The future of online video is clear. Faster connection speeds have allowed smooth streaming of HD video on both desktop and mobile devices, making video instantly accessible to web users 24/7. Popularity of online video consumption continues to soar with reports that the average viewer watches nearly 22 hours of video online in a single month. Adoption of mobile and the convenience of sharing via social media have fueled this growth.
The Case for Video Marketing
There are a variety of reasons web-based video is such an important media vehicle, and marketers that understand the nuances will be more successful than the laggards. For starters, video is one of the most efficient and highest life form of media. Video draws on a greater number of senses and therefore creates up to five times greater retention and brand recall. A 30-second HD video offers four powerful media form factors to marketers: video, audio (podcast), text (transcript), and still images. Each of these form factors can be edited, optimized, syndicated, and promoted across a variety of platforms.
Another compelling reason for marketers to pay attention to video: YouTube is the second most popular search engine by volume. That means your customers are using YouTube for research in addition to or in lieu of Google, Bing, or Yahoo. Video provides the ultimate storytelling medium: If a picture is worth 1,000 words, then how many words is a 30-second video worth at 30 frames a second?
YouTube: The King of Video
There’s no doubt that YouTube is the king of video sharing sites on the internet. Here’s a look at the numbers that clearly demonstrate YouTube’s dominance:
- Seventy-two hours of video uploaded every minute
- Over 4 billion videos are viewed a day
- YouTube Mobile gets 600 million views a day
- Seventy percent of YouTube traffic comes from outside the US
- Localized in 39 countries and across 54 languages
- In 2011, 1 trillion views (nearly 140 views per person)
- U.S. consumers exposed to a YouTube homepage ad are 437 percent more likely to engage in a key brand activity on the same day than those unexposed
Video Marketing Essentials
Having developed video marketing strategies for a host of Anvil Media clients, we’ve had the opportunity to test and refine our best practices. Below is a list of recommendations to consider when developing a successful video marketing program.
- Think globally, locally, and mobility: Translate videos to target markets globally, yet localize content when possible (particularly for retail businesses.)
- Don’t forget videos are often viewed on mobile devices, so adjust your creative accordingly and empower your team to upload videos via mobile device when in the field.
- All videos should include a closing call-to-action (visit a website, subscribe, comment, share, etc.)
- In the production stage, consider embedding URLs and calls-to-action into both the video (annotate) and the description
- Based on analysis of existing videos, the ideal duration to maximize engagement is 30 to 120 seconds
- For trademarked or copyrighted content or improved measurability, consider digital watermarking
- Don’t forget to set default sharing option to “public” or “allow all”
- Use comments, hot spots, and A/B Testing as your virtual focus group (to determine future content and format ideas)
- Based on new posting rules recently released by YouTube, be sure to use your Google+ profile when commenting on videos
To learn more about video marketing, check out my Ultimate Guide to Video Marketing for best practices for video marketing, optimization, measurement and promotion on iMedia Connection. You can also check out Anvil’s YouTube channel for some inspiration.