It is reported that YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world, used by almost 47% of Australians. Given the enormous use of Search by consumers these days, these facts alone should convince you that video really should be a part of your marketing mix.

However in case it’s not, here are a few more convincing facts:

  • The sale conversion rate increases 35% amongst shoppers who engage with rich media vs those who do not.  Source: PowerRetail
  • Viewers spend 100% more time on pages with videos on them. Source: MarkingSherpa
  • Google favours web pages with YouTube embeds because they own YouTube.

Don’t tell me SHOW me.

Apart from the cold hard facts, there’s the human element. Video is eye-catching, it can help you stand out from the crowd and draw in potential customers. Video can clearly define your business and in a succinct, much more interesting way then text. And importantly, video can bring faces, voices, personality and heart to your operation, while also demonstrating your authenticity. So if a picture speaks a thousand words, a video speaks a million! Check out how local company, TM Digital, can turn a standard brochure into an innovative video for marketing – and appropriately they use video to sell the concept.

Spread the word. Strike that… Spread the video!

Like any content, video can be shared easily to help spread the word about your products and services. Create a YouTube channel and embed your YouTube videos in your website, blog and all social channels. Links between your YouTube channel and website can boost your rank in search engine results, as can the added visitor count if your video encourages viewers to visit your website.

What Kind of Content?

Different types of content work for different types of businesses, here is a list of ideas to get you started:

  1. Success stories – bring case studies to life.
  2. A brief company intro or value proposition video.
  3. Product demonstrations (even for simple products).
  4. Interviews or Q&As with your CEO, clients, industry experts etc.
  5. Record any external conference or seminar presentations you give.
  6. Product reviews and testimonials – check out Bravo to capture user generated content.
  7. “How-to” videos or short tutorials, eg. if your business sells child safety equipment, create a video on how to child proof the home featuring your products.
  8. A video tour of your premises – if this acts as a selling point or benefit for customers, then show them.
  9. Introduce users to staff that have consumer contact, such as customer service – it’s nice to put a face to a voice.
  10. Record internal training presentations – this content could be valuable for both consumers AND staff.  Important company announcements – don’t just post an update or press release.

What about production?

Your videos don’t have to be big Hollywood productions to be engaging and effective. In fact, you should focus more effort on video planning & marketing, than video production.  You don’t need to use expensive camera equipment or even record in HD when for the web. It’s possible your web cam or smartphone will do the job just fine. And in terms of editing, YouTube offers its own free video editor, Windows Movie Maker is bundled with Windows, and iMovie with Macs.

Here are seven tips for creating your own videos:

  1. Short is sweet – and definitely no more than 5 minutes.
  2. Focus on first 10 seconds – engage viewers from the very start.
  3. Work to a topic guideline, not a script.
  4. Maintain a fairly fast pace to keep the content punchy and interesting to watch.
  5. Lighting is important. (Avoid windows behind you).
  6. Camera shy? Try Animoto or screen capture such as Ezvid.
  7. Include a call to action.

Share, post, blog, tweet, update…

Once you’ve created your video content promote it everywhere!  Upload to video sharing sites – YouTube (see below), Blip.tv, Vimeo, Viddler, Metacafe  – post on Facebook, tweet on you know where, share on LinkedIn. You can even (and should) embed videos in your email marketing. And encourage your staff to promote via their network and social channels.

Leverage YouTube – it’s free!

Nowadays YouTube is much more than an entertainment channel to watch funny cat videos or hear Harry announcing that Charlie bit his finger.  It’s a powerful (and cost effective) communication tool, so be sure to create a YouTube channel for your business. And like all your web content, your YouTube videos must be optimised:

  1. Give your video a title that includes your strongest keyword (relevant to the content).
  2. Complete the description with a short synopsis of what the video entails, including keywords and a link.
  3. Use tags that are true to the content of your video and include your business name too.
  4. Because consumers won’t necessarily be watching your video on your channel, embed your logo via YouTube’s Channel Settings (InVideo Programming).
  5. And maximise links to your website from your YouTube channel.

In summary if you run a business or manage the marketing for one, there’s a lot of compelling evidence suggesting that online video marketing should be part of your marketing activity.  (And in case you’re wondering why this article is text and not a video… watch this space!)

For more advice or assistance with your marketing get in touch.