Updated: Oct 15, 2019
At this point, most entrepreneurs understand the importance of video content marketing. It drives customers to your site through accessible, attention-grabbing visuals, stronger emotional connections, and improved SEO. To top it off, 70 percent of marketers note that video content typically boasts a clearer boost in sales than any other form of marketing.
Nevertheless, many small business owners elect to ignore the potential of video content marketing. This is often due to how content creation is perceived as excessively expensive or laborious — and that the effort involved doesn’t justify the results. However, with a streamlined process, these concerns can be eliminated. Here are three ways you can improve the productivity this process:
1. Create Videos That Appeal to Your Customers
The first, and arguably the most important, step is to generate ideas for content that will appeal to your target buyer persona. Strong video content either appeals to the interests of your customers (while remaining relevant to your niche) or answers specific questions about your product or service that customers are likely to have.
If you haven’t done so already, gather some information about the demographics, needs, and desires of your customer base. This can be acquired through interviews with customers, surveys, and social media. As you analyze this information, you should identify common traits that define your average customer and compile those traits into a persona. All of your future video content should directly appeal to this persona.
As you flesh out video ideas, keep in mind that effective videos comprehensively lead customers through the marketing funnel. Not every video needs to include a direct sales pitch, but each one should at least increase awareness of your brand. Furthermore, they need to be engaging; whether you aim to inform, entertain, or inspire, videos must maintain audience interest to make an impact. There is a delicate balance: overly advertorial videos may cause your audience to become disinterested, while failing to properly brand your content will cause a video to fail to drive sales.
2. Find the Right Video Sharing Platform
The next step to your campaign is to find the right video sharing platform for your needs. Depending on the size and resources of your business, it may be viable to host your video content directly on your website. However, bandwidth issues might cause videos to load slowly, which may cause customers to leave your site before viewing the content.
A great alternative to this is to use websites like YouTube or Vimeo to share your videos. The only caveat here is that you need to ensure that your videos are optimized for those platforms. When converting videos for YouTube, for instance, you need to select a format that is compatible, such as .MP4, .MOV, .MPEG4, or .AVI — though YouTube has stated that .MP4 is the preferred file format. If you film your content at a high resolution, it may be wise to choose a lower resolution when converting videos, as these will upload more quickly.
As a bonus when using video sharing platforms, you can even encourage loyal customers to follow your channels. When used in conjunction with social media shares, this can be an extremely effective tactic for keeping in touch with potential and recurring customers. As noted in a resource by Rutgers University, “Social conversions are particularly important for eCommerce and lead generation sites, especially considering that (they) typically offer a lower cost-per-conversion than advertising on search engines.”
Finally, don’t forget about mobile optimization. Considering the many ways that mobile technology has inarguably changed our lives, it is important to ensure that videos are optimized for phones and tablets. While this won’t be a concern for marketers who opt to use a popular video sharing platform (as those are typically already optimized for mobile), you will need to do so if you decide to host content on your own site.
3. Test and Refine Your Content
Ideation isn’t a static process. As you gain followers online, gauge your audience’s reception to specific types of content. Do some perform better than others? Are there any recurring sentiments expressed in comments regarding your video quality or style? Being willing to adapt to consumer demands not only improves your ability to drive conversions, it also demonstrates your receptiveness and willingness to truly listen to your customers — an essential part of earning a client’s trust.
This can be done effectively through A/B testing. By using minor variations in your video style and format, you can compare how certain changes impact the effectiveness in your videos. Be mindful to test for meaningful, substantive changes; by focusing too heavily on the minutiae, you can waste a lot of resources for relatively trivial information. However, reflecting on some changes, such as how you engage viewers, how your product is displayed, or how you present information, can be illuminating. Researching different approaches to these areas can gradually improve your video marketing content.
These are a few of the basic steps you can take to ensure that your video content marketing campaign will take off smoothly. By considering what your customers need, which video platform to use, and how to continue to improve your content, your chances of finding success will improve greatly. If you are willing to create effective content for your audience, you will establish yourself as an expert in your niche — and improved sales will doubtlessly follow.