Is video part of content marketing?
Does Video Play a Part in Quality Content Marketing?
Many of my customers wonder how to use video marketing on their websites, social media channels, and business marketing plans. Video production continues to be a huge portion of internet marketing and presence, and not just for streaming companies like Netflix and Hulu, but for small and medium sized businesses in every industry.
Data on Video Marketing
If you love digging into lots of spreadsheets, check out Cisco’s Visual Networking Index, a study of all the data on the internet along with forecasting projections. According to this story, 83% of all the data on the internet is projected to be video by next year, up from approximately 73% last year. 83% is substantial; video is part of content marketing.
On the other hand, if you love scrolling through large infographics, read this post by MarTech on the video trends in 2018. Some items to take notice of include the fact that content marketing is becoming more personal and relational, video drives engagement on social media, and video use is increasing as a substantial portion of internet marketing.
Content and Relational Marketing
Content marketing and relational marketing mean many things to many people. At Paul Davis Solutions, content marketing means that your marketing materials and strategy focuses on more than just selling products. Content marketing crafts written, audio, and visual content to educate, entertain, or inspire your customers.
Relational marketing means that your marketing strategy integrates with sales and customer service to focus on building a relationship with your leads where the process of turning a lead into a customer and a customer into a raving fan is a natural, organic part of the marketing process.
Video plays a key part in this in many ways. Videos give people a face to go with your business; this makes your content marketing more relational. Video marketing delivers content in multiple ways to potential customers: both audible and visual. Because of the dual modality of video marketing, it can make your content speak to a larger group of people than written content alone.
Since video should play a regular role in your content marketing plan, how do you do video marketing for your small business?
The following are some basic strategies that I am working on employing for both Paul Davis Solutions and our customers. Let me know if any of these strategies work for you:
Video Content Strategies
Each business needs to look at their capabilities to build a video content strategy. I have several that I recommend and use for my clients, depending on budget, time, and who we have on the team. The following are basic, intermediate and advanced video content marketing strategies that can help you increase engagement, build your brand, and provide a more human touch to your customers and leads.
Repurpose Blogs via Live Commentary
For a single person shop, this is the easiest and most affordable method of creating a video content strategy. Take a little time to review what you are going to be saying during the live, write down some notes, then open up YouTube or Facebook on your phone, and go Live.
While this is the easiest for solopreneurs to do, it is also the easiest to do poorly. People do not mind a live video looking like you filmed it with your phone, but they still expect the content to be valuable, and the presenter to be presentable.
Plan and Execute Live Events as Part of Your Content Marketing
While this is as easy as pressing the go live button, planning live events and regular live videos requires a higher level of planning, strategic investment in technology, and a larger marketing plan. For some of my clients, this makes more sense than a smaller strategy, because they have regular in person events, like classes, that naturally lend themselves to a marketing strategy.
Besides classes, other events that lend themselves to a video content strategy include seminars and presentations, more personal touches like business get togethers, and of course a more technical live content repurposing than just giving a video blog.
Integrate Organic and Paid Marketing Plans for Video on Multiple Platforms and Delivery Options
If you have the technology and a content calendar for video, the next step is to integrate SEO, SEM and SMM with your video content campaign. This advanced video content marketing is part of a much larger and comprehensive content marketing campaign. At minimum, you would need to have regular written content on well, with reposting your videos to the social media platforms where your audience is likely to watch them, as well as posting the videos to your website with transcripts to help rank and to give busy computer users like myself something we can skim.
Use A Free Online Tool to Make a Photo Slideshow Into a Video
There are many useful tools for stringing together photos and adding a sound track over top of them. Facebook and YouTube both have native slideshow creating software built in, with approved music that you can add to the video without researching copywrite and licensing. If you want to do this on your own with a 3rd party software system, remember to find music that is royalty free and to give credit or purchase it as needed.
Use Professional Products to Create Regular Videos for Content Marketing
For creative processes, I am a fan of Adobe Creative Suite. With Adobe’s SaaS pricing strategy, small business owners can use their software to manage photos, videos, and audio files for content marketing at a fairly affordable price, if you sign up for a year’s worth of Creative Cloud.
If you are going to have a regular and manageable video marketing plan, you need to use software that works. Some people prefer buying a Mac for this reason, but I do not have enough experience with it to recommend it.
A more comprehensive software, hardware and firmware study is required to really do this option than this post is going to cover.
But, for a planned video content marketing, you need to research the technology and include videos in a weekly content creation schedule. Content marketing needs to be both valuable to your audience and regular enough that people will keep you top of mind. For any type of native longer content, weekly posting is the minimum you should do to keep your business front of mind.
Using Video to Convert Leads Into Customers
We have explored whether video should be part of a content marketing campaign, what level of video content marketing you might use for your business, and now we will spend a little time discussing the sales process in video content marketing.
The sales process is the process by which someone goes from a member of the disinterested public to one of your customers, and from a customer to a raving fan. See the infographic to the right for a little breakdown of the sales process.
During the general disinterest phase of the buyer’s journey, lighthearted and human focused videos serve to provide a reason that people who generally are not interested in you or your service might be later down the road. For example, many insurance videos aim to reach a generally disinterested party: Mayhem, 15% or more, Flo, Duck, you name it, these videos are all geared primarily toward our remembering them. On the other hand, most medication advertisements are targeted towards people who already have a need: can you name a depression medication from an advertisement if you are not on meds for depression? Me neither.
The next phase of the sales process is the first place where you can take a member of the general public and turn them into a true lead. This is the point of view where they start to wonder if there is a solution to their needs. Video content focused on this stage will include introductory tutorials, motivational videos, and more. “How to” videos are great for targeting people who have become aware that they have a need.
After awareness comes more involved research; this is when someone has realized a need and a solution and started to look for the best solution. Videos targeting people at this point can have a little more of a sales copy approach to them, but the main point is to showcase specific aspects of your business that make it unique. More in-depth tutorials are a great way to do this, as well as video customer reviews, video demonstrations of your product and more.
Once a lead is comparing services, you ideally want them to be your lead. At this point, video content marketing can include comparisons, PR pieces on other people’s platforms, and honest journalistic looks at your business and services. Much of the content at this point in the buyer’s process is outside your control, because they are comparing you with others. A good way to include this in a video content marketing campaign is to regularly build relationships with other businesses and journalists in your industry so that your content will be analyzed by them, honestly.
Finally, the moment of decision. At this point your videos transition entirely from content marketing to sales copy. Videos targeting the people at the end of the buyer’s journey need to be included in most of your content marketing, where you include a Call to Action (CTA), but stand-alone videos like this will often be webinars or videos within an email marketing campaign. This is because someone who has given you permission to sell to them is much more likely to watch your sales video and make a yes decision than someone who feels pressured by the video.
So, in review, video is a key part of content marketing, you can incorporate video content in your business no matter where you are at in your business, and you can incorporate video targeting your customers at every level of the journey that they are at.