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As technology becomes more interactive, content follows suit. Video marketing isn’t just a fancy thing trick companies can do to engage their customers–it’s now an expectation and a best practice. Luckily, any business owner with a smartphone or tablet can get in on this trend.

According to a study done by HubSpot, 53% of consumers want more video content from marketers, and 59% of executive decision-makers would rather watch a video than read an article. HubSpot predicts that video will gobble up over 90% of web traffic by 2019. Videos also improve brand recall and boost the SEO on your website.

Many small business owners and less tech-savvy professionals think that diving into video marketing is expensive, difficult, and time consuming. But 51.9% of marketing professionals around the world say video is the content with the best return on investment (ROI). And by the way, the investment doesn’t have to be very steep at all. Keep reading to find out how to do it cheaply and easily.

How can video to improve your marketing and outreach?

  • Add them to marketing emails to boost click throughs by 200-300%.
  • Use them to enhance product descriptions on online retail platforms, making customers 64% more likely to buy what you’re selling.
  • Embed them in landing pages and newsletters to increase conversion by 80%.
  • Post them on your social media to engage and increase your following. All of the major social media platforms are optimizing themselves for video for a reason.

There are two main options when you decide to start video marketing, but it’s best to tailor each option depending on how you’re using the video.

Professionally produced videos – These are the most versatile. They are polished and edited with music and text and are perfect for emails, social media, blogs, and advertising. We recently produced a video highlighting one of the small businesses we were able to fund here in California. To make one of these, you may have to hire a production company, which are springing up in droves to meet the demand.

As a subcategory to a “professionally produced” video, you can also cut corners and still achieve the look of a pro video. Apps like Nutshell Camera, Magisto Video Editor, iMovie, Animoto and Adobe Spark make it easy to DIY it with videos you take yourself.

Live streaming – This one is limited to social media, but the best snippets can also be incorporated into edited more polished videos later on. Jump on your social media live during a busy time at your business to announce a promotion, share good news, or wish your customers a happy national (something) day that is relevant to your business. If your staff is into it, plan a weekly fun live stream event with them as a team building exercise.

Use both of these methods together to make the most of your video marketing campaign. Before you begin, remember these final, very important tips:

  1. Keep it short. Only the top 5% of videos are watched more than 75% of the way through, so get to the point quickly and keep it under two minutes. Thirty seconds to a minute is even better.
  2. Plan it out and practice. Even when you’re live streaming, know what you’re going to say, and say it out loud a few times. Talk a little bit slower than is natural for you.
  3. Stick with it. Don’t just do a couple of videos and call it done, and don’t give up if the first couple of videos don’t go well. This is a growing phenomenon that isn’t going away, so make it a habit.
  4. Measure performance. Use analytics to track how your videos perform and make improvements as you learn. You don’t have to be perfect right from the start.