If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video must be worth millions. The ubiquity of internet access and availability of video creation, consumption and sharing applications makes video the “go-to” digital marketing medium for 2013 and beyond.
Companies can demonstrate products, share their expertise, interview satisfied customers and show employee and brand personality all through video that can be consumed on a computer, tablet or mobile device.
Whether you’re a big business or small, B2B or consumer focused, video is a hot online marketing commodity that should not be overlooked.
From content marketing to advertising, investments in video are on the rise. And for good reason: A study by the e-tailing group and Invodo reports that over 50 percent of internet users believed that online product videos helped increase confidence in their purchase.
Companies are sensing those trends in consumer media consumption and adjusting budgets accordingly. According to eMarketer, spending on video for content marketing has risen by 44 percent.
While the evidence is compelling for the growth of video creation and consumption, some companies, especially small businesses, may feel uncertain about where video may fit in their marketing mix. Here are three reasons to do just that.
1. Video is Social
There are hundreds of video applications that make it easy to capture, edit and socially share video. Twitter recently announced its entrée into the short form video creation space with Vine, a smartphone application that enables users to take 6-second, looping videos and share them on social networks. Brands are already experimenting with Vine in creative ways.
Such outlets for creativity are entirely amenable for sharing, enabling small businesses to proactively leverage video to create compelling, creative and socially sharable video content. Don’t believe me? According to a study by the IAB, 90 percent of viewers share mobile video content.
Creating great content using apps and software that are designed to make social sharing easy means it’s easier than ever for small businesses to get into the video marketing game.
2. Video May Be A Mobile Marketer’s Best Friend
It is estimated that the number of U.S. consumers that watch video on mobile devices will rise to 110 million by 2016 – that’s 1 in 3 Americans consuming video content on smartphones and tablets.
Consumers are watching more than short, YouTube form content on mobile and tablet devices. Tablets have become as popular as computers for watching video, ranking second only to televisions. However, rather than compete with TV, mobile content serves as a second or third screen for many consumers.
Companies that get creative around events on TV and cable might consider creating content that consumers will seek out while watching the show. It might be facts and backstory or clever connections between the company’s product and what’s being watched. Small businesses have used such tie-ins with their advertising for years, such as promoting snacks and beer with Super Bowl-themed ads.
Mobile consumption can extend the reach of online video normally consumed through computers as well. Companies just need to make sure their video content is available and optimized on mobile-friendly platforms.
3. People Love Video and So Do Search Engines
YouTube is often cited as the second most popular search engine with over 4 billion hours of video watched every month. While video content isn’t as easy for search engines to understand, the content can be transcribed to text and when combined with the video title, description and tags on a website, the video is easier to find.
When videos are embedded from a hosting service like YouTube or Vimeo onto a web page or blog post, the descriptive text can be optimized for easier discovery on search engines. Video content is more interesting than text and more likely to attract links and social shares. Those links and social signals help search engines rank web pages that contain embedded video more prominently than boring old text content.
Video consumption is a worldwide phenomenon. According to Nielsen, 80 percent of internet respondents in 56 countries reported watching video content at home on a computer. Combined with video consumption on mobile devices, that means video might just be the perfect opportunity for companies that want to excel at attracting and engaging with their customers to increase awareness, interest and sales.