How to Build a Solid Video Marketing Strategy with Real ROI
How many times have you seen a video — either because a friend shared it on Facebook or because you were surfing YouTube — and thought, “I want my company to create that!”? You envision the possibilities: for your marketing team, for your department, for your company. And really, how hard can it be to make a short minute-long video? Everyone knows you should be investing in it, so it should be easy, right?
Yes and no. The difference between a good marketing video vs. a bad one is the strategy. A well-thought out strategy aligns process, content, and execution, making for a seamless process and a video with a clear message. A muddy strategy leads to confusion, wasted resources, and general hair-pulling-out-iness (trust me, that’s a real word).
Whether you’re a big organization looking to build up your video marketing efforts or a small company hoping to hop on the video marketing train, here are 5 foolproof tips to make sure you’re creating a strong video marketing strategy where you can see results and a return on investment.
MEASURE THE RIGHT THING
Every time I hear someone say, “Look at how many people watched this video!” I cringe. Marketers who justify their video marketing efforts with only video views are like car salesmen…you can’t trust that they’re giving you the whole story (unless awareness is your goal and viewership is your KPI).
When building out a video marketing strategy, first start off with the goal of your efforts. Is it part of a branding campaign, or are you trying to convert leads into customers? Is it on a product page with the hopes of increasing conversions, or are you trying to re-engage previous customers? Once your goal is established, you can identify your KPIs, and therefore, the most important video metrics you need to look at.
If you’re looking to get into shape, you don’t immediately start off running a marathon if you can barely run a mile. Video marketing is the same. Start small and slowly build up your video marketing capabilities to make things manageable.
And when I say “start small,” I don’t necessarily mean shoot a low budget video on your iPhone and post it on Facebook. Rather, invest strategically in a few campaigns and really test out your capabilities. So many of us feel like if we haven’t created the next viral video, we’ve failed. Video marketing isn’t an all-or-nothing approach, and there’s nothing wrong with starting small! Work with what you’ve got (money, time, manpower) and focus on making that a success. Once you can show your efforts have a return on investment, you can get more resources allocated towards your video marketing strategy.
MAKE A LITTLE GO A LONG WAY
I’m always impressed when I see people online that repurpose their old jeans to make a book cover or flower pot or some other crazy crafty thing (in my mind, DIYers are magicians because the way they make something out of nothing is 100% witchcraft). If jeans from the 90s can be repurposed, why can’t you do the same with your video?!
Check out this video on 6K technology and how you can get stills from your video shoot without the added cost of a photographer!
Video is literally a gold mine for additional marketing collateral. A good video marketing strategy will take that into consideration and make the most out of a campaign. Use the time to capture stills that can replace stock photos! Version your video into shorter pieces to be used in an email or on social media. Think about repurposing the video content into a blog post, or maybe even a blog series! Create gifs to share on Twitter and graphics to post on Instagram! The possibilities are endless.
The best thing you can do for yourself and your marketing strategy is to make sure that you repurpose your video so it lasts months after your campaign has been launched.
AVOID FADS. FIND EVERGREEN CONTENT.
The #mannequinchallenge was so popular that even Michelle Obama, Beyonce, and the New York Giants did it. But that doesn’t mean your business should be targeting these viral memes/fads. It might seem like a good idea to hop on the viral bandwagon, but oftentimes, these fads fade out so fast that by the time you put your content out there, people aren’t looking at it anymore. And more importantly, even if you do see a spike in viewership, visits, and buzz, it’s very temporary. Many brands struggle with maintaining attention when it’s all said and done. Essentially, once the fad is over, the viewers will leave, and with them goes their business. You’re better served working with evergreen content when it comes to video.
What is evergreen content? It’s content that’s always relevant. When building out a solid video marketing strategy, you’ll see higher returns on investment using topics that are constantly searched for. Think of “how to dance” versus “the Dougie.” Which do you think does better? Maybe within the first month, the Dougie does better, but overall, it’s really “how to dance” that will get you the most engagement. For what you’re investing, it’s not worth making a video if it’s dead a month after you post it. And while you don’t see that immediate spike like you would by piggybacking on a fad, with evergreen content, you’re investing in the long game. And that’s where you’ll see real ROI.
ALLOCATE TIME AND BE PATIENT
When it comes to ROI, time and money aren’t usually in a marketer’s vocabulary. When we launch a new campaign, marketers typically want to see results immediately so we can report positive results at the end of the quarter. So, when our success depends on a quick results, it’s very easy for us to fall into the trap of chasing the lowest hanging fruit. When you think about it like that, it makes sense why we choose fads over evergreen content! However, like I mentioned above, building a strategy around quick results often means a loss in the long-term. Why invest all that effort for it to be dead in the water after a month or two? Especially when you’re investing a fair bit of money, time, and human resources to make it happen, you want to see sustained growth to justify the investment.
Good marketing strategy goes beyond execution and includes a plan once your campaign launches, often known as the testing and analysis phase. This is where you see your work in action, and have a structured way of iterating and improving. Your video marketing strategy is no exception. When you take the time to see what is working and what can be improved on, you are able to build a smart way of moving forward, where you’ll see an increase in ROI. Not to mention, you won’t have to start your efforts from scratch…you’ll already have something to work off of!
So when you’re watching that awesome video that you wish you could recreate for your company, take a step back and think. What was the strategy that went behind it that made the video a success? And trust me, we get it…video feels like the unicorn of marketing — it’s a beautiful thing, but it can be so hard to capture success. That is until you get your strategy done right. For social, sales, branding and such, nothing touches the impact video can have. Now that you’re armed with what makes for a good strategy, you’re ready to start seeing results on your video marketing efforts. High fives all around!