Embrace the Magic of Movies
Dating as far back as 1896, with the legend of the Lumière brothers’ Train Pulling into a Station, and continuing on with beloved classics like Citizen Kane, Casablanca and even modern blockbusters like Avatar, the magic of the movies has captivated our society for more than a century. Over the course of those 100 years, movies have drastically changed, not only in their style and technical composition, but also the way they are received by audiences. And while the reasons for the shock and lasting impact of Train Pulling into a Station and Inception greatly differ – viewers of the former supposedly retreated to the back of the room in fear that a train was coming through the screen, while the latter’s audience grappled with a mind-bending story and unbelievable effects – both movies made a similarly magical impression on people who viewed them, even decades apart.
As a society, we have declared our enduring love for movies. This love is independent of any type of film, as we have shown our appreciation for the many different forms of the medium. And that is the reason April 23, 2005 was such an important day for the world of digital marketing. It’s the day the Internet and movies became one and, in retrospect, the day that video marketing was born.
The rise of YouTube and the dawn of video marketing.
On that fateful spring day, YouTube co-founder Jawed Karim uploaded the platform’s first video, entitled “Me at the Zoo”, which officially launched what is now one of the most popular websites in the world. So, how much do we watch the videos of YouTube? In looking at these stats, it might even be an understatement to say that we have fallen in love with this shorter, often more personal and directly engaging style of movie:
- Eight years of content is uploaded to YouTube every single day
- YouTube receives more than one billion unique users each month
- Over four billion hours of video are watched each month on YouTube
- YouTube is localized in 53 countries and across 61 languages
- YouTube is the second largest search engine next to Google
- In 2011, YouTube had more than one trillion views (around 140 views for every person on earth)
The upshot of all this is simple. Our society loves movies – old movies, new movies, and short movies hosted on the Internet. Only one of these kinds of movies can be reasonably and affordably turned into a marketing tool and thus, you and your company need to embrace the magic of video marketing because it is certainly the way of the future.
Engage Customers Through Video Marketing
Create Effective Videos
Creating videos that effectively engage your customers and nudge them along whatever path you want them to follow (you do have a conversion goal in mind for your video, right??) isn’t easy. It involves high quality (but not necessarily expensive) production, professional delivery and most importantly, a well-defined message.
Determining your video’s message should begin with picking its subject and then figuring out what you want to say about that subject. A helpful exercise might be to think of a product or service that you bought or used based on a video you watched. Chances are the video spent more time trying to engage and entertain you than actually trying to sell you a product or service. But in the end, the video was still somehow related to solving a problem and highlighting the value of a product or service. It’s a very fine line, but completely achievable within any industry with a little bit of focus.
Other tips and tricks to keep in mind when creating your videos:
- KISS (keep it short, stupid): the slightly modified acronym for simplifying things feels right, especially since the stats support it. The longer a YouTube video goes on, the lower its chances of being viewed to completion.
- Quality matters: no, your video doesn’t have to be a Hollywood production to be successful, but make sure you use a decent camera, get the lighting right, and film somewhere quiet so your message resonates loud and clear.
- Ask for something: as with most methods of marketing, forgetting a call to action in your video is a huge mistake, so don’t make it. Provide your viewers with a clear path to completing the action your video is trying to persuade them to take.
How to Get More Viewers
Give Value to Your Video
Much like a blog post that doesn’t get read, a video that doesn’t get viewed serves no purpose. Ensure the value of the videos you worked so hard to create by doing the following things to increase the exposure of your mini-movies:
- Feature your video on your web properties: you’ve got a website and microsites, so take advantage of this built-in audience and see how they like your video.
- Share the wealth: you’ve created an engaging and valuable video, so share it with the world on all your active channels. If you’re in the video and you’re nervous about the exposure, don’t be. Share, share, share and who knows, maybe it’ll go viral!
- Send an email: your email list is another pre-existing source of viewers that you should take advantage of. Even if they’re already customers, a little bit more value isn’t going to hurt them, right? These are only some of the many strategies and techniques for creating effective videos and ensuring they get found and viewed by your target audience.
For more information or guidance on how to embrace and unlock the magic of making movies for your customers, get in touch with a local WSI Consultant today!