5 tips for adding video to your social media strategy

5 tips for adding video to your social media strategy

It’s no big secret: videos are now the most powerful content type on social media. With Facebook and Snapchat reporting 8 billion+ and 10 billion+ daily video views respectively, and Instagram stories recently hitting 150 million daily users, it’s no surprise that people expect to see videos from all the brands and businesses they come across. AND they expect to enjoy them across all the social platforms they use. The facts speak for themselves: in 2017, videos are predicted to make up over 74% of all internet traffic. It’s all to say: videos = a big thing!

As a marketer or business owner, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to reach your customers if you’re not incorporating videos into your content strategy — and optimizing those videos for social. But if you’re not a filmmaker or social media pro yourself, it all might seem a bit daunting. Fear not! Below, you’ll find five essential things to keep in mind when starting to build out your personalized video strategy for social.

1) Establish your video goals

Whether you’re looking to increase brand engagement, generate leads, or drive conversions via social, make sure you suss out your primary goals before concepting and creating your videos. One helpful trick is to take a look at your overall marketing roadmap: focus on your upcoming launches and campaigns, and then map platform-specific video inputs to back to them. ChefSteps creates evergreen videos around engaging tips and tricks, but repurposes them in compelling ways around trending topics — such as the holy holiday of National Pizza Day.

This will also help you prioritize videos and determine which channels will have the biggest impact per marketing initiative. If you’ve got a quick office culture update, maybe you just want to record something beautifully janky on Snapchat. If you’re launching a new product, perhaps you’d want to create a few cuts at different lengths — say, a 1:30 embed for your own site, and a :15 to :30 second cut for Instagram, house them all on your Vimeo account to stay organized, and put some paid spend behind it when release day arrives. Sometimes less is more, and other times key initiatives take a bit more effort but drive better results.

2) Know where your audience hangs out and what they love

Identifying your target audience and the social platforms they spend most of their time on is key. This will help ensure you reach the right people at the right time. Also, understand if your fans (and soon-to-be fans) spend most of their time on mobile or desktop: this will assist you in determining things like the optimal length, format, and overall makeup of your videos — specific to each social platform.

How to figure this out? As far as tools to use, take advantage of tools like Google Analytics to see which social platforms are driving the most referral traffic back to your site and what devices they are on. For a quick scrape of the landscape, search various queries on each social platform to get a high-level look at what people are saying about your brand and its initiatives. If you’ve got extra cash, tools like Sprinklr or Sprout Social offer more advanced tools for more robust insights.

Ideally, you’re not simply syndicating your longer-form videos, ones meant for your website or landing pages, for your social networks. For one thing, depending on the platform, length has a big impact on engagement and overall performance. Facebook found with Nielsen that up to 47% of a video campaign’s value is delivered in the first three seconds, while up to 74% of the value is delivered in the first ten. For Vimeo’s paid social, we use optimized, shortened video teasers edited with specific platforms in mind, which drive to the full version embedded on our landing pages:

3) Cater to the strengths of social (and each platform)

As with all videos you create, make sure they exude authenticity and tell a story. But there’s another crucial element all successful social videos must possess: inherent shareability. Include a compelling thumbnail image and a hook within the first few seconds, and you’ll help to ensure your viewers stay engaged no matter the platform. Here, GoPro gives a subtle poke of their camera that floods the viewer with an array of compelling shots on Facebook.

You’ll also need to cater to each channel. Even in our own video marketing efforts, it’s necessary to leverage the native social video players within each platform. The benefits of having autoplay enabled and getting a higher weight within each platform’s algorithms will help your message reach more eyeballs and increase performance.

And as stated above, play to each platform’s strengths when it comes to video. For example, you might leverage Twitter for more engagement or lead generation-based videos, Instagram videos for campaign teasers, and Snapchat for real-time coverage, based on what you see resonating with your audience. Find what works for your business and continue to test and refine.

4) Spread the word (and videos) far and wide

OK, so you made a thing. Now, it’s time to think about how to amplify it on social. You’ll want to look at your distribution from a paid, owned, and earned media perspective to ensure you get the most from your efforts. For paid social efforts, make sure you choose objectives that map back to your overall goal of the video.

Our “I am a Vimeo Filmmaker” campaign celebrates professional filmmakers, and is intended to speak to creators. We used quotes and amazing videos from top Vimeo Staff Picked creators to hear how Vimeo helps them, in their own words. We used this video to 1) spread positive vibes about all the things that make Vimeo special (like, our insanely terrific community), and 2) increase awareness about the power of Vimeo PRO and encourage the right people to sign up. The creators involved in this campaign were happy to share with their fans what they were up to on their own channels, which increased our reach in a super natural way:

5) R u up, ROI?

Measure, measure, measure. You (or your bosses) will be extremely pleased when you prove out the value of your investment. Again, this goes back to the goals you established from the get-go. Make sure you have the right tracking and measurement in place in order to prove the effectiveness of the key performance indicators (or KPIs) outlined. After video goals are established, dial down to the primary metrics you’ll need to focus on. For example, if you’re looking to drive leads, then click-through rate and the email addresses you capture may be the numbers you want to focus on. (And fun fact: when it comes to assessing which content marketing types deliver the best ROI, over half of marketers say it’s video.)

Phew! When you keep all these tips in mind, you’ll be well on your way to creating stunning and effective videos on social — and hopefully that untangles some of the complicated-ness (but as always, if you’ve got questions, share them in the comments below). The most important thing to remember is to simply get started. It’s OK to just jump into the waters, test out a few things to see what works, and keep at it. And if you’re looking for more, peruse these videos types to consider creating for your business, and keep on building your video brainpower.

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