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We have reached a point where video content is a must for any business. The simple fact is that text and images can’t compete with video when it comes to building trust and engagement. As many as 80% of people would rather watch a video about a product than read about it.

This means that if you rely exclusively on written descriptions of your products, you are risking that you will lose the attention of four out of every five potential customers. What happens if a competitor provides similar information in an engaging video? The data suggests that you would be at a significant disadvantage.

Fortunately, there are many opportunities to create videos and get them in front of the right people. Major online players are evolving to handle this new expectation. Image oriented platforms like Facebook and Instagram have slowly evolved into video dominated sites before our very own eyes.

 

How to build an audience with amazing video content

The future is increasingly video-like

Some of the most viral content on Facebook and Instagram tend to be videos, and video ads are a highly effective format for earning clicks on the platform. Each social media network is making moves to encourage more video as well. Instagram increased the video length to 60 seconds last year, and Facebook is introducing an app for video creators in 2017.

Despite the growth of video elsewhere, YouTube is still the primary destination where people go to find their video content.

It recently eclipsed the milestone of over one billion hours of video being viewed every single day. YouTube is also the world’s second largest search engine. This means that no matter what your business does, your ideal customer is likely watching videos. If you are not producing video content to put in front of them, then you are missing out on a massive opportunity to engage with them.

 

Focus on a strong message when creating video content

Some companies have embraced YouTube exceptionally well. For example, fashion and makeup giant Chanel has over 850,000 subscribers following their channel. They regularly produce stylish updates on their new product lines and ad campaigns which get anywhere from 30k to 450k views. Multiplied by the number of videos they are publishing, this is a tremendous amount of relatively low-cost exposure to their target audience.

Google (owner of YouTube, and no stranger to the power of video) runs their own YouTube channel which helps out customers in a different way. Rather than boost the “glamor” of its brand like Chanel, Google produces high value tutorials that help users get the most out of its tools and apps.

These helpful and practical videos are valuable in different ways. Anyone who is trying to decide what tools to use is more likely to adopt the Google ecosystem if they are educated on what features are available to them. Anyone else who is already a Google apps user is likely to stick around when they are learning from these videos and get the maximum value from everything Google.

 

You don’t need a big budget to be successful

While big brands are more likely to have invested in video content, it’s not limited only to those with multi-million dollar budgets. Backlinko founder, Brian Dean discovered just want an impact YouTube videos could have for his own web traffic. A relatively small budget on a few good quality videos has resulted in hundreds of thousands of views, and very high quality traffic visiting his site. In this case study, he explains how many customers first found him through YouTube.

So what can business owners and marketers take from this? If you aren’t leveraging video today, the takeaway is that you should start right now. There are many places where you can get inspiration – simply go online and look for exceptional video marketing campaigns and you’ll find them.

Fortunately, if you have a business, then you have already made some of the most important decisions required for success on YouTube. It should be very clear in your videos who you are trying to help, and what problems you can help them solve – just like with your business.

Once you have your strategy in place, you are going to need good content. This doesn’t necessarily mean that it needs to be high end or high budget. Crisp visuals and clear audio help, but what is even more important, is the value that you bring to your customers.

A good YouTube video should never look like a commercial. People go to YouTube to find answers and instructions to address specific challenges. You can show people how to meet those challenges in an actionable way. If solving challenges is related to your company, then you can incorporate your product or service as part of the video – but don’t make it the focal point.

Think about videos titled “How to do X” rather than, “Why you need product Y.”

To this end, don’t limit your content to just marketing or sales oriented videos. Just about every function across your organization can benefit from video. Customer support can reduce support time and increase loyalty.  Human resources can put your best foot forward to recruit top talent.

 

Optimize your content so others can discover it

Once you have created your content, it is time to maximize its effectiveness. To do this, you will want to make sure that every title and description is designed to perform well in YouTube SEO.This will help you to be found by your target audience.

You can also do more with your video than just post it on YouTube. Share it on all of your social channels to maximize reach. Include it in your next email blast. Use it on your blog or on a product page. Video gets higher engagement than text in virtually every channel on the web, so take advantage of the high value content you have made. Don’t forget to optimize your YouTube Channel as well.

For inspiration on how to use video across your organization, check out this infographic from Vlogging Guides.

YouTube marketing infographic by Vlogging Guides

Featured image editorial credit: Alexey Boldin / Shutterstock.com

Mike Barrett

Mike Barrett is the founder and lead writer at Vlogging Guides, a resource blog for aspiring Vloggers, Video Marketers, and YouTubers. Mike is a lifelong technology enthusiast, and has spent his career helping start-ups to be discovered and grow. He spent the last three years with Advocate Marketing leader Influitive, helping Marketers to adopt comprehensive programs designed to identify customer advocates, and generate valuable content through their stories.

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