Video is everywhere. From personal devices to public installations, it’s defined a new era of media integration in society. Advances in video technology have created not only a meteoric increase in the quantity of video content, but also an increase in quality and production value. Video is one of the sharpest swords in your content marketing armoury, and it’s only going to get sharper. By understanding how to create and effectively implement video, you can make your message more powerful than ever.
Lots of people are saying that video will be the future of online content marketing. That’s probably true, but it might preclude the possibility that video is the present of online content marketing. Is this the case? Does video content already rule the cyber seas? As a video professional, I certainly think so. Here are seven little-known video content marketing secrets that explain video’s dominance and can help you create video content yourself.
1. Video content is easier to create than ever before.
Video production technology has made incredible advances in the last decade. There’s never been a time where making a professional-looking video has been more affordable. Cameras and editing software (iMovie is free for Mac users) have become incredibly accessible and cost effective. Even high-level tools like drones and other image-stabilizing apparatus are available for reasonable prices. This has opened up video production potential once thought too vast to be affordable for mere mortals.
Another factor in play here is the incredible accessibility of video education. University and college courses still have their place, but the Internet offers an immense amount of self-learning potential. Creative Cow is one of these resources (and one which I frequently use and highly recommend). Tutorials, specific program-based questions and support, and a vibrant user forum make it an invaluable tool for any video professional or aspiring videographer.
One drawback (really more of a healthy wake-up call) of well-produced videos becoming more and more common is that the public has developed a taste for quality. It’s never a good idea to skimp on video production, but these days it’s even more apparent to your audience. Luckily, as I mentioned before, a well-produced video is more affordable than ever. So skimping shouldn’t even be on your radar.
2. Video content can be consumed in exciting new ways.
Advances in video technology have not only made it easier to create videos, but easier to view them as well. The advent of the smartphone has brought in a new era of video reach and made video constantly accessible. There are many new technologies that will allow us to experience video in a unique way, like 360-degree video and virtual reality. As these technologies refine and improve, we’re likely to see more and more content using them.
Interested in trying out some virtual reality but don’t have access to an expensive system like the Oculus Rift? The release of Google Cardboard has brought virtual reality into the hands of the public for about $20. I had the privilege of testing out Cardboard at a presentation last year, and I was amazed that something so simple could be so powerful. If you can harness the power of virtual reality for $20, you’d better believe we’re going to see a rise in VR video marketing.
3. Video rules social media, and social media loves video.
Social media has long since established its hold as a prime platform for video content sharing. According to a 2016 HubSpot survey, 43% of consumers want to see more video. So do all of the social media platforms. Facebook in particular favours long-format video content over short videos or other types of media because their stats show that users engage better with video.
Even in advertising, video outperforms static ads by getting in front of more people with a lower cost per click for video ($0.03/click) versus a static graphic ($1.25/click).
4. Online video has displaced traditional video delivery services.
A large gap is opening up between TV and online video providers like YouTube and Netflix. YouTube alone reaches more 18–49-year-olds than any cable network in the United States. Public desire for online, on-demand video is increasing every day, which means video reach is on the rise, too.
Video already accounts for over two-thirds of all consumer Internet traffic. Cisco estimates that it’d “take an individual more than 5 million years to watch the amount of video that will cross global IP networks each month in 2020.” Online video has indeed taken over from traditional video, and it’ll solidify its claim even more in the years to come.
5. Video connects more deeply with your audience.
Video connects with people on multiple levels, and connection is key for content marketing. Life is experienced largely through sensory interactions with the physical world, so it’s no surprise that our brains are more receptive to video than any other medium. Videos provide us with both visual and auditory messaging. Our retention of information from video content is far higher than that of other mediums. Simply put, video is the best way to simulate and communicate life.
I recently produced a video about a woman named Shanine, whose newborn daughter developed a rare and potentially fatal condition. This video received over 560,000 impressions during our three-month Be The Cure campaign. You’ll notice a lot of stills in that video. Adding stills to a video gives an image situational context, and audio backing provides deeper meaning. Video also allows you to add movement to still imagery, which breathes new life into the image.
Shanine thoroughly documented the process of her daughter’s treatment and recovery, which gave me access to lots of powerful still images. That’s the other key to a strong video: emotion. Emotion makes memories and taps into the memories of the viewer. If you can create an emotional connection with your viewer, you’ll not only strengthen the impact your video has, but also better hold the viewer’s interest.
6. Video is more efficient than other mediums.
Our attention spans are fleeting at best these days, so getting your message across quickly is imperative. Around four times as many consumers would rather watch a video about a product than read about it. Still images of a product give viewers some basic knowledge, but you still need to supplement that imagery with text to communicate what’s going on under the hood. With video, you get all the important visual information across in a concise and palatable way.
As an example, we produced a video for AFD Petroleum about their product, the Portable Fuel Station (PFS). The product is simple to use but comes jam-packed with a list of high-end features that could fill up a large document. Instead of overwhelming the viewer with words, we integrated a small amount of text into the scenes to further drive the product features home. Text isn’t just for titles; it’s become its own character. Your video might benefit from integrating it.
7. Video puts your best foot (or face) forward.
Online interaction can often be impersonal. Using a face or voice in a video adds a little humanity to the whole experience and puts your audience at ease. Another direct benefit of using video for content marketing is an increase in your SEO. Google highly prioritizes video in its list of search results, so this is an easy way to increase public accessibility. Having a video is one of the easiest ways to introduce your content and make your audience more informed.
Video is no fad. It’s one of the most efficient, effective ways of delivering your content, and it’s only going to increase in relevance and importance. As technology continues to evolve, so will the quality of video and the demand for engaging video content. Implementing video content into your marketing strategy is one of the best moves you can make, and there’s never been a better time to jump on the video content train.