Video Drives Engagement: How to Get Started

You can quote survey upon survey that confirms it: Online shoppers are more likely to complete a web-based purchase – or at least go deeper into the sales cycle — if they’ve been able to see a video on a product site. Global networking giant Cisco predicts that by 2016, mobile video will generate over 70 percent of mobile data traffic.

If you’re not incorporating video into your blog or website or other social media venues, it’s likely that you’re going to start losing business to companies that do, given these forecasts.

Content is King, Indeed

Bill Gates said this in 1996, and just about every online marketing guru has echoed that sentiment. Think about your favorite TV commercials. If you’re like most of us, sometimes you can’t even remember what it was selling until the fourth or fifth viewing. But you remember the story. Something touched you or made you laugh or think.

Of course, your viewers will know who you are. They went to your site.  Keep that message in mind. You’ll be evaluated based on the quality, usefulness and engagement level of your content, not on your branding efforts.

Consumers and businesses respond favorably to well-made videos. Potential customers are likely to hang around your online space longer if you incorporate them.  A compelling, or humorous or smartly done, video has a better chance of being shared than your text.

Q&A: Creating Business Videos

Don’t have any video experience except for what you’ve taken at family gatherings? There are tons of tools, tips and advisory articles that simplify the production process.

Start with YouTube. Don’t just post videos randomly, or your creations will end up next to clips of dogs playing the saxophone. Create a brand channel for your company – incorporating effective tags — and use YouTube’s tools to start learning and adding videos to your website and blog.

Where do I start? Develop your strategy first. What messages are you trying to convey? Where will your content live? How would you like your viewers to respond? What resources will you need? Who’s in charge?

What kind of content should I create? Ask your employees for ideas here. You can tell a story. Film situations that illustrate how your products or services can impact peoples’ lives. Demonstrate your product in an interesting or unusual setting. Let customers tell their stories. Introduce key staff.

Help. Educate. Delight. Solve problems. Give your viewers something to remember. Don’t pitch; let your content sell for you.

How long should videos be? You can probably keep people interested for a couple of minutes (though you may have to go longer if you’re doing a how-to). Your script will probably run 250-300 words.

Make sure your first moments are compelling. How much time do you spend watching a video before you click it off? 20 seconds? 10 seconds? You have about that much time to keep viewers engaged.

Can’t I do any promoting? Yes, subtly, through your closing call to action. Ask your viewers to do something, like call or email you, take advantage of trials or samples, or visit your blog or another page on your site.

No one expects you to be Steven Spielberg.  Watch other company’s videos; continue to learn and give it your best.