What does it take to build a brand that stands the test of time? How do you make someone fall in love with your brand? Is it possible to build lifelong audiences and advocates for your business? There’s a good reason these questions still remain at the forefront of marketer’s minds today. And that’s because, in 2020, your brand has never mattered more.
That’s why we teamed up with Buffer to bring you Built to Last, the first-ever audio conference for brand builders. Throughout the event, attendees received exclusive access to a private podcast feed where we released six episodes over the two-day conference. Each episode featured lessons and key insights that can be applied when crafting memorable content and campaigns that build engaged audiences.
We heard from marketers and creatives behind some of the world’s most-loved brands and learned a ton of valuable lessons when it comes to building brands that thrive. In this post, we’re sharing our top five takeaways from the event. But we’re curious — what lessons did you learn? Be sure to share them with us in the comments!
Throughout Built to Last, one theme that consistently rang true for our speakers was the power of focus. From picking very specific target customers and understanding exactly how your business fits into their lives to prioritizing building a community and crafting super-specific content — when it comes to building lasting brands, focus is key.
Emily Heyward, Co-Founder of Red Antler and author of the book Obsessed — Building a Brand People Love from Day One, pointed out how important it is to consider the context of the world we live in today when it comes to getting people to care about your brand.
“Consumers have more choice, more information, and therefore more power than ever before. Think about how what we used to buy was controlled by gatekeepers. We were only able to buy whatever was available at the drugstore or the grocery store. We only learned about brands through national TV campaigns. Now we learn about brands through Instagram. We can Google exactly what we’re looking for and access niche brands that have millions of consumer reviews and are being written about on forums that contain people who are similar to us and have similar needs.”
Co-Founder, Red Antler
Emily recommended that brands come forward with a simple, clear offering right out the gate so they can spend more time focusing on what they stand for and what it matters, rather than getting bogged down by every detail of their product offering. This can help businesses more clearly articulate the value they bring to the table, rather than having to explain away a ton of complex features of variations of their product.
Ben Witte, Founder of Recess, a consumer wellness brand in the beverage industry, touched on a similar concept throughout his episode. He noted the importance of staying focused when it comes to attracting the right audience.
“I think you want to identify who you’re speaking to very early on. I think [Recess] is relevant to all age demographics and psychographics. But your content strategy has to be very specifically defined. And if you’re speaking to everyone, you’re speaking to no one.”
Founder and CEO, Recess
Another, perhaps, not-so-surprising thread that was woven throughout the conference? The marketing evolution from focusing on brand awareness to actually cultivating brand affinity. Businesses are doing this today by investing in high-quality, narrative-driven content like video series and podcasts (just like Built to Last).
Wistia’s very own CEO and Co-Founder, Chris Savage, spoke to this concept throughout his talk and explained how Wistia ended up on the journey towards creating this type of binge-worthy content with the goal of building brand affinity.
“We started to ask ourselves the question — we’ve been trying to go wider and get more awareness, but what if we go deeper? What if we go above and beyond for our customers and our audience members who are still engaging with us? What if we try to use the audience we have to grow an existing audience? How do we do that? And what we settled in on was we would go bigger on the scale of the content. We would try not just a blog post, we would try something much larger and more impactful and see how that would work.”
Co-Founder and CEO, Wistia
As brands continue to build niche audiences of people who love their content and the experiences they provide, these people are more likely to recommend that business and share that content with the people they already know and trust. This creates an incredibly powerful organic growth for your brand, which Helena Hambrecht, Co-Founder, and Co-CEO of Haus, a modern aperitif brand, spoke to throughout her episode as well.
“Our theory was if we put 100% … 200%, everything we have into the product and the customer experience upfront, the customer will be delighted enough to share that experience and share it with their friends. Put everything that we can into the experience up front, and we will grow the word of mouth. Those were the bets that we made, and it worked. All of our growth — we grew a ton in the first six months — was 100% organic.”
Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Haus
“My biggest advice to our founders creating consumer brands is that your brand better have something to say.” Ben Witte shared some words of wisdom for brands during his talk that seemed to ring true for many other brand-builders throughout the conference as well, which doesn’t come as a huge surprise. After all, consumers these days are increasingly making purchasing decisions based on what a brand says, how it acts, and what it stands for.
Certainly, the pressure is on for brand-builders — why does your business even exist? What are its purpose and mission? Your values and what your brand cares about can play a huge role in shaping how your brand is perceived and the direction your business takes in the long run.
Madison Uttendhal, Founder of Utendahl Creative, a branding, content, and social media storytelling agency, highlighted why she believes it’s so important for brands to take a stand.
“In order to have returning customers and ones that are loyal to you, that have genuine brand affinity, it means that they really have to believe in you because they stand with your values. For me personally, as an African-American woman, brands that have taken stances on Black Lives Matter, on supporting marginalized groups, I’m going to continue to purchase from them. And I’m going to go out of my way to make sure I am purchasing from them rather than purchasing from a brand that isn’t saying anything at all.”
Founder, Utendahl Creative
Joel Gascoigne, Buffer’s Co-Founder, and CEO, also shared his thoughts on the importance of authenticity when it comes to building brands that stand the test of time.
“I do believe that modern consumers expect more transparency and authenticity from brands. I would say, in a lot of ways, they’re even demanding it. I think that they’re demanding that companies take a stance and become an aim to be a net positive for society.”
Co-Founder and CEO, Buffer
And last but not least, Helena shared some pretty telling insights around her modern aperitif brand, Haus, and some of the data they’ve uncovered around purchasing behavior. “I encountered a treasure trove of Nielsen data and consumer trends around millennial and Gen Z consumers and how they’re looking for something that alcohol wasn’t providing. They’re concerned about their health and their image, and they care deeply about authenticity, transparency, convenience, and quality. And you see proof of that in other industries that have been disrupted by more millennial-leaning brands that represent their values.”
Another trend that came up across several episodes was the idea that content is one of the best ways to showcase your brand. We’re not just talking about any old content though — a one-off blog post or Instagram Story won’t do. For brands to last, they need to understand their audience to the core and then create entertaining content that speaks directly to them.
Ben Witte called out brands like Red Bull, Gatorade, and Monster Energy, commenting on the fact that they are effectively media companies that monetize through “selling cans.” He also noted that the era of being able to launch a brand through ads alone on Instagram is over, and that “You should use paid as an accelerant, not to establish yourself.”
Chris Savage also spoke to this idea of creating and promoting content like a media company, just like Red Bull does with their extreme(ly dangerous) looking content. “With Brand Affinity Marketing — making podcasts, making video shows, and longer-form content — you’re making content that you are marketing like a product and treating like a product. And so just like when you’re doing product development, someone goes and asks customers, ’What do you like about this and what don’t you like?’ You just have to do the same thing with your content.”
Other speakers commented on the importance of solidifying your story and the content you are going to use to share that story, rather than focusing all your energy on racking up empty impressions. In other words, getting your messaging down and establishing what your brand is and what it stands for before you start hunting down exponential growth.
Madison also puts a finer point on the age-old quality vs. quantity debate. “I believe that quality wins over quantity any day. It is more impactful to have three posts a week that are beautifully done — thoughtful, intentional, informative than it is to have seven posts in a week that look half-hazard and a mess. Taking the time to create beautiful content and letting that project marinate so that it can be the best it can be is really important.”
Finally, and this one is sneaky because it might seem super obvious, but businesses need to remember that their audiences are made up of real people, just like them. An endless sea of demographic information, tracking pixels, and retargeting campaigns have made marketers forget just how important each individual in their audience really is. For brands to make it for the long-haul, they need to get back to the basics and remember what businesses are built on — people.
“In order for brands to make it for the long-haul, they need to get back to the basics and remember what businesses are built on — people.”
“I think that people like to forget that humans work in businesses,” says Chris Savage. “I think it’s kind of that simple. We talk about people’s job titles and we’re like, ’I’m trying to market to the VP of Marketing, I’m trying to market to the Director of Customer Growth and Acquisition.’ As opposed to, ’I’m trying to market to Kelly, I’m trying to market to Chris, I’m trying to market to Kristen.’ And they’re a person, and they watch Netflix, and they watch YouTube, and they have all these interests and all this richness. And their job is part of their life, and their career is part of their life, but they’re a human being. It’s just that simple.”
Thinking about your audience in this way can also help you unlock some of the core tenants of your brand. For Joel, Buffer’s brand evolved over time thanks to how they approached sharing the story of their journey as a business. “We always wanted to focus on sharing our journey, gaining insights by sharing a lot of the details of things we’re trying, things that are working, things that are not working. And so all of those things formed our approach and formed the brand.”
Madison spoke to the importance of building a strong community when growing a business and shaping a brand as well. She noted that businesses can’t lose sight of the fact that there are people behind every single dollar that goes into your bank accounts. “Ultimately, if a founder has the ability and balance to reach out directly to top purchasers, it’s a beautiful, incredible, and impactful way to build community and makes people feel that you see them and you value them for their loyal service.”
We heard from so many great speakers throughout Built to Last and took away a ton of learnings about everything from how to increase the lifetime value of a customer to unique tactics for creating thumb-stopping content on social media. But, believe it or not, there’s still so much we didn’t cover in this post.
If you missed this first-ever audio conference while the episodes were dropping live, don’t sweat it. You can still sign up to get access to all of this amazing content on-demand, right here.
And like we said before, we want to hear from you! Leave us a comment below and let us know what jumped out to you throughout Built to Last. What new strategies are you going to employ at your business so you can build a brand that stands the test of time? We can’t wait to see what you come up with.
5 Ways to Make Better Marketing Videos with Psychology
I hear that Slack notification you just got. I see your phone sitting next to your keyboard, buzzing with new texts. It’s okay; I won’t be offended if you check. People are being pulled away all the time, and it’s all too easy to bounce if we get bored. In order for your audience to […]
I hear that Slack notification you just got. I see your phone sitting next to your keyboard, buzzing with new texts. It’s okay; I won’t be offended if you check.
People are being pulled away all the time, and it’s all too easy to bounce if we get bored. In order for your audience to hear you — and listen — you have to create something they’ll pay attention to despite the distractions.
Videos are one of the best ways to grab your audience’s attention, but they come with a non-negotiable time commitment. You need to convince people to give up a predetermined amount of their own valuable time. To keep them watching, it pays to understand what gets people’s attention on a psychological level.
Let’s take a look at a few basic psychology principles that you can use to make more engaging marketing videos.
Different colors evoke different feelings, and some are better at grabbing people’s attention. By understanding the basics of color theory, you can capture attention and invoke specific emotions with your video content.
In a classic study on color, Satyendra Singh determined that it takes a mere 90 seconds for a customer to form an opinion about a product. And, 62–90 percent of that interaction is determined by the color of the product alone.
How do these associations work? Well, red is often associated with power, energy, and anger. Blue conveys a sense of trust and security. Yellow suggests caution. Black indicates luxury and exclusivity.
But of course, color theory isn’t as black and white as it may seem; contrast, vibrancy, shade, and context can all alter the look and feel of your video and your message. For example, the color red can convey love and passion in a Valentine’s Day ad while also sending a very different message in a political ad campaign.
But in general, it’s essential to be mindful of color associations and to match the look and feel of your video with a color palette that captures attention and invokes strong feelings.
“It’s important to be mindful of color associations and to match the look and feel of your video with a color palette that captures attention and invokes strong feelings.”
Sticking with the red example, let’s explore how McDonald’s uses this color in their marketing. As noted above, red is often associated with energy, passion, and activity. Studies even suggest that the color red can increase blood pressure and heart rate. And, it is widely believed that red stimulates appetite, which might explain why many fast-food brands, including McDonald’s, rely heavily on this color throughout their visuals.
Consider different color schemes and how something as simple as a wardrobe or background change can completely alter the tone and mood of your video. Use color wisely to create the strongest and most immediate reaction in viewers.
Sparking viewers’ curiosity isn’t enough to guarantee engagement; you need to hook them within the first few seconds to get them to stick around.
According to Facebook data, 65% of people that watch the first three seconds of your video will watch it for at least ten more seconds. And another 45% will watch an additional 20 seconds of content. People are wired to seek instant gratification, and if your video doesn’t hook them within the first few seconds, they likely won’t stick around much longer.
“65% of people that watch the first three seconds of your video will watch it for at least ten more seconds. Another 45% will watch an additional 20 seconds of content.”
One easy way to hook viewers early? Play music. No — really! As it turns out, hearing a catchy song activates the nucleus accumbens, a part of the brain responsible for rewarding you with fuzzy feelings when you eat, drink, or exercise. Happy viewers are engaged viewers, and they might just stick around longer thanks to a compelling audio story.
Take this example from the University of Phoenix. This ad tells the story of a woman who feels frustrated balancing work with school, a pain many people can relate with. But, she discovers a flexible program designed for adult learners like herself and finds a balance that works for her demanding lifestyle. The ad doesn’t use a script or formal narration and instead lets the music tell the story.
Nike is another master of music. For years, their ads have been applauded for everything from taking a stand on racial injustice to celebrating women in sports. This particular spot aired in 2020 and was praised not only for the beautifully executed imagery but also the subtle background music that helps change the energy throughout the narrative.
Marketers can take advantage of the effect that music has on your brain. Think carefully about what feelings you want to evoke for the viewer of your video, then choose the best music to make this happen and deliver it in a way that ties back to your message.
Emotions are more powerful than people give them credit for. Many people believe they make choices based on logic, but emotions actually heavily influence or even determine most of our decisions.
Your viewers will pay more attention to how you present information than to the value of what you’re saying. This is called the “framing effect.” It triggers a part of your brain called the amygdala that deals with emotions and decisions — helping you decide whether or not to stick your hand into that piranha tank or even if you should wear high heels on cobblestones.
Create a narrative that shows your viewers that you know what they feel and anticipate what they want to feel. If viewers are emotionally connected to your content, they’re more likely to decide that the message is important.
“If viewers are emotionally connected to your content, they’re more likely to decide that the message is important.”
Car companies are well-known for creating connections with buyers through storytelling, and no brand does this better than Volvo. Their “Moments” ad from 2017 is masterful — but don’t take our word for it.
Did someone cut an onion in here? Just me? Volvo, known for being one of the safest car brands on the market, taps into this feeling of safety by narrating a young girl’s entire journey — which is almost cut short by a distracted driver. The final tag of “sometimes the moments that never happen matter the most” cuts right to the core of parents’ innate desire to protect their children.
Giving a viewer someone to root for is really the way to their heart. (We’re lucky to have our Wistia mascot Lenny, who makes a perfect canine protagonist for our videos.) This Intuit video, “A Giant’s Story,” achieves this same connection by putting a playful, human touch on something that might otherwise feel a bit cold — b2b accounting software.
At the end of the day, people want to connect with other people, and we often do this by sharing feelings that we have in common. In general, video is a perfect medium for sharing — but videos with emotional content are even more likely to be shared. Give your viewers a reason to share and a reason to connect.
The brain can understand visual information in 13 milliseconds, and your visual system activates over 50% of your brain. Science!
Casper took a visual approach for sharing the engineering and design process behind their products. The behind-the-scenes video shows real employees walking through how the mattresses come to life and what exactly makes them oh so special. The video also incorporates animations to simplify some of the more complex or ambiguous ideas they explore, like A/B testing.
GoPro also takes a highly visual approach to their videos. The outdoor camera brand sourced user-generated content for this 2018 ad promoting a new line of cameras. Why tell folks how great their products are when they could let real customers do the “talking” by sharing their own adventures? The ad combines vibrant and energetic submissions from several participants living life to the fullest.
Spice up your videos and keep viewers engaged by adding unexpected visual elements. Even something as simple as a whiteboard can anchor your video and give viewers something compelling to look at, especially if your video relies heavily on someone talking directly to an audience.
Our final tip for leveraging psychology to create catchier brand videos? Use credible video talent to build trust with your audience.
Credibility refers to the amount of knowledge the communicator (aka your video talent) is assumed or perceived to have. This is why brands often leverage celebrities for cameos in their commercials.
You know and trust Matthew McConaughey, who also happens to love our car; you should buy it and be more like Matthew! And in case you’re wondering, this can actually work! Lincoln reported a 25% lift in sales after launching new ad campaigns featuring McConaughey. Alright, alright, alright.
A classic example of a trusted thought leader in video is Moz’s Whiteboard Friday series. For years, Rand Fishkin, an icon in the SEO world, led the weekly series that followed a simple but effective format — explaining complex SEO concepts via a whiteboard.
As one of the most influential leaders in the SEO world, Rand’s video series took off and put Moz on the map for digital marketing decision-makers.
How can you do the same? Leverage well-known, trusted, and likable talent for your own videos — whether that’s tapping external guests or leaning on employees.
We use this tactic at Wistia by showcasing internal thought leaders for webinars, marketing videos, and shows. For example, we put Chris Lavigne, trusted video production expert and storytelling extraordinaire, behind the lens for our (Out of) Office Hours series, which covers all things remote video and audio production.
As a video producer himself, Chris knows the industry like the back of his hand. He’s well-known in the creative community and has a strong and loyal social following that engages with his content.
At the end of the day, people want to connect with other people, and we often do this by sharing feelings in common.
Even in a world that constantly pulls our attention in many directions, you can carve out space in your viewer’s mind. Armed with your camera and a few principles of human psychology, you’ll give your video the edge that will set it apart from the distractions.
If you get your viewers to truly engage and connect with your video, you’ll grab a little bit of valuable space in their constantly-buzzing brains. This is how you’ll succeed in making viewers remember your video and take action on what you said.
How to Sell Leadership on Creating Audio Content for Your Brand
Ever since NPR’s Serial blasted podcasts into the mainstream in 2014, audio consumption has skyrocketed. In 2020, podcast listenership reached an all-time high: according to Edison Research’s Infinite Dial Study, an estimated 104 million people listen to podcasts every month, up from 90 million in 2019.
Brands have noticed the rising interest in audio content, and big names like GE, Slack, and even McDonald’s have launched their own podcasts in the past few years. These series often climb the podcast charts, helping the brands that produce them gain valuable name recognition and strengthen connections with their audiences.
But for many marketing teams, convincing leadership to take the leap and invest in audio content is still a challenge. To get buy-in from above, marketers need to show how branded podcasts drive engagement and build brand affinity without being cost-prohibitive.
If you’ve struggled with selling the value of audio content — we’re here to help. This post will provide some actionable insights for marketers to showcase the value of adding podcasting to their content strategy. Let’s get started!
Podcasts have a huge potential audience. An estimated 75% of Americans are familiar with podcasts, according to Edison Research’s study. They also have the most reach with younger audiences, a valuable market demographic: 7 in 10 millennials and Gen Zers listen to podcasts.
This is great news for brands because podcasts also have an exceptionally high engagement rate. The average podcast consumer spends over 6.5 hours listening to podcasts every week and listens to an average of six podcasts weekly.
“The average podcast consumer spends over 6.5 hours listening to podcasts every week and listens to an average of six podcasts weekly.”
And, unlike other forms of media, podcasts lend themselves well to multitasking; a study on branded podcasts by BBC Global News found that 94% of podcast listeners consumed podcasts while doing other tasks, which in turn made them 18% more engaged with the content than listeners who weren’t doing an activity.
Podcasts connect hard-to-reach listeners to your brand
Across the board, BBC Global News also found that branded podcasts were an incredible opportunity for brands to connect with their audience: They reach people at previously unreachable moments, such as when they’re doing the dishes or walking the dog. Plus, they’re incredibly effective at reaching “ad avoiders,” a valuable and hard-to-target segment.
“Podcasts reach people at previously unreachable moments and are incredible effective at reaching ‘ad avoiders’, a valuable and hard-to-target segment.”
Not only are branded podcast listeners more engaged and more receptive, but they also tune in regularly: When listeners find a show they like, they subscribe to download new episodes to their devices automatically. They also spend more time engaging with that content than they do with other mediums, like text (how often do you read a 30-minute blog post?) and video, which gets the most engagement at or under two minutes.
The BBC study also showed that branded podcasts created positive subconscious associations between the podcast sponsor and words used during the podcast. For example, if a branded podcast used the word “innovation” and “innovative” several times, the brand was subsequently more likely to be considered innovative by listeners. That’s a valuable and low-effort way to influence your brand’s public image.
To get leadership on board, look at podcasts that are performing well in your industry. Then, create a pitch of what a branded podcast would look like for your company. Will you make an interview-style show to highlight struggles and successes like Conga’s Agents of Change? How about a compelling narrative-style podcast like Buffer did with Breaking Brand? Or, something totally original like HubSpot’s Weird Work?
Whatever your approach, have a clear vision for your show format, your unique angle, and how the content can break through the noise to connect with and engage your specific niche.
When marketing teams mention podcasting, executives often get nervous about the potential price tag attached. But the truth is, the days of ultra-expensive audio equipment and recording studios are long gone, and almost anyone can create a podcast with a few basic tools and a little practice.
“The days of ultra-expensive audio equipment and recording studios are long gone, and almost anyone can create a podcast with a few basic tools and a little practice.”
Start with a quality microphone — the Blue Snowball and the Blue Yeti are great budget-friendly options. Then, add some free recording software, like GarageBand if you’re using a Mac, or Audacity for any computer type. Finally, choose a podcast hosting and distribution platform to manage your audio content, and you’re off to the races. The up-front costs are low, and there’s plenty of room to grow as you gain experience and your podcast hits the mark with your audience.
If your company leaders still aren’t convinced, you can show them real-world data: E-commerce sales brand Privy launched a successful podcast for only $53 an episode.
Podcasts will also feed your content creation cycle
Consider repurposing existing content to keep costs down: Can that viral blog post be retooled as an audio narrative? If your content marketing strategy already leans heavily on video, can you turn your video show into a podcast? Emphasizing podcasting’s crossover potential is an excellent way to prove value and show leadership how it’s possible to keep costs under control.
Adding podcasting to your marketing channels is also a great way to bolster your existing content. Podcast clips can be recut and used for social media or blog posts or can even serve as the basis for an ebook once you have enough content to pull from. Rather than siloing your content, add audio as part of your overall strategy, with all of your content working toward shared goals.
Audio is also much easier to execute remotely. While even blockbuster Hollywood productions faced delays and rescheduled release dates because of COVID-19 restrictions, podcasting has been mostly unaffected, with hosts successfully recording great audio content from home. If your team will be remote for the foreseeable future, podcasting is a low-lift way to continue feeding your content creation cycle.
With all the advantages we’ve listed, it’s no wonder that brands are increasingly turning to audio production as a marketing tool. If all else fails, tap into your leadership’s FOMO (fear of missing out) and point out that they’ll risk getting left behind if they don’t take the leap soon.
“If all else fails, tap into your leadership’s FOMO and point out that they’ll risk getting left behind if they don’t take the leap soon.”
After all, brands of all kinds are now using audio content in their marketing strategy, from consumer-focused companies like Sephora and McDonald’s — who launched interview-style #LIPSTORIES and investigative The Sauce, respectively — to SaaS outfits like Slack (Variety Pack) and Basecamp (The Distance).
Many of these brands have had chart-topping success with their audio content. GE’s LifeAfter reached #1 on iTunes and is currently ranked #17 in science-fiction podcasts in the United States, despite being first released in 2015. Duolingo’s popular Spanish podcast is currently #1 in Education.
Content produced by brands can and does top the charts, and more companies are taking notice. Point out to your company leadership that no matter what market you’re trying to corner, chances are, at least some of your competitors have already started dipping their toes in the audio game.
But that doesn’t mean the market is saturated
At the same time, the market continues to grow year over year as new listeners discover and fall in love with the medium. In 2020, an estimated 37% of the U.S. population listened to podcasts monthly, and the average amount of time spent listening weekly increased by an average of 10 minutes per week compared to 2019.
As audio content becomes more popular, devices and technology are also optimizing for audio distribution. Apps like Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, and Spotify make it easy for listeners to download their favorites wherever they go, and devices like Google Home and the Amazon Echo offer listeners a convenient option at home. Even if the market is booming, your leadership team should know that there’s still plenty of space for your brand to find its audience.
We think that 2021 will be the biggest year for podcasting yet. Traditional advertising channels are increasingly saturated, and your audience is bombarded with targeted ads on every platform. And investments in SEO take a lot of time and effort to move the needle.
Branded audio content, on the other hand, offers a unique opportunity to cut through the noise. But if your executive team still needs convincing, maybe these parting words from Dave Gerhardt, CMO at Privy, will do the trick:
“For most companies today, competing in search is really hard and takes a lot of time. If you just blog, you’re going to have to write 100 blog posts to gain only a little bit of traction. I think the better thing to do is not play that game at all. Instead, do something big — make a show, start a podcast, or do an event. That’s how you’re going to get found today.”
How to Add Video to Your Content Strategy
If you’re not already incorporating video into your content strategy, adding it in may sound like a daunting ordeal — but it doesn’t have to be.
Instead of developing a siloed video strategy, try looking at what you’re trying to accomplish from an overall content perspective, and then figure out how you can use video to complement your efforts.
Video content can fit into what you already have planned, help you create lasting connections with your audience, and move your metrics up and to the right. In this post, we’ll go over where and how to begin including video in your content.
The first step to optimizing your content strategy with video is to assess your existing content to see where you stand. What do you currently focus on? What are your goals? How can video help support these efforts?
Figure out which parts of your content strategy could be expanded, which ones may not be as clear or focused as you’d like, and which ones aren’t getting much engagement or leads.
Chances are, your best content will provide a ton of value, have little filler, and get lots of shares and engagement. Anything that doesn’t fit should be assessed — it may need to be repurposed or recreated.
Look back through your analytics to see which blog posts are already getting some love, but have the potential for much more engagement. These types of posts can often serve as great starting points for experimenting with video.
“Look back through your analytics to see which blog posts are already getting some love, but have the potential for much more engagement.”
If you’re looking for other places that could benefit from video, consider one of the following types of content:
- Older content you’re planning on re-purposing
- Social media content
- Webinar registration pages
- Consistent weekly or monthly content
- Lead generation campaigns
Consistency keeps your business top of mind for folks who are consuming your content. If an ongoing video series can help you achieve your content goals, it’s worth experimenting with.
To begin, you can repurpose and expand upon concepts you have in other content pieces to create weekly or monthly video series.
With these consistent videos, you can answer questions from your audience, deep dive into different product features, or share recent news, while building relationships and brand affinity. Below is a great example from Rand Fishkin of Moz, who is famous for launching a weekly series on marketing and SEO called Whiteboard Friday.
These videos keep their audience coming back every Friday. They’re widely shared, and they help build trust between Moz and their community of viewers.
If you’re creating content that explains something to your audience, why not cater to all different learning styles with both written copy and video? Why not take the opportunity to liven up the information with a smiling face and some delightful background music? Many are familiar with the phrase “show, don’t tell.” With educational content, you can show your audience something and leave a memorable impression using video.
Product videos are incredibly helpful for folks in the awareness or decision stage of the buyer’s journey. In fact, 95% of businesses who use video believe that it has increased user understanding of their product or service.
These types of videos not only clearly convey value, they also give you the opportunity to establish a human connection with your audience and show off your brand’s voice and style. We love this example of a product walkthrough video from Slack:
If they fit within your content strategy, how-to videos can provide your audience with lots of value. If you’re already publishing educational content — such as how to install your latest product, or how to use your product to level up — you can create quality videos for your audience to use, share, and engage with.
At Wistia, we create videos that teach our audience about production and marketing skills, so they can be successful with business video. Take, for example, the following video that’s included in our Library article about shooting overhead video.
This type of video content creates trust between the consumer and your brand. It can also serve as a vehicle for lead generation. With Wistia’s Turnstile feature, it’s easy to gate your videos and create larger campaigns around them.
“This type of video content creates trust between the consumer and your brand.”
Whether you’re doing physical events or online get-togethers, such as webinars or live chats, you can use video to grow your registration count. According to Wyzowl’s most recent video marketing survey, 83% of businesses who use video believe that it has helped them generate more leads. Adding video to your event’s landing page is no exception to this rule. We use promotional videos to add a bit of spunk to our invites and encourage people to register.
You can create a marketing strategy around your event invite video using email, social, and search tactics to spread the word. Plus, you video thumbnail can serve as a CTA in your promotion campaign. Through testing here at Wistia, we’ve found that on average, emails with video thumbnail images had higher click-through rates.
Adding video into your content strategy does not have to be difficult or expensive. You can set up a video studio in your office and work it yourself — no fancy help required.
You can purchase a DIY lighting kit that will make your shots look professional for under $100. You’ll need a camera, but before you start shaking your head at the cost of a DSLR — try recording a video with your iPhone first.
According to Wyzowl, 89% of marketing professionals feel that video gives them a good return on investment.
Once you’ve created your first video — make sure you have a solid promotion plan in place. And, be sure you have a video marketing platform that can help you measure the success of your efforts. From there, you’ll be able to easily track and measure the ROI for all of your video assets. Think through potential lead gen campaigns and how much a qualified lead is worth to your business. Soon enough, buying a quality DSLR for your shoots will be an obvious win-win.
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