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How using video natively wins more viewers and how to use it as part of your marketing strategy

By Sian Hainsworth, Head of production



The Drum Network article

This content is produced by The Drum Network, a paid-for membership club for CEOs and their agencies who want to share their expertise and grow their business.

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October 28, 2019 | 5 min read

Video has exploded on social media with impressive view rates such as the over 500million hours of video watched on YouTube each day. According to Cisco Visual Networking, video accounts for 80% of all traffic this year, which is enough to make any marketer think about creating video content for their brand. While you should consider ‘native video’ as part of your marketing activity, it’s not as simple as recording and uploading.

Video native

Using video natively is the key to maximising the views and content engagement, and it’s easy to do, but it requires a little planning… With stats like above, going native should be on your marketing agenda.

But what exactly is native video and how do you use it meaningfully as part of your marketing strategy?

Technically native video is video content that is uploaded directly on to a platform (social networks and played in-feed). But to get a clearer picture of what native video is, it’s helpful to look at what it isn’t. An example is a YouTube video shared in a Facebook post - this isn’t native video. To ensure that your video is native, it must be designed (formatted) for the platform it’s being uploaded to.

So, why is it important to create video that fits its intended platform? Because running videos via a 3rd party platform (such as YouTube) may well sabotage your video’s full viewing potential. Creating your own native content allows more control, feels more authentic and in line with your marketing strategy. It allows the viewer to stay on your branded platform instead of opening a new window. This simple activity will keep your viewers invested in your brand. That, ultimately, is a marketer’s goal.

Top five reasons

  1. Engages viewers for longer
  2. Attracts more views
  3. Achieves more organic reach
  4. Easier for viewers to consume more content from the creator and follow the brands account
  5. Finally, and most importantly, content that isn’t native often annoys viewers by interrupting their user experience with unnecessary clicks or challenging functionality

Examples of good native video

Good examples of how to use native video are retailer Primark and The Great British Bake-off (Channel 4).

Primark (created by Live and Wired) provides an example of the same video used in different ways to fit different platforms:

The Great British Bake Off is a great example of taking video native to television and tailoring it to fit different social platforms:

The way these videos are edited, viewers don’t need to know what’s happening in the show to enjoy them. They end with either trailers or with full-screen details of where to watch the next episode, seamlessly helping the viewer to stay engaged.

Top 3 tips

  • Think about the way the platform is widely used. For example, Facebook video is far more watched with the sound down than YouTube video, so you could consider adding subtitles to a native Facebook video.
  • Consider the functionality of the platform and if you need to encourage viewers to interact differently with your video content depending on where they view it.
  • Aspect ratios are important. When you alter an aspect ratio, keep an eye on the quality.

Once creators start tailoring their videos, they will see how hard a single piece of content can work across multiple platforms and reap the benefits.


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