video marketing in 2017
For many marketing professionals and agencies one topic has been front of mind for the past year – video marketing.
As we move into 2017, it’s clear that video is going to play a major part in the marketing and business strategies being formed for the coming year, even more so than over the past 12 months. So, in case you were napping during 2016, here’s what you need to know about the ‘state of video’ and how you can take advantage in 2017.
Video and Social Media
Social media has been largely credited for the explosion in video production and consumption. Newer platforms with video at their centre, such as Snapchat, continue to grow in popularity, whilst establish channels such as Facebook have seemingly fallen in love with video over the past year.
Facebook announced that last year saw video viewership double from 4 billion to 8 billion across a seven-month period. This was partly due to the auto-play facility that the site’s smartphone app has – you get to watch the video without clicking a thing and once it is moving, there is always the urge to watch and see what is going on. Facebook Live has also grown in popularity (noticed their recent TV ads?) for businesses of all sizes, allowing impromptu sessions to connect with customers and grow an audience in an interactive environment.
Video and the Smartphone
Video views from smartphones have increased a massive 400% from 2012 which parallels the increasing importance of these devices for everyday activities. Last year saw the number of Google searches coming from a smartphone overtake those from desktops for the very first time.
Combine this with the fact that smartphone users are 1.4 times as likely to watch ads on their phones than on a TV, and are also more liable to pay attention to branded content on YouTube than they would do to the same content on their TV sets, and the case for video looks strong!
Video and Email
Another area that video has proven to be a success is in email campaigns. Building and growing an email list remains a top priority for many businesses thanks to the relatively low cost and potential returns offered by email marketing. But simply having a list is one thing – having people who open and engage with the content of your emails is another, and where the real value lies.
When a video is contained in a marketing email and indicated within the email subject, click through rates can increase between 200-300% on those without it. Further to this, when people open an email and click through to a landing page, conversion rates typically increase by 80% when there is a video on that landing page.
Video and Sales
While the idea of using video to grow social media followings or to boost email opening rates might seem attractive, the most significant reason that businesses are embracing video is the trackable return on investment and boost to sales that the format offers.
For example, 90% of users say that they use a video to help make a decision when looking to buy a product or service. In fact, one third of all online activity involves watching videos and video is also highly sharable – 92% of mobile customers, for example, share a video they have watched, spreading its reach organically.
Outside of the B2C arena, some 75% of executives say they watch videos relating to their work at least once a week while 50% of those executives seek out more information once they have watched a video. And nearly two thirds of executives would rather watch a video on a topic than read text.
Video and SEO
Social media sites love video, and so to do the search engines such as Google. A well-made video can boost search engine rankings for any business. Since Google’s acquisition of YouTube, the importance of video in its rankings has continued to increase, resulting in a website being 53% more likely to show up in the page 1 search results when there is a video on it. This SEO boost is why 86% of colleges and universities have a presence on YouTube and why 96% of B2B companies make use of video as a central part of their marketing strategy.
There is also a big market for ‘How To’ videos that provide useful information and drive customers to websites to view them. Companies that offer useful video content in addition to promotional pieces find that they build trust with customers that can transform into sales or leads.
Quality Over Quantity
So, should every business get staff to video as much as possible during the day to create lots of content and gain that extra exposure? The answer is still no – while some content of this nature can be great to personalise the brand, there is still a big emphasis on quality over quantity.
For example, 5% of viewers will stop watching a video that exceeds one minute and some 60% will click away if it goes on for more than 2 minutes. This means you have 60-120 seconds to make an impact and engage the customer before losing their attention – so the quality of the video and its content is key.
Good quality, well-made videos that provide interesting information, engaging stories or even something funny can also persuade viewers to stay longer. 36% of smartphone viewers will watch a video that is five minutes or more – providing it is well made, interesting and on topic. So five minutes of someone running around the office just isn’t going to cut it!
Getting the Right Videos
Getting this quality of video is where a professional company can be an ideal partnership. While smartphones can make great snap videos and webcams are ideal for those Facebook Live shots to attract social media views, you still can’t beat well-made video content.
Three quarters of businesses have said that allocating budget to video makes for a great return on investment and while using a professional company may seem an added expense, the resulting quality content that can be produced will reap clear benefits.
Of course, not all video needs to be perfectly produced and shot; aim to strike the right balance between real world snippets and longer, professional made content that will attract, engage and convert those one-time visitors into lifelong customers.