A staggering 100 million Internet users watch an online video everyday. Thanks to improved access and advances in delivery options for video, it has emerged as one of the most powerful tools in a marketer’s arsenal. Today, Internet video is transforming the way people consume entertainment, share their experiences, learn new skills, and most importantly for marketers, connect with brands.
Even more staggering than the consumption of Internet video is its effect on consumer engagement: 50 percent of users watch business-related videos on YouTube once a week, 75 percent of users visit a marketer’s website after viewing a video, and website visitors are 64 percent more likely to buy a product online after watching a video.
Many marketers are content to acknowledge the power of video and leave it at that. However, a deeper understanding of why video is so powerful empowers marketers to deliver even more effective campaigns and maximize their results. Let’s take a look at 4 ways marketers can get the most out of their video marketing efforts.
Videos are the most effective way to explain and show what a product does. Video has the ability to quickly explain complex subjects. What may take hundreds of words to explain with text can be conveyed with a short and sweet video. Video also helps with the retention of the information since it engages multiple senses, which has been shown to increase brand and message recall.
In addition, videos enable users to see products in action. They bring them to life, which allows users to visualize how they might use the product and addresses questions or uncertainties. 90 percent of users say that seeing a video about a product is helpful in the decision process.
Videos are meant to tell stories. Because they use sight and sound, those stories are visceral and immersive. They trigger emotions that cause users to feel a strong sense of connection to what they are viewing and a desire to act on those emotions. By emotion, I don’t just mean sappy videos of lost puppies or grandparents bonding with their grandchildren. Greed, anxiety, and fear are also influential emotions, as are excitement, gratitude, pride, hope, awe, love, and amusement.
Emotional videos will make your products and your brand seem more human, not to mention more memorable. In fact, 80 percent of Internet users remember the video ads they watch. When it comes to setting off an emotional response, user-generated content is often the most powerful because it feels real, and thus carries more emotional weight.
As mentioned above, truth and authenticity play a huge role in conversions. Today’s consumer is reluctant to believe things that they have not seen with their own two eyes. Witnessing something for yourself makes it more believable.
Video is the closest way for a consumer to experience your product without actually owning it. Therefore, video becomes a source of truth for whatever it is you’re selling.
By showing (rather than telling) what your product or service does, you cultivate trust and confidence in the viewer -- especially if that content comes from actual users. The greater the trust, the more likely the user is to complete a purchase. It’s no surprise that 70 percent of marketing professionals report that video converts better than any other medium.
To choose your product over all the other products out there, consumers need information to understand what it is and how it works. They need to feel a connection to the product that inspires them to want it, and they need to feel confident that the product will live up to its claims. That is a tall order, especially in today’s fast-moving, always-on world where consumer attention is stretched razor thin.
Video makes this possible. As Dr. James McQuivey of Forresterk put it, “a video is worth 1.8 million words” a minute. A two-minute video can include all the explaining, emotion, and authenticity needed to drive conversions. The best way to hit all three of these notes in a short video is from user-generated content that shows real people engaging meaningfully with your product. And thanks to mobile devices, editing apps, and social media, there is a wealth of user-generated content at your disposal. As a result, marketers have no excuse not to deliver amazing videos. It involves a little effort for a big reward.
Al Falaschi is currently the video subject matter expert and customer marketing manager at Widen Enterprises. He tweets @digitalmediaal.