We’re all avid video watchers now. And we’re in a new era of video marketing, as marketers recognize its effectiveness in increasing conversions.
Since the pandemic hit, video consumption has jumped even more. So, increasingly marketing teams have halted their brand ambassador search or their in-person event arrangements, and taken advantage of this uptick in video platform use to ramp up their video content.
More companies are keen to get on board this trend and build personal relationships with customers who are engaging with videos more and more.
Here’s some more good news:
Turns out the average consumer enjoys casual, lo-fi content, so your video content doesn’t have to be expensively produced to succeed.
What you need is a good dose of strategy, creativity and—to go viral—the gift from the gods that is a bit of luck.
How video fits with your marketing plan
First things first, plan your video thoroughly to execute it well. If this is new territory for you, there’s a lot to think about in creating and publishing your film. Start by asking why you’re making the video at all.
Clarity of purpose will be a beacon throughout the video creation process and a reminder of how you want to motivate your audience to become loyal customers.
A clear, well-articulated objective also keeps the stakeholders in your team aligned and can save you the time you otherwise might squander on reshoots and edits.
Before you shoot a video, ask the following: Why are you creating this video? Who is your target audience? What do you want your audience to do after viewing it?
Maybe you’re launching a new product. Or perhaps your goal is to raise brand awareness.
Another thing to consider is where your video will go live. Settle on your target location first, and worry about repurposing your content for other channels to get more mileage out of your efforts later.
Videos can be professionally produced, lavish affairs, but raw and simple productions can also convey authenticity. And more often than not, that's an invaluable hook. So it's an ideal low cost digital marketing tool.
And if you achieve your goals, ask yourself what creating a successful video will mean for your business. What performance indicators can you use to measure and analyze whether your film delivered results? Some key video metrics: Number of views, playback time, and click-through rate. Monitor these analytics to hone your future projects as necessary.
Be smart about integrating your video strategy with your other marketing efforts. How does this project complement your other content, and where does it fit into your social media or blog?
What tools will you use to promote your content? Affiliate marketing is an increasingly popular tactic. What is an affiliate program? Well, it’s a tactic whereby businesses pay commission to affiliates when they see conversion results, and it works well with engaging video content. All you need to do is add affiliate links to your videos.
To maximize your chances, though, you must avoid the most common video marketing pitfalls. This article will lay out five of those common video marketing mistakes that can damage your conversion rates.
Let’s dive in!
1. Making your video too long
It’s a cliche that today we all possess the attention span of goldfish.
But, if you don’t capture your viewers' attention instantly, you really can lose them for good.
When only 37% of viewers watch videos to the end, it’s little wonder that “the shorter, the better” carries the day among marketers.
Brevity is the soul of wit and the key to effective video marketing, it seems. Anything over two minutes running time is basically War and Peace.
One classic mistake by a rookie auteur trying to hack the algorithm to go viral is pushing long-form content to time-strapped audiences.
All the same, there are exceptions—for content that convinces and engages and earns its keep.
If your main goal is conveying information, don’t compress things too much lest you overwhelm the audience. How do you avoid a mistake like outstaying your welcome? The key is striking the balance that matches your goals.
The optimal length will depend on what you’re crafting. A grabby commercial, a tutorial video, a behind-the-scenes look, a demo, or a much more in-depth webinar—all have their own ideal format. So adjust your time accordingly.
A good rule of thumb when presenting your content is to get off to a flyer. Having a script—not necessarily word for word but a mapped-out plan—can be a tremendous help.
It helps you get to the point about the value or transformation your audience should expect within the first 30 seconds, giving them a reason to keep watching.
Tip: When you feel you’ve mastered how to capture viewers right from the start, think about expanding your reach with the best affiliate marketing software.
Man Crates showcased their brand spirit and their products in under 30 seconds with a suitably gravelly unboxing.
2. Flooding viewers with too much information
Don’t barrage viewers with too much information at once, listing too many facts.
Taking your viewers on a narrative journey is a good way of exciting emotional pathways without overwhelming them.
For example, you can string videos together to build a sense of anticipation without packing too much in each one. Tease your next product or a new project with a casual mention in a video on a different topic. Then update viewers on your progress and even solicit their input.
A subtle video marketing trick, to be sure, but it works. When you get your audience to invest emotionally in your product, they’ll invest financially.
Canadian Tire’s “Wheels” video ad drove 20 million views in less than 24 hours with its inclusive messaging.
3. Failing to implement SEO practices
Ignoring customer searches is a reliable way of more or less consigning your video handiwork to the recycle bin of history. Your videos won’t log views and will become practically invisible, rendering your hard work fruitless.
Fortunately, there’s a solution. By doing keyword research, you can discover what your ideal viewers (customers) are typing into search bars.
From there, you can use tools that help you sift through the search traffic volumes for each topic or invest in affordable search engine optimization and craft video content strategically.
When you know what your customers are searching for, you stand a much better chance of showing up in their search results.
Fun future fact: Advances in AI capabilities and speech recognition technology mean that video is becoming ever more search-friendly, expect it to become a tool for SEO in the future!
4. Not branding your business or services correctly
Another common marketing mistake that can hurt your conversion rates is related to how your video marketing fits with your overall branding.
The only way to get the most from your content is through blending content your target audience wants with the messaging and branding that helps you.
Instead of creating what you wager your customers need, create the content they want by figuring out the preferences of your ideal audience and tailoring it to suit.
Then, consider how to seamlessly incorporate your branding. Your logo, tagline, or even URL are elements you want to be top-of mind with your audience. Consider placing them at the top of a video, and then repeating them toward the end.
Viral video campaign #LikeAGirl from Always, viewed more than 90m times, leveraged storytelling and emotions, but still gave the key branding element (the hashtag) a starring role.
5. Your video is not entertaining
Another key to a winning video marketing strategy is to entertain. While it’s never been easier to shoot video—often, your smartphone will do—producing the kind of content that’ll move your conversion rates is another story.
People choose businesses they feel connected to and whose personality they like, and brands they can trust. A well-crafted video that spotlights your personality can help you create that connection.
What missteps do businesses make trying to create inspirational or engaging content that makes their clients sit up and take notice?
Often, a video script penned by an internal employee won’t pack the same punch as a professional writer who knows how to tell a story from the beginning, middle, to end.
If you’re investing in high paying affiliate programs to benefit from performance marketing, you need to make your video content count.
Most of us watch YouTube to learn, laugh, and be entertained.
And we avoid boring video content like an airborne virus.
Take a leaf out of Wistia’s book, who won two Webby awards for ingeniously combining their marketing with reality TV to generate word-of-mouth buzz
Don’t expect overnight success
Avoid those five mistakes and you stand yourself in good stead for video marketing success. You shouldn’t, however, expect that success to come straight away.
One of the best ways to see results from your videos is by being strategic about how you approach each production.
Though they rarely go viral, slow and steady progress can win you conversions. Failing to see this big picture can result in a lot of misplaced effort and lost opportunity.
And consistency is key. Just as you would design any other piece of content to accomplish a strategic goal, the same principle applies to your online video marketing. Sometimes people get carried away and expect their YouTube explainer to do instant numbers.
A neat hack here is disaggregating all the metrics that make up a successful video into distinct objectives.
For example, you might craft a video with the specific goal of building your online community. Or to become discoverable. Then you might create a separate video to generate sales.
This approach brings focus to your work and prevents you putting everything into each video and creating glutted content that leaves you deflated when it achieves none of what you hoped.
That’s a wrap
Video continues to dominate internet traffic. Naturally, a majority of companies now use it in their marketing strategy.
If you spend time and money creating videos, you expect to see a return on that investment. You want to expand your audience, boost engagement, and generate new business.
Steer clear of the five marketing mistakes we’ve outlined to produce video content that can help you reach your goals and keep your conversion rates healthy.
About the author:
Sam O’Brien is the Chief Marketing Officer for Affise—a Global SaaS Partner Marketing Solution and also an expert on how to create affiliate program. He is a growth marketing expert with a product management and design background. Sam has a passion for innovation, growth, and marketing technology. Here is his LinkedIn.