So, quarter one of 2016 is already a fading memory and Spring has truly sprung.
Hopefully you are rolling through the year so far with planned content and everything in the digital content garden is growing nicely…but where are you with your video marketing?
2015 was widely labelled as the year of the video. If you spend too much time on Facebook then you might have noticed through last year that your friends stopped sharing so many pictures of their cats and cakes and just began sharing videos. In April 2015 stats were revealed that showed that Facebook was playing host to a staggering 4 billion video views every day!! By October that figure had doubled and over 8 billion videos were being watched every day on that one social media platform.
Throw YouTube and Vimeo into the mix as well as Instagram launching video capabilities too and it is becoming clear that the moving picture is moving marketing pitches onto a whole new playing field and you need to start setting your video marketing stall up if you haven’t considered creating them already.
Video is the king of content and with mobile devices what they are today making them is easily within the grasp of any retailer or brand.
But before you start buying tripods and make up and one of those fabric director’s chairs you need to set your strategy. This goes back to understanding your customers and your audience and having genuine insight into who you want to attract.
How can video marketing content draw them closer to you and encourage engagement with your business?
What questions can you answer? What content is already prevalent and sewn up by others and, more importantly, what content is hard to find yet would be really useful to your audience?
Maybe it is a 40 second video that shows how to properly fold that pushchair or use that garden tool, and you know it solves a problem for many because you always get asked about it on your Facebook page.
Perhaps, for retailers, a member of staff giving a detailed demonstration of a product is a new way to get your store found and loved online.
But making one video is not a strategy, and neither will it get you found or sought after. You need to be consistent and you need to start as you mean to go on. At least one video a month for the next 4 to 6 months is realistic and will give you a great ‘test & learn’ environment to gauge whether video is something that can move your marketing and audience engagement up a few notches.
Ideas for content will come a lot easier than you might imagine if you give it a little bit of thought. How about customer video testimonials? Can you tempt someone who can clearly string a sentence together to get in front of the camera and big you up? Are you going to an event that warrants a bit of film time that you can share? Maybe a video interview with someone we don’t normally hear from…a product designer for example, or a landscape architect, or a warehouse manager?
When you have a brainstormed list of videos then separate the wheat from chaff and put the final list into a video marketing calendar and give yourself plenty of time to get of them filmed and finished.
And onto the videos themselves. You need to make them as polished as possible. We’re not talking Hollywood standard, but one example is if someone is talking on the video then the viewer needs to actually be able to hear them!
Buy a tripod, it makes for a much better video than a tired arm shaky-cam effect. Film somewhere that is well lit. Get people to smile, even just a little bit.
Aim to grab the viewer’s attention in the first 5 to 10 seconds as that is crucial to keeping them watching and make sure you have a very clear and obvious call to action at the end of the video. Don’t leave people hanging.
Video hosting services such as YouTube and Facebook give you the opportunity to upload your own thumbnail image. This is a vital part of someone’s decision to watch a video or not. Think about your own visits to YouTube – how often does the thumbnail image play a part in whether you click play? A random scene from the video is not a good thumbnail and you get a very limited choice when you upload your footage online so make a great image that you can upload that will increase your chances of drawing in viewers.
Finally, when the final cut is uploaded don’t forget to share it as far and wide as possible…you want your work to take up bandwidth as well as disk space.
Oh, hang on…I just wrote a line that an IT person would enjoy…so I’m off to film myself lying down. Sorry.