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Using Video Content in Your Emails

With the rise of youtube and vimeo we are seeing a surge in video content, and with that surge the question rises “Can I email my videos?”  In the past the answer would be no.  With the improvement of HTML, and the introduction of the video tag we are seeing more and more video finding it’s way into email.

Why does this matter?

Why you ask?  Because according to Diode Digital video is 600% more effective than print!  Have you picked yourself off the floor yet?  With effectiveness that high it is hard not to consider incorporating video throughout your marketing.  Yes, even email marketing needs video.

Can we do it?

Well the answer is yes and no.  The video tag in HTML does make embedding video a possibility, but the support of that video tag in the user’s email client is where things get sticky.  If you check the video support for email clients you will see that the number of clients that support HTML5 video is very small, but not all hope is lost.  For clients that don’t support video we can do a fall back image that links to our video.  The video won't play in the email, but at least the user can click through to a landing page to view the content.

The second wrinkle

There is one more small wrinkle.  SIZE!! If you are thinking about sending a long video to your email recipients I would advice against it.  Not only will the load time for the video be slow, but the email client may view the video content as spam due to the size of the email, so keep it small.  That being said, one cool video idea we tried out recently met the requirement.  A video voicemail.  That’s right!  We would send out a video of our account manager introducing himself/herself to the potential client to help break the ice in conversation.  The results from our video voicemail email were great.  We increased click rates, and the video was short and to the point.  If you are worried about size there is always another option.  Animated GIFs can add some movement to your emails without the size of a video.  Litmus has a great tutorial on animated GIFs that you can check out if you want to go that route.

Is it worth it?

Considering effectiveness of video compared to print I believe it is hard to ignore video.  Although it is not fully supported at this point in time you can still work around the issues that the video tag present, and boost your engagement in emails.  If you are willing to work around these issues I believe the results will speak for themselves.

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