This is a guest post from Jake Lee. Jake is the founder of Odistry, Inc., a niche digital production company that empowers marketing teams of any size to supercharge their communications with a diverse set of technical skills designed to best serve growing businesses. You can email him at email@example.com.
With its attention-grabbing and visually engaging qualities, video marketing has been growing exponentially since 2015. According to Smart Insights, 92% of marketers view video as an important tool to include in their marketing strategy. Back in 2015, that number was just 78%.
As the volume of online content increases and attention span for new content decreases, it’s vital for marketing teams to utilize videos to help convert new audiences and maintain engagement among current customers.
In this article, we’ll go over the key components of a high-converting video, and the most common ways we see videos successfully used.
What makes a high-converting video?
At Odistry, we believe that the most important aspects to consider for video conversion are:
- Positioning: where and when you publish your digitally produced content.
- Retention: how long a potential customer stays on your video.
- Function: the purpose the video serves for your target audience.
Understanding and synergizing positioning, retention rate, and function of your video is the key to turning viewers into customers.
Video factors that affect positioning and retention
To maximize the captivating qualities of a video, you need to produce content that will be seen by the right people while holding the most precious digital resource—their attention. Luckily, there are a few tangible factors that can improve your video’s positioning and retention.
Duration is the length of your video. Engagement is highest with videos up to 2 minutes long, and that engagement drops significantly after the 2 minute mark.
However, there are many opinions on what length is optimal depending on your message, context, and platform.
For example, videos on YouTube are great for long-form content, but the optimal length of a video on Instagram is only 30 seconds.
A good approach to video length is to get your message across in as little time as possible, and then position it where it will perform best.
Copywriting is the written content that gives direction for your video and complements the visuals. To retain viewers, put your energy into constructing a clear and concise message and let the visuals follow, rather than allowing elaborate visuals to distract from or delay your message.
After all, in an attention economy, videos that fail to get their point across are quickly skipped through or excited entirely.
3) Video style
Video style refers to the type of video production, such as kinetic motion graphics, 2D character animation, an action video, etc.
Find out what style appeals the most to your target audience, and synergize it with your product features and brand identity.
Here are some tips to identifying your audience and marketing your product to them effectively.
4 Core functions of a marketing video
We know that video serves as a quick way to grab attention, but if that’s your only reason to use it, you will lose viewers just as quickly as you gain them.
For a video to convert, there needs to be an understanding of where the video fits within your marketing funnel.
The marketing funnel is the potential customer’s journey from awareness to conversion towards your brands product or service. Understanding the function of your video ensures that you use the right techniques to captivate your audience at the appropriate stage in their conversion journey.
At Odistry, we’ve seen videos used successfully by marketing teams for four core functions; advertisement, explanation, feature walkthroughs, and branding.
Think of short Facebook video ads that talk about discounts, flashy product presentations, an event coming up, or a new service to sign up to. These videos scream “sign up now” or “buy now”—calls to action that tempt viewers to convert.
These videos are all about explaining dense information in a digestible way. Producing and publishing explainer videos is a good way to position your business as a thought leader in order to permeate your industry. It’s important to note that explainer videos require a good content writer to begin with.
3) Feature Walkthrough
These videos showcase product and service features in more depth than an advertisement.
For example, an eCommerce SaaS can use a video tutorial, or “how-to” video to explain how their software works. Or a company can provide some general tips and tricks to making the most of their product or service.
These videos help current customers learn to use your services better, and potential customers get a glimpse of what your service or product experience may be like before purchase.
You might also call this function brand recall, since these videos help your audience recall your brands more easily and often.
In this type of video, the function is all about building an emotional connection with a target audience. These videos are focused on messaging a business’s brand values and the way they see the world.
Most brand recall videos aim to personify the brand and be relatable to its target audience, so that the viewer subconsciously leans toward them when it’s time to make a purchase.
What metrics show video success
Although videos grab attention, viral views aren’t the end-all, be-all metric for video marketing. The best example to demonstrate this is the Super Bowl.
Super Bowl ads get the most eyeballs in America. You would think that the views should translate into more sales. However, a 2014 Ad Age study found that more than half of Super Bowl ads don’t end up immediately increasing sales or even the intention of buying into the business’s product or service.
This is why it’s important to consider function in producing videos that convert. The function or purpose of those Super Bowl ads was to increase brand recall and awareness.
As a business, you have to consider your overall marketing strategy and at what stage the potential customer will see the video along their conversion journey in order to make the most out of the viewer’s attention while you have it.
Case studies from real clients
Making long-form content digestible at Deliverr
When we began working with Rachel, the lead marketing strategist at Deliverr, the brand was still a young start-up. Deliverr had a bold vision of being positioned as a thought leader in the eCommerce industry.
They started publishing in-depth written content about the eCommerce industry, and Odistry began making explainer videos summarizing their articles.
Their written content is Deliverr’s strongest marketing asset: since this deeper content is best suited for audience retention, the videos functioned as short summaries for each article to encourage Deliverr’s audience to dive in deeper, resulting in higher conversion.
By complementing the content marketing that was already established, Deliverr used our video production services to bring qualified leads deeper into their brand’s orbit.
Capturing interest and attention at Walmart
For Walmart, we were asked to produce videos on Walmart Marketplaces’s new eCommerce UI/UX features. Since Walmart is a household name, the video’s core function was to showcase the features as creatively as possible.
The video’s goal here was to focus on making the video informational, entertaining and visually pleasing enough for viewers to get excited about the new features of their eCommerce platform.
In each case, the function of the video was determined by the brand’s overall marketing strategy, and where we saw video production fitting into their marketing funnel. From there, the video was optimized for positioning and retention.
Wrapping it all up
It goes without saying that a good marketing video must be short and artistically appealing. But at its most fundamental level, a video that converts is a video that can be clearly understood and immediately used. It is a short-form, easily digestible piece of content that carries a specific function within your brand’s overall marketing strategy.