Murray Newlands is an expert blogger and online marketer who owns his own marketing consulting firm, Influence People. I recently met with him at the San Francisco Blog Club which he runs, then again at ad:tech in San Francisco.
Five years ago, few people outside the U.K. had heard of Murray. But today, he is known for his expert consulting, the TV series he hosts, and his online marketing expertise which he put into a book, Online Marketing: A User's Manual. Murray's book helped him gain more mindshare among the worldwide marketing community. Its popularity helped establish him as an American online marketing authority. When I asked Murray one thing he would change about Online Marketing, he replied, "I would absolutely write more about video."
"I began using video as a marketing tool for my clients back in 2011," explains Newlands. "I made a few standalone marketing videos for them, and they were successful and driving conversions. However, I soon realized that this wasn't always the best way to do it, that we could be more successful is we did videos in a different format."
Since it's original publish, the Internet has become faster and more accessible, and the importance of video has increased exponentially. "Video marketing is not its own entity that you graft onto the rest of your marketing campaign," Newlands insists, "instead it's a component of marketing campaigns and it needs to smoothly fit with your campaign to have maximum effect."
There are two main types of online marketing videos: Standalone video and series video.
Standalone videos, as Newlands explains, work well for some things, such as landing pages. They can be to the point, instantly engaging, and give a static landing page the element of multi-media that makes it both more professional, and engaging. Newlands continues, "What's essential to developing a good standalone video is captivating your audience. You need to grab their attention in the first fifteen seconds and then deliver a clear, compelling message before they lost interest. For this, you often only have two minutes or less depending on your audience."
The weakness with a standalone video, however, is people see one video, and then they don't interact with you anymore. "What if viewers could keep coming back for more?" Newlands asks. "I looked at how traditional TV shows work, and found that the answer was staring me in the face the whole time: Make a TV series." Formatting video as a weekly series keeps customers engaged week after week and makes them more likely to bring their friends in as regular viewers.
Murray's first video series was Future of Engagement, which has been wildly successful and led to more TV shows. "Series videos are what a marketer wants to use for continuous engagement," Newlands explains. "Future of Engagement is an interview and analysis show where I talk with other industry experts on the future of social media and other forms of customer engagement." So essentially people watch Future of Engagement to stay a step ahead of the social marketing curve by listening to what people have to say in Murray's interviews. He continues, "They also watch it to better understand current happenings in social media through my analyses of current events and how they spread across social media."
5 Most Important Considerations in Video Making
In the past few years, media has become less and less broadcast and more and more oriented towards continuously engaging with the people who consume it. I asked Murray for what he thinks are the five most important things in making a successful video series. He said he wasn't sure which things are more important than others, but believes "If you have six hours to chop down a tree, spend three sharpening the axe."
- You need to plan your show before you make it. You need to know your show format and your target audience before you start anything.
- You need to have a plan for distribution to your audience so that they see your videos and engage with them. Don't just promote it with 'drive-by' social media."
- Plan out your production cycle so that you have time to edit your show. Newlands explains, "A professional-quality show is a must these days, even for B2B marketing shows, and editing is almost as important as the content itself."
- Build industry connections. Especially if you're doing an interview series, you'll want to know people who would be more than happy to come onto your show on short notice.
- Use a green screen effectively. Newlands proposes, "If you want to reinforce geography, have a picture of your city as your background. If you want to be journalistic, key in an image of a newsroom. Green screens require minimal investment and let you control the mood of your show with just a few simple edits."
If you would like to learn more about Murray's shows, contact Murray at [email protected] .