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Conversion Challenges #3: Improving video engagement

Conversion Challenges #3: Improving video engagement

Slack and Company | November 2, 2017

As marketing tactics go—at least, when it comes to B2B—it’s tough to beat video.

And that’s the case regardless of if you’re the one being marketed to or if you’re the one doing the marketing: Google found that 70% of B2B buyers and researchers watch videos to inform their buying decisions and, according to Adobe, nearly 52% of marketers found their video content had the best ROIs.

But this isn’t Field of Dreams and you aren’t Kevin Costner. If you build it, they won’t necessarily come. You have to give your audience a reason to play ball.

Though, getting James Earl Jones to do your VO might guarantee a few views.

He has to return our phone calls eventually.

Video content can represent a significant investment for any business. So, beyond making sure your content is compelling, knowing how to drive engagement is critical. Here are three questions to answer before you start looking at scripts and storyboards.

1. What's my goal?

What kind of video is it? A testimonial? A product launch or demo? An educational or “how-to” video? Or, maybe a culture video? What purpose does it serve in your content strategy? Is your goal brand awareness or education? Clicks or views? A specific call-to-action such as a download or sign-up? Engagement looks different depending on the kind of video you’ve created and the objective you have in mind.     

Having a clear-cut goal—and building your video and promotional strategy around it—provides the foundation for successful conversions down the line.  

2. Who's my target?

What really matters to your audience? How do they consume digital media? Where do they go online and how long do they spend there? How do they make buying decisions?

A little research can go a long way. If you haven’t already, develop personas and journey maps for your target audiences. Know where your customers and prospects might be in the process when your videos get in their way. Then, you’ll know how to message to them and what the right call-to-action is for each video.

3. How are they going to watch?

A survey by LinkedIn found that B2B audiences are nearly just as likely to watch B2B videos on their mobile devices as they are on their laptops or desktops. But no matter how your audience consumes content, don’t overlook these four ground rules that always apply to video content:

Make sure it's mobile-friendly.

Functionally, yes. But not just. In order for a video to truly be effective in a mobile environment, it has to tell a story, visually, first. Remember, most viewers won’t have the sound up initially. You have to convince them to stick around and listen to what you have to say. Or, at least give them captions or subtitles to read. 

Give your users a second option for viewing.

There’s nothing wrong with using a third-party program to take care of your video hosting needs, but there’s always a chance that it might not work on a viewer’s computer. We suggest using YouTube or Vimeo. They both generate embed codes that make adding videos to web pages a more user-friendly experience, and adding your videos to your YouTube channel makes them more findable—and viewable.

Consider what people are going to see before they press play.

Open your video file, but don’t press play. What do you see? A black screen? Your video star’s picture frozen with their mouth open? The “poster frame” is important and can be used to tempt viewers into clicking. Make sure it has something interesting to say.

Make sure there’s a strong call-to-action.

Remember question #1? It’s first on our list for a very good reason. What do you want your audience to do after they’re done watching your video? You can include it in the video itself by programming button overlays (again, YouTube makes this easy) or on a web page with a hyperlink or CTA button. Consider using action-oriented phrases like “Learn more,” “Sign up today” or “Try now.”

Now, let’s increase engagement with your video using…

Social media
(Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin)
1. The perfect video length
People typically prefer shorter videos (Vidyard found that 56% of videos are less than 2 minutes long) but that can vary by not only your industry but also by your chosen social media platform. Some platforms like Twitter even place restrictions on how long your videos can be. Consider teaser content that links to a longer video on your site.
2. Don’t forget the data
Most social platforms offer inexpensive native features that can get your videos in front of people who want to see them. LinkedIn’s sponsored content and Facebook’s Mobile Advertising IDs are good places to start.
3. Use your words
Never let your video stand by itself. Make sure your post features attention-grabbing copy that raises interest in what your video content has to offer.
Emails and landing pages
1. Subject matters
No one will view your video if they don’t open the email carrying it. Simply using the word “video” in your subject line can increase open rates by 19%. Not to mention CTRs, which can skyrocket as high as 65%. Check out more tips on writing click-worthy emails right here.
2. All eyes on me
Make sure your video is placed “above the fold.” It should be the first thing users see when they open your email or navigate to your page.
3. Simplified search
Use SEO-friendly keywords to make your landing page—and your content—findable. Consider including a transcription of your video. They’re a rich source of metadata that search engines use to rank content. Don’t want a whole slew of words below your video? Putting the transcript on a separate web page and offering a link to it in the video’s description is an easy solve.

Still need some batting practice? We’re always happy to talk.


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