The word that summed up the year 2015 was VIDEO. It was everywhere: YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Periscope, Meerkat… You couldn’t look at a smartphone or computer without coming across a video. With the prediction that 80 percent of the world’s internet traffic will come from video by 2019, the trend is set to continue. Are potential customers seeing your brand every time they look at a screen?
With 1.55 billion active users on Facebook every month and more than eight billion video views a day on Facebook, people are clearly keen to consume video content on this platform. That’s a lot of people who could learn about your product or service, just by connecting on Facebook.
The reality is that having an engaging Facebook page with regularly updated videos isn’t something that’s ‘nice to have’ – it’s firmly in the ‘essentials’ category when it comes to marketing your company. Social videos are a form of engagement that pushes the viewer further down the sales funnel as they learn more about your brand and what it can offer them. Businesses that don’t tap into this opportunity to connect with their customers are at real risk of getting left behind.
Making a video for Facebook doesn’t have to be expensive or even time-consuming. With some careful planning, creative thinking, and a smartphone, it’s possible to produce videos that truly resonate with your customers.
What Do You Want To Say?
Video is a great opportunity to tell your customers something about your business. Perhaps you have a complex product that would benefit from a demonstration? Behind the scenes footage, if presented correctly, can be fascinating.
Videos allow you to release your inner show-off by demonstrating your expertise. Yes, showcasing your knowledge does mean you’re giving away information for free, but that’s short-term thinking. What’s important is that you’re showing to customers that your brand is credible and trustworthy. They’ll want to know more about you and what you can offer them.
Letting the audience have their say is a sure way to generate interest. Why not run a competition inviting customers to produce their own video? Unscripted reviews also promote a genuine connection between your brand and your audience.
If you’re really stuck for ideas, why not see what others in your industry have done? Copying would of course be counter-productive, but considering what seems to be working well for others can help jump-start the creative process.
The One Element Every Video Needs
Whatever you want to say in your Facebook video and however you decide to say it, there’s one thing that’s crucial: The call-to-action.
What do you want viewers to do after watching it? If you want them to share it, then entering all sharers into a giveaway acts as an incentive. Rather than telling them to buy your new product verbatim, offer an incentive such as an online discount code (shown at the end of the video). Local customers could benefit from savings simply by mentioning the video to their supplier or shopping assistant.
Rather than thinking in terms of one video, think of a video campaign. After all, you wouldn’t tweet once about a topic, you’d approach it in a variety of ways. Come up with a series of videos that tell your story and post it over the course of several weeks.
Of course, you’ll want to build your video archive on Facebook, but there could be some videos that are highly specific to a particular campaign. Set an expiry date for any that you don’t think would add to your brand image in the long run, or might be confusing to customers if pricing changes or an offer ends.
Bigger Isn’t Better When It Comes To Facebook Video Marketing
Research carried out by Facebook has found that videos no longer than two minutes are the most effective. That’s not a long time to get your message across. Be concise, and use sound and props to help emphasize your point.
Once you have shot the video, edit ruthlessly. Every second counts. If a shot isn’t helping to tell the story of your business, it has to go. There are lots of free and paid-for editing apps available, so put them to good use.
During the editing process, it’s worth remembering that videos autoplay silently on Facebook. There are many reasons why your audience might not be able to watch your video with sound but are still able to watch without it. Captions and subtitles help engage them, whatever their circumstances.
Who’s Watching Your Video?
When you’ve made the video and started the distribution process, you might think you’re finished, but there’s another important element to be aware of. This is part of video marketing that makes some people wince and gets others excited – analytics.
You need to know how your video is performing so you can gauge whether it’s successful. Facebook will share certain types of information with you, but if you are serious about video it’s best to connect with a video services company that will allow you to meaningfully collect information about your audience, as well as provide a platform to host your content outside Facebook.
At SproutVideo, we help our customers maximize the potential of video in a wide variety of ways, but one of the most popular is analytics. Our service enables users to learn about viewer engagement, plays and impressions, location, and device type. It’s even possible to track individual customers so you can refine your sales process. We help our customers work out which parts of the video were most popular, whether customers disengaged at any point, and whether they shared it outside Facebook.
The Art and Science of Videos for Facebook
Video marketing is both an art and a science. There are statistics and research that will help you get certain elements technically optimized, but only you (or a professional, guided by the information you provide) will be able to get it ‘right’ and strike the note that truly resonates with your audience.
Knowledge of your own brand, industry, and audience helps to pitch the video correctly. Using video to convey emotion, humor, or imagery that really tap into your customers’ needs is the best way to entertain, engage, and build a lasting relationship.
“Guest post from Laci Texter, a writer at SproutVideo, and founder of Texter Communications. You can keep up with Laci on the SproutVideo blog and on Twitter.”