Video marketing continues to grow as a powerful tool for attracting new customers and building a community. Studies continue to show how videos in emails and on landing pages can increase leads and conversions by significant amounts, and users seem more likely to take action after viewing some kind of relevant video. What that all means is that this is a great opportunity for you to grow your audience and see increased traffic.
Here is the list of 11 video types you should be making, or at least consider making, for your company, brand, or product.Which one is best for SEO, you might ask? The big surprise is that it really doesn’t matter to a search engine what the content is, or how it's created. Any of these styles can perform well in the search engines if you optimize your videos properly. Not all will target organic search traffic, though, so optimization might focus on the style or message of the video.
Without further ado, here’s the list.
1. Live Video on Meerkat, Periscope, or Facebook
This is the latest social phenomena that mobile devices and fast network speeds have made possible. Live video streaming has been around for nearly a decade, but making the live stream simple and interactive has eluded streaming sites. Up popped Meerkat and Periscope to add simple features and intuitive interactivity.
Facebook, always trying to keep up with the latest trends, has now incorporated live video into its social feeds, too. You have always been able to record a video on your timeline or post your own videos, but this takes it to a new level. Facebook is really trying to favor live video feeds right now by sending notifications to friends or followers. So go live!
This is a great opportunity to show off your products or services in action, with real people. You can show the fun things that are happening in your office as well as impromptu interviews with customers. Simply put, it’s a great way to share a little more of your personality.
A short list of ideas for your live videos:
- Product or Company Announcements.
- Product Demonstration.
- Live Q&A’s with Team Members.
- Group Support and Feedback.
- Impromptu Giveaways.
- Flash Sales or Discounts.
- Live Auctions or Raffles.
- 10 Examples of Brands using Facebook Live.
This live facebook feed by Wella Education caught my eye recently. Their production was fantastic and they used Livestream as the main feed, and then connected into Facebook for the social interaction. Livestream has never been able to reach large audiences, but maybe this may finally give them relevance. Oh, and isn't model #35 just adorable?
2. Snapchat Video
Many companies overlook this outlet for video production because it just comes off as “the latest thing” which may or may not last all that long. However, recent studies have shown that Snapchat has a great potential for capturing visual attention and emotional responses. What’s more, forecasts seem to think it’s going to be around for a while.
There are more than 100 million visitors to Snapchat every day, and many companies have used this platform as a great way to engage their customers.
The difference between creating Snapchats and normal videos is that a Snapchat will not stay for long. It’s all about sharing something “in the moment.” You are encouraged to tell a story (a series of Snaps played one after the other) and realize that it will last up to 24 hours. This creates some impetus for your customers to pay close attention to your feed so they don’t miss anything important.
See how RedBull used one of their sponsored athletes for a day on Snapchat:
Back in the day, a video on Twitter was really just a link that would take you to a third-party site where you could watch it. Now, Twitter Video allows users to watch the videos without leaving the stream. You can simply record and upload them directly to the platform. These are 30-second videos because Twitter has always been about creating a direct and concise experience.
You can use this video format to respond to questions or other tweets, create short promotions, share events happening at your company, and providing up-to-the-minute news clips.
Here is a great use of video on Twitter by Playstation:
You get a 30 second commercial, and PlayStation takes full advantage, no words, just visuals telling the story. It's a great teaser that gets lots of retweets and social interaction.
4. Instagram Video
When another social media platform adds new features, companies are either superfast to jump on the trend or they are extra hesitant, unwilling to commit the resources to untested marketing channels. Instagram videos, though, have been around long enough that we’ve seen the benefit from several different brands.
Instagram videos give you up to 60 seconds to communicate your message, and it lets you add various filters (just like with pictures), and there are more than 400 million Instagram users, making it a fertile ground for your video marketing efforts.
Even at 60 seconds, there is a lot of potential for creativity. You can provide quick how-tos, answer frequently asked questions, and show off your products in a unique way.A fun video by Nike:
I love the fist at the end! Once again a commercial, this time it's 60 seconds in length. Perhaps with good planning, that 30 second commercial can be used in Twitter and Instagram.
5. Explainer Video
What is an explainer video? Hopefully the answer is rather self-explanatory: it’s a video that explains something. (Shocking, right?) These videos are visually engaging and viewers tend to stay and watch them longer than most other types of videos, and that means they can be extremely effective for your business. In fact, according to Unbounce, animated explainer videos increase conversion rates by 20%.
I’ve broken these videos into two main categories.
- Whiteboard Explainer Video
The Whiteboard video was one of the first big hits on the internet as explainer videos go. It all started with capturing a real person with a time-lapse camera while they drew images on the board. Once the videos started going viral, software developers started creating apps to make the catchy format available to everyone. With that said, creating an interesting, graphically appealing professional whiteboard animation isn't easy.
- Animated Explainer Video
Some creators have taken the explainer video up a notch by adding animated characters and scenes. A well-crafted 2D animation allows companies to engage audiences with a professional, quality look without breaking the marketing budget. These videos, when created by the right team, can be highly effective in communicating your message to your target audience.
Here is a piece we produced for iHomeFinder:
These are typically 30 - 90 seconds long, but they can be an engaging way to tell your story. Although this one is a bit long it's a way to engage customers and keep them around to fully understand what you offer.
6. Video Infographic (30 - 60 Second sample)
What is a video infographic? Infographics were all the rage when social platforms like Pinterest and Tumblr made everything about the visuals. Research quickly found that they worked because they were eye-catching and could hold the attention of visitors longer than most other types of written content.
A video infographic has a distinct advantage over a traditional infographic in that it also has an audio aspect. Someone can provide a little extra commentary to increase interest and engagement and give it a little bit of a personable spin.
This one would be easy to shoot, it's a continuos shot of the subject. The graphic elements would take a lot longer to produce, I might have added a voice over to go with it because studies have shown we retain more information that way. Overall it's a creative and effective way to share information about something related to your brand.
7. Video Sales letter
A video sales letter (VSL) is a very simple video made up of text, a voice over, and a music track (though that last one isn’t really required). It’s the same you would put in a regular sales letter, just more engaging. Think of it as a PowerPoint with text and audio.
A sales letter can be as simple as black text over a white background, or you can match it to your brand or product by adding a little color and styling it with a logo and matching font. Some even use simple icons or animations, but it doesn’t have to look pretty.
Why do these types of videos help so much? According to some recent research:
- 90% of users say seeing a video about a product/services or a company influences their decision making process.
- Videos increase our understanding of a product or services by 74%.
- The brain retains 95% of a message when it's a mix of video, audio, and reading.
- 64% of online viewers are more likely to go ahead and purchase that product or engage with the companies after seeing the videos.
Somehow I find myself watching these things and paying close attention. Well marketers have found that people tend to pay close attention when information is presented this way, did you notice yourself watching, listening and paying close attention?
8. Tutorial Video
Tutorial videos are generally made with screen capture software and they allow creators to walk through and demonstrate how to use computer-based programs and software, or web based applications. It’s a simple step-by-step how-to video that shows exactly how to do a specific task. These help educate your customers on how to use your amazing product or service, and you only have to make it one time then share it forever.
Lynda has made a living off these types of instructional videos. You can show the ins and outs of your software with good tutorials. Help customers get started and the proper training on how to best use your products and they'll love you for it!
9. Instructional video
Now we have to start taking out the camera to produce an instructional video. These videos can effectively demonstrate a product or physical service. This is a platform to show your captive audience what exactly your product does and how it does it. These can be very informal, or made to feel unscripted by a knowledgeable person on camera.
This is a perfect example of using a host to get the person demonstrating into their comfort zone and asking good questions and helping the expert focus on telling the audience what is going on. I would have liked to see 10 or so quick shots pieced together with this, but it works.
10. Product Video
A product video differs from an instructional video in that it’s more formal and may not demonstrate all of the functionality of the product. Product videos are meant to sell someone on the features, but you won’t always see exactly what’s in the box, or how to put it together. These tend to be a sexier sales pitch and may only demonstrate the value a person gets by having this product. For example, this Jaybird Sport video introduces a potential buyer to their X2 bluetooth headphones:
Notice that the video isn’t “spec” heavy or too technical. They focus on the value added to the buyer. The images on screen combined with value statements for the end user make this a highly effective video targeting their specific market. They have successfully created an image, a brand, something an athlete in training wants to be a part of.
11. Webinar Video
A webinar is a web-based seminar, presentation, lecture, or workshop that is transmitted over the internet. A webinar is intended to capture your audience for a longer period of time. They tend to be 20-60 minutes in length and present valuable information related to your business or niche. According to Wikipedia, "Web conferencing refers to a service that allows conferencing events to be shared with remote locations. Applications for web conferencing include meetings, training events, lectures, or short presentations from any computer. A participant can be either an individual person or a group."
A webinar can be presented live or recorded and delivered later. A common tactic used today is to pre-record a webinar and present it as though it is a live event. That way viewers can schedule the webinar according to their schedule and they may believe they are viewing a live event. This will help retain viewers and make them feel they are getting something more valuable because you are investing time into them.
Why It Matters
Ranking well in YouTube by creating quality content can also help you take up more spaces in Google’s results. This will give your company and brand even more opportunities to get in front of your potential audience and offer your products or services.
More than that, though, video marketing is literally a simple way to speak directly to your customer base. You can open your company up to your customers and give them a peek behind the scenes, and let them feel like they’re really getting to know more about you. This, in turn, can give them more reason to take the next step and visit your website or purchase your products.