What was the last piece of digital content that you found truly engaging? Chances are, it was a video, but why does this format strike such a chord with users? Quite simply, it’s because it’s easier to get a strong and memorable message across in a short time frame in a video, as you have the attention of both the eyes and the ears. It’s hard for a humble article or a static photograph to compete in terms of impact, and, according to Cisco, by 2018, video will account for 79% of all consumer internet traffic.
Why is video becoming more accessible?
YouTube has long been heralded as the king of video sharing platforms, and is now considered to be the second largest search engine after Google with over 3 billion searches a month. However, in the last few years other websites such as Vimeo, and channels like Vine and Instagram, have given users even more options to create animated marketing messages, and often the very good (and the very bad!) ones spread like wildfire thanks to social media.
As well as the increase in platforms, video making has also undergone somewhat of a revolution recently. With high quality, low cost, digital camera equipment now readily available, video technology has never been so accessible, and even smart phones are now capable of creating video content. That’s not to say that video production is always simple, but it depends on what you’re trying to create. Although filming and editing software is now accessible for all, you are still likely to need assistance from an expert if you are trying to create a well structured professional video with little previous experience. However, if you want to create something more low key, or down to earth, then a short Vine or Instagram video can be created and uploaded with relative ease.
How can video help your business?
Good video content goes hand in hand with good SEO, meaning you are far more likely to get conversions when you invest in great video content. Videos created on a variety of different platforms can be uploaded with detailed descriptions and backlinks to your product or service, before being embedded within your site and shared via social media, meaning that there are many opportunities to optimise your content for maximum reach. Once videos are on your website, they are more likely to draw users in and keep them on your website for longer, creating buy-in and increased exposure to your brand values and ambitions.
A recent survey by Antimo revealed that 96% of consumers find videos helpful when making purchase decisions, and 73% are more likely to purchase a product or service if they can watch a video explaining it beforehand.
As you will have seen for yourself, videos are frequently promoted and prioritised over other forms of content. In Google, YouTube videos are often listed within the top primary search results, and Facebook introduced an algorithm in 2014 to push video content to the top of timelines. These big brands understand that video is highly engaging, so they are using it to keep users on their websites, but there is nothing to stop SMEs following suit. Well produced videos will keep on giving, long past the sell-by-date of your average article, as they can be replayed again and again, and continue to reach new customers and drive more traffic to your site.
What are the drawbacks of video content?
Video content can be time consuming to create, particularly if you are trying to craft an in depth and highly produced piece of work. It can also be expensive if you use a professional agency to help you create it, but the likely return on investment for a high quality video should outweigh the cost. Long videos can lack usability if they’re covering a variety of detailed topics, but you can also supply users with the option to download a transcript to get around this problem.
How can you create and monitor your video content strategy?
As with all digital content, you should spend time analysing your audience to find out what they find engaging, and assess how best to deliver that information to them in order to develop your video strategy. Discover the questions they are asking, and then work out how you can answer them with video content. Both entertaining and informative videos can be evocative in their own right, but you need to find what fits best with your product or service and your brand, in order to create videos that really reflect your values. Consider carefully exactly what it is you want to accomplish and craft your content around that. For example, ‘how to’ video guides often perform well as they are more user friendly than written guides, and product presentation videos are also highly useful for e-commerce websites, and significantly improve conversion rates.
Once you’ve firmed up your message, you’ll need to set your budget. This will determine how your video is produced and factor in any professional assistance. Important consideration should also be given to the platform that your video will be released on. Will it be embedded directly into your site, or will you also be putting it on a sharing platform as well? Give thought to any music or voice-over accompanying your video and make sure it is in keeping with your brand and your message. If you need a spokesperson make sure they work well in front of the camera and match your desired tone – the company clown may have your office in stitches, but they may not necessarily be the best person to deliver a professional message on behalf of your business.
After your video has been produced and uploaded, the hard work doesn’t stop there – you’ll need to spend time analysing it to see how it’s performing. For videos embedded on your site, check Google Analytics to see how long users are staying on your relevant pages, and set goals to see how many people are on your site long enough to watch the full length of any videos you may have uploaded. Monitor how often your video has been shared if this option is available, and keep an eye on any feedback and comments it may receive. If users are dropping off half way through the video, consider why this is, could it be that the video is too long or too irrelevant? Use this feedback to continually develop and evolve your video strategy.
If you’d like to re-invent your content marketing strategy, we’re here to help. Our service includes detailed competitor analysis to help you keep one step ahead, and bring in real results for your business. Get in touch with us today to find out what we can do for you.