For some time now, video has been a dominant force in content consumption. By 2021, video is poised to make up 80% of web traffic. It’s a great opportunity to get eyes on your brand, and raise interest through a successful (or even viral) video. Yet, while views are wonderful, there’s a next step that’s even more useful: lead generation.
How can you create and utilize marketing videos to reliably generate leads?
Include Gated Content
The first suggestion offered by Syed Balkhi and numerous other marketing writers is to include gated content. That is, videos that require information from the viewer before they can watch the content. Balkhi addresses the concern this approach might raise, saying “You might think it unusual that people would be interested in filling out their information when trying to watch videos.”
Indeed, it does seem to run counter to content marketing’s emphasis on providing value to the customer before focusing on the product. To be clear, the call for information isn’t always the first thing viewers see. Some gated content also operates by requesting the information partway through the video. Either way, you’re asking for value from the customer.
Regardless of how counterintuitive as it may seem at first blush, research shows that gated videos boast a 16% conversion rate, and a 42% conversion rate if the form is within the first 20% of the video. Balkhi addresses concerns about the possible rejection of gated content, arguing that gated content belongs later in the customer journey. Situate gated content starting mid-funnel, and the viewers who encounter it will be much more likely to enter their information.
Gated content can potentially net you a sizable amount of leads, potentially for a very long time. But what of customers whose journey hasn’t progressed quite far enough to ensure gated content’s effectiveness?
Don’t Forget Your Call to Action
One thing every video you make should contain, regardless of its position on the customer journey/marketing funnel, is a clear call to action. Earlier, we said that while views are wonderful, they’re not entirely useful without the next step. We should’ve been more specific: that’s more true of videos without a CTA (call to action).
The CTA will tell the viewer exactly what that next step should be. A landing page is a great place to direct viewers. Even better if it has an embedded video to offer more value. With good video content marketing, the value you’ve provided your viewers will keep them interested in your brand, and likely interested in examining more of what your site has to offer.
Videos That Convert Evoke Emotion
What kinds of videos should reside on your landing page?
The kind that “move you and make you feel something… [those that] evoke the kind of emotion that can lead to conversions.” This dovetails with Neil Patel’s advice approach to “push their pain points,” reminding them of the issue they need solved, and following up by “push[ing] their pain points even more.”
Patel is not saying to create a gloom-and-doom picture of the viewer’s life and concerns. He’s simply adding some specificity to the kinds of emotions that drive conversions. There isn’t just one that works. Comedy might work for many viewers. Frustration with their unsolved problem may drive others (Patel’s expectation with his repeated suggestion).
Avoid wrong emotional content that inspires disgust, guilt, or other purely negative feelings. Very few people have ever said, “I’m so disgusted, I could sign up for this new company’s newsletter”. Even the pain point emphasis needs tempering at a certain point.
It’s great to drive frustration at a problem, but don’t frustrate your viewer to the point that the emotion refracts onto your organization. People do a lot of surprising things, but they reliably don’t buy from brands that have angered them.
Give Viewers a Chance to Stay in Touch
Anand Srinivasan recommends using the subscription ability available on YouTube for any marketer who intends to create a series of videos. Now, this doesn’t immediately generate leads, since YouTube does not provide access to email, phone numbers, or other contact information.
Merged with an email marketing system, however, subscription can be an absolute boon to lead generation. Through newsletters and subscribing, you involve your viewers in gated content. Signing up for a newsletter isn’t a surprising tradeoff; it’s something motivated prospects do excitedly, because they see the value in the information—and videos—they’ll receive.
It’s all about Consistency
Lastly, don’t forget to keep making videos. If you make a great marketing video that is verifiably successful in generating leads but has not been updated in three years, it’s quite possible that you’ve gotten all of the leads you will get from that video.
Re-evaluate the videos you’ve made, and examine which ones are still in circulation and where. It’s okay to have older videos in a series on a YouTube channel, as long as you continue to produce new ones.
Be conscious of updating your landing page’s videos, though, as that is likely where new—and old—videos will direct viewers. You don’t want to have prospects arrive at your landing page to find a video that’s visibly old and focused on long-past trends or ideas, right after they’ve spent time watching your new, attractive videos. Be consistently high-quality, and don’t forget to keep creating.
With gated content, clear calls to action, emotionally resonant content, subscriptions, and continuously updated video offerings, you’ll see your marketing videos generate a high quantity of leads. Video marketing isn’t just about views, though those are crucial—it’s about next steps and lead generation too. Be purposeful in your content creation, and enjoy the increased lead generation it provides.
Do you consider video to be an important part of your marketing strategy? How has it helped you develop leads? Can you think of techniques beyond the ones mentioned above for increased lead generation through video?