If you haven’t started using video marketing as a consistent component of your campaigns, then you are likely behind your competitors. Thanks in large part to social media, video content consumption has been on the rise for several years and is now crucial to your paid campaigns. Not just ANY video either. Marketers, business owners and entrepreneurs are looking for new ways to engage their viewing audience with a variety of video tactics and are developing content that is tailor-made for their specific audience. Paired with a streamlined follow-up strategy, video is guiding customers right into the sales funnel and having a big impact on businesses’ return on investment (ROI).
An agency like Strategic Marketing will help you to finetune your video marketing strategy, backend logistics and creative development to make sure you are getting the best results from your content. Below are some things to consider when developing your video marketing strategy.
Creating Video Content
From interviews and explanation videos to webinars and entertainment, if you can think it – you can make it. Make one of every style if you want! Your video content should showcase your brand while being relevant to the viewer. The more you cater to your ideal audiences’ interests and needs, the more success you will find with your video strategy. Make sure to opt for “suitable” instead of “salesy.” Be mindful that your video brings something of value to the customer and is not just about your product or service. There is a time and place for every kind of video. From shaky behind-the-scenes clips to professionally shot drone footage, it’s about what you are evoking with your content. Here are some tips to get you started:
- Develop a library of clips that you can reuse and reorganize to keep your content fresh.
- Work with a professional to shoot quality footage worthy of your brand name.
- Tell a story – not a sales pitch.
- Choose the best thumbnail. This is the first thing people will see prior to ever clicking your video.
- Stay relevant and relatable to your ideal audience.
- Use people (if applicable). A smiling face can be the connection between the buyer and your product.
- Use “supers” to support your audio since many watch videos with the sound off.
- Research budget-friendly video software. You may be able to start with some simple clips.
- Above all, invest in your content as it will be inextricably tied to your brand identity.
Video Marketing Platforms
Not sure where to put up your new video marketing footage? Luckily, pretty much every platform offering advertising is set up for video. Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and many others are beefing up their ad formats to include a variety of ways you can present your content. This is where it gets tricky. Each type of format is going to come with different costs, audiences, and responses. Campaigns have a myriad of targeting parameters and audience segments, which is great – if you know how to use it. Products and services are unique for each business and results can differ depending upon each variable. This is where working with a company like Strategic Marketing can help you to keep your campaigns straight, on budget and optimized for performance. An agency partner can help you to realize your campaign goals with a flawless execution.
If you don’t plan on using video in your paid campaigns, then posting video organically can generate some traffic as well. Post the video to your business Facebook page or YouTube channel and share the links in places where your customers would find it. Most of all, make sure you are leveraging video on your website where people can engage with your product right on the page.
Driving Leads Through Video Marketing
Success begins once you can translate your video views into revenue! By using targeted messaging and strong calls-to-action in your content, you can drive people to your website, product page, or sales funnel. The easier you can make the transition from video to sale for the viewer, the more results you can generate. For example, it is more likely for a viewer to hit a button under the video to navigate to your site than it is for them to type in your full URL into the search bar to find your product. Creating a frictionless sales funnel will help you to convert more people, faster. Make sure you are driving leads to precise pages relevant to what they watched and provide a clear path for them to follow. Busy pages full of links or pages that do not load are bound for failure! If you think you can improve, Strategic Marketing can help you develop clean sales funnels that maximize your ROI.
Have a common thread across all of your marketing efforts. Simple branding elements can help you stay on track while creating your content. Make sure you stay within your color schemes, add your logo and stay consistent with your story. From there, the more places you put your video marketing content, the more chances it will be seen. And seen again. And seen some more. For example, tying video into your email campaigns can boost your open rates by 19%. Just add “video” to your subject line! By nature, marrying the different tactics increases the frequency a customer sees your ad while also cultivating a sense of brand consistency – an element perfected by the high-end brands with padded marketing budgets. Try your content across all of your marketing efforts. After the initial launch, you can see which platforms yielded the best results and you can finetune your strategy from there. Don’t be afraid to switch creative if it is not resonating with your audience the way you imagined!
Apart from creating your videos, the most important part you will need to do is monitor the performance of your new assets. The results you see from your content will tell you what to do next. Perhaps you need to switch creative, put your video on a different platform or maybe toggle some campaign settings to adjust who sees your ad. Robust reporting and thorough monitoring will help you to optimize your campaign to reach the highest ROI possible from your video marketing efforts. However, just tracking the campaign is a full-time job and you have a business to run! Working with a partner like Strategic Marketing can ensure that every aspect of your video marketing campaigns is being tracked and reported back to you with the appropriate suggestions for improvement.
Video marketing to online shoppers is perhaps your best chance to capture the attention of your audience. Although there are simple tactics you can incorporate into your marketing routine, your best bet would be to work with an agency partner who can help you develop your video marketing campaign from concept and creative to monitoring and reporting. Strategic Marketing has the technology, experience, and creative eye needed to help your business boost ROI through robust video marketing strategies. Get started with a free evaluation by filling out the form below.
Your Old Plan is Not Useless, But it Must be Re-examined
Chances are, you had a marketing plan before COVID-19. If you didn’t, that’s okay too. Whether you’re needing to tweak your marketing strategy or create one entirely from scratch, the following Guide to Marketing After COVID-19 will assist you with key elements to consider when it’s time to start advertising your business again.
User Behavior Has Changed
The world you advertised in before does not exist anymore. People are not going to snap back into the exact same place before Coronavirus. We have been through a trauma and this will affect how we return to daily life. We will continue to go about our lives, but there will be a mindfulness that didn’t exist before and it will change how we behave. Take something as innocent as a birthday party. There will no longer be someone blowing on a cake just before it’s served. We will adapt, however, and continue the tradition. There will be a similar routine with the birthday song and cupcakes. Our lives will return but we will adapt to new circumstances. It’s these nuances that you’ll need to consider when developing your messaging and honing your new strategy.
The experience we have been through and the awareness we now have on how quickly germs can spread will create a deep-seated impact on our daily lives; therefore, every message you send and keyword you bid on must be rethought. During quarantine, we learned new behaviors either by choice or necessity and will bring these new behaviors with us into the new world. The boomer who was skeptical of online shopping is now getting her groceries delivered and enjoys the time savings it allows her. The parent who has never walked their kids around the block before COVID-19 may have found the act therapeutic.
As our behaviors change, the way we search and consume media will also change. When designing your Marketing Plan, you’ll need to re-examine your basics: Price, Product, Place and Promotion. If you’re a restaurant and you found success offering family take-out meals during the quarantine, you should consider keeping that product on your menu. As such, people may continue to search online for “family take-out meals”, so you’ll need to optimize your website for that term and make sure it’s included in your Pay-Per-Click (PPC) campaign. Don’t have a website or run PPC? You need to take a step to change that, today. In the world we now live in, the average person spends over four hours a day on their smartphones. Your business MUST be accessible to them on that device.
Social Trends Change Even Quicker
With the time we spend online and on social media amplified, trends pop up and gain traction at record speed. If you had an organized social media regimen before COVID-19, where you scheduled content for the week or even month in advance, you’ll need to rethink that or at the very least be flexible.
New trends appear and fade out quicker than ever before. Even though your business isn’t on TikTok, you’ll need to know what’s relevant on that platform this morning because by 11 a.m. it’s all over Instagram, then an hour later on Facebook. Before you know it, the message you had scheduled today at 2 p.m. now comes across as “tone deaf” because there is a taco challenge trending right now and you just posted about burgers.
You can learn to use these trends to your advantage. If there’s a taco challenge trending right now and you sell tacos, then everyone is going to be in the mood to order tacos for dinner. Make a taco special, post about it and boost that post so more people see it. The internet has basically already initiated the desire and brought people into your sales funnel. It’s your turn to make the close.
Riding these trends is sort of like surfing, you get to choose your wave. Go with the flow and let the trend do most of the hard work. While surfing you would never paddle out expecting to catch every single wave. You get into position and wait for the right one. Watch the trends, get into position and choose the right ones for your business to ride.
Social Media is an excellent place to reach new customers and build your business. However, you have to “live and breathe it” to keep up with the trends and keep your messaging relevant. If you still don’t have social media accounts, make that a goal this week.
Speed is Everything
People are looking for information on their phones, and their attention spans have become even shorter. The good news is that publishers such as Google and Facebook understand this and make it easy for you to provide critical information and updates to your customers online.
Make use of the features available to you. Things like “pinning comments” to the top of your Facebook feed or updating your Google listing will make important information about your business easily visible online.
Once your off-site profiles have been updated, take stock of your website. There is no excuse for a slow website; beware of overdesigning. All of the cool animations and huge images can take a toll on how quickly your website loads online. Images are very important for your website but they must be saved in the correct format and have “alt tags” behind them.
With only two months of 2020 under our belts we’ve already seen quite a bit of changes on the SEO front as Google has released and taken back several updates both affecting the way the algorithms evaluate pages and the way the ranked results are displayed to users. Although Google maintains that they have not released any core updates following the January core update, reports suggest that smaller updates have been rolled out and tweaked on an ongoing basis- an approach Google confirmed we will see continue via Twitter:
“Some have asked if we had an update to Google Search last week [in November]. We did, actually several updates, just as we have several updates in any given week on a regular basis.” – Google comments following the November Update.
With many websites throughout the internet feeling the impact of the updates released so far this year, we at Strategic Marketing are stepping back to review the past two months of changes, big and small, in order to adjust our strategies as these small updates shed light on what types of website formatting and content Google shifts are assigning value to.
Shifts:January 13th and Beyond
Following Google’s twitter announcement, there was the usual commotion in the SEO community with experts reporting large swings in traffic. Although there was no consensus on exactly the impact of the update, the fluctuations were observed in the health sectors and on dictionary websites.
January 13th also marked the roll out of the new Search Engine Results Page (SERP) layout which included each website’s favicon and replaced the URL with the page’s breadcrumb.
So two things to note here:
1- Don’t forget to upload a custom favicon
2- Keep your website’s content organized in a way that makes it easy for users, and search engines, to understand.
An obvious tell of a lazy developer is that standard wordpress favicon. You know what I’m talking about. That grey globe-looking thing at the top of your website’s browser tab. Hopefully you didn’t hire one of those lazy developers or your QA process was detailed enough to catch that missed opportunity.
Not to worry lazy developers, on January 24th, Google rolled back the favicon and stated that they are testing different favicon layouts. Although today the SERPs are sans favicon, I suspect the icon will make an appearance and advise that you shouldn’t overlook yours.
As far as the URL being replaced by the breadcrumb, this was long overdue. For years Google has been deenfisizing the use of keywords within the url and placing value on a logical, well organized website taxonomy. If you have been following best practices in this area all along, you have nothing to worry about. However, if you have not put effort into organizing your blog posts and landing pages, well, you better start.
Concurrent to the changes in the organic section, Google tweaked how the paid ads appear by placing a bold “Ad” in front for the web address. Based on feedback from AdWords advertisers, they have since changed this back to the green box with Ad in the middle and are still experimenting with different design variations to delineate these snippets as paid placements.
E-A-T Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthines
No matter the google shifts that occur, following SEO best practices will always work out in the long run. We know mobile usability and page speed are critical but above all, the Google Algorithms seek to reward websites offering the best content possible. Does your content display expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness? If your website experiences a downward shift in traffic, reevaluate the content of your site. A great place to start is Google’s blog on the topic: What webmasters should know about Google’s core updates which offers a list of questions designed to advise you on what exactly quality content means to them.