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By now, it’s no secret that you need to incorporate video into your business marketing, but when you’re just starting out, it can be hard to know where and when it’s most effective.
Whether they’re being used to replace content in your marketing or to supplement it, videos for your business should be driven by a purpose and towards a goal. Understanding your ultimate intent helps to narrow down your video opportunities and the form it should take, whether it’s alongside your other content or standing alone.
Two of the most effective ways of putting video to work for your business are giving your brand an authentic, human appeal and supercharging the buyer’s journey with a fresh, new take on the content we’d expect to find there.
Explore 13 practical ways you can use video to target both of those goals:
Humanize Your Communications (and Boost SEO)
People are vain.
We care infinitely more about what we can relate to, businesses included. By using video to put a real face to your brand, you instantly make your business more relatable. You’re no longer an abstract profit-hungry concept, you’re a bunch of real people with real people problems. You can understand your consumers because after all, we’re all just human, right?
It really is that simple.
Another major point to consider is the humanizing value that’s unintentionally added by your less-than-perfect videos. In a lot of cases (not all, but still), amataur videos have way more appeal than professional marketing videos. People like to see you unscripted, making mistakes and looking less than perfect. That’s real life.
And making your business seem like a sleeping, breathing part of real life is the whole point. Use these content marketing opportunities to bring your business off the screen and into the real worlds of your consumers:
At Impulse Creative, we’ve adjusted our blog strategy to supplement all blogs with video, even if it’s just a 30-second branded video intro. Other blogs get a full video that’s nearly a carbon copy of the written version, as a companion piece. A few other blogs have been replaced by video completely.
What we’ve discovered using these tactics is increased conversions, increased social media interactions and increased site traffic.
If you’re thinking, “Wait, won’t using video be counterproductive to my SEO goals?”, you have nothing to fear. In fact, search engines are rewarding video content (and content supplemented by video) more than ever before. Look for Google and the like to continue supporting the growing popularity of video content by ranking it higher and higher in the future.
There’s nothing quite like having something explained by someone who’s passionate about it. Excitement, mannerisms and tone are just so much easier to convey in person, or in this case, on video.
Now that the world is starting to expect a faster, more interesting video version of almost all content, it’s important to include video on your website, on nearly every page. At Impulse Creative, we’ve supplemented our web pages with short videos that supperize the written content in a slightly different way.
That strategy lets consumers skip reading, if that’s their goal, while keeping both the video and the writing relevant for site visitors who want both.
This might be where video shines the brightest. Instead of lengthy explainer blogs, Q and A’s and instruction manuals, you can literally just show people what you’re talking about.
From product troubleshooting videos to replacing customer service hotlines with friendly faces on live video chat, consumers love the empathy and connection of dealing with brands face to face when they need help.
Think about navigating a long, computerized phone menu, followed by a long wait on hold. Most of the time, it’s our search for an answer using those unbelievably frustrating customer service methods that makes us irate, not the actual problem we’re calling about.
Now, imagine going online to video chat with a customer service rep about that same issue. Not only would it be faster and easier, but both the customer and the customer service rep would naturally treat each other more like human beings.
People most need a human connection when they’re feeling vulnerable. Signing a lengthy contract and committing to spending a large amount of money are both big moments of vulnerability. Contracts make business feel impersonal and constricting, spelling out scarey legal and financial obligations that don’t take our humanity into consideration for even a second.
Ease the minds of your newest customers by putting humanity between the lines. Add videos into your digital contracts to thank clients by name, introduce them to your team, further explain finer points and more.
Use video to reassure clients that no matter how long and complicated the contract is, your business is run by real people who are committed to making them happy.
Drive Consumers Through the Buyer’s Journey
As buyers navigate between the moment they have a problem to the purchase of a thoroughly researched solution, video content can help them to be decisive, confident and convert to customers quicker.
Each stage of the buyer’s journey is an opportunity to leverage different types of video in your content marketing.
At this point, your buyers are just becoming aware that they have a problem or need, so your video content shouldn’t try to sell to them. Focus instead on short videos (30-90 seconds) that introduce them to your brand and your insight into their interests and challenges.
Be the helpful video resource your buyers find in their first Google search for solutions with how-to content. Resist the urge to sell your products (or even mentioning that you sell anything) as the people behind your brand share their expertise with the world.
Company Culture Videos
Consumers care more about who you are than what you do. Use videos to peek into your company culture and attract like-minded people. Show them what you stand for, from core values and causes you support, to fun philosophies and lifestyles. In a world with endless choices, buyers choose the solution that’s most closely aligned to their own beliefs.
Calls to Action
This is the closest you should actually get to selling anyone in this stage, encouraging them to exchange a little personal info for more in-depth or comprehensive content. Use short videos to have your brand experts confidently promote that premium content as helpful and relevant to your buyer’s needs.
Keep building trust with your buyers by using short or long videos to showcase and explain your solutions and options, without selling too hard. This stage is all about being informative. Your buyers have likely narrowed down their options and want as much information as possible to finalize their decision.
Nothing beats seeing something work with our own eyes. Buyers don’t really know you, so they don’t have any reason to trust what you say. By showing them what you’re trying to say, on video, they don’t have to trust you in order to believe you.
Give your buyers more humans they can relate to, who have problems just like their own. Get a few customers willing to go on screen in short videos, explaining their problems and praising your solutions. Even if these are used alongside written testimonials, they’ll go a long way to build the trust of your buyers.
These longer videos are more comprehensive breakdowns of how your solutions have solved customer problems. When you’re selling services and not products, particularly services with a higher price point, case studies can go a long way in helping buyers understand why your solution is the best choice.
Now that your buyer is ready to make a purchase, it’s your mission to help them decide exactly what to buy. Use videos of any length to provide the details, reviews, guides and discounts that make that decision easy.
A simple, on-camera Q and A session, with or without visual aids, can help ease a customer’s last remaining concerns and push them towards a purchase.
Reviews and Unboxings
No one can convince a buyer better than your other customers. Popular YouTube product review and unboxing videos can explain your products and services from the point of view of your consumers. Since you can’t really do these yourself, think about working with influencers or offering incentives to spark the production of these video resources.
Product Features Guide
In this stage, the final decision is in the details. Take the time to show off the features and functions of your products and services in guide videos hosted on your website. Leave no question unanswered as you show every detail of your goods in action.
It’s simple: use video anywhere and everywhere you possibly can. As video content begins to take over the whole content marketing industry, your business can only benefit from a video-first strategy. Experiment, track your data and don’t be afraid to simply ask your consumers where they want video most.