In 2016, the main question around video for business has moved from ‘why should we use video?’ to ‘how do we use it strategically?’ Video represents one of the most effective and meaningful ways to connect with your audience of prospects and customers. Sophie Rayers, Director of Marketing, EMEA & LATAM at Brightcove, looks at five key video concepts and five ways to use video strategically to meet business goals.
5 Key Video Concepts:
- Video brings visitors to your site
Video is a necessity for the health and discoverability of your website. According to Cisco, by 2018 video will account for 79 per cent of all search traffic. Forrester Research reported that web pages with video are 53 times more likely than traditional web pages to receive an organic first-page ranking. Since only the most avid researchers venture past the first page of Google rankings, a first page ranking is highly desired. Google’s algorithms change constantly, but they tend to favour their own YouTube videos when ranking single assets. Their website rankings, however, are determined by time spent on site, which demonstrates that people found valuable information there. The trick to bringing viewers to your site is creating a blended distribution strategy for your videos that allows Google to list your video first and bring people to your site for content and experiences that you own and control.
- Video keeps visitors on your site
Once viewers are on your site, you want to keep them there ingesting valuable content that leads them through the customer journey from engagement to conversion, and then to retention and advocacy. Video has been shown to increase time on site by over 100 per cent. It is content that touches viewers at an emotional level, and explains complicated information quickly and easily. The most important thing you can do on your site is combine compelling video storytelling with branded customer experiences. Using branded video portals to combine like-content into a larger story is one easy way to increase message retention and your site SEO at the same time. Adding interactivity to your videos also increases engagement and leads to a better customer experience.
- Video converts
Video not only gets people to your site and keeps them there for longer periods of time, it converts the viewers at double the rate of non-video sites to take actions such as contacting sales or purchasing onsite. Savvy marketers construct the onsite customer journey by placing engaging videos next to conversion buttons, such as video within an order module. A hospitality customer demonstrated that video demonstrating site-specific customer experiences resulted in twice the bookings and twice the revenue as their sites that didn’t use video.
- Video gives you deep insights
Video is digital native and thus online video gives marketers more meaningful analytics than many other asset formats. Video offers macro-level analytics such as impressions, total views, play rates, device types, operating systems, and referral systems. Video also gives deep micro-level analytics such as engagement rates that let you know how engaged your audience is with the video. A low engagement rate means the audience abandoned without ingesting much content, and a high engagement rate lets you know the video content matched the viewer need and most of the video was watched. Compare this information to a visitor downloading a pdf. You don’t know if the person read the pdf, how much, and if that person is interested in receiving related content. When rich video analytics are fed into a marketing automation platform, they give you a good definition of the individual viewer and what to send that person to take them to the next stage of the buying journey.
- Video offers compelling experiences
Creating a video is an accomplishment, but the true marketing skill is creating video experiences that engage visitors, inform them, compel them to take action, and contribute to the visitor developing a high brand perception of your company. This is where the needs of businesses depart vastly from the needs of the everyday video-maker who posts cat videos on social websites. An example of an effective video experience begins with an email that entices a traveller with a beautiful thumbnail of a far off land. Clicking the image leads to a landing page that features a curated collection of trip-specific videos: the beautiful overview of the trip (from the email thumbnail), tour guide introductions and user generated content of that trip. The landing page also contains a written itinerary, pricing, customer quotes, and photos. And prominent on the page is a selection of call-to-action buttons for requesting further information or signing up for the trip. That is a video-rich experience.
5 Strategic Video Practices:
- Marketing automation
In 2015, marketing automation caught fire in the US and we are now seeing more multinational companies pushing platforms into stronger use in EMEA and APAC in 2016. The reason is simple: a compelling ROI. Marketing automation allows marketers to go beyond the concept of personas, and create individual portraits of online users based on preferences and activities. However, marketing automation platforms have one blind spot – video. It’s critical to integrate your online video platform and marketing automation platform to use video’s rich metrics to better inform your marketing – leading to better lead generation and nurture tracks, and ultimately to conversion and retention of customers.
- Interactive video
Interactive video helps marketers create 1:1 online conversations with their prospects and customers. Interactivity allows viewers to choose content paths, take related quizzes, and discover related content of interest. The result of interactive video is two-fold: 1) marketers gain the data-driven insight to serve compelling content to the viewer, and 2) viewers are able to define what content is relevant to them, and thus create a better online experience. Interactive video has many uses throughout a business. Many of our customers utilise it internally as well as externally, enhancing their executive communications, learning initiatives and internal communications.
We think of personalisation as data-driven lead nurturing that allows marketers to send hyper-relevant content, generating high response rates. Marketers can personalise many areas of marketing, including video marketing. Rather than sending out blasts of anonymous content, the marketer is able to refine the content gleaned from marketing automation and interactive experiences, and send personalised content. One area where our customers are creating personalised viewing experiences is on their video portals. Some are creating sites for particular targets. Others are combining video and web personalisation, dynamically reconfiguring the videos on their portal based on an individual viewer’s onsite activity.
- Account-based marketing
Account-based marketing (ABM) is a practice and structure that moves marketers from marketing to a vertical or demographic in broad strokes, to very high touch interactions with individuals. These interactions fast track prospects to conversion, retain those customers over time, and ensure that marketing and sales align from awareness to conversion to advocacy. The 1:1 conversations marketers have with prospects is greatly enhanced with video: it begins with identifying the individual through marketing automation and interactivity, then delivering the right information via interactivity and personalisation, and coalesces in ABM activities enriched by serving rich video assets that move the recipient through the customer journey.
- Live video
Live video is a fantastic way to allow people who can’t be physically at an event, to experience it as intimately as possible. At Brightcove, we have been focused on melding this live experience
with other forms of community engagement to create a special digital experience. Our Gallery Live product was designed for the three stages of live event video marketing. Pre-event, viewers can see promotional videos, social media around the event, and take various suggested actions. During the event, the live video is surrounded by real-time social engagements. Post-event, viewers are able to view video on demand, review content on the page, and click links to related calls-to-action.