By Hope Horner
Wouldn’t it be great if you could significantly boost your company’s marketing reach, web traffic, leads, sales, and bottom line with a single initiative that could be integrated into many different campaigns and distributed across many different platforms? You can!
The statistics don’t lie — consumers today prefer watching videos to reading text. Whether your goal is to engage prospects, attract new ones, or build trust with customers, if you’re considering an investment in video production for your business, you want to begin with the end in mind.
Without a plan, you’ll never get what you want. While things rarely unfold the way we expect them to, the simple act of planning requires you to envision the end goal. Having a clear objective can keep you focused and on the right track — even when things get hectic.
Start at the Finish Line
Let’s say you want to convert more prospects. Your videos should address objections or questions prospects might have at various stages of the buyer’s journey. The objective is to help them overcome those concerns and move closer to making a decision to purchase.
If you’re going to create a series of videos, planning ahead becomes even more important. At Lemonlight, when we work with franchise (or multiple-location) clients, we recommend filming unique opening or ending calls to action for each location. We cut each video, and when we begin advertising, we use the one that speaks directly to the local audience to create a personal connection.
Last year, we worked with BurgerFi, a burger chain headquartered in Florida to build excitement around its release of a new sandwich. We produced a series of social media videos that led up to the big announcement. Before that, we were in Connecticut shooting preroll for Pure Barre (great for working off those cheeseburgers). Neither of these projects would have been possible without careful planning.
Maybe you’re only up for making one video to see how you like it. If you plan your video marketing strategy in advance, even a single video can be pretty versatile.
Here’s what I mean:
1. Use video in your email campaign.
Do you want your emails to be like most marketing emails? Probably not — most marketing emails never get opened.
Inserting a video into your email will help it stand out. In fact, a video could improve your open rates by as much as 20 percent, as well as dramatically boost click-through rates. Just make sure you plan ahead and send the video to those particular audience segments that the campaign intends to reach with it.
2. Repurpose video for future campaigns.
A video can be a big investment. To stretch that investment, you could take short clips or excerpts and post them on social media, grab video stills and overlay them with text to create an instructional manual, or throw them into a digital whitepaper.
Anything goes, really, when it comes to repurposing video to increase your ROI. The more ways you can reuse your video, the better — but you need to decide on these in advance so that you can incorporate them into your overall content marketing strategy.
3. Create a video for each customer interaction.
Video is a valuable marketing tool, no matter where your targets are in the sales funnel. Are you introducing your brand to an audience for the first time? A good explainer video is basic enough for anyone to understand, but it also conveys quality and inspires trust.
Want to entice current customers to explore additional options or features? Create a video demonstrating how the upsell will ultimately benefit them. Even if they’re already familiar with your brand, a video gives them the opportunity to see where you’re going and can get them excited about the future.
4. Film variations of your video.
Filming the video is typically the most expensive or cumbersome part. Spend some extra time and effort filming a few different variations of key elements in your video. This can give you the chance to optimize once the video is already in front of audiences.
For example, try shooting some variations of your final call to action; then, use feedback from audiences to see which performs the best.
5. Fit video into your social strategy.
Some brands, like GoPro or Red Bull, for instance, do a great job of creating videos that are shared widely on social media. Getting tons of shares is a surefire way to build brand awareness — especially if you distribute your video on the platforms your target customers use the most.
As with any marketing initiative, start with a goal for your video. Then, create a strategy and develop a schedule. Doing all of this ahead of time will not only save you from headaches and unnecessary stress during production, but it will also help maximize the return on your investment.
Hope Horner is CEO and founder of Lemonlight, a video production company that produces and distributes branded video content at scale. Hope is a three-time entrepreneur who has been featured in Inc., KABC, Extra, and other publications highlighting her successes in the Silicon Beach community over the past decade.