Level Up Your Video Marketing In 2020

January is a special time for lots of businesses as it’s usually the month where marketing managers and business owners plan for the year ahead. Video marketing in 2020 is set to be even more exciting than it was last year so keep reading for the latest updates.

If the last decade was all about the emergence of video as one the most effective ways to inspire your audience, the next decade will be about building your brand by telling more enriching stories.

In this blog we will focus on the emerging trends in video marketing for 2020 so you can make the most informed decisions when implementing video into your integrated marketing strategy.

1. Social Platforms

It’s no secret that social media platforms love video. It’s easy to see why too. Video is the most effective medium for engaging audiences thereby keeping users on those sites for longer. Don’t think Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter are all old hat now, just because new social platforms such as TikTok, Lasso and Byte have all recently arrived on the scene.

Social video is essential because it’s important to put your video where your customers are. Social is all about discovery and awareness so you should treat your video content here a little like bait.

2. Embedded Video

If your video content on social media is your bait, then you should think of the video content on your website as a means of aiding conversions or generating enquiries. Video is great for this because it feeds all of the senses we as humans rely on (with the exception of smell but that may well be a technical evolution for another day).

You can use free or cheap tools such as YouTube or Vimeo to host the videos on your website however this isn’t always in the business interest. We’ve written extensively about why you should be hosting the videos on your website using an online video platform such as TwentyThree or Wistia. Take a look at our blog here about why your business needs a blended video strategy.

3. Segmentation

Content that targets everyone, focuses on no one. The great thing about social media is that it is easier than ever to locate, identify and target your audience.

Sadly a lot of the more established social media platforms are now expecting businesses to pay for the reach they used to enjoy through more organic means. That said, there is still a lot of scope to reach new audiences via LinkedIn.

If you would rather not pay for eyeballs, one of the exciting and attractive features many of the new and emerging social media platforms offer is that they don’t yet have the same restrictions on organic reach that the more established players have. The obvious flip side is they often don’t have the equivalent number of users meaning the organic reach is likely to be smaller. On the plus side though, at least you won’t have to pay for it.

4. Personalised Video

All of the main social media platforms have become increasingly video focused, this means as part of your video marketing strategy for 2020 there is more room for personalised video outreach using the native messaging tools contained inside of each of the platforms. In fact this can also be a technique used to get around the curbs on organic reach imposed by the established social media giants. Personalised video or 1:1 video as it is also known, isn’t restricted to social media platforms either, it can be used in email too.

Since adopting a strategy of personalised video around email, we have experienced a 34% increase in booked meetings to discuss video marketing with our clients.

5. Brand Identity

You can use video to harness the power of your brand identity. Once upon a time producing a video to promote a product or service online was something of an after thought. Now, it’s video first

The trick here is to be consistent. Consistent in your message, consistent in the time of posting and consistent in the look and feel of your content. Marketing typically works in three ways; what do you want your customer to learn, what do you want them to feel and what do you want them to do. Being consistent in each of these messages means your video strategy will be not only easier to measure but easier to manage too.

5. Critical Mass

A little bit of a follow on from the previous point but effective video marketing is also about critical mass. In order to post regularly you need to have a certain amount of content in order to keep it consistent. It’s easy to fall into a rut when you’re trying to manage so many things but one of the things you can do when producing any video content is try and create some derivative content too. Bloopers and shorter versions are great ways of extracting more material from a given production.

Thank you so much for reading this blog. I hope you found it useful and informs much of your planning for 2020. If you would like to discuss your plans and how you can maximise your video effort for the coming year and beyond please do let me know. You can ping me a message on LinkedIn or alternatively if you would like to have a chat, please book a meeting with me by clicking the button below. 

Wishing you all the best for 2020.

About the Author

Nathan Haines

Nathan is the managing director of Element 26 and an expert in video production and video marketing. Nathan enjoys supporting companies to grow their businesses using video. Get in touch on Twitter @element26uk

Choosing The Best Social Media Platform For Your B2B Video?

Let me start by saying you shouldn’t even think about posting a video on social media unless it’s a good one!

The days when B2B companies got a free pass and were able to choose dullness over creativity are long gone. Intel, for one, got that memo, as you can see from its campaign ‘If cables were people’.

Intel has cottoned on to the fact that the name of the game for B2B video is the same as it is for B2C video – make the viewers feel something. In this case, it aims to raise a smile. But it could just as easily be to make them cry or even scream at the screen, so long as it creates a gut response in those watching.

Video’s ability to generate emotion is the reason it works so well on social media. In fact, video on social media generates 1,200% more shares than text and images combined (Adelie Studios). So, it’s no surprises that in 2016, 62% of B2B marketers rated video an effective content marketing tactic (Content Marketing Institute).

Which begs the question: with so many social media platforms to choose from, which ones are best for you to post your B2B video on?

Video And The Buyer’s Journey

To answer that question, we need to take a step back and think about why you made your video. In other words, where does the video fit in the buyer’s journey for your business’s goods or services?

That journey starts when a potential buyer becomes aware of what you offer. A video at the awareness stage needs to grab people’s attention about what you sell or do. It should create an emotional connection with the viewer in the way the Intel video does. The more a video gets people talking, and sharing on social media, the more people it is going to reach.

One B2B company that does this brilliantly is Adobe. It’s Secret Agent: How’s Your Customer Experience? video promoting Adobe Marketing Cloud is one of a series aimed squarely at making potential customers aware of its product. There’s no explanation at all about what the product does or how it works.

Other types of videos along the buyer’s journey include:

  • Product or services videos that show how your products or services work. Buyers will watch these when they have moved beyond the awareness stage and are actively considering whether to buy from you.
  • Culture videos. These show your business’s culture, with the aim of transforming you from a faceless corporation to one that has a human side. I love this example from Schneider Electric, Llama Superstar, which has bags of personality.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MfrPFc5mK3o
  • Testimonial videos that act like old-fashioned word-of-mouth endorsements.

Which Social Media Channel Should You Choose?

Where your video fits on the buyer’s journey will help inform your decision about which social media platforms you can use for your videos. You also need to consider how the platform functions and its audience. In most cases you will want to take an omni-channel approach with your video marketing and place different content on different platforms. Let’s look at each social media channel in turn.

Facebook

Video on Facebook generates around 32 billion views per day. If each video were watched for only three seconds, Facebook would generate over 3,000 years’ worth of watch time every single day. 

With staggering statistics like this, you may think that posting your video on Facebook is a no brainer. And it’s true, if you are looking to raise awareness, Facebook can be an excellent platform. It’s easy to ‘like’ video on Facebook and the more likes your video gets the higher it will appear on people’s timelines. It is also very personal so you can engage with people directly.

It has downsides, though, one of which is due to the way Facebook works. You are only relevant for so long as you appear on people’s timelines. Once you drop off you are nowhere to be seen. Also, because Facebook content is within a ‘walled garden’ it is all but invisible to search engines. Plus, you can’t embed calls to action in Facebook videos in the way you can on YouTube (see below).

Videos that work best on Facebook are snappy lifestyle pieces, news items and funny meme-type videos. Anything too corporate will get ignored, so your video needs to be authentic and preferably either shocking or amusing. Remember video published natively to Facebook will out-perform embedded video content so if you decide to use Facebook to reach your audience you will see better results by publishing that video content directly to Facebook itself.

YouTube

One billion hours of YouTube videos are watched every single day. Content on YouTube tends to have a broader range than it does on Facebook and includes videos that inform and educate as well as those that entertain. 

As a result, people search for videos on YouTube – something you can’t do on Facebook. And, as YouTube is owned by Google, videos hosted on the platform rank higher in search results than ones hosted elsewhere. Also, YouTube allows you to annotate your videos and add ‘Cards’ – clickable hotspots – that link to other videos on your channel or back to your website.

YouTube gives you the potential to reach a vast audience and because of its versatility works well for all sorts of videos: awareness, culture, testimonial, etc.  

On the flip side, your video can easily get lost in such an enormous sea. Plus, if you post a video both on your website and YouTube, people searching online are likely to be sucked away from your site and onto YouTube. Once there, it may be hard for them to stay focused on your video and they might be distracted down a YouTube rabbit hole. We’ve all done it!

Instagram

Instagram has more than 500 million active monthly users who on average share 95 million photos and videos per day. These are several million reasons why you should consider Instagram, but there are drawbacks.

The platform only allows videos of up to 60 seconds, although its Stories feature allows you to post a series of videos that will play like a slideshow. These disappear at the end of the day though, so there is no permanence as there is with YouTube.

Bear in mind Instagram’s demographic when considering it for your B2B videos. Unlike Facebook and YouTube, which span the generations, Instagram’s audience tends to be younger. I would say it has uses for awareness videos so long as they are short and breezy but doesn’t work so well for other types of video content on the buyer’s journey.

Snapchat

Like Instagram, Snapchat’s is mainly aimed at a younger demographic, with 18 to 24 year-olds making up 45% of its audience.

Two weakness of Snapchat stand out for the B2B market. First, it has no hashtag feature so it can be hard for new people to find you. Second, the content only lasts for 24 hours and once it’s gone, it’s vanished for good.  It can be a good platform for edgier original content that raises awareness of your business but beyond that its use for B2B videos is limited.

Twitter

Twitter claims that a tweet with video is six times more likely to be retweeted than one with photosThat means it should be an excellent platform for raising awareness. However, one downside of Twitter is that you don’t know who your tweet (and video) is going to reach (beyond your own followers) as its journey is at the whim of the audience. Like Facebook, the ‘feed’ nature of Twitter means that any tweet you post has a limited lifespan.

Twitter lends itself to sharp, original content and whilst it is good for awareness video, it really comes into it’s own when tied together with events. The best use cases for for video on Twitter comes in the form of reportage content. We’re live from this or that event.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn only jumped onto the video bandwagon this summer when it allowed users to upload video for the first time. This should be of great interest to B2B marketers given that 80% of leads sourced through social media for B2B marketers come from LinkedIn

It’s too early to say how effective video will prove to be on the platform but I think the fact that the audience is so clearly defined makes LinkedIn a ‘must-use’ for B2B videos. Videos can last up to 10 minutes though LinkedIn recommends videos of between 30 seconds and five minutes.

Drawbacks of LinkedIn are the fact that although it has more than 500 million members, only 23% use the platform on a monthly basis and when they do they average just two minutes a day on the site. I for one will be watching how video fares on LinkedIn with interest.

Conclusion

As with all your B2B marketing the starting point is to make great content. I encourage all my clients to have at least one video for each stage along the buyer’s journey and place these strategically on the social media channel that suits it best depending on the nature of the content and the target audience.

About the Author

Nathan Haines

Nathan is the managing director of Element 26 and an expert in video production and video marketing. Nathan enjoys supporting companies to grow their businesses using video. Get in touch on Twitter @element26uk

How To Choose The Best Social Channels For Your Video?

Sharing video on social media is a fantastic way to build awareness of your products or services. But with so many social channels out there, how do you choose which ones are most appropriate for your business.

As regular readers of our blog will know, we talk a lot about where video fits in the customer journey. In broad terms, that journey starts when a potential customer becomes aware of your product or services. Once this happens, the role of your marketing, and your videos, is to lead them from becoming aware of what you offer, to evaluating it and in turn buying it.

One of the best types of video to grab people’s attention about your product or services is an elevator video (such as the Elevator 1). This is a video version of your elevator pitch. You would use this to build your brand and create an emotional connection with your audience. This is about showing what your values are and why you do what you do rather than selling your goods or services.

One company that does this brilliantly is GoPro. Their videos sell adventure and excitement. Check out their Best of 2016 video and you’ll notice that there isn’t a single reference in it to their products. In the month after the video was posted on YouTube it was viewed more than 1.6 million times.  

YouTube is one of many social channels you can choose to show your videos. Each channel has different attributes and it can be difficult to determine which ones are most appropriate. Here’s our guide to help you find the best social media channels for your awareness videos.

social-media-channels

Facebook

Most businesses would be wise to consider using Facebook for their videos as Facebook loves video. As at January 2016, more than 500 million people watched Facebook videos every day (Recode). In February 2016, videos uploaded directly to Facebook generated more than 199 billion views (ReelSEO). (Up-to-date figures, when they come out, are likely to be higher still.)

People scroll through their Facebook feeds expecting to be entertained. They are open to authentic video content that makes them laugh or cry or go ‘wow’. You don’t even need expensive kit to do this. There’s nothing to stop a short video shot on a smartphone going viral, like the one of a person shovelling snow from their yard dressed in a dinosaur outfit.  

You can now live stream video on Facebook using Facebook Live. These videos are watched three times longer than regular videos (Mediakix.com) and offer unlimited potential to engage directly with customers. Showing plenty of personality in Facebook Live videos is important and if you get this right you can quickly build brand awareness and loyalty.

YouTube

YouTube has many plus points, one of which is the fact that it has more than one billion users. It is also the second biggest search engine in the world.  People use it to watch music videos and clips of people falling over, but they also search for educational information and useful stuff about how things work. And, as it is owned by Google, a video posted on YouTube is more likely to show up in organic Google search results than one hosted elsewhere.

Another advantage is that you can use YouTube videos to drive viewer action. You can add annotations to your videos and clickable hotspots linking back to your website or ask viewers to subscribe to your YouTube channel. All these features make it a good place to spread the word about your business.

It has its downsides, though. The site is huge, so your video can easily get lost. Plus, viewers may have to watch an ad for anything from a few seconds up to 30 seconds before your video loads. You could lose them before your video starts playing.

The biggest problem though is that YouTube sucks viewers away from your website. You want people on your site so you can drive them along the customer journey using calls to action and relevant links. YouTube works well for raising awareness but less well for the videos a prospect watches when they are close to making a purchase decision (such as product videos). You probably want these on your own website rather than YouTube.

Instagram

Instagram generates more than 3.5 billion likes a day and with 30% of internet users now on Instagram, you can use it to reach an enormous audience.  What’s more, as the platform is owned by Facebook, with one click you can publish a Facebook video directly onto Instagram.  For these reasons alone you would be crazy not to at least consider posting videos on Instagram – or at least extracts, as Instagram allows videos of up to 60 seconds only. Instagram also has a useful Stories feature that allows you to post photos and videos throughout the day that play like a slideshow. At the end of the day, the photos and videos disappear. Stories is a great feature for using either pre-made or live video promoting an event and combining them with still photos.

Snapchat

According to Bloomberg, Snapchat’s daily video views grew in the year to May 2016 from two billion to 10 billion. By May this year, daily views are expected to exceed 18 billion. These are impressive numbers but it doesn’t necessarily mean you should post your videos to Snapchat. It has a predominantly young demographic, with 18 to 24 year-olds making up 45% of its audience so it won’t suit all businesses (eMarketer). Another drawback is that it doesn’t use hashtags or help users by recommending people to follow. That makes it harder to build an audience or get found by people who don’t know you already. 

Twitter

Twitter is a good place for businesses to post videos. At the awareness stage of the customer journey, one of the best ways to spread your message is through engagement. According to Twitter, video is the most shared type of media and tweets with video are six times more likely to be retweeted that tweets with photosTwitter has also jumped on the live video bandwagon with its Periscope app. As with Facebook, this is popular with brands that want to connect with their audience by live streaming events and launches.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn in not particularly video friendly. It does allow certain ‘influencers’ to upload video but this feature is not available to the masses – yet. Sure, you can make posts that link to videos hosted elsewhere but not in a way that shows your video directly in people’s timelines. Watch this space, though. LinkedIn was recently acquired by Microsoft, meaning 2017 looks to be an interesting year for the business. Its only a matter of time before LinkedIn opens out video to all its users.

To discuss further how you can produce video for your social media channels, get in touch with us today.

About the Author

Nathan Haines

Nathan is the managing director of Element 26 and an expert in video production and video marketing. Nathan enjoys supporting companies to grow their businesses using video. Get in touch on Twitter @element26uk