Are you looking to add video content into your social media marketing mix in 2017?
According to an end-of-the-year Hubspot report, 4X as many consumers would prefer to watch a video about a product than to read about it, while 76.5% of marketers who've implemented a video marketing strategy say that it's had a direct impact on their business.
These are just some of the many data points supporting the power of video content - used correctly, social video ads can significantly improve the returns for your marketing efforts.
But correct use is the key element.
While there's little doubt that adding video ads into your social marketing mix will help improve reach, it's important to remember that not every video will work the same way for every advertiser or platform.
In order to get maximum bang for your buck with video advertising, consider these tips.
1. Optimize Video Content for the Platform
Most video marketers have learned that they can get better results if they set different goals for various platforms.
For example, Facebook is a great channel for piquing interest and drawing people into you sales funnel - videos on sites like Facebook and Instagram only have a short time to catch attention as users scroll through a busy news feed.
By comparison, lots of internet users visit YouTube for content that explains things in more depth. YouTube users are often looking for information that can help them solve a problem - in fact, YouTube is considered the second largest search engine on the web.
By the time people arrive on YouTube, viewers are more ready to settle in and watch. This difference in approach is important to consider when planning content for your YouTube marketing strategy.
As a simple example, it might be best to use short and punchy videos for a Facebook or Instagram feed, then reserve more evergreen and in-depth content for YouTube or your own website.
Also, it's particularly important to optimize content for mobile for more mobile-focused sites like Instagram.
2. Also Optimize Video Files for the Platform
Even if you decide to use the same, or similar, content for different social networks, you may want to consider the way you need to optimize your files.
Each social platform will display video content with its own optimum height and width ratios and resolution:
- For example, Google offers a page with recommended encoding for YouTube
- These tips from Facebook explain their key video dimensions
- Other social sites have their own help files that can offer suggestions on how to ensure that your videos look and sound great on their platform
As with image sizes and dimensions, it's also important to consider how video content is being presented, and how you can maximize screen real estate to make your videos more immersive and engaging.
3. Always Encourage Social Video Sharing
Hopefully, you already encourage social sharing on your own website by offering accessible and prominent social sharing buttons on your content. If you're looking to maximize the reach of your social video content, you also need to consider how you can encourage sharing of these posts too.
For example, Mashable provided an interesting outline of the way that Oscar Mayer promoted sharing in one of their video campaigns.
The promotion worked like this:
- The content offered viewers a chance to get discount coupons that they could use in retail stores
- The company also increased the value of a second coupon for every 5,000 shares that the content received after the first coupon had been used
- In other words, the company encouraged their audience to use the first coupon on a purchase and then to work together to save even more money
Oscar Mayer encouraged sharing in a creative and effective way. Campaigns like this might not work for all companies, but it is worth considering how you can promote social sharing in order to maximize the reach of your messaging.
For example, companies with a longer sales funnel might offer access to more in-depth content before asking for a sale.
Working with influencers or very active fans can also help improve visibility and increasing social sharing.
Is Social Video Worth It?
Video marketing might seem particularly complex because of the different platform offerings and the manual work required for each. At the same time, advertisers are seeing great results with this kind of content.
A key positive is that affordable software and hardware options available now make it possible for almost anybody to produce high-quality videos without hiring a professional producer. This is true even if different types of files and content are needed to succeed on various platforms.
And while it is important to consider how each platform hosts video content, and how it's presented to users, marketers can try using the same videos on all of their social media platforms and their own website. However, if this one-size-fits-all approach doesn't work well, it's a good idea to consider these tips to improve ROI.