Over the last few years, videos have become a part of daily life in pretty much all communications. Moving pictures in television have taken over the displays of computers and mobile devices. Simultaneously, they are also beginning to be an important part of a company’s marketing strategy, even though there are vast differences in how videos are used in various companies.
Some marketers perhaps still have the viewpoint that videos are complex, cumbersome and an expensive form of media. In reality, nowadays making videos is affordable and agile, and customers can be reached very effectively using them!
Like videos, online stores are also part of the present day: setting up an online store is easy, fast and affordable. Of course, being profitable is a bit more difficult – you need customers at your site and they should also buy.
This is where videos come into the picture: videos are a really handy tool for an online store and can be used throughout the customer’s purchase process. With the help of videos, conversion, or the opportunity to get a sale to the finish line, can also be improved significantly.
As with any other marketing action, the use of videos requires planning. Why then should videos be used and how? The end goal may be sales growth, but what factors make videos such an excellent tool?
Because customers these days make more and more purchase decisions without contacting the company. Companies have to adapt by offering help and solutions where their customers naturally are - online. Videos work well alongside websites in different social media channels, as well as for example email marketing.
The merchant should consider which channels the video will best reach the desired target group and whether in addition to organic visibility, paid marketing should be used in places such as Facebook, YouTube or even Instagram.
“A picture is worth a thousand words” is one of the most used clichés, but it’s also true. Pictures and videos stay in people’s minds better than text. They make it easy to appeal to the emotions, and also better to display the product and its use.
When searching for product information, a customer is likely to eventually end up on Google, which is well-known for favoring video in its search results. When the flow is Google search > YouTube video > link to product, an interested customer will have gotten, with just a few clicks at best, the desired product information, ended up in the online store and placed the product into the shopping cart.
The same flow also helps measure marketing objectives. Each video should have a clear goal, because it is only by measuring the video can the full benefits be reaped – a few nice comments from an occasional viewer and friends is no longer enough. With regard to videos, define a goal, is it to for example get more visitors to the website, or to improve conversion, or increase the size of an individual purchase.
How should video be used?
Video content should change through the different stages of the purchase process. In the early stage, or even before the actual purchase process, a video is used to arouse interest towards the brand, product or service. The content of the video at this stage can in fact be anything at all, as long as it appeals to the emotions and creates an impression for the customer that the brand/product/service is a solution to their problem. If the message is powerful enough, the first and easy customers will already be crying out in unison “Shut up and take my money!”, but usually a bit more is required.
In the next stage, the customer wants more information about the product and then the video can’t just be based on feelings. In addition to emotions, hard facts need to be shared.
Product presentation videos are excellent solutions, particularly for online stores. At its simplest, they may be just visual text and moving images. But at its best, the video offers for example several customer testimonials where real customers share specifics about their own experiences with the product or service.
After the clinking in the cash register, far too many (online) merchants are content with lounging on top of their money, waiting for the next new customer. Even though it would be extremely important after the purchase to generate some customer loyalty.
For example, for the Finnish (and probably also other nationalities) men who know it all and heed their natural instinct to immediately throw away the owner’s manual, and later don’t have the nerve to ask for help, videos can be an invaluable help. Included in the online store’s order confirmation could be a short instructional video, which customers can nowadays watch from almost anywhere. At the same time, the situation may arise where they order an accessory which makes using the new product even easier.
Also, videos are effective tools for retargeting and remarketing, if the customer has abandoned their shopping cart.
It’s not worth making videos just for the sake of making them. Being goal oriented helps in both campaign and individual videos, since the numbers of views usually don’t mean much. Therefore, ensure that in addition to the videos there are clear calls to action that move the customer in the desired direction.
A skilled production company knows the type and length of content that works on each channel and can assist with both the planning and distribution of the video. Plus, the production company makes sure that both the script and technical production of the video will be of high quality. The alternative is of course to do everything yourself, but remember that it takes time away from other daily tasks.