Prior to the internet, marketers spent millions on 30-second television advertisement spots, and the returns on investment were unpredictable, to say the least.
Back then, any form of video marketing was out of the question for small businesses, but times have changed in a big way. Now, your brand can leverage video easily and effectively with minimal investment and generate massive interest from audiences worldwide.
How are current business leaders leveraging video marketing to grow their companies? We asked the question – and got some answers. Check them out here.
Meet the Demand
It’s easy to see why book sales and blog readership are at all-time lows when there is so much free streaming video available online.
Today’s web users know what they want – and your brand has the opportunity to provide. Create videos and put them in the right positions across the web to extend your reach and make an impact.
“Social media is an integral part of any business model,” said Kamron Kunce, Senior Marketing Manager at 4Patriots. “Following COVID the world has flocked to online platforms far more than ever before. Our industry’s customers are spending millions of hours watching YouTube videos to answer important questions about their lifestyles. YouTube gives us the opportunity to meet our customers where they’re at with how-to’s, demos, and so much more to show off our products.”
Don’t ax the rest of your content strategy just yet – just focus on video moving forward.
Not So Serious
So many marketing materials are strictly fact-based and don’t do much to generate excitement from the viewers. It’s nice to know features and stats, but the video format is so dynamic!
You might as well make the most of it with exciting stories and visuals.
“Video marketing should always have some form of fun that goes along with it,” said Steve O’Dell, CEO and Co-Founder of Tenzo Tea. “You want people who watch your videos to be engaged and entertained. With social media platforms popping up such as TikTok, you can make fun content that also helps grow your business.”
Different platforms are better suited for particular content types, so know where you’re posting and what to expect from audiences.
Products in Action
Some video campaigns are high-concept and don’t reveal much about the products themselves.
That’s great if you’ve already got billions spent on other forms of outreach, but for the typical video series from a smaller brand, keep it focused on the products and make them look fantastic.
“Crafting videos should be a part of all marketing strategies,” said Andrew Pires, Owner of The Maskie. “If you sell a product or service, chances are you have something visually appealing about it. For The Maskie specifically, we are able to showcase the face coverings transition from a mask to a scrunchie. It is a simple process, but when you tell people about it they immediately want to see it in action. Videos give this opportunity. We encourage other people to make videos with our products as well so that more is spread online to showcase what we have to offer.”
Once people know and love your products worldwide, you can start getting more experimental with your video styles, but simplicity rules at first.
Build a Following
Social media success is predicated on generating a long list of followers who want to see your latest and greatest videos. The only way to do this is through consistent effort and appealing to the demands of the crowd.
“We’re operating in a world where one good video can lead to a massive social following; where a massive social following can drive programming decisions; and where programming can be dynamically created by a user,” said OpenSlate CEO Mike Henry. “Or an advertiser.”
Interests and trends will ebb and flow, but your videos can serve as useful litmus tests to determine the viability of campaigns or messaging strategies.
Video is not the time to bore viewers with endless statistics and technical details about your products or company vision. They want flashy visuals, fun sound effects, and overall positive energy so that they are compelled to get on board the bandwagon.
“We use video to capture and share as much raw emotion from our customers as possible,” said Adam Reed, CEO of Crown & Paw. “We love to show people that we don’t just sell a product, we create a moment that is cherished by not only the consumer, but the people around them too. We also like to create fun, entertaining stuff that people actually want to watch.”
Include a casual pitch if you must, emotion should be the key focus in short video clips.
Before you set out to produce a video for your company, ask yourself – what purpose will this asset serve our company? If you can’t answer that simple question, head back to the drawing board until you figure it out for certain.
“We use video marketing of two different types: Demo videos; these videos showcase how the product works and explains its various features,” Jay Shah, CEO of Auris. “Also – customer testimonial videos. These types of videos are used for remarketing and are very effective in conversions.”
Creating a few categories or “buckets” of video content can help make production more simple and intentional for your team.
Build on Current Campaigns
Not sure where to start when it comes to video marketing? Look at your current lineup of campaigns and select some “greatest hits” to generate some inspiration.
Surely you have a message or image that has served you well in recent months. Build on that and see how you can transfer those ideas into a video format.
“When it comes to marketing, coming up with innovative, creative ideas can make all the difference,” said Dr. Amir Yazdan, Founder of GroMD. “One of the most important things is to consider including video in your marketing strategies. This can work very well with your content campaigns, where a video can say much more than a thousand words. Plus, sharing videos is almost synonymous with social media platforms. By posting your video content online, you can easily expand your reach to a broader audience – and even new demographics.”
Now that video is a part of your repertoire, keep your eyes and ears open for inspiration everywhere.
Videos can be used to advertise products, tell customer stories, offer market insights, or simply give people a fun, carefree viewing experience.
However you want to use video to your advantage – there’s a way to make it happen with a bit of effort and creative intention.
“Online video is the Swiss army knife of internet marketing,” said Executive Coach Mark Robertson. “It really can be used all over the customer lifecycle, whether it’s customer service, marketing, or even recruitment.”
How is your company using video right now?
Better question: how is your company not using video?
Hop On New Features
At one point in time, social media only offered text-based posts and maybe some image galleries. These platforms have come a long way in recent years, and now video is the star of the show no matter what application you choose.
“Instagram Reels and TikTok’s rise in popularity has been fantastic opportunities to leverage video marketing to help grow our business and drive sales,” said Lauren Bosworth, CEO of Love Wellness. “By creating short-form video content for these apps, we have been able to speak directly to customers and create a community around our products. By utilizing social media trends and these platforms, we are able to reach new customers.”
If a new platform emerges or offers a new feature, jump into the action early and get a feel for the technology before your competitors beat you to it.
We use the term “viral video” for a reason – people share videos more than any other type of content on the web.
You may not have the next viral sensation in the chamber, but you can certainly urge users to send your videos to friends and family to spread the word more efficiently.
“With the massive growth we have seen of social media platforms, every business owner should be doing what they can to grow their video content creation,” said Ryan Solomon, CEO of Kissmetrics. “If you can put great videos on social media that showcase your product or service in action, you can draw in a large number of individuals who are interested in purchasing your product and who might also share what they like about your company with others.”
When more people share your videos, you connect with unexpected market segments and expand your business opportunities much faster than otherwise possible.
You don’t need a marketing degree to know when a video seems inauthentic or disingenuous. That kind of thing can’t be faked.
Put yourself in the customers’ shoes and think about what they want to see. This will clarify what needs to be done and point your production in the right direction.
“The best way to use video marketing to grow your business is to make your content geared around showing your customers who you are,” said Carrie Derocher, CMO of TextSanity. “Make videos personal and show off a little about your personal life. Do you have a family? A fun hobby? Anything that can help your customers relate to you can do wonders to your business’s virtual growth.”
Personal connection is key in all forms of marketing, video especially.
Give Creative License
Video production is a labor of love, so give your creative teams some autonomy when brainstorming ideas and putting together these digital assets.
These are people who are immersed in popular culture and social media, so they can often create more compelling and engaging content that executives may not be able to match.
“If you’ve got a great product and a team of inspired individuals running the show, it’s hard to mess up with video marketing,” said Aylon Steinhart, CEO and Founder of Eclipse Foods. “Set a schedule, stick to the fundamentals, and be consistent with uploads to social media every week. You’ll gain a following faster than you expect, and the payoff will be huge.”
Listen to the young folks on your squad and take their ideas seriously! They might just have the next great campaign idea for your brand.
Posting one video every few months is not going to give your brand the momentum it needs to make an impact in a highly saturated video marketplace.
Be sure to map out a content calendar as you would with other digital assets like blogs and graphics. As momentum builds, the process becomes so much easier.
“Don’t overthink it when it comes to video,” said Alex Keyan, CEO and Founder of GoPure Beauty. “This is still a fairly new concept for many businesses, so just by showing up, you’re already ahead of the game. Many of your biggest competitors may be hesitant to go all-in on video, so take advantage of that imbalance. The little guy has an edge in this unique new medium.”
Look around your niche to see how immediate competitors are leveraging video. They tend to be more creative and generate organic hype, unlike larger organizations.
In a 30-second video clip, there’s only so much time to talk about features and capabilities. A better strategy is to simply make your products look as appealing and exciting as possible, then viewers will naturally want to find out more.
“Include plenty of pertinent information about your products, because they’re the star of the show,” said Jason Wong, CEO and Founder of Doe Lashes. “You don’t need any fancy settings or million-dollar consultations. Just put your products in front of the right people at the right time, and let the goods do the talking.”
With plenty of additional information on your site and social media, that one eye-popping video will serve its purpose for igniting interest upfront.
Ramp Up Investment
Is that marketing budget not giving you the returns you expect every single quarter? You may be stuck in a rut, doubling down on old strategies that don’t make the same impression anymore.
“If you’ve got a little extra cash in the marketing budget, put it towards video,” said Derin Oyekan, Co-Founder of Reel Paper. “It’s one of the best investments you can make right now. You immediately separate yourself from the pack with strong production values and a clean presentation. Image is everything, especially with social media leading the way.”
Marketing is an experimental practice at its core, so keep pushing the envelope by testing new formats and implementations of unique video content.
Keep it Light
The tone of your videos should match your brand, and this is something that so many marketers just can’t seem to grasp.
You’re not just selling a product – you’re selling an entire vision of the world that should make people excited right off the bat.
“Remember that video is supposed to be entertaining and lighthearted, so don’t take ourselves so seriously when putting together footage,” said Sarah Morgan, CEO of Even Health. “Viewers should feel like they’re part of a fun, cool community when they watch your channel or ads. Loosen up and enjoy the process!”
Under no circumstances should a viewer walk away from your video in a state of confusion about your product or what it does. Even if your product is somewhat complicated, do your best to showcase its abilities and make it easy to understand for everyone watching.
“We use video marketing to show the simplicity of our products,” said Ashley Troutman, Senior Director of Brand Management at Mother Dirt. “When you have an innovative product that’s new to the market, anything that demonstrates how it works is a big help and makes it more tangible. Our videos can be shared from friend to friend and on social media and this helps us grow.
Use all the tactics in the playbook – demos, text, step-by-step slides – and you’ll get the key points across in a short timeframe.
Integrate All Efforts
Video is definitely the “new kid on the block” in the marketing world, but that doesn’t mean you should treat it differently from ads, blogs, or other types of content.
The more seamlessly you can mix video into your current strategy, the more effective it will be.
“Stop thinking of video marketing as this separate entity that is optional for your business,” said Digital CEO Expert James Wedmore. “Video is an effective form of communication that needs to be integrated into each and every aspect of your existing marketing efforts.”
As marketing becomes more complex in the internet age, cohesion across the spectrum will be more important than ever.
Give Customers the Floor
Your customers undoubtedly have a lot to say about your brand, and it’s more than likely worth sharing on social media. Why not make a video series that broadcasts customer satisfaction and makes your brand more relatable on a human level?
“We leverage the fantastic results we get for our clients by asking for video testimonials and highlighting them on our website and our social media after they’ve had a big win,” said Jonathan Snow, COO and Co-Founder of The Snow Agency. “Social proof that’s directly from clients is more persuasive than any other strategy. It shows our expertise, gets us clients and builds trust with future clients.”
This is not the time to shy away from video marketing, so dive right in despite any hesitation or uncertainty. Your brand will quickly get the ball rolling and those initial efforts will not be regretted.