Video for marketing is in. Like never before.
Aside from the supporting stats, I’m finding this truth in daily conversations with clients and prospects asking a common set of questions.
What Types of Video Should You Be Aware of For Marketing?
Video has value for two main reasons:
- Social: The power of sharing is a metric that is quickly trumping clicks. YouTube clued many into this in May when they began a cost per view advertising model, as opposed to a cost per click.
- Search Engine Visibility: Forrester research has pointed to the fact that web pages with video stand a 50 percent better chance than text pages alone of showing up on the first page of Google search results.
The following are eight types of video you should consider for marketing:
- Slideshows: This could be considered a low-cost/entry-level method of creating YouTube assets or simply a repurposing of presentation (PowerPoint slides, photos, shorter video clips) content that is converted into video. Could you expect this kind of video to go viral? Likely not, but it’s potentially a good start to increased search visibility for targeted keywords. Check out Animoto as a low cost resource for helping you build such assets.
- Product Demonstrations: The more you can tell a story in the context of a product demonstration, the better. Note: the number of product demo videos to promote mobile apps is increasing. Example: Word Lens iPhone App.
- How To / Tutorials: Serve an immediate (searched for) need while also positioning yourself or your brand as the expert on that subject matter. For web-based tutorials (as well as product demos), the use of screencast software like ScreenFlow or Camtasia is a no-brainer. Example: Brandon Whalen’s post “How to Get Started With Google Plus.”
- Case Studies and Video Testimonials: Considering the effectiveness of product reviews, it isn’t surprising that customer testimonials via video can drive real results. Additional advantages are present with a video case study that can also be repurposed for online press releases, landing pages, and award submissions: Example: Sanrio Store Locator video featured on Facebook Studio.
- Social Videos: Although “social” is a potential value to any form of online video, these types typically focus a more intentional (with supporting budget) approach to viral activation. Like game mechanics, the core of what motivates people to act (in this case, share) is fully tapped. Check out Jeremy Scott’s Social Video Blueprint series, which highlights several social video examples.
- Video Vignettes: This kind of production can be effective in supporting a series of videos, or simply helping to create an impression/focus around an organizations’ culture and ideas. A good example of this can be seen via The Founders TechStars videos.
- Video Scribing: This evolving, white-board animation methodology was first made popular by Cognitive Media’s RSA Animate videos. The key to this medium is effective and concise storytelling, where potentially long stories with various complexities can be synthesized to the essentials. Example: The Story of Linux.
- Branching Videos: This is an emerging form of interactive video that “branches” to other videos based on a choose-your-own-adventure model. There are some very cool things happening in this space in terms of analytics, publishing tools and engagement. Keep your eye on FlixMaster as a company supporting (HTML5-powered) video publishing tools that could help shape the next generation in video marketing.
Quick Video Marketing Tips and Trends
Apologies for stating the obvious, but if you aren’t already doing this, YouTube advertising is something you need to seriously consider as part of your video strategy – especially considering how relatively inexpensive it still is.
Lauren Fisher’s recent post on why and how to run an effective YouTube video ad campaign is definitely worth a read. And as Chris Schreiber stated in his recent post about Google+ driving social video growth:
“It’s quite possible that we will look back on the Google+ launch as a landmark moment for social video advertising, because of the new possibilities it created for people to share, co-view, chat and text about entertaining videos.”
Outside of advertising, meta data is an important part of your strategy to ensure videos are effectively indexed on search engines. Brightcove’s Sara Watson references the first best practice of a social video program as leveraging the power keywords in your video’s titles, descriptions and tags to maximize search engine visibility.
One of the best tips I picked up from Greg Jarboe at an OMS conference pertains to the fact that YouTube gives you 5,000 characters to describe your video. That translates to approximately 850 words – and if you treat that 850 words as an SEO’d webpage, also using your targeted keywords within the video’s title and tags – your likelihood of being indexed on page 1 of Google for those words substantially increases.
This becomes an extremely important tactic when considering how some web pages have seemed to lock up the placement of top search rankings on highly competitive search terms.
As it’s been established, audiences will reward emotional content (humor, surprise, curiosity) within video by sharing it with others. But also of importance, is the means by which video content can be optimized for high search engine visibility.