Separately, both video content and content marketing have seen a remarkable rise in interest and effectiveness in the last several years. Video content marketing, their inevitable and profitable combination, has seen similar growth in use and discussion.
So let’s discuss the five most frequently asked questions about video content marketing, and see if it’s time your company joined the movement.
Video content marketing can help a lot. With 84% of companies reporting increased website traffic, 80% mentioning increased dwell time on a company’s website, and 81% reporting improved lead generation, Wyzowl’s survey of businesses proved that video content marketing can help your brand substantially, and in many areas.
The difference between video content marketing and video marketing comes in the way the promotional aspects of the video is handled. In video marketing, conventionally, promotion is fairly overt. To one degree or another, the product or service is foregrounded and the script exists to celebrate it.
By contrast, video content marketing uses indirect promotion, and foregrounds content that will be valuable and/or relevant to the audience. That valuable content might be humor, educational, behind-the-scenes event footage, a thought leadership video, or more. The point is that video content marketing aims to promote a brand through linking it to something the audience cares about, instead of directly telling the audience that the brand is superior.
So are you, in fact, already doing video content marketing? Do your marketing videos work to provide something valuable and engaging, or do they pursue more of a direct promotional tone?
Nigel Gutzmann correctly points out that “Video marketing is not expensive unless you promote it across your social media channels by buying ad campaigns in sites like Facebook, Instagram or Twitter”. He adds that “high-quality videos” will require a big budget. He’s half right.
When you create video content marketing for your own website, the costs fairly well stop at production expenses. Moving your efforts into social media will indeed cost more, so weigh that cost. Higher visibility means a greater chance at achieving your content marketing goals, but you might want to monitor your video content marketing’s success on lower-cost platforms first.
And, to the point about high-quality videos requiring a big budget: define “high-quality”. If high-quality just means good content marketing, then Gutzmann’s off-base. Company culture videos, a great kind of video content marketing that promotes relatability and trust in a brand, are rarely ‘big budget.’
There’s a conflation between “high-quality” and “high production value” that I think Gutzmann and many others make: quality isn’t synonymous with perfect set design, A-list casting, and licensed music. That kind of thinking leads to this kind of ad—and that’s great, it’s astonishing—but it forgets about this kind. Sure, you can see the difference in budget, but I’d argue that the IMPACT video’s personal and comedic content make it just as “high-quality.”
If the previous example of Jean Claude Van Damme stretching between moving trucks and a Willy-Wonka themed corporate culture video didn’t already hint at this answer, then I’ll just say it: Video content marketing looks like whatever you need it to.
In one short article, Curata identifies ten types of video content marketing and the stages of the customer journey to which they cohere.
For customers just becoming aware of your brand, educational videos are a great way to show your brand’s expertise, impart some free wisdom, and drive visitors to your website.
As customers consider which solution they’ll get, try an explainer or how-to video to teach them skills and tips for using your product, which will increase the likelihood of conversion.
And when it’s time to finalize their decision, a customer testimonial video can be the personal, trustworthy push they need to become a buying customer.
Video content marketing takes a multiplicity of forms. As long as it provides valuable, relevant, and memorable content to your viewers and promotes your brand less directly, you’re creating video content marketing.
Words like subtle and indirect are awkward in describing video content marketing, because they only apply in comparison to non-content video marketing. Video content marketing still very much exists to promote your brand. Don’t confuse descriptors like ‘indirect’ with a sort of scheme to hide the product; if video content marketing truly ignored the brand/product, it wouldn’t be used at all, let alone successfully by some of the biggest companies in the world.
Let’s go back to the Van Damme ad. What words come to your mind after you finish watching it? Personally, I think of strength, elegance, and the interplay between size and power. The stunt provides the value, but the stunt is only possible because of Volvo. Two colossal Volvo trucks literally drive the ad, and at the end, we read that “This test was set up to demonstrate the stability and precision of Volvo Dynamic Steering.”
In other words, “We could’ve made a video that just showed a truck handling well, but instead, we gave you a death-defying stunt by a world-famous movie star with an interesting monologue and music.”
Good video content marketing isn’t hiding the product, or using indirect promotion to cover up some kind of flaw—it’s using the product as the spark for something exciting, something special. It’s remixing the formula from “Here’s Product X, by Company Y” into “Here’s something fascinating! This was made possible with Product X, which comes from Company Y.”
Hopefully, the above answers will show the value and viability of video content marketing.
Keep an eye on distribution and other possibly budget-expansive elements.
Be comfortable with the high degree of variability that’s achievable with video content marketing, and understand that content marketing means showcasing the product in a different way.
With these considerations in mind, you’ll be ready to make your own successful video content marketing in no time.