Next time you’re searching for something online, notice how many times a video crops up. Thinking about a holiday? A video shows you the resort. Trying to work out how to use that new gadget? Try this online video guide. Looking for an architect? Click on the video for a guided tour of the practice’s work.

Online videos have become an essential way for people to search for information about products and services on the internet and more and more companies are using corporate video production services to bring their brand to life, online. They’re everywhere, and they’re increasingly powerful as a marketing tool for small businesses. Here are the stats behind the trend.

Pic 1 Video Marketing

The rise and rise of online videos

  • 55% of all keyword searches return at least one video. (Google)
  • In 2018, 79% of web browsers will watch online videos every day. (Groupon)
  • By 2019 as much as 80% of consumer internet traffic will be people watching videos, up from 64% in 2014. (Cisco)

Senior managers are watching too

The viewers aren’t just people whiling away time watching videos of singing dogs and dancing babies. They’re senior managers – the decision makers in business who hold the purse strings and can decide whether or not to pay for your products and services.

According to a Forbes study:

  • 75% of business executives watch work-related videos at least once a week
  • 54% of senior executives share work-related videos with colleagues at least weekly
  • 59% of senior executives prefer to watch video, if there is both text and video on the page.

Does video marketing work?

You bet it does. Video marketing works because it captures people’s attention, draws viewers in and delivers a message both simply and powerfully.

  • There’s an 80% increase in conversion from viewers to buyers when companies use video on landing pages. (ReelSEO)
  • People spend around 88% more time on websites that include video. (Mist Media)
  • Consumers are 64% more likely to buy a product after they’ve watched a video about it. (ComScore)

If you’d like more proof, have a look at this on the power of video.

Improve your search ranking

Put video marketing at the top of your ‘to do’ list if you want to improve your online ranking. Landing pages that feature a video are 53% more likely to improve on the first page of a Google search, according to Forrester Research.

And the more people find your video through search, the more likely they are to share it, creating additional valuable links back to your site, and potentially attracting more customers.

Small businesses tap into the trend

The good news for small businesses is that online videos are now within the reach of organisations of every size. They represent a highly cost-effective, accessible marketing tool that gives small businesses excellent exposure and helps them to punch above their weight.

What’s more, this is the perfect time for you to get on board with the video marketing trend. Increasingly, video is the medium of choice, both for business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing and business-to-business (B2B) channels.

See how effective video marketing can be

Here are a few examples of video marketing done well:

Rio de Janeiro restaurant comes alive

Do you want chilli with that cocktail? In just over a minute, the Espaço Cultural 512 restaurant in Rio de Janeiro conjures up the atmosphere that customers can expect, using music, images and no words. It’s a great example of how a web video can convey a business’ brand and personality.

Would you like a video like this? You’d need to think about these questions:

  • How could you sum up your business without using any words?
  • Which images or elements of your business would you want to focus on? Here, there are close ups of shots being poured, musicians and dancing. What would your equivalent be?
  • What music would you use? (Remember you’d need either to create your own music or use non-copyright music. A professional video production company knows the ropes and would help sort that out for you.)
  • How would you bring alive the atmosphere of your product or service?
  • How would you create a desire for your product or service through your video?

How to make water-repellent interesting

This B2B video sounds as though it’s about the dullest thing on earth – a water-repellent super-hydrophobic coating – but over 3 million people have watched it. Watch as water slides off paper, mustard rolls off bread and one man shakes off a bucket full of muddy water while his colleague gets drenched.

So you want a funny video that grabs viewers’ attention while – subtly or not so subtly – ramming home the benefits of your product or service? Here are the things to think about:

  • What would be your equivalent of the opening shot here, where the two guys get drenched? What is there about your product or service that customers would find amazing?
  • Which areas of your business could you use to film your video? Do you have an office with a great view? Do you work from a heritage building? Are there any fascinating behind-the-scenes areas that the public don’t normally see?
  • How might you incorporate the low-tech ‘scribble on paper’ headings into your video?
  • Which of your people would present your product or service most effectively? Who’s most passionate about what you do? (Passion comes across brilliantly on screen, and is often more important than a slick presentation.)

Modern Mark’s guide to modern marketing

Oracle’s not a small company, but you can still take some tips for your small business from the way that a large business markets itself.

Oracle took a different approach to their competitors with this series of animated B2B videos. They show Modern Mark taking on the challenges of marketing in the era of the Cloud – and winning. The format’s engaging and the irreverent tone is a real point of difference in this sector.

If you want an animated marketing video, here are a few questions to ask yourself:

  • What type of animated video do you want? 2D (like Modern Mark), 2.5D (which combines both 2D and 3D styles) or 3D (all elements are 3 dimensional – this, naturally, costs more)?
  • What style of animated video do you like? Are you going for something that looks a little rough around the edges or a super polished style?
  • How would you reflect your brand in your animated video? (Tricks include using your brand’s colour palette.)
  • How will you engage your typical customer? (All online videos need to do this, but an animated video can have an edge because you can create an animated character who reflects the concerns and desires of your typical client.)

So you want to start video marketing?

Here are three tips to help you get started.

  1. Define your goal

Your first step is to pinpoint the message you want to get across and what you want to achieve.

For example, you might want your web video to:

  • Give an overview of your business – who you are and what you do
  • Launch a new product or service
  • Introduce your team to potential clients
  • Work as part of a sales pitch
  • Help your business become more visible online, by improving search result rankings or reaching new customers through a viral marketing campaign.
  1. Identify your viewers

Before you get going on the content of the video, it’s useful to take a step back and think about who’s going to be watching it. Ask yourself three questions:

  • Who do you want to watch this video?
  • How much do they already know about your company?
  • What are their concerns?

You might want to think of one typical viewer, such as a specific potential client, and use that person as a reference point for your video. You can then deduce a fair bit about the style and content of the video by imagining how they might react. If they know nothing about your business, you’ll need to get across who you are, what you do and what would impress that particular person. You’ll be able to assess the level of detail they need, and the business jargon they will or won’t understand.

Thinking about their concerns sounds counter-intuitive. Why create problems where there are none? But if you consider what that person might be worried about (whether it’s the cost, your experience or your ability to deliver), you can address those issues directly in your video.

Pic 2 Video Marketing

  1. Think about hiring a professional production company

It’s perfectly possible to create your own online video using a video camera, a microphone, a few lights and some video editing software.

But you might find it’s worth investing in some professional help. A production company will remove a lot of the headaches involved in filming a video and can save you time and money in the long run. A professional company offering video production services will take care of the entire process, including:

  • Holding a brainstorming session with you to come up with a theme and style for your video
  • Helping you decide who, what, where and when to film
  • Writing a script
  • Providing post production facilities
  • Providing production staff to plan and oversee filming
  • Supplying camera and sound crew
  • Providing all the kit, including cameras, broadcast quality lights and sound equipment
  • Producing a voiceover
  • Adding music, graphics and any animations.

Video marketing: the game-changer for small businesses

There’s never been a better time for small businesses to get on board with video marketing. It’s more accessible than ever before and the power of video just keeps growing.

See what it can do for your small business. You might be surprised.