A recent study by IAB found that 33 percent of mobile phone users watch videos on their devices multiple times a day, and figures on video consumption are still rising across every measurable field. Despite the literary purists bemoaning an increasingly non-reading generation, the fact remains: video speaks louder than words. Current research indicates that only 20 percent of consumers read written content, compared to the 80 percent who watch videos. In marketing terms, this makes video at least four times more valuable. Bearing in mind that unlike text, video is an "attack" on all of one's senses -- sound, sight, and motion -- and the fact that video (especially on mobile) occupies the entire screen (thus capturing all of one's attention) means content marketers can no longer overlook the unprecedented impact of video on consumer behavior.
Effectively injecting video into your marketing strategy can be achieved by following some basic principles:
When launching a multi-part video campaign, it's important to have a plan in place, such as releasing a new video for each segment of your campaign. Snappy creativity, great music, and engaging visuals are the foundations of any good marketing video. Remember -- brevity is key here. Content producers have largely hit upon what it takes to keep their audiences engaged: YouTube reported this quarter that "watch time" -- the average time people stay tuned in to a particular video -- increased by 60 percent; the fastest growth in years. This reflects on the quality of video experience demanded of -- and delivered by -- video producers.
Engagement and transparency
The internet space has always been unique in its capacity for dialogue between people, and forward-thinking marketers have discovered that conversation between brands and consumers need not be any different -- even more so in the age of social networks rising to prominence in reaching consumers. As such, video's ability to portray the human beings behind a company rather than simply the standalone product should not be overlooked. Humanizing your brand can make all the difference in the world, and can be done professionally nowadays at very little cost. Further content-based engagement can be achieved by inserting calls-to-action directly into the content. Space for user testimonials, comments, feedback, and even consumer-created response videos all help foster a sense of transparency, communication, and trust between brand and audience, and, in exceptional cases, an emotionally-infused brand loyalty that can border on ferocious.
Knowing where to place your video content on the web is essential, and not necessarily intuitive. Using YouTube as a host is obvious, but remember that hosting your video on your own website in addition to YouTube allows for complete control and helps sidestep some potential problems of appearing exclusively on YouTube, like competitor videos showing up as "recommended." Becoming knowledgeable on Facebook campaign strategies is vital, as is conducting friendly, well-worded outreach to relevant bloggers and media outlets. Make sure that all online postings include a "Share" option, and a way to contact your company within a few clicks. By familiarizing yourself with reading analytical video stats, you can stay informed on how your campaign is doing in real-time. Variables like watch time, repeat watching, sharing, and call-to-action clicks are priceless data points that conventional marketers of the past could not even have dreamed of accessing.
The only way to ensure increasing distribution and cultivating loyalty is by being very persistent and frequent in your content schedule, developing the concept of a series, where viewers know when to expect another episode. At some point, a brand who wishes to push distribution even further can seek the help of influencers and their organic distribution as means to expanding the content reach.
There's no better time to be a marketing manager. Armed with a little creativity, a great intuitive video production platform, and some easily accessible knowledge of the internet's mechanics, you can watch your organization or business flourish. For, as author Milan Kundera once said, business has only two functions -- marketing and innovation. Doing video right draws on both, and pays fantastic returns.
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