Video is the new king in content marketing. Over the last few years we’ve seen online videos grow in viewership, with most businesses taking notice. YouTube has increased viewership 100% every year, with numbers expected to continue to rise. Whether you record a video or broadcast live, it’s important to your business that video be a part of your marketing platform. But how do you go about using video on social media? There are a few keys that you need to remember before posting a video on your social media accounts.
Why Videos are Important on Social Media
According to marketing studies, 90% of people say viewing a video about a product is helpful in the decision making process. Videos also have staying-power in the minds of the viewers. The Online Publishers Association claims 80% of all video viewers can recall in detail a video ad they viewed within the last month. That kind of impact makes videos one of the best things that you can post on your social media.
Videos help your followers understand your products. Videos are a great to add to your social media to help answer frequently asked questions about your products or services. They can be used for fun, to teach (like tutorials or “how-to”) and give important information to your followers.
Videos are also a great way to be seen, over traditional link-based posts. I have a client that sells home decor, mainly silk flower arrangements. The videos I post on social media of her products with some basic information are some of the most engaged posts. People are more visual than ever, and creating a short HD video that showcases her products helps people looking for silk flowers know what they’re getting.
People Are Watching, But Not Listening to What You Say
The first rule of posting videos on social media is to remember that most people are not listening to the videos. The majority of people will be watching a video on your feed on a mobile device. The person(s) watching the video are likely watching it while in a family room with other media playing (like a TV show). Digiday reports that 85% of all videos viewed on Facebook are watched without sound.
Without sound it can make your message more difficult to spread. My advice? Learn to edit video. You can record videos with sound, however once recorded you should use an editor to create captions that will give people the ability to read the message, instead of listen to it. You don’t need to buy software that costs hundreds of dollars. There are several free editors available that will help you create a professional, HD video. Make sure to include website links, phone numbers and social media information in the text on your video, along with your message.
Live Video is the Future
In the last year live video has started to become popular. It began on Twitter, with Periscope and has moved to Facebook Live. Facebook Live, in my opinion, is the greatest threat to Twitter’s monopoly on immediacy that I’ve seen. Facebook live allows anyone with a Facebook account to stream their video live. The public setting means anyone can reach the entire world. I first noticed this as an important tool when there was political strife in Turkey over the summer. To get insight, I went to Facebook Live, which provides a map that shows all the people broadcasting live. So all I had to do was go to the people streaming in Turkey to get information on what was going on, from the people. It was amazing.
So how does a business take advantage of live videos? The answer is complex, because it depends on your business. Hopefully you have creative people among your staff that can understand how to utilize live video. Live video can be used as promotional tools, to explain contests or special deals for your followers. You can also use live video to give people behind-the-scenes access. Live video can be used to answer questions, and have more interaction with your followers. Most live video platforms (YouTube or Facebook especially) have comments sections that can allow the public to talk with you while you broadcast. I know many resorts that will live stream the beach. The options are all up to your creativity. It’s also helpful if you have someone who is personable on your videos.
Recorded Videos Should be to the Point
Don’t draw out your videos too long, or people will lose interest. Typically, recorded videos should be around two minutes. Most viewers (about 55%) say that they will watch a video that is one minute long to its completion. That number drops to just 5% for videos three minutes or longer.
There are obvious exceptions. If a hardware store, for example, posts a “how-to” video on re-tiling a kitchen, that video will need to be pretty elaborate, and people will tend to watch longer to get step-by-step instructions. People are also more likely to watch longer videos (1-2 minutes) about specific products. A two minute video that details the features of a laptop, for example, would be more likely to be watched from beginning to end than a normal video.
So how long should you make generic videos? If you are recording a general video that tells followers about your company, try to keep it under a minute. Treat it like a broadcast commercial and write copy that will inform and entertain.
The Best Social Media Sites to Post Video
I’ve not had great results posting videos on Pinterest. It’s possible to post a YouTube video on Pinterest, however I find most users on Pinterest and other imaged-based sites (Flickr, Tumblr, etc.) tend to stick with images. Your results will vary, and there is one major exception to the rule I’ll touch on in a moment.
So where is the best place to post your videos on social media? The obvious choices: Snapchat, Facebook (live & recorded) and Twitter (live via Periscope & edited). But don’t forget about Instagram. Just this year Instagram has unveiled the ability to post videos similar to Snapchat. The videos you record on Instagram appear at the top of the home page, making them more accessible than most pictures you post on the site. It’s already proving a popular feature and will grow into 2017.
So get recording and have fun interacting with your customers. Never forget social media is supposed to be “social.” Using videos are a great way to forge a connection with your customers, however it’s hard for some businesses to understand. If you’re struggling to find ways to incorporate videos I can help! Learn more about my content marketing services or contact me for a quote.