that, Snapchat tends to be shorter and punchier, Instagram can be either really, but we’d still advise to not go for a Scorsese epic on the platform.
We know it’s possible to start to view your video as a piece of art rather than marketing. You may not want to ruin its exquisite plot with something as uncouth as a call to action. But remember, video marketing creates stronger customer engagement and can be great to drive purchase behaviour. But only if you provide directly to the viewer.
Hopefully, this has demonstrated the increasing importance of video marketing in the modern marketing mix, and that whatever the size of your business, video can help you achieve your marketing ambitions. Still not sure, get in touch.