There’s a reason why you can’t escape video.
From brands creating eye-popping product promos on Instagram to your embarrassing friend live-streaming their ghost pepper challenge on Facebook, social users are totally surrounded by video content.
We’re obsessed with it too. Perhaps that’s why approximately 80% of all web traffic is projected to be video-based by 2021.
And so the message for marketers is crystal clear: you can’t sleep on video anymore. Your fans and followers are consuming visual content like never before. Meanwhile, video is heralded by over half of marketers as having the highest ROI of any type of content.
The good news? There are more options than ever for marketers and video content marketing.
Despite popular belief, you don’t need a studio, complicated editing software or a director’s chair to get started. No budget? No problem. If you have a smartphone and an internet connection, chances are you’re good to go.
Below we’ve outlined the myriad of platforms and effective strategies for video content marketing regardless of your budget, background or marketing niche. These types of videos are fair game for creatives and non-creatives alike. That said, let’s dive right in!
Facebook Video Marketing
There’s just something compelling about live content, isn’t there?
Maybe that’s why Facebook Live is experiencing such a boom right now for marketers looking to get in front of their followers in real-time. In fact, Facebook themselves note that viewers stick around live videos three times longer than traditional video content, signaling huge opportunities for engagement.
From fashion to travel and beyond, brands of all shapes and sizes are finding ways to take advantage of live video.
For example, AirBnB takes their followers on a journey to exotic destinations via on-location interviews:
Meanwhile, this vertical Q&A session from Tim Ferriss proves that viewers don’t need perfect production value to appreciate live video:
Part of the beauty of Facebook Live is the fact that real-time video produces raw, unpolished content. Perfect for impromptu conversations or a back-and-forth with your followers, Facebook Live allows marketers to build a more personal rapport without having to worry about the finer details of video content marketing.
Facebook Live is the ideal platform for marketers:
- Who are comfortable in front of the camera and don’t need a script to tell a story.
- With limited time or little budget. After all, the videos are smartphone-friendly and require no editing.
- Looking to establish one-on-one connections with their followers.
And since Facebook saves your live broadcast as a static video after it’s over, you can continue to promote that piece of content in the future.
Speaking of which, Facebook is still a hub for video content marketing beyond Live as well. For marketers, it’s common to see traditional commercial-style videos hosted on the platform such as those frequently put out by Dollar Shave Club:
Also common are “behind the scenes” videos for brands looking to show off their personality, such as this example of cuteness overload from Sprout Social:
Instagram Video Marketing
Despite Instagram’s dominant reputation as the go-to social photo platform, 25% of ads on Instagram are video.
For those with a creative edge, video content marketing via Instagram is a treasure trove of engagement opportunities. Often serving as a sort of a spiritual successor to the now-defunct Vine, it’s noted by Wistia that longer videos on Instagram receive less engagement.
This might explain why bite-sized, GIF style loop videos like this one from H&M are so popular:
Generally speaking, video content marketing on Instagram is:
- Short, sweet and to the point. Rarely do you see many creators take advantage of Instagram video’s 60-second limit.
- Bold, colorful and eye-popping, just like any Instagram photo should strive to be.
- Typically humorous and playful, boasting a light hearted tone versus stuffier, more serious or “salesy” content.
This brief recipe how-to from Tasty is a prime example of how a potentially longer piece of video can be trimmed down specifically for Instagram:
With a feed already filled with bold imagery, Adobe occasionally posts jaw-dropping, high-def loops to win over their followers.
Even traditional commercials are commonplace on Instagram, such as this humorous bit from Denny’s poking fun at the recent eclipse.
As you can see, Instagram represents a sort of “anything goes” platform for video content marketing. If you’re looking to experiment with video minus extensive editing, this is the place for you.
Twitter Video Marketing
— Sprout Social (@SproutSocial) August 22, 2017
At a glance, Twitter may seem like a sort of “jack of all trades, master of none” when it comes to video. However, Twitter video is definitely worthy of your attention if you’re on the hunt for more replies, retweets and “likes.”
Other compelling reasons for brands to hop on Twitter for video marketing include:
- Making your Twitter content seem more exclusive as videos only broadcast through the platform have a sort of “must-see” feel.
- Standing out in your followers’ feeds. The occasional video is a welcome change from solely text-based Tweets, especially given how quickly the platform moves (to the tune of about 7,000 Tweets per second.)
- Double-dipping your video from other platforms to squeeze the most out of each video you create on behalf of your brand.
More generous than the likes of Instagram, Twitter caps its videos at 2 minutes and 20 seconds. This is more than enough time for most marketers to get their messages across.
General Electric represents one of the more active companies using Twitter video, especially for their short-form “Did You Know?”style educational content.
— General Electric (@generalelectric) August 11, 2017
Meanwhile, split-second loop-style videos like this one from Major League Soccer are yet another reminder of the ghost of Vine.
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) August 24, 2017
The platform also boats long-form live video via Periscope, rivaling the likes of Facebook Live. Here’s Global News Canada‘s recent live Twitter broadcast of the solar eclipse which drew tens of thousands of viewers:
— Globalnews.ca (@globalnews) August 21, 2017
LinkedIn Video Marketing
LinkedIn is relatively new to the game in regard to video content marketing, recently announcing its new platform-specific video.
According to LinkedIn themselves, their new video functionality will allow users the opportunity to:
- Create tutorials and how-to’s related to your industry.
- Go behind the scenes of your company and its day-to-day activities.
- Share current projects and hype up new launches.
Users will be able to either record videos directly through LinkedIn or upload previously edited videos within the platform.
Of course, any of the previously noted types of video content could also be published to LinkedIn through YouTube as it currently stands. That said, only time will tell in terms of how much LinkedIn’s new system catches on in the coming months.
YouTube Video Marketing
Last but not least, let’s talk about the big kahuna of video content marketing.
The power of YouTube as a marketing platform really can’t be overstated. With a reach larger than any cable network in the US and users consuming billions of hours worth of video daily, we currently live in an era where your followers are probably more likely to watch a video versus stick with a traditional blog post.
For marketers, YouTube is no longer the wild, wild west. From attracting leads and showing off products to educating their audiences and building social proof, marketers certainly have their hands full in terms of options. Hubspot notes the four most common types of videos for marketing purposes to be:
- Explainer videos
- Product demos
So, what do these sorts of videos look like in action?
This in-depth webinar from Trello showcases an awesome way to teach your audience how to use your product. Oftentimes an explainer video is more effective than a seemingly endless tutorial on paper.
Another prime example of how-to content on YouTube is Moz‘s Whiteboard Friday series, delving into actionable advice for those looking to learn the ropes of SEO.
Video also provides a platform for creative marketers in seemingly “boring” industries to bring their products to life. This old-school example from Blendtec sits at over 12 million views and reminds us that product demos don’t have to be a total drag.
Finally, the storytelling element of video is a great way for brands to show off their heart as displayed in this video testimonial for ALDI.
Picking & Choosing Your Video Content Marketing Channels
Depending on your brand and its goals, there is no “right” channel to choose in terms of video content marketing.
As a rule of thumb, you should strive to start and scale your video strategy wherever your existing social audience is. The benefits of this approach to video are two-fold:
- You already have a built in viewership and don’t have to build a channel on another platform from scratch.
- You can use the existing videos from those social channels and repurpose them into a YouTube channel down the line.
Also, don’t use a lack of experience or equipment as an excuse to hold off on video. Phone cameras have proven to be more than enough for the majority of marketers today as displayed by Facebook Live. Besides, if you already create written content on behalf of your business, think of video as a supplement to your current content rather than an entirely new endeavor.
Even if you’re camera shy or don’t consider yourself to be tech-savvy, there are still options out there for you to begin creating video. Either way, the rise of video content marketing signals the need for marketers to get on board ASAP.
What Does Video Marketing Look Like for Your Brand?
Between an all-time low barrier to entry and so many options for creatives and non-creatives alike, there’s no reason not to hop on the video marketing bandwagon. Given video’s inevitable domination of web traffic and the variety of platforms out there, those on the fence about video should pick a side sooner rather than later.
What are some of your favorite brands killing it with video content marketing? Which types of videos typically catch your attention in the social sphere? Let us know in the comments below!