A well-produced video looks impressive. And it can certainly capture and hold attention. But can it actually win you more sales? That’s often what the head honchos want to know. What’s the verifiable ROI? To what extent will it boost the bottom line? Will it result in more conversions?
The last thing anyone wants is another fancy but ultimately useless addition to the marketing toolkit. Thankfully, video can and does boost revenues. Here’s how.
Video As A Brand Builder
More than any other medium, video helps you get your brand front and center in people’s minds. But producing quality videos alone won’t cut it. You need to be where your audience is.
And that means YouTube – in 2020 YouTube became the most visited website worldwide, with 8.5 billion users using the platform each month – and on social media, from well-established platforms to the next big thing (TikTok got to a billion active users stupendously quick).
But it doesn’t stop there. Search engines are increasingly prioritizing video, too. For instance, it’s reported that if your page is optimized with video content, it’s 53 times more likely to rank on the search giant’s first page than text or images.
Don’t let the sheer volume of video content out there put you off either. Compelling, unique and carefully thought-out video content can help businesses of any size cut through the crowded media landscape – and you don’t have to spend a fortune on it either.
For example, when Blendtec launched its ‘Will it Blend?’ series – which basically involves putting its blades to the test by throwing a range of tech devices into the ‘pot’ and letting it rip – it raised its profile so significantly that sales grew by 700%.
Video is 12 times more likely to be shared on social media than text or images combined
Finally, know this – video lends itself to easy and instant shareability. In fact, it’s been suggested that video is 12 times more likely to be shared on social media than text or images combined.
Video As A Demonstration Tool
Confusion around how products or services work – or even what they’re intended for – can be a major barrier to purchase. This is especially true if products or services appear more complex than they actually are (for one reason or another).
Using video to demonstrate or explain things a lot more clearly can help businesses overcome that challenge, with three-quarters of US consumers stating that an explainer video created by a brand has encouraged them to purchase the product.
This applies to b2b brands, too, where video content can help mitigate the loss of in-person trade shows or conferences by allowing potential customers to ‘see’ and understand a product or service in action.
The beauty of this approach is that it has the added value of humanizing a business. Modern consumers reward brands for a sense of authenticity and transparency – and video lets them engage with senior business leaders directly, understand their passion and even start a conversation.
Think bigger than simply a CEO or technical expert vouching for a product though. There’s also huge value to be had in integrating user-generated elements into your video content strategy, where existing customers share testimonials, reviews and recommendations. This adds an extra layer of social proof and can have a material impact on sales.
So powerful is this approach in fact, that reviews alone on a business website can add a sales uplift of up to 44% per 200 reviews.
Video As A Direct Sales Channel
Unlike static text or imagery, online video can act like a shop window. In more recent years, social media platforms – in particular, Instagram, Facebook and, as of late, TikTok – have spotted the value in allowing users to browse and buy products –without ever having to leave the platform.
The catch-all term for this major trend is ‘shoppable content’ – and yes, video is set to dominate this lucrative and powerful revenue stream. The social media giants know this, which is why they are continuing to monetize all aspects of their platform. For example, as recently as December 2020, Instagram launched shoppable Reels, “as part of an ongoing series of shopping-related updates” to the app.
This kind of functionality puts an end to estimating ROI. Brands can now directly map ‘cause and effect’ between video content and its impact on sales.
The use of online video as a sales channel is only set to evolve further, too. Already, in Asia Pacific, brands have experienced huge successes with the use of shoppable livestreams, a market already worth $60 billion annually in China alone.
Businesses or influencers front these live video ‘events’ selling products for a limited period on ecommerce platforms like Alibaba and Taobao. They engage directly with viewers via live Q&As and watch sales roll in in real-time.
Now, the strategy looks set to make its way to US and European markets, too, with 17% of companies having already experimented with what live video can do for them.
A few years ago, the ROI on video content – or, more generally, video marketing – might have felt pretty fuzzy. If anything, it was just good to do and good for clicks and kicks but little else.
Now, while that conjecture was never true, it still felt like you had to fight hard to make a case for continuing with or investing in video content. Not anymore. With the meteoric growth in global consumption of online video, which has accelerated significantly over 2020, that’s all changed.
This reach – coupled with the ever-improving toolkit for businesses that have been developed by ecommerce platforms and tech companies – now creates a clear, verifiable link between a compelling video content strategy for your business and a compelling balance sheet.