Video marketing, as we know, is a highly potent and effective way of putting brands before potential customers. This is why it has come to serve as a cornerstone of so many marketing campaigns, both of the B2B and B2C varieties.
But – and it’s a substantial but – you have to know what you’re doing in order to make the most effective use of video marketing. There’s so much video content out there that it can be very difficult to stand out among your competitors, who are probably all making use of video themselves.
So, what does it take to get the most out of video marketing? Here are our top tips.
Get to the point
Not only are online channels heavily saturated with video marketing, but viewers’ attention spans can be mercilessly short. As a result, you need to make sure that your video output gets straight to the point so that it gets key messages across with the minimum of delay.
Think about it. No doubt you’ve done it yourself, scrolling through your social media feeds, briefly stopping to check out part of a video and then swiftly moving on. The first few seconds of your video, therefore, should grab the viewer’s attention and convey to them what it’s about.
All too often, video marketing relies on slick presentation and attractive visuals to cover up for a lack of substance. But what viewers are looking for instead is authenticity and proof that your business has genuine expertise and reliable credentials.
This isn’t to say that you can neglect presentation. Obviously, with so much video marketing competing for the attention of its audience, your videos need to look the part as well. But this mustn’t be the be all and end all – there has to be substance at the core, too.
Craft a narrative
Storytelling is a highly effective way of capturing the attention of viewers. This can work much better than simply giving them the hard sell – which is likely to turn many people off. Your videos need to find a way of connecting with viewers so that they have genuine cut-through.
So, for example, instead of simply giving people a list of reasons why they should choose your product or service, you could demonstrate to them how it helped a customer solve a particular issue they were faced with. This way, you can highlight key features and show how they work in practice.
Audiences often respond much more positively to this narrative-based approach, rather than being bombarded with lists of features and their benefits. Plus, a video that has a coherent story to tell often makes for better and more compelling viewing. Don’t be afraid to use humour, but within reason – it’s good to have fun, but you don’t want to offend anyone’s sensibilities or inadvertently undermine your own claims to expertise.
Understand who you’re trying to reach – and how
You need to understand which audience you’re targeting with your video marketing, along with how – and where – you’re going to reach them. Therefore, you need to think about the type of content that your target audience will find useful and how to distribute it.
It’s worth doing some competitor analysis and research what your competitors are doing in the field of video marketing. This should give you a good general understanding of the types of content that perform well and the appropriate tone of voice – and it will also help you find out what your rivals are doing well and what they’re doing badly, allowing you to improve on it and steal a march.
Social media platforms have huge numbers of users and can be a good way of putting your content before a large audience, but if you’re targeting a particular niche, you must consider which platforms to target them on. Hosting videos on YouTube or Vimeo, too, will enable you to embed them on your own site or in blog posts. Video case studies, in particular, can be a compelling and easily accessible way to demonstrate previous successes and underline your expertise.
Don’t forget about subtitles
Subtitles are a must-have for video marketing. Firstly, you want to make your videos as accessible as possible – and around 12 million people in the UK suffer from some form of hearing loss. Secondly, many people watch videos on social media without sound anyway.
Adding subtitles, therefore, makes your videos accessible to a wider audience. It also allows your audience to watch your content and understand its key messaging with the sound off – which is especially helpful if, for instance, they’re working in the office or on public transport and don’t want to inconvenience other people by cranking the sound up.
Software such as Adobe Premiere Pro can be pretty good at creating automated subtitles, but tools like this aren’t faultless and embarrassing errors could easily slip through the net unnoticed. This is why it may simply be better to create subtitles manually instead.
Include strong calls to action
No doubt you’re already well aware of the importance of calls to action on landing pages, in email communication and in social media posts. But they’re also vitally important in video marketing as well. You should always ensure you end your videos with a compelling call to action, or CTA.
If someone watches your video content all the way through, then they’re probably going to be open to taking the next step – making an enquiry or completing a purchase. You can encourage them along by including a CTA at the end of your video, letting the viewer know what to do next if they’re genuinely interested.
Video can be one of the most effective forms of marketing. It can inform, enlighten as well as entertain your audience, cementing bonds of trust between your brand and its customers. At Workshop, we can help you create high-quality video marketing from explainer videos to brand-level films. You can find out more and check out previous examples of our work by clicking here.