Video

Stop ignoring video. Stop thinking the production process is too complicated and too expensive. Stop thinking your company can’t benefit from using this kind of communication channel.

Just stop . . . and consider this . . .

Video now appears in 70% of the top 100 search results, and viewers are anywhere from 64-85% more likely to buy after watching a product video.

Today’s marketing landscape welcomes using videos to connect with customers, explore ideas, and generate leads. Video apps and social media have made producing and sharing videos easier than ever, and many companies are using this to their advantage.

If you want to become one of those companies, you’ve clicked on the right link. In Video Marketing 101, we’ll take you through four proven video marketing strategies that companies have used to strengthen their brand and grow their audience.

1) User Testimonials

Video testimonials about your product or service can be powerful marketing tools. These days, consumers highly value the opinions of other customer.

Video testimonials are a great way to show customers that you deliver on your promises and that there are plenty of real people out there who have had a good experience working with you.

There are plenty of different ways to portray a customer’s thoughts in a testimonial. Here are two in particular to consider.

In-The-Moment Testimonials

These are on-the-spot reactions from customers that are quick and organic.

Ask clients when they visit your facility if they would like to share their thoughts on camera. They don’t have to give elaborate answers. Just a quick minute or two about why they love your products or how working with you has impacted their own lives/business is all you need.

You can also request these quick video testimonials on social media. Some consumers will jump at the opportunity to share about their experiences with you.

In-Depth Testimonials

Like the title suggests, you could also put together a more in-depth testimonial that would resemble a case study.

These testimonials focus on how your products or services impacted one company in particular. They’re more formal and will take more production effort, but these in-depth case studies can be used to generate leads for a while.

Action Steps:

– Consider your audience. Are they techies that prefer the details? Or are they everyday consumers who just need a quick opinion?
– Always determine your goals for testimonials before starting to shoot video.
Measure your results.

2) Video Replies

Video Camera

Consumers often reach out to brands via Twitter and Facebook with questions, and those brands will typically send a personalised response back, but personalised messages aren’t anything new. The best brands already personalise messages, and many consumers have started to expect it. What they aren’t expecting is for you to take the time to personally address their questions or concerns in a video response.

It’s easier for customers to connect with your brand when they see a person actually speaking to them. The brand becomes more than a logo. It becomes human. Because of this, you can bet that the recipient of the reply will appreciate your effort and be an advocate for your brand in the future.

How often do customers actually get to hear from the CEO or CMO of a company? Not often, so when it happens, it’s memorable, and most importantly, it’s sharable!

Along the same lines as a video response, vlogging is a great way to give your brand a face. It can supplement your other content marketing efforts, especially if your customers are social and like to share content.

Typically, even customers that aren’t very involved will take a minute to watch a quick video, while they probably won’t take the time to read an article.

Action Steps:

Work a few video posts into your normal blog to see how users respond.
– Pick and choose your video responses. Ask yourself: Is this a question or concern that you have gotten before? Will this video provide value to people other than just the direct recipient?
– People will often recognise a CEO’s name in conversation, but they may have no idea what he or she looks like, so give him/her a face.

3) Instagram Video And Vine

Twitter Vine

Instagram and Vine are both are mobile apps, and both have exploded with popularity as of late.

Instagram is one of the most popular social networks in the world with over 150 million monthly active users, and since launching back in January of 2013, Vine has over 40 million registered users.

The mobile revolution is here, and these video apps might just be the perfect way to reach your mobile customers. Because Instagram Videos are only 15 seconds long and Vines are only 6 seconds, you can appeal to customers’ short attention spans. You can reach different audiences across the social network than you would with just normal written content.

The different ways you can use Instagram Video and Vine are practically endless. Here are a few to get you started:

Highlight Special Offers And Events

Coordinate your Instagram and Vine videos with your other social media promotions to make sure customers know what your current promotion is. If you’re putting on a webinar or another type of event, introduce yourself through video and give customers a taste of what to expect.

Showcase Your Best Work

Consider putting together a video portfolio of your products. Customers like seeing behind-the-scenes footage, so if you can, show them how the products are made. If you’re a bakery, take customers through the steps of how you bake your famous bread. If you’re a restaurant, highlight the main ingredients that go into making your most popular dishes.

Run Video Contests

Contests are always a great way to get users engaged. Encourage customers to create a Vine about your brand based on a certain theme. Then have them tweet it to a certain hashtag. Not only do you get customers involved, you also get free, user-generated video that you can continue to share!

Action Steps:

– View how to shoot Vine and Instagram Videos like a pro.
– Create an introductory video that introduces you and your company and post it. See how users respond.
– If you can, include in a quick call to action at the end of Instagram Videos asking users to follow for more information.
– Post videos consistently to show customers that you’re serious about engagement and that they should follow you for more promotions, contests, and behind-the-scenes footage.

4) Product Demonstrations

Even the most descriptive words don’t always do a product justice. Sometimes customers actually need to see a product in action in order to understand how it can make their lives better. Why else are infomercials still around? They show customers why they need what the company is selling.

The mistake many companies make with these demonstration videos is not putting in the right amount of production effort. Again, it depends on your customers. A video trying to reach 20-somethings who value visual quality and brevity will be different than one trying to reach an older generation more focused on information rather than presentation.

Highlight your most impressive features or the features that will appeal to your target audience the most. If your product is complicated, break down the functions so it’s easier to understand. Show customers how they can apply it to their own situations.

This Feastie Analytics demo video is a good example of a video that gets you hooked by telling a simple story. They present a problem and then explain how their features help you overcome that problem.

Demo videos are perfect for when you’re in the early stages of nurturing a new prospect. Instead of relying on a pitch from a sales rep, you can point the prospect to a demo video that explains exactly what you want that person to know.

Action Steps:

– If you don’t have the resources to produce your own video, there are plenty of video demo services to choose from.
Autodemo is a great service for demonstrating software.
Demoflick helps you build animations.

Final Thoughts

As the Internet gets more crowded and everyone grows more connected, it will become increasingly harder to get your customers’ attention. Video is one way you can differentiate yourself, and it has proven to be effective. Consider working a few of these video marketing strategies into your current content marketing efforts.

How are you using video?

Share your ideas in the comments.

Image: Flickr
Image 2: Camera
Image 3: Vine