With sound, images, music and other engaging elements, video marketing has all the bells and whistles to attract viewers. It’s projected that adults will spend 80 minutes per day watching digital video by 2023.
Marketers need to take note of this if they want to develop their video marketing strategy on social media.
Luckily, there are many ways video can be used in social media marketing. We’re not limited to TV-style ads or perfectly polished educational videos. With the introduction of live streaming videos, an interest in brand authenticity and accessible editing apps, it’s easier than ever to dip your toes into the video marketing world.
Follow our 7-step guide to creating a successful social media video marketing strategy.
- Set goals for video marketing
- Decide on your platform(s)
- Select your video types
- Plan content production
- Know what post-production entails
- Schedule and promote the videos
- Understand and analyze metrics
Our guide will walk you through each of the seven steps you need to create a successful social media video marketing strategy. But you can also watch the below video for a crash course, including tips for scaling your video process from pre-production to post:
1. Set goals for video marketing
At the beginning of any new marketing strategy, there’s a need to set goals. What do you want your videos to accomplish?
If you’re just starting out, we recommend creating only a few goals so you don’t become overwhelmed. An example of a video marketing goal would be creating brand awareness.
But with the right script and creativity, your video marketing strategy can do more than support a prospect’s awareness of your brand. It can also guide them through the decision stage of their buyer’s journey, educate customers on their brand new purchase and fuel a brand’s advocacy plans.
There are five stages of a typical marketing funnel, and videos can fall easily into each stage as long as you develop your social media video marketing strategy to target them.
As you reflect on what your goals are for your video marketing strategy, consider where they’ll fall within each stage of the buyer’s journey and use it to inspire your social media video ideas. Setting your goals and identifying the funnel stage will help you create highly effective calls to action in your video content as well.
Here are five example goals you can accomplish within each funnel stage:
Awareness: Reach new customers
According to The Sprout Social Index™, more than half of social practitioners and marketing leaders alike track follower growth on social as a core metric, which is table stakes in understanding social’s impact on brand awareness. In the first stage of the buyer’s journey, brands are trying to capture consumers’ attention and introduce themselves. Social media video marketing is a great medium to reach new customers and show them who you are and what you value, what your brand offers and what differentiates it from your competitors.
With video you may only have seconds or minutes to capture your audience’s attention, so get right to the point when you’re creating awareness-stage video content.
For example, eye-catching educational videos or opinionated thought leadership can establish credibility and your brand identity, so when consumers have purchase intent, your brand is top of mind.
For some brands, videos are used heavily for advertising. They may start on a product page on the website and then branch out to land in a social ad. Others create videos only for social media ads. This is especially useful for direct-to-consumer brands like Lo & Sons, where product videos are necessary to help the consumer picture themselves with the product.
In the below product video, the luggage brand shows how their Rowledge backpack is appropriate for any occasion. The video is relatable and short, and can not only be used in Facebook as a feed post but also be promoted as a social ad.
The super versatile Rowledge is now 50% OFF with our Summer Sale!
Posted by Lo & Sons on Wednesday, July 7, 2021
Consideration: Generate demand
Once consumers have reached the consideration stage, they may know about your brand and what you offer, but it’s still your job to generate demand for your products and services.
There are several ways you can achieve this goal with social media video marketing. For example, how-tos and tutorials show your product in action and make it easy for the consumer to envision how they’d use the product themselves. Brands in the skincare, makeup and beauty industry, like ColourPop, are masters of consideration-stage videos.
You can bet that whenever ColourPop has a sale or giveaway going, they will share short-and long-form social videos of makeup artists, influencers and real customers applying their products. Consumers can see the smoothness of foundations, color pigment of eyeshadows, creaminess of lipsticks and other visual markers that will catch their attention.
When people can see how your product works or how other people use your services to solve a problem, they can visualize themselves doing the same thing.
Animated explainer videos can be an alternative option to live-action demonstrations. While they might be a bit more abstract, they’re still an opportunity to put the customer’s problem into perspective and introduce your services as the solution.
Consideration-stage videos don’t have to focus solely on your products or services, either. Consumers also consider a company’s culture and core values before committing to being their customer.
Data from the Sprout Social Index™ shows company alignment with personal values is 74% more important to consumers than it was in 2021.
Lean into this consumer interest by using video to highlight your brand story and core values so you can establish an emotional connection with your audience, making it more likely they’ll choose your company over a competitor.
Decision: Drive conversion
The decision stage is the point when your goal is to turn prospects into customers. Here, customer testimonial videos can go a long way to show the real potential and payoff of your products and services.
Instant Pot’s Community features videos from the brand and members. Although there are a few product videos, the page focuses on what customers can create using Instant’s home appliances.
Recipe videos like the one below can help customers envision how the product can help a plethora of recipes fit into their lives—or their mouths.
What makes this video a strong decision-stage piece, is the aspirational, yet authentic, “this could be you” feeling. Instant isn’t just making a promise to you as a customer and hoping you buy with blind faith: they’re showing they’ve already earned their customers’ trust and made a difference in their lives.
Use this kind of video content to show potential customers the results and the real benefits that others have reaped and what they stand to gain from choosing your business.
Adoption: Educate customers
It’s not just marketers who want to make sure they’re seeing a return on their investments. Once a prospect becomes a customer and enters the adoption stage, educate them about how they can get the most out of your products and services.
This kind of fun, energetic how-to video is ideal for platforms like YouTube, Facebook or IGTV, where people are willing to spend a bit more time watching and learning.
You have a few options:
- Educational video: If your products or services have a lot of bells and whistles, features based on specific needs or there’s a learning curve that comes with them, lean into educating your audience. Content that’s focused on hacks, tips, optimization or special features can put complexities into perspective and make customers more confident.
- Webinars: These can be highly effective mediums: They give customers a chance to engage with your brand in real time, ask questions and get answers they’re looking for.
- Live stream: Going live can help you capture a broader audience, but it’s your biggest fans and existing followers who are most likely to tune in. And live is the third most engaging type of in-feed content, according to our Index data. Unlike posts that show up in people’s feeds, Instagram Live streams appear at the top of the interface at the beginning of Stories. Followers who have their app open when you go live will also receive a notification that you’re broadcasting, so they can easily tune in to get the latest from your brand.
Advocacy: Inspire evangelism
By the advocacy stage, you have happy customers that will sing your praises and champion your brand.
The beautiful thing about advocacy videos is that customers don’t feel like they’re being sold anything. Capitalize on organic, genuine love for your brand and product using social listening tools like Sprout Social’s. With Listening, you can meet the moment and capture brand mentions from engaged profiles, and you can surface user-generated content.
Not every advocacy video will be viral or come straight from your fans. Employer brand strategies can also be bolstered by employee advocacy content. Consider showcasing your colleagues to show the ins and outs of your company and why they love working there.
2. Decide on your platforms
Every major social media platform has its own form of video, so there is plenty of real estate to incorporate it into your strategy.
If you’ve never used video on any platform, begin with the ones where you already have audiences established. According to the Sprout Social Index™, Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok are the top platforms consumers and brands anticipate to use the most over the next year.
Choosing any of these five to begin your video marketing strategy is a good first step, but it would be remiss of me to not tell you to strongly consider using TikTok and YouTube for video marketing first.
When to use TikTok for video marketing
Without a doubt, TikTok helped popularize the love of short-form video and has become one of the internet’s favorite apps because of it.
In the Sprout Social Index™, our data showed consumers find short-form videos 2.5 times more engaging than long-form ones. Plus, short-form video is the most engaging type of in-feed content, followed by images and live video.
The app is a powerful awareness driver, but trends like #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt show that short-form video can also convert consumers into customers.
When to use YouTube for video marketing
With over 2.5 billion monthly active users, YouTube still reigns as one of the most popular video platforms amongst consumers and marketers.
A massive user base is great, but that isn’t the only reason brands should consider YouTube marketing. YouTube is one of the most popular search engines in the world and videos from the platform show up in Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs) as well. Marketers can use YouTube to increase their brand’s visibility by producing content that targets commonly searched topics.
You can use YouTube video marketing to address all the stages of the marketing funnel, so you can reach the goals of your strategy no matter what you choose.
Social media video formats and features
To choose the right platform for you, you need to understand what each one offers and what video dimensions can be displayed. This is important because if you’d like to repurpose your videos, it’s best to choose platforms that complement each other.
As different social platforms continually add more features, it can be hard to keep track of what type of video content can be uploaded where, or when you might need to do some additional editing.
See below for a quick reference and visit our full social media video specs guide for all the details you need to upload on each network.
- Landscape and portrait feed video
- Facebook Live (live streaming)
- Facebook Stories (disappearing content)
- Landscape and portrait feed video
- Live streaming (Instagram Live)
- Instagram Stories (disappearing content)
- Instagram Reels (short-form and long-form content)
- Landscape video
- Portrait video (may use pillarboxing on some uploads)
- Live streaming
- YouTube Shorts (portrait, short-form video)
- Portrait feed video
- Live streaming
- TikTok Stories (disappearing content)
- Landscape and portrait feed video
- Landscape feed video
- Portrait feed video
- Idea Pins (set of images, videos or text similar to Stories)
Tasty’s social media content offers great examples of how to tailor your videos for different platforms. It includes a heavy dose of video, customized for platforms like Instagram and YouTube. Not only are the orientations different but the topics and series also vary between platforms. This diversity of content ensures that the audience will find original content no matter which Tasty social media page they’re on.
3. Select your video types
Determining the type of video that works best for your brand is an important step in your marketing strategy. Not all videos are made the same and that’s okay–what is most important is that they support your key goals.
Our research in the Sprout Social Index™ found that consumers want authentic content from brands on social media. Some 51% of consumers want to see brands highlighting their product or service. Some 39% want to see customers testimonials/demos, and 34% report wanting posts that showcase a brand’s personality and less-produced videos.
The takeaway here? Consumers are looking for all-around authenticity within your content.
Here are a few different types of social media video ideas and their benefits to get you started with accomplishing the genuinity consumers are looking for:
- Educational: These are informative and can create brand awareness for new customers. They often take a less casual, more polished tone to establish the brand as an expert. If created for current customers, then the videos could be focused on guides and tips for getting the most out of a product.
- Explainer: Similar to educational videos, explainer content focuses on teaching the audience more about your brand and the product or service you offer. Use these videos to quickly explain what your company does and how the brand can help solve a particular problem. End with a strong call to action to prompt viewers further along the marketing funnel.
- Behind-the-scenes: These give a look into company operations and employees. They sometimes serve to entertain the audience or give a virtual peek behind the curtain.
- Interviews: With guest speakers, interviews are a great way of introducing your audience to a new influencer and vice versa. Handing the virtual mic over to a guest can be fun and provide a little more authenticity to your brand.
- Entertaining: These include jokes, cute puppies and even pranks. They serve solely to entertain the audience but can be a great way of emphasizing your brand voice and building a sense of community among your audience.
- Testimonials: In marketing, these videos look like customer highlights and help to create social proof for your brand. Videos that showcase how a customer uses your product or service and their satisfaction with it operate on a connection level: ideally, a potential customer will see themselves in that video and be persuaded to purchase.
- Product: Highlight the top features of your brand’s most popular product or service by showing it in action. Showing off what makes your product or service unique can help customers envision themselves using your brand.
- Narrative: Put your author’s hat on and tell an engaging story to leave a lasting impression on viewers. Use animation or go documentary-style to explain how your brand was founded or a customer problem you resolved—anything that showcases a memorable story.
Once you’ve determined which types of videos to tackle, it’s time to move onto planning the actual video.
4. Plan the content production
A good content production plan will save you time and money in the long run. Whether you plan with a spreadsheet or old-fashioned pen and paper, you need to establish how you’ll create and film videos.
Evaluate your options for content production and post-production. Hiring an agency or production company will alleviate a lot of the stress. They’ll handle all the planning and approvals, you just need to give the guidance.
But if you’re planning on doing this all in-house, you’ll need to think about all the steps needed to produce a successful video. This includes but is not limited to:
- Identifying needed equipment and props
- Writing a script
- Editing the script
- Storyboarding the video
- Planning the shoot for optimal filming. Filming won’t be linear for the most part.
- Gathering and nurturing talent (the people who are featured in the video)
- Identifying the place(s) you’ll film and taking natural daylight into consideration for timing
- Knowing where to send the footage to be edited
- Determining who will do the approval sign-offs for each step. For example, you want to make sure that the script sounds good and is in line with your voice. This might require two people to review it.
- Checking that the music you’re using is licensed for you
As you run through the content plan, you’ll find some ways you need to tweak it or things you missed earlier, especially if this is one of your first efforts putting together a comprehensive video content plan. After a solid plan is executed, it’s time to move on to post-production.
5. Know what post-production entails
Allot plenty of time to post-production, especially if your videos will be used for ads or have heavier editing needs. Post-production does not mean just cutting scenes and putting them back together to music. It also includes additions like closed captions, text overlays, call-to-action screens and more. The more you film and the more polished you want your video to be, the more time you’ll need.
Some videos will only need light edits post production. For example, if you host a Facebook Live, the video is published immediately after it ends. You’ll be able to edit the caption and title but not much else.
Uploaded videos will go through the post-production process. On YouTube, for example, you’ll be able to add tags, multiple language closed captions, detailed captions and more.
Know what you’re getting yourself into before you start: formal, polished videos on YouTube require a lot more work than a basic livestream. Since YouTube is a video platform, you’ll need to optimize your words and visuals to stand out.
6. Schedule and promote the videos
Now that you have the completed video, it’s time to schedule and promote it. Some management platforms like Sprout offer publishing options for videos.
For instance, Sprout’s YouTube publishing options include details like tags, category, playlist and privacy settings. We’re the only social media management software that lets you manage your TikTok content by allowing you to schedule your videos in the same calendar as your other social posts, all on one platform.
Don’t think of videos on social media as one-and-done. One fully produced video could be uploaded to several networks over a month-long time period, depending on your social schedule. On Twitter, you could promote it many times. For livestreams, you’ll need to promote often to ensure lots of people will join in at the right time.
One film recording session could produce multiple videos. Different clips could be used for promotion or spliced together to create new videos. Think big when you’re promoting videos.
7. Understand and analyze metrics
The last step in any strategy is the most important of them all: analyzing it. You won’t know how a video performs unless you take a look at the statistics associated with it. What are the view counts? The watch times? The shares and likes and comments? How is your YouTube engagement or TikTok engagement?
Each network provides different sets of video metrics, so it’s important for you to know what they are before you start on production. Every platform also has native analytics that will tell you how your video content performed. The metrics you use to analyze success should match the goals you set in the beginning. If you wanted brand awareness for a video, the matching metric might be impressions or video views.
Along with scheduling, Sprout offers a suite of analytics tools. For example, you can analyze your performance by reviewing TikTok analytics to identify which video posts were the most successful. TikTok’s native analytics only saves your data for 60 days, but Sprout’s Reporting and Analytics tools don’t put an expiration date on your post performance data. You can view how your TikTok videos perform over time, and even against the content on your other platforms.
Keep in mind that audiences will even watch your older videos. With the right combination of keywords and an evergreen topic, a three-year-old video might still be relevant to your users today.
Start your video marketing strategy today
And there you have it! A full 7-step guide to creating your video marketing strategy. We hope this helps inspire your brand to plan your next set of videos. To go deeper into your strategy with analytics, sign up for a 30-day trial.
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