Should Video Be Used In My Social Media Marketing Campaign?
By Greg Ball, President of BMI
Using Social Media as a key part of your business’s marketing strategy is “no longer a bold new idea.” It's more like a necessity. In fact according to the most recent Association of National Advertisers (ANA) survey of US marketers in 2012:
“90% said they were using social networks for their efforts—about even with [2011, at 89%. This percentage has risen dramatically since 2007, when just 20% of marketers used social media...
So it's likely that you're already using social media as a part of your company marketing strategy, and if you're not, you'll need to move forward to stay competitive.
If you are using social media, here's an important question for you. Are you using it correctly, or to its full potential?This is where video and rich content comes into play.
When it comes to building or improving upon your social media presence, the power of online video is unparalleled.
There’s an old saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. Multiply that by a few million pixels, and -- you get the picture! Video creates an emotional connection to your target audience in a way that text alone just can’t touch.
More and more companies are coming to realize that web video is good for more than just cute videos of puppies and kittens, or teenagers getting pranked.
Video gives you power!
Forbes magazine reported that 75% of its executive readership watches business or work-related videos at least once a week, and that over 50% of those work-related videos were watched on YouTube! So if you still think that YouTube is nothing more than a 24/7 version of America’s Funniest Video’s – think again! The truth is that YouTube has evolved into a Social Media powerhouse, rivaling Facebook and LinkedIn.
As a social media platform, YouTube is the ideal place to connect and start a conversation with existing and prospective customers. The point is, YouTube is a community, and you can use it to build your own community around your brand, just like you hopefully already are with other social media platforms. And you can use your videos on your social media pages as well!
But, if you have already undertaken any kind of Social Media Marketing you know that it takes time and effort to build that community. The key is regular, fresh, and engaging content. That’s not a problem for the Nike’s and the Coca-Cola’s of the world. Huge companies, with huge advertising and marketing departments have internal video production teams that can crank out television broadcast quality videos on a daily basis.
YouTube and other online video channels may level the playing field. You don’t have to have a Super Bowl Budget to purchase “airtime.” All you need is an internet connection!
But, the mistake a lot of companies make is thinking that just because it’s going on YouTube, a video doesn’t have to “look good.”
That may have been true a few years ago, before YouTube grew-up, but no longer. Really the only acceptable amateur content on You Tube today is that made by – amateurs, or homegrown non-business related user-generated content.
If you’re a professional company, and your social media video looks amateurish, it sends a very wrong message to your viewer.
That’s not to say that your videos need to be dry and stodgy like the “Corporate Videos” of the ‘80s. Quite the contrary, they need to be fun and engaging, which is all the more reason why they need to be professionally conceived and executed.
While they’re the major player, understand too, that online video is not restricted to YouTube. Vimeo, Yahoo Video, Metacafe and dozens of other video sharing portals are giving YouTube a run for the money, proving that online video has indeed become a "social technology."
Types of Online Videos
Promotional Video/Corporate Documentary: Every company has a story. This is your opportunity to tell yours. This is the kind of video that is the “must have” for any video marketing strategy; it puts a face on your company and your brand.
How to/ Product Demos: If you’re selling the kind of product or service that could benefit from a “how to video” or product demonstration, this kind of video shows that you care about your customer, and want them to have the best user experience possible with your brand.
Video Blog: A video blog is a great way to provide timely and updated information about your company, your products, news and events related to your brand and industry. Think of it as a “live” company Newsletter.
Testimonial Videos: There's nothing like posting a few rave reviews from satisfied customers who look and sound “just like me” to your target audience.
The optimal on-line video strategy will use a combination of all of the above.
An ever-increasing number of consumers expect to see video about the things they buy on company websites, on popular video distribution sites, and on social networks – not only when cruising the internet on their computers, but on smartphones and other mobile devices.
On the one hand video content may be easier than ever to create. There are Smartphones that put out HD video better than the broadcast video cameras of just a few years ago! But while the tools may have changed, and even become more affordable, creating good video content is still an art that requires creative concepts and professional effort.
No matter how you look at it, the better your video looks and sounds the more return you’re going to get out of your investment in social media marketing.
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