Text and image-based content marketing have their place, but if your brand really wants to grab attention and convert leads, video-based content is the way to go. The popularity of video content has been on an upward trend since about 2016, but it took the pandemic to accelerate its growth. When everyone went remote, events that previously took place face to face and in-person suddenly had to take place online.
Live streaming came to the rescue, delivering concerts, TV shows, poetry readings, and more. Even as the world has opened up again, video content continues to grow in popularity.
It’s time to implement video content to give your digital marketing strategy a boost. Let’s take a look at how your business can do this.
The Benefits of Video Content
Internet-based video hasn’t been around that long, but its rise has been astronomical. YouTube first went online in 2005, and its original videos left a lot of desire to watch more. Steadily though, video technology and quality improved, right along with popularity. Video was aided in its rise to stardom by increasing smartphone use. Between 2019 and 2020, the average user in the U.S. increased their media consumption by 215%.
What makes video so popular as a content format? For one thing, it’s more engaging than other content forms. When a person watches a video, the steps are seamless – you simply tap on a screen, and the content starts playing. They can pause the video, go back, or fast forward to get to the good bits.
Video is also easier to digest than other forms of content. Having someone show you how something works or how to make a recipe makes it a lot easier to understand. It also tends to be more shareable than other content forms, making it more likely to go viral. Twitter users are ten times more likely to engage with tweets with videos than tweets without, for example.
Give your brand’s SEO a boost by implementing video into your mix. Search engines rank pages with video more highly, as those pages earn a higher quality rating. Visitors are also more likely to spend more time on a page with video, which also aids SEO.
What Types of Video Should You Use?
The first step in developing a video-first digital marketing strategy is deciding on the type of videos that work best for your brand.
Video comes in many formats. The type that works best for your brand depends on what you’re selling and who you’re trying to reach. Some options include:
- Demo videos: If you sell a product, demo videos showcase how it works. The setup of a demo video can take several formats. One example is an unboxing video, during which someone opens the product for the first time and proceeds to set it up. Another example is a video tour that guides a person through using the product.
- Explainer videos: Explainer videos break challenging concepts down into digestible, easy-to-understand pieces. They bring the viewer on a journey, sharing how a particular service or product helped solve a problem.
- Instructional videos: Instructional videos walk viewers through the process of doing something, step by step. They can be DIY guides or recipe videos that demonstrate how to prepare a dish.
- Event videos: Event videos give people a chance to experience a live (or pre-recorded) event as if they were there. They can take many forms, from recorded conferences or lectures to recorded live performances such as concerts, ballet, or theater.
- Testimonials: Testimonial videos let you turn the camera on your customers, getting them to share their experience with your brand. You can use testimonial videos to highlight common problems people might have and highlight the ways your brand solves those problems.
How to Develop a Live Streaming Strategy
Live streaming allows you to engage with customers in a way that was previously possible only through in-person experiences. Live streaming means more than simply pressing the record on a camera and pointing it at whatever’s onstage. You should also have a plan for connecting with the viewers of the live stream.
Think about your live stream audience and what they want from your brand. If you’re hosting a live stream of a speaker or panel discussion, consider giving video viewers the chance to submit questions for the speaker or panelist, just as the people in the live audience have the chance to ask questions. If you’re live streaming demonstrations or tutorials, ask people to follow along at home and share pictures of their progress on social media.
It’s also important to choose your platform for the live stream carefully. You have a few options, each with its own pros and cons:
- Facebook Live: Facebook users can RSVP to live events on the platform and receive notifications once the stream begins. Your brand also gets plenty of rich data and metrics about who’s watching and where. A drawback of Facebook is that it’s SEO-friendly, so it can be difficult for people to find your video if they don’t already follow you on Facebook.
- YouTube Live: You can also post live streams on YouTube, which is SEO-friendly. Compared to Facebook, YouTube has more user-friendly tools, such as polls and thumbnails.
Another option is to crosspost your live streams to multiple channels, to reach the broadest audience possible.
How to Use Video to Boost SEO
Your brand’s videos can improve your search engine ranking, provided you take steps to optimize them. Video SEO allows your videos to be ranked by the search engines, so they appear at the top of the results pages, ideally for both video results and general web results.
Your video’s transcript acts as the page copy that search engines crawl looking for keywords, so if you aren’t yet using video transcription, it’s good to start. Transcribed videos are also more accessible and can engage a wider audience, as they make it possible for people to use captions when watching your content.
Other ways to boost video SEO include choosing engaging thumbnails and picking the right title and description for your videos. A keyword-rich title and informative description will lead to better search result rankings and more clicks.
A strong video marketing strategy can lead to a dramatic increase in leads and conversions. Offering live streaming of your brand’s events helps people feel like they’re part of the action, even if they’re miles away. If you’re not already using video as part of your content marketing strategy, there’s no time like the present to get started.