Video content is amazingly effective with advertising, livening up a website, improving email marketing engagement, and so much more. Even though the information in a video can’t be skimmed like text can, almost everyone finds this audiovisual medium attractive. Let’s take a look at how video content works, or doesn’t, depending on a few critical factors. With the right mindset during production and a few creative strategies, you’ll be able to get conversions and engagement for a minimal investment.

The Full Potential

Your videos should be supplying information that is impossible or more difficult to deliver to the customer through images or print. Think about the more challenging parts of customer conversion for your business. Perhaps using your product is a bit complicated and your video could provide visual aid. Perhaps customers could understand the point of your product better if you had a brief skit outlining the problem it solves. Or maybe your product has been endorsed by a respected person and you could have them on screen talking about their experience with it.

Videos are an opportunity to visualize certain ideas or to make people hear what you want them to hear, and it’s a good idea to frame your video content goals with this in mind. If you try to communicate the same content you had for a web page or email, except in video form, you may be missing the best advantages. Find what people aren’t getting from your other content and use video to show it.

Don’t Sell With Video

Though it may be hard to resist, the least effective thing you can do with first-impression video content is try to get a sale. Video content is a deliciously good customer education tool, and is equally good at generating consideration for making a purchase, but videos clearly made to sell a product take us all immediately into infomercial watching mode. We raise our eyebrows, we roll our eyes, and we don’t listen because it’s clear what the video was made for: to get our money.

Videos are far better for getting leads that you can ask sales from later on. The best way to do that is to make sure your content is actually for the customer by providing interesting, engaging, or helpful information. Businesses that sell knowledge have it particularly easy. They can offer a few captivating snippets about how to solve a specific problem relevant to that audience and offer more tips or even a free ebook if people sign up for a newsletter. Use video to introduce people to your business and to build up to a sale, playing the longer game and staying authentic.

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Personalized Videos

This is a new and thrilling way to use videos that has been shown to boost conversion rates over simple email or phone marketing. Personalized videos involve using a reliable format to create a video specific to a customer and then sending it to them. For example, consider an author service company who asks users who sign up, but haven’t bought yet, to provide the name and cover of their book. That business could send a custom video mentioning them by name in text over an image of their book with graphics implying improved sales and performance potential.

Personalized videos have been shown to encourage a higher purchase rate by making customers feel personally attended to, and it completely shatters the prevalent skepticism that most marketing is copied and sent to thousands of other people. This is a way to make customers feel special and remembered, and you don’t have to make it a complex system with ten variables to swap out. It can be as simple as a customer representative saying he missed you by phone and would love to talk about a new offer.

Short Enough for Mobile

hand holding mobile phone

Image via Flickr by JeffreyTurner

Brevity is generally a good idea with video content, especially since the majority of internet browsing is now done on mobile devices. Imagine that whoever is seeing your video is on the go, and could be required to put their phone down any minute. Provide the information and content people want quickly but thoroughly and don’t stall or leave in anything extraneous.

How long is too long? It really depends on the avenue. Video pay-per-click ads should be very short, usually no more than a minute, because they already arrived unexpectedly. If you are doing a video education course to warm customers up to a sale, the videos are expected and you naturally have more time. In all cases, get to the point as soon as possible without the video feeling unnatural or awkward. If your video is for an ad, try to make something that will inspire people to click before it’s finished playing.

Get Customers Interacting

Videos are naturally good for interactive content. For example, a professional photo editor could have an interactive page where a person’s photo is being worked on, and the page visitor can click on different desires, such as ‘remove blemishes’ or ‘change background’ to go to different short videos that show how easily the editor can touch up the photo and handle each issue. It’s not much more effort than a single long video showing these things, but the interactive process keeps things super targeted toward specific users and what they want out of a photo editor.

This kind of interactive strategy really gets deep into your customer’s wants and needs, and creates shareability and brand trust like nothing else. It takes a little programming and web design know-how, but going interactive opens up all sorts of ways to stand out from competitors.

To sum it up, the best format for video content is not hard selling off the bat, but instead providing something valuable to the customer that video does best. Before you get started, however, remember to trust professionals experienced in your particular needs. You’ll get the best results by hiring outside help who not only know the ins and outs of the creation process but can also see your best opportunities from a unbiased perspective and help you make interactive audiovisual content for your biggest potential fans.

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