Why it’s more important than ever to engage your audience with video.

It’s tough out there for a brand.

Just as you thought the dust had begun to settle after COVID, we’re hit with rocket-ship inflation, and rising prices everywhere. Yikes, eh. 

It’s not all bad, though. While times look like they might be getting a little tight for a while, the pandemic has proven to us that even when things look gloomy, there are opportunities around the corner and light at the end of the tunnel.

So how do we get there?

Well, if you’re a company looking to stay afloat and, dare I say it, grow in these times, then you’ll need to have an effective marketing strategy in place that is built around video.

What’s so special about a strong video marketing strategy? For us, it’s simple. Your audience is asking for it, there’s a plethora of places to share content, and it will generate strong returns on your investment.

In this blog, we’ll break down how audience trends have changed in recent years, how to create awesome content across platforms, and what you can expect it to do for your business.

First up, your audience.

The pandemic changed your audience – it’s time to adapt to recapture their attention.

What else were we supposed to do when locked down at home? A report from Wyzowl suggests that around 70% of people say the pandemic changed the way they watch videos with nearly all of them (98%) saying that their viewing hours had increased.

Having to spend more time at home meant that we streamed up to 12% more content. We binged boxsets, were glued to 24-hour rolling news channels and rediscovered our love for the shopping channel – albeit, this time we were buying from TikTok shops. 

These habits look like they are here to stay. UK users are spending up to 20 hours each on networks like YouTube and TikTok. The latter being a stand-out winner throughout the past couple of years, as user activity doubled and its user base grew from 3 to 14 million. These platforms of choice speak to the speed at which customers expect brands to keep up with trends. However, quality cannot suffer with this demand. According to WARC, up to 27% of UK customers expect to see no difference in production when viewing on new platforms.

What does this mean for brands then? Simple. You now know where your audience is spending their time, and what is holding their attention. 

Now you need to nail what will get you noticed by your audience.

So we’ve clarified that to win your audience’s attention, you need to deliver top quality at rapid pace. No tall order then…

Achieving this needn’t be rocket science, however. The look and feel of your content will immediately be elevated by following a few simple steps:

  1. Understand who it is your speaking to by spending time on your strategy,
  2. Know where it is you’ll be targeting this customer,
  3. Take time to tell the story right, and finally,
  4. Nail the format.

Let’s unpack the format point. Now that we spend so much of our time on platforms that leverage different native formats, it’s important to ensure what you present can excel within the constraints. A very simple example of this is vertical video. In a recent blog, we shared the stat that up to 1 in 3 of your customers aren’t willing to rotate their phones if you show them landscape content. It might seem like a throwaway consideration, but simply shooting your videos so they can be enjoyed in a native portrait format can increase engagement rates up to 4 times.

Before considering what will work best for your next video project, take some time to understand the unique requirements across different platforms.

Here are a few thought starters to kick off with:

  • What is the native format for the platform, is it square, portrait or landscape?

    Knowing the format that works best for your platform should shape your approach to the art-direction and production of your content. For example, if you’re creating something that is going to sit in a 9:16 crop, you would adapt your production, and even shoot in portrait, so that you know you are making the most of that crop. (Nothing worse than your subject slipping out of frame or not even fitting, because you’ve shot all of your content in landscape. This will make it more engaging, increasing the likelihood of your audience consuming its message.

  • Are you operating with any runtime restrictions?

    Different platforms have different limits on runtime. For example a YouTube pre-roll ad needs to engage a user within seconds, while a YouTube video can take minutes to communicate its message. Remember, audiences’ attention spans aren’t always long, and your video will be surrounded by plenty of others fighting for attention. Communicate the message quickly, leave a little room to excite, come in on time.

  • Is your content going to be used for an ad, a feed post, or as a standalone on your website?

    Finally, think about where the video is going to sit. If it’s on your own website, then chances are your audience is more dialled into who you are and what you’re offering them. That buys you a bit of runway to show them something more detailed and rich. Delivering your content in-stream however is a totally different story, here you’ll be one swipe away from being forgotten. So, have a hook, land it fast, and be clear about what you want the viewer to do (follow, buy, click, etc.)

Why go through the process in the first place?

Here’s your reward if you’ve made it this far. Dedicating resources to your video strategy will deliver an impressive return on your investment.

In fact, 78% of marketers have said that investing in their social video strategy has boosted their sales. What’s more, you can compound those gains through the delivery of a consistent strategy. By sharing content on a regular basis, you set expectations among your audiences. Once you’ve hooked them in, they’ll engage, which will start to send your reach figures sky-high! Fail to stick to a regular strategy however, and you’ll lose your audience’s attention.

Remember, when building your strategy, take time to ensure you have a balance of:

  • Awareness Optimised Ad Content.
  • Consideration Optimised Ad Content.
  • Conversion Optimised Ad Content.

And once you have customers beginning to purchase from you…

  • Retention Optimised Ad Content.

It’s once you have a comprehensive presence across each stage of the customer journey with your content that you’ll really start to drive results. Once you start seeing your metrics move in the right direction, take the time to interrogate what is working, and what could be improved. Once you integrate test and learn strategies into your workflow, you’ll start chasing exponential growth.

At that point, the sky is the limit!

If after reading this you realise that what you REALLY need is a helping hand, then get in touch with the We Are Even team. We live and breathe this stuff, and would love to work with you on making your next project a success. You can get in touch with us here, we look forward to chatting!