It’s early morning and you’re at the bus stop. It’s lunchtime and you’re at your desk. It’s time to commute home and you’re on the subway. What are you doing? Chances are, your phone or your tablet is out and you’re surfing social media.
You’re taking a look at links and videos shared by friends. Maybe you’re catching up on work. There is hardly a moment in the day when people aren’t connected to a device. This is both a goldmine and a cautionary tale for marketers. Even at work, people are looking to be entertained. They want quick bites of fun, or interesting material. If your marketing isn’t compelling, if it’s full of old-school, blowhard, horn-tooting buzzwords, your audience has about 958,573,625 other things vying for their attention.
This week we start a new series about using interactive video to give your marketing – and your business – a turbo boost. Compel your audience to stick with you. Show them what you’ve got. Don’t make them dig for information. And track every click they make. This series will also explore using interactive video to enhance customer service, training, and more. But for today? Today we’re talking marketing.
When you sit down to create your marketing plan, you know there are several topline goals you’ll always look for. You want to be able to connect with your audience. You want to be able to convert them. You want to be able to track their decisions. All of these overarching needs can be met easily, and seductively, with video.
Of course. When used the right way, video is so easy, you’ll find yourself wanting to use it more, and do more with it. Brand interaction reaches new depths when you integrate video into your marketing. You’re able to humanize, share, entertain, and persuade. And with interactive video you’re doing all of this directly from the video player. When the time arrives for you to prove to your viewer that you empathize with her, that you can help educate her towards the best decision, that you are transparent in your desire to convert her to your products or services, that you aren’t just looking for a “quick sale” but a loyal advocate… you can achieve all of this (and track your results) by integrating your marketing plan into interactive video.
Before we get ahead of ourselves, though, let’s answer the fundamental question of why video (any video) is such an important tool for savvy businesses. Did you know…
- video will be 75% of mobile data traffic by 2020 (Cisco VNI Report)
- over 300 hours of video are uploaded every minute on YouTube, resulting in 1 billion unique users each month
- the number of videos posted to Facebook per person in the U.S. has increased 94% over the last year
- 79% of B2B content marketers utilize video in their programs (B2B Content Marketing 2016 Benchmarks, Budgets & Trends, Content Marketing Institute)
It’s obvious that video is here to stay, which makes it even more obvious that it’s up to us to maximize its potential. So, what are the top five ways you can use interactive video as an indispensable marketing tool?
- Choose your own adventure
Watching video doesn’t have to be a passive experience. Allow your viewers to guide their own way through your videos, or help guide them along a path you choose. Interactive video allows you to add clickable pop-up boxes, speech bubbles, labels, chapter markers, and more. Your viewer learns as she clicks – and she never has to leave the platform.
- Website-i-fy your videos
Keep your viewers engaged with clickable links embedded in your videos. Just because there’s a PLAY button doesn’t mean you can’t have a website experience. When someone is watching a video and their curiosity is peaked; when someone sees an idea or a product they want to follow-up on, give them that opportunity as soon as the synapses fire. They can “Join now!” “Discover more!” right from the video they’re watching.
- Steal this content
Sometimes a viewer needs to take a video on the road. And sometimes that road doesn’t include wifi. Encourage your users to download your video files for offline viewing. Offer them the ability to download sales decks, case studies, customer testimonials – right from the video they’re watching. This way your ravenous viewer can consume your content in the office, on the subway, wherever they want. They control the means, you control the message.
Keep your viewers engaged by allowing them to stay within your video platform as they move from video to video. You can curate small series, longer series, bundled videos, anything you want. Maybe you have a series of videos highlighting sessions from a conference. Maybe you’ve cultivated a series of on-boarding videos for new hires. With interactive video you can create videos leading to videos leading to videos, all from one player. It’s videoception, and it keeps your audience in one place, clicking their way through your curated programming.
- Create action, don’t just ask for it
There’s a call to action and then there’s the actual click. Providing a link directly in your video allows your viewer to make a decision and act on it, without ever leaving the video platform. Want to register for your conference hotel? Done. Would you like to order a demo of our product? Ordered. Ready to connect with others via social media? Make a purchase? Done and done. Embedding e-commerce capabilities in your videos is a measurable game-changer, hands down.
Clearly, video has moved beyond hitting the PLAY button and counting views. So how is your business going to adapt? How can you create interactive videos, track analytics, stay up-to-date on technical differences between each upload, and still keep your content relevant and your audience engaged? Sure, sometimes it seems easier to have six remote controls than it does to program the swank universal remote. But with uStudio, we do the programming and you choose the channels. Suddenly, integrating video into your marketing, and integrating marketing into your video is as easy as understanding a video platform that does the thinking for you.
uStudio’s interactive player framework deepens audience engagement and loyalty, and produces measurable outcomes. Customizations and extensions are limited only by imagination. Our plug-and-play solution gives you the muscle, while we take care of the back-end brainpower.
Your audience is out there, and they are hungry for content. Make it as easy as possible for them to consume what you’re offering, and soon… they’ll be eating out of your hands.