Social media video marketing

10 Tips for Successful Social Video Marketing

Social video marketing conveys messages and values through short films, livestreams and stories. Whether YouTube, TikTok or Instagram is best suited depends on your target group and your topics. With the right strategy and our ten tips, even small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with a low budget can benefit.

Why video content works

Why are videos so popular on the net? Classic and linear TV is going out of fashion and internet users are becoming their own programme boss. On the market leader YouTube alone, a whopping 400 hours of video material are uploaded every minute. Most people think of YouTube when they hear the words social video or video marketing. But we don't want to forget niche providers like Twitch or rising stars like TikTok in this blog post. 

The right format

Videos can be used in a variety of ways: from appealing commercials that bring brands to life with clever storytelling to explainer videos.

Explaining to your customers how your products work in helpful short films fulfils two goals: 

  1. Your customers are happy to get a short and snappy explanation instead of having to slog through a page-long instruction manual. People's attention span has been reduced more and more by the internet and social media. 
  2. With good explanatory videos you relieve your hotline and customer service. Colleagues no longer need to answer questions about the application ten times a day, but perhaps only once a day. 

Publish social videos

You can embed videos on your website, blog or webshop and share them on social media platforms. If you regularly publish videos as a company, it is best to create your own channel on YouTube. 

The right platform

In addition to carefully produced films for image and branding, there are numerous moving images that are only shown temporarily. These include livestreams on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, but also short videos on Snapchat or Instagram or Facebook Stories.

Even if your videos are only visible for a short time, you should take care. Let's take a livestream as an example. Before you start, think about how you want to proceed and prepare at least the introduction well. Also consider that viewers come and go at will during a livestream. Therefore, it does not hurt to come back to the core topic again and again and to repeat yourself. 

10 tips for your social video marketing

Tip 1: Get to know your target group

You can't go wrong with videos, as they are popular with all age groups. Nevertheless, the platforms differ. YouTube has long since become a cross-age platform where even Silver Surfers look for instructions or reminisce with clips from "Dalli Dalli". Best agers are also strongly represented on Facebook and consume videos there as well.

Twitch and the rapidly growing app TikTok are only gradually attracting people over the age of 30. Twitch still has its origins in the e-game scene, and many TikTok users know that it used to be called musical.ly and was mainly used by female teenagers. Those days are long gone and we even find the Tagesschau, which is working towards half a million users, or lawyers and pharmacists on TikTok. If you are active there, you have to present content to the point and not bore people with your films. 

Nevertheless, style and story differ considerably. If you reach your very young customers with quick image changes and bright colours, the age group 40+ prefers something more serious. As usual in marketing, it can help you to work with personas. Instead of addressing the working mother in the terraced house, you then have a concrete person in mind with Monika. 

Tip 2: Choose the right equipment in combination with a clever strategy

Now the exciting question: Do I need a professional cameraman with expensive equipment or are my mobile phone camera and a free editing programme enough? 

The basic technical equipment in video marketing includes

  • A high-quality smartphone or digital camera
  • A tripod
  • an external microphone and 
  • a simple tool for post-processing.

As you can see, the necessary equipment can be put together without high costs. This is an advantage, but it can lead to "just shoot it". But here, too, a well thought-out strategy should come first - because what really counts is the story you want to convey.

Tip 3: Score with relevant content and quality

The web is overflowing with content - and there are now an inflationary number of videos. If you want to stand out from the crowd, you need relevant content and creative implementation. The quality should also be right, although your film doesn't have to be Hollywood-ready. Ideally, your content should be informative or entertaining, or both at the same time.

If you want to produce an explanatory video, it should come across with a twinkle in your eye. The recognition value is important. Let's take the retail chain Edeka as an example. Their commercials have their own narrative language, which usually makes you recognise where the commercial video comes from after just a few seconds.

Tip 4: Don't forget the core message and the call-to-action

You have a good idea and a creative approach. It can become a compelling film, but have you conveyed your core message?

Films are a good way to get a message across. Do not overload the short film: concentrate on the one message you want to address and do not try to send out several appeals at the same time. To ensure that even unfocused viewers understand the message, it should ideally appear twice or even three times: at the beginning, during the film and again at the end. If you want to attract viewers to your webshop as a call-to-action, your endcard should show the URL.

Tip 5: Attract viewers with a crisp introduction and storytelling

To get noticed in the background noise of the internet, you need a great cover picture and an understandable title that attracts attention. Of course, that alone is not enough. The first few seconds have to captivate the viewers. For the video to go viral, it must appeal to the emotions and motivate users to share the message in their network.

Maybe you remember Edeka's successful #homecoming commercial. That was highly emotional storytelling at its best, but perhaps a little too predictable. With a dramatic development, a hero and an antagonist, you are sure to get the attention of your viewers. 

Tip 6: Not too long and not too short

Due to the "information overload" of most internet users, their ability to concentrate for longer periods suffers. Therefore, there are few long formats that still work. Explainer videos belong in this category if they are well made, as well as films by celebrities. The well-known saying "brevity is the spice of life" seems to have been invented for YouTube and co. Moreover, it should be clear after a few seconds what the film is about - otherwise the impatient user will immediately switch to the next film. 

Tip 7: Regularly carry out a success analysis

You can see how well your video is received on YouTube by looking at the likes and dislikes. To learn from the results of your monitoring, you should go deeper into the analysis. YouTube's analytics show you where viewers are coming from, when they bounce and what proportion watch the film to the end. If many viewers drop out after 20 seconds, something is wrong with your film at this point. Is it boring or incomprehensible? It also helps if you identify the hotspot of your filmWhere in the video do my users watch repeatedly?

If you compare your previously published videos, you may find that your viewers prefer longer films. Also, look at your competitors' videos: How long are their most successful films?

Important key figures include the number of video views and the number of subscribers. In addition, the view-through rate and the engagement rate are meaningful. The engagement rate puts likes and comments in relation to the views of the video. In YouTube, the like/dislike ratio is another important parameter.

Tip 8: Think about the subtitles

Since many people watch videos without sound, you should provide subtitles. Another reason for subtitles is to make your films accessible. YouTube can automatically create subtitles. You should check these before uploading the video. Depending on how clearly the people in your video speak, there may be errors. 

Tip 9: Publish a video regularly

On social media platforms, it is nice to have a regular rhythm of publishing, for example once a week or once a month. If you stick to this sequence, loyal fans know when they can expect new content. With a weekly rhythm, a fixed day of the week is ideal for uploading the new film. But here, too, it is important to take a close look at your own target group and to consult the analytics mentioned in point 7: Will it cost you followers if you publish a new video too often or, conversely, will you lose fans if you offer a new film too seldom? 

Tip 10: Nurture the community

Look at your fans' comments and respond to them promptly and publicly, unless they are trolls. Take possible criticism from your fans seriously and benefit from free market research through viewer feedback. If you activate the "Community" tab in YouTube, you can exchange information with your fans and also communicate with them between uploading videos. For example, you can give an insight into the making-of of a particularly popular video. You can also link to and tease other postsvideos.

Final thoughts 

With videos and stories, you can clearly convey your products and topics. Which platform is suitable depends on your target group: You are more likely to reach older people via YouTube, younger people on TikTok or Twitch. With a captivating introduction, a rousing story and a cleverly chosen call-to-action, you can reach fans and customers in a targeted way. Cultivate your community, regularly check the statistics and don't forget to pay attention to the accessibility of your films. 

Do you have questions for Katja about social video marketing?

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