To say video marketing has come of age in 2020 would be an understatement. Video platforms continue to expand, viewership continues to skyrocket and early 2020 work-from-home mandates have catapulted video conference providers like Zoom into the spotlight. Video marketing – in all forms – is here to stay.
For businesses wading into the video marketing waters, the main difference in today’s environment comes down to simple numbers. There are more viewers, more videos and more businesses using video to their advantage than ever before.
In our previous blog post on real estate video marketing, we highlighted some key numbers to keep in mind:
- 82% of Twitter users watch videos on the platform
- YouTube has more than 1 billion users
- 45% of viewers watch more than one hour of video content on Facebook and YouTube each week
- More than 500 million hours of video is consumed on YouTube every day
It therefore makes sense that your video marketing strategy not only matches your company’s mission but that any video marketing also helps you differentiate from your competition.
According to a study by Insivia, viewers retain 95 percent of a message when they consume it through video. Even executives prefer video, with 59 percent indicating a preference for video over text, according to Wordstream.
Where Should You Start?
Video marketing can be an exceptionally rewarding practice for your business, but it can also seem very daunting – especially in the early stages. What topics should you cover? How long should your videos be? Should you hire a video production crew to help?
Let’s tackle these questions in reverse order.
Do I Need a Video Production Crew?
First, if 2020 has taught us anything, viewers will consume video in all shapes and sizes. Live videos work well on social media platforms given the immediacy of the networks. Long-form videos reviewing products, explaining techniques and entertaining consumers work well on YouTube. And consumers expect to see well produced videos on a company’s product pages.
So where do you start? We suggest live video, as it gives you a chance to hone your skills and get comfortable operating, performing and directing video. Live video also gives you the opportunity to interact with viewers in real time, answering their questions, taking their pulse and asking for comments. In fact, live video is your quickest feedback loop if you want to get better faster.
Live video (and longer-form YouTube video) can effectively be produced by your team or even yourself. In fact, in many instances, viewers prefer this. The practice of “going live” on Facebook, YouTube or Instagram has conditioned them to expect a less-polished format – perfect for beginners.
Video production crews are essential as you move into creating product videos for your website. Many times, consumers will still seek out your website to get the “official” video of a product. Such opportunities should be regarded with video with a more polished flair.
Still, you want to take advantage of every opportunity to capture the attention of your audience so we recommend including links to other relevant videos right alongside your professionally produced video. It gives your audience a chance to consume more, and it shows them that your product or service wasn’t created in a vacuum.
How Long Should A Video Last?
Again, length depends on format. Livestreams tend to run much longer than a product video, video review or event video. A quick search of YouTube will demonstrate that product videos and product review videos can run the gamut. The most important thing is to cover all relevant points with your video. And event videos can run from a few minutes to “check-in” up to the entire length of the event if livestreaming.
So how long should your video be? Facebook has stated that videos tend to be shown to more organic users if the video is at least 3 minutes long. Videos on Instagram tend to receive more engagement if they’re less than 30 seconds although they can be as long as 1 minute.
And YouTube? That can depend on the many factors we’ve discussed. But it’s also important to remember that YouTube will showcase videos that demonstrate longer watch times – and those watch times can be quite profitable for both the platform and your company channel, so longer video times (up to 8-10 minutes) are preferred. What happens if you have more than 8 minutes of content? We suggest either breaking the videos up into easily digestible segments or providing time stamps of the “chapters” of your video in the YouTube video summary or first comment.
What Topics Should a Video Cover?
The possibilities for video content are limitless, which can make narrowing down your lists of ideas challenging. Here, it helps to work with content producers to help you identify and flesh out your ideas. Having specific topics and creating content that addresses those topics is key. Developing additional videos that organically move the topic along are also important.
Videos that address specific questions that your customers routinely ask can be a great starting point, as can simple do-it-yourself videos that explain your service or demonstrate your product.
Here’s a great way to start: Make a list of all topics you’d like to cover. Then take each topic and list it separately on a sheet of paper, writing down related topics that come to mind for each main topic. Using a schedule of one video per week, four topics with three related subtopics can give you 16 weeks of videos!
There’s No Better Time Than Now
Remember, the most important part of video marketing is simply getting in the habit of making it part of your overall marketing routine. And it can only become a habit if you start doing it! So pull out that smartphone, jot down some ideas and start creating!
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