Does it add up?

A lot has been said of video as of late. Some wonder if it’s worthwhile, others assume it’s really expensive, while some don’t know where to start or what kinds of videos they can create (check back next week for more on this).

Study after study has demonstrated that consumers and executives alike prefer video over reading text. The question is not whether video is worthwhile or not, it’s what kind of video should you be creating and where should it live?
59% of C-suite executives prefer to watch video over reading text.

character animations(source)

A few years ago Explainer Videos became very popular. Some companies have seen enormous success, similar to the Explainer Video we created for HouseCall. Explainer videos provide many of the details or product features with the intention of getting that information directly to the customer.
Unfortunately, a lot of explainer videos started out the same, and we became immune to the. The “Meet, Bob” explainer video became stale and quickly took over our perception of a given company, rather than focus on their product.

 

Explainer videos still have their place in today’s market, but they are not the end all be all for video. Instead, we need to figure out where they most valuable and use them to our advantage.
Explainer videos should be reserved for new products that need consumer explanation. They should be concise and the messaging should be updated and A/B tested to ensure greater success and ROI.

video infographic.(source)

There are other forms of videos beyond explainer videos. Branded Entertainment, commercials and documentary are other successful forms- each with their own set of parameters and logistics.

Brightcove, a cloudbased video delivery service provider found that video is increasing in popularity from Fortune 500 companies to startups because of it’s effectiveness and drop in barriers to entry.

Furthermore, about 55% of companies are developing and managing content internally and partnering with video production companies for execution on a project. This allows greater flexibility and control for brands while keeping the production value and content top notch.

Producing high quality video content has a direct correlation to the value and return on investment. Companies that place more importance on video content will spend more time developing and managing their content, making sure that the right content reaches the right customers. Since creating high quality video assets, or video with greater production value, is often times more work, the extra effort pays off in terms of quality.

Tracking effectiveness

Wistia, a popular cloud based video player, offers powerful stats and insights in your videos. Once you know how long people watch your video for or where the dropout rate falls sharply, you know where to fix your messaging.

Since video has a temporal element brands have the ability to test and understand exactly which video content, or part of the content is the most effective. For example, if you reviewed your stats after 1,000 views on a video and you see that 33% of viewers watched it in it’s entirely and 48% drop off at 0:28 you have some incredibly powerful insights into your media that you can work with.

What does this tell you? It tells you several things, and if you look into it you might be able to find some areas for improvement. First off, the fact that one third of viewers are finishing your media is pretty good, not great, but now you know where to look for improvements. If you have the stats on the 33% of viewers for finishes it you can create targeted ads for this demographic knowing that you have a far greater chance of them watching it all the way through.

What kind of action do you want your audience to take after watching it all the way through? Are you getting them to sign up for your email campaign? register for an event? buy a product?

Nearly double your conversion rate with video.

Whatever your goal is, you should have supporting call to actions on the page. Vimeo, the most popular quality video provider available, has several options for content creators to enable upon completion, such as suggested videos to watch, a HTML enabled link, or message.

The viewers that drop at 0:28 can also offer incredible insight. The first thing to note is that you’ve made it past the 0:05 milestone. What is happening from 0:20-0:28 seconds? What’s causing them to drop off?

Depending on what the content is, where it is being watched, and how it is being watched i.e. on what kind of device, you’ll have to figure out what’s causing the dropoff. Once you realize this you can put a few different variations in place to A/B test.

Never before have you been able to test media at this level. In the past, with TV commercials or magazine advertisements companies were stuck, without any real hard data to update their media.

Let’s take a look at ads.

According to the Aberdeen Group in a 2014 study, companies who used video in their content marketing efforts saw a conversion rate of 4.8%, versus just 2.9% for companies who did not use video.

If you have a $12,000 ad budget over 3 months, would spending part of that on a video and CPC yield more than text based CPC ads?

CPC CPC + Video
Video Cost $0 $4,000
Ad spend $12,000 $8,000
Campaign Costs $12,000 $12,000
CPC $4 $4
Clicks 3,000 2,000
Conversions 2.9% 4.8%
Sales 87 96

In the example above, not only do we have more sales, we have an asset that we can carry forward. Beyond this, we have the valuable stats on who’s watching our video and how to improve. This will continue to reduce your ad cost per sale over time as you continue to leverage your video.

Video is about creating media that your customers want and that they’re responding to right now. You have to track your customers down and connect with them on their terms- meaning on their phones and the digital space that they live in. If you’re using Adwords and your customers are on Instagram you’re missing the mark.

You might find that it’s a combination of techniques. Perhaps it’s text ads that get potential customers to your landing pages and the video featured there is what converts them.

How have you used video in advertising for your business? What kind of ROI have you seen? Let us know in the comments.

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