With 79% of Internet traffic expected to consist of video by 2018, there's little disputing that video has a bright future in marketing.
Video content is engaging and easy to consume, and it helps you connect to the people that matter most—your audience.
But how can you get the full benefits of video? Take a look at these six actionable ways you can implement video into your marketing strategy.
1. Produce an educational series
As we've learned more about effective content marketing, it's become evidently clear that educational content is the one of the most favored types for consumption. By including an educational video series in your marketing strategy, you can educate your audience in relation to their pain points.
Because of videos such as these, customers will learn from you and so follow your brand or actually make a purchase from you. And this approach can work for just about any industry. In Moz's case, the audience will learn a bunch of useful SEO tips, and some will likely to sign up to use Moz's software.
2. Create a product explainer video
An explainer video is similar to an educational video, but it is more focused on being a sales tool for your product or service: An explainer video shows off your product, conveys its benefits, and ultimately persuades watchers to make a purchase from you.
You could create an animated explainer video to keep people engaged on your homepage; you can create a preview of your latest mobile app; and you can even encourage people to sign up to your software using screen recordings from your website. The options are plentiful.
For example, this animated video from Clipping Path Specialist simply presents what its software can do for clients in an engaging, animated explainer video. It's short, concise, and benefit-led, helping to sell the product.
3. Host a webinar
A webinar is a great way to engage your audience and build a strong following for your brand. The good news for webinar fans is that it's not something that's going to gobble up your budget. Check out Google Hangout and Skype as potential hosting platforms.
The subject of your webinar should depend on your audience: What do they want to learn from you? Perhaps something new has happened in your industry that you can shed light on? Maybe you want to get public opinion on your latest product launch?
You can do a lot with a webinar.
And one of the biggest selling points is that you can use it to truly engage your audience. Get them involved in the discussion and organize a Q&A section so that they'll want to tune in to your webinar and stay connected to your brand.
(Take a look at this Convince and Convert article for 14 steps to hosting a successful webinar.)
4. Use it in your email campaigns
According to a report (PDF) from DemandGen, a drip feed campaign can average a 20% increase in sales opportunities, but you need to have the right nurturing strategy. And that's where a video can help: You can produce different types of video, depending on where the person you're nurturing is in the sales cycle.
So, for example, when a Wyzowl client opts to receive our emails, we'll send them a video to give them ideas on how they can get started with their first video:
We'll then send another email that includes a video detailing exactly what goes into creating a video:
And once they make the purchase, we'll send them a handy video that explains how they can use their own video to market their business and gain the full benefits of video.
By creating video drip-feed campaigns and including useful content, you'll be nurturing your audience along the sales funnel; they'll be far more likely to buy your product, and they will continue to return to you.
5. Produce video customer testimonials
Most customers read online reviews before making a purchase decision. So, clearly, a customer testimonial is a great tool to use to build up trust for prospective customers.
A video can bring the testimonial to life. It's the best way to show Web visitors who your customers are and why they liked using your service, without visitors' having to read a huge paragraph of text on your site.
Take a look at Pardot to see the perfect example of a brand with effective video testimonials. Every video is of high quality, perfectly capturing the story of what it's like to work with Pardot. They're ideal for building up trust.
6. Use video in your social strategy
The great thing about social media is that most platforms let you create a video on the fly and upload it instantly to your followers.
Some of the best types of videos to use in this instance include interviews and Q&As, capturing scenes from a networking event and conference, or an entertaining video that's highly shareable.
For example, General Electric is a B2B brand that regularly uses Vine to create short, shareable videos related to their niche, like this one:
GE then pushes them out via all of their social channels to get the maximum exposure.
Now it's your turn
When planning a video as part of your marketing strategy, have your end goal in mind: Do you want to increase sales? Inform your audience about a new service offering? Entertain?
You can do a lot with a video... so long as you create it with your audience firmly in mind. If you do, then video content can and will accelerate your entire marketing strategy.