Are you convinced you’re doing everything you can do to market your business online? You probably have blog posts, photographs, and client testimonials – all the things you’re supposed to have. If your list of great content doesn’t include videos, though, you’re missing out.
The Lowdown on Video Marketing
Video marketing is hugely popular with internet users. While people might not make time to read a couple of thousand words, most will take a few minutes to watch a short video. If that’s not reason enough to add video to your content, here are a few statistics that might help you make the leap:
- 55% of all internet users watch video online at least once a day, and 78% do so once a week
- Online video accounts for 50% of all mobile traffic as of 2015
- 81% of all brands feature videos on their websites
- Just using the word “video” in the subject line of an email boosts open rates by 19%, and click-through rates by 65%
- Internet users stay on sites that have video an average of two minutes longer than sites that don’t have video
You have to admit, those are some pretty impressive numbers. In case that’s not enough to convince you, the next step is to learn about some of the concrete benefits of video marketing.
What Video Marketing Can Do for Your Business
It’s no accident that video marketing is so popular. Most marketers find video marketing to be an effective way to communicate with existing customers and attract new ones. Here are just a few of the ways getting into video marketing can help you:
- It can boost your SEO. You might not be aware of this, but YouTube (which is owned by Google) is actually the world’s second-largest search engine. It’s also the world’s third-most trafficked website. Not only is YouTube a great way to share your videos, the information you include (such as keywords and links to your website) can boost your search ranking, and that’s a big benefit.
- It can increase conversions. Research shows that customers are about 80% more likely to convert on a page that includes video – and they’re 64% more likely to make a purchase.
- It encourages social sharing. Videos are some of the most popular content on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. In fact, Facebook has recently added features like auto play and view count to its embedded video player, and Twitter now has a native app that allows viewers to make and edit videos up to 30 seconds long.
- It gives you a leg up in marketing to mobile customers. As mentioned earlier, videos account for about 50% of mobile traffic – and 40% of customers say that video on a website increases the chances they will make a purchase using a mobile device.
The benefits are undeniable.
What You Need to Make a Video
The thing that ends up stopping a lot of local business owners from using video marketing is that they can’t get past a string of questions like these:
Aren’t videos expensive to make?
Don’t I need to know a lot of technical information to make a good-looking video?
What about equipment?
Let’s talk about those things. None of these questions should stop you – and if they are, it’s time to get over it. The truth is that you probably already have most of what you need to make an effective marketing video.
Here are the nuts and bolts of what you need to make a video:
- A camera. Most smart phones will shoot video, or you can buy a point-and-shoot digital camera or DSLR to record HD video
- A microphone. While most cameras come with a built-in mic, the sound quality tends to be terrible. Invest in a separate microphone – they don’t cost much and they can make a huge difference.
- A tripod. A marketing video is not the place for herky-jerky, handheld footage. A tripod will keep the camera still.
- Editing software. Most new computers come with basic editing software, such as iMovie (Mac) or MovieMaker (Windows).
That’s it. The chances are good that you already have most of what you need, and it won’t cost much to get the rest. If you don’t have a decent camera, keep in mind that most digital cameras can shoot short videos. It won’t cost much to get what you need – at most, a couple of hundred dollars – and you’ll earn your money back quickly because you’ll be able to use the equipment over and over again.
What Kind of Video Should You Make?
The thing about video marketing is that it’s so incredibly versatile. You can make almost any type of video you want, but here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Demo a product or shoot a how-to video. The key to any kind of online marketing is to offer value to your customers. How-tos and demos are easy and inexpensive to make – and the truth is, nobody is more qualified than you are to tell people about your product.
- Give a behind the scenes tour. Do you have a unique manufacturing process, an enthusiastic staff, or an interesting origin story? Make a video to let your customers know about it.
- Record interviews with company leaders or staff, or shoot some “man on the street” style videos with customers. This can be a terrific way to grab some off-the-cuff client testimonials and product reviews.
- Speaking of testimonials, ask some of your customers if they’d be willing to sit down to record a video testimonial. Or, take it a step further and make a video case study of one of your clients. Most consumers today say that they look up reviews and testimonials online before making a purchase, and videos add a personal touch that makes them hard to resist.
Those are just a few ideas, but you could also consider doing a white board “explainer” video for your product or service, or making an animated video about your company.
Make Sure People See Your Video
After you’ve shot and edited your video, the final step is to make sure that it’s out where people can see it. We’ve already talked about YouTube a bit, but creating your own station there and uploading your video is an important first step. You can also:
- Embed the video on your website, and link to it in marketing emails
- Post it as a vlog (video blog)
- Share the video on your social media pages. Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn are all good options
You can also consider sponsoring a contest or giveaway to encourage social sharing.
The bottom line is that adding videos to your marketing mix can make a huge difference in areas like brand recognition and conversions. Why not give it a try?