Scroll…scroll…like…scroll…ooh what’s that about?
Sound familiar? I would bet all the money in my pocket (exactly £5.32) the piece of content that will make you stop scrolling 90% of the time is a video. Be it on social media, a news page or company website, we are naturally drawn to video. So what does this mean for brands today?
Video became the world’s primary source of information and entertainment during the 1950’s when people started to watch news, sport, music, plays and adverts from the comfort of their couch. Back then a brand would have an agency produce an advert (often a visual representation of a parallel radio piece) in order to reach as many people through the new medium of TV as possible, and run that ad until a new product was launched. These adverts were often actually quite good, they could be abstract, sometimes inspirational, often using music motifs, influencers and animation to make their impression but would often still very much focus on product, not brand.
Nowadays we view video on computers, TV, mobile phones and even on our watches. Time is at a premium and content has to be on demand to stay relevant. Video is downloadable, streamable and wrangled to fit our schedule.
Currently, 55% of people view videos online each day with 51% of online video being viewed on mobile devices. Facebook sees over 100 million hours of video consumed each day, that’s almost 11.5 thousand SOLID YEARS of content….let that sink in. Video shares on social media are 1200% higher than text and image combined and people absorb 95% of information from a video as opposed to only about 10% from a written article.
So what does this mean for your brand today?
Social media and the mobile internet now give us a platform that allows the production of immediate, relevant and most importantly shareable content. Video is a medium that lets you tell your story in a modern and relevant way that is accessible and attractive to your customers. Prompt responses to brand or market news, product developments and releases, even birthday celebrations in the office are all relatively easy to produce and can be pushed live through social channels in an instant.
As a professional services brand, these platforms give you an opportunity to stay relevant, keep on trend and to make sure that your clientele know exactly how you can help them navigate new and potentially exciting opportunities. It also allows you to show a bit of personality and to put out some more lighthearted content.
In the professional services sector there can often be a perception that these brands are a bit antiquated, dull or irrelevant to personal needs with only people who are in the know being able to fully appreciate the value they can add. This series by Saxo Bank was a really nice ending to 2018 and actually personally made me look deeper in to their products and services after it popped up on my LinkedIn feed.
You also need to consider the length and detail included in your video content. Large events like conferences or talks that your executives or leadership give are an amazing resource for video content, they can not only put across a great deal of information but also give more credibility to your brands knowledge and capabilities.
The full event could be put out on to Youtube as an unedited, raw account of the moment but you also have the opportunity chop it down in to more digestible pieces of content specific to a certain point. These can (and should) then be put on platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook or Instagram as part of a campaign that links back to the full piece and can easily set you up with content for months!
Video can be a potent tool for customer engagement and acquisition, but it does take a little consideration and planning to make it a success. Think about your target market and where they are likely to find your content first of all, whether you are looking for a more professional or public audience for example.
When you know what platforms you can use and groups you are looking for, think about the content itself. Will it be data driven or will they be more colour pieces to show your personality and to differentiate you from the competition?
Don’t forget, you and your competition are often going to be providing very similar services in very similar ways so you need to differentiate. Either find a niche market to appeal to or provide enough flavour and interest to attract new people to your business. Be the shiny opal among the pebbles.
My biggest piece of advice however is to just do it. Gather the attention you want and get people interested in you. Depending on your goals, it doesn’t always need to be highly polished content, it just needs to capture people’s imagination and speak to their needs.
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