5 Tips to Optimize Your Video Marketing Efforts
Let's face it, video has taken the online world by storm over the last few years and we're really only just beginning to learn how to best harness its power. Furthermore, the technology, data and tools being made available to retailers with respect to video are changing at an even faster pace. So while it may be premature to discuss best practices at such an early stage, here are five imperatives for working with video:
1. Get on board with video now. Video is everywhere; it will be the No. 1 way you engage consumers online. YouTube's Vice President and Global Head of Content Robert Kyncl said that video would soon be 90 percent of all internet traffic. If you're not using video now, you're being left behind.
2. YouTube is your best friend; you're just using it wrong. You don't want the video content on your website to be hosted by YouTube. That's a direct path off your site. That said, YouTube is the second largest search engine and one of the strongest customer acquisition tools available to retailers.
Just ask Home Depot, which has created tons of do-it-yourself (DIY) videos on YouTube. Search for "how to install a toilet" and Home Depot's video comes up first. In the video, Home Depot directs viewers back to the DIY section of its own website.
If you haven't already, create your own branded YouTube channel. Then, using effective teaser content and YouTube annotations, push the traffic your channel gets back to your website and even specific conversion pages.
3. If you're just using video to "play a video," you're wasting 95 percent of its value. Video player technology is growing faster than video content itself. New player technology can enable retailers to build calls to action or even entire retail transactions into their videos.
Video analytics can now tell you how long people are watching your video and what content they're engaging with. That's an enormous feedback loop that's been missing. Retailers need to seek out and adopt new video marketing tools and data to start optimizing video content and driving response through the roof.
4. Test your thumbnail for no-brainer volume lift. A simple change of your video thumbnail — the still image that shows before visitors play your video — can lead to double-digit increases in your clickthrough rate. But how do you know which of your thumbnail options is going to work best?
It's simple, run an A/B split test. If you're not A/B testing your video thumbnails, you're giving away views.
5. Be sure your videos play on every device. Fifty percent of smartphone users watch web video on their mobile device. With mobile video traffic set to increase 16 fold by 2017, can you afford to ignore or underserve that market? Plus, research has shown that smartphone users watch video content longer than viewers on other platforms, and are more likely to buy.
Bottom line: Test your video content to make sure it works on all platforms. Otherwise, you're missing a massive and rapidly growing opportunity.
Don't Get Left Behind
Video may be new, but it's taking over. Best practices for video marketing in retail are going to be shaped by those retailers that invest in testing, learning and optimizing the fastest. So what are you doing about it? Share how you're driving results with video in the comments section below.