How to use video as an effective tool in your social media marketing

Whether you are starting out on your first social media journey or you’re seeking ways to improve engagement on an existing page, there’s a good chance you have noticed there are an awful lot of videos on social media these days. Video content is easier to consume, more engaging and more memorable than content comprised of just images and text. Posts with video get 48% more views (on average, across all the major social media networks) and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has called video a ‘megatrend’. So how can you use video to put the magic in your social media marketing? I’m going explain what sort of video content you need to make, how to use it to best effect and give you some hints and tips to make it all as easy as possible.

What should my videos be about?

Firstly, a quick reminder all your social media content, including video, should be valuable, helpful and interesting. Don’t just use social media to blast sales messages out to the world – remember that people go on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube for entertainment, recommendations and inspiration.

Here are some ideas for when you are planning your video content:

  • Answer some of the most common questions you get asked by customers and prospects. If you have a pooch-friendly glamping site and people always ask if they can bring dogs, make a video compilation of the doggie visitors from the past summer!
  • Go behind the scenes of your business to show people how you do what you do and why. If you’re converting a part of your land into a wedding venue then sharing a before, during and after video will show people how far you’ve come. Or share the day to day life of being ‘you’ – a travelling horse dentist’s day is very different to an accountant’s!
  • Showcase your products with video. If you have farm shop why not feature one product a week, with close up videos and tasting notes. Or do a walk-through of a holiday cottage so people can get a feel for how it feels to be there and see how lovely it is.
  • Give advice that will help people use your products more effectively. This means your customers continue to get value from you even after a sale, and you’ll remain at the forefront of their mind.
  • Don’t shy away from repurposing other content into videos! If you’ve written a blog you’re proud of, why not turn it into a video or series of short videos?
Get the most out of your videos

You’ll invest some of your precious time into creating video content so it’s important that you make sure you give it the best chance of success. Here are some hints and tips:

Catch their attention! Just like written articles or content, the first few seconds of a video really count, as you want to make sure people keep watching to the end. Make the first shots engaging, beautiful, funny – whatever you need to do to hook their attention.

Don’t forget subtitles – ever watched a video on Facebook or Instagram while stuck at your desk? Or when you’re waiting in a queue for something? Either way you probably couldn’t have the sound up and so relied on subtitles to understand what was going on. 85% of videos on Facebook are watched with the sound off, so make sure you pop subtitles on anything wordy.

Pinned posts. Don’t let videos just get lost in your feed once you deploy them. Pin a video to the top of your Facebook page or add Instagram videos to highlights – anything to stop them just disappearing into the ether.

Different lengths for stories/posts/live etc. Let’s say you’ve made 3 videos about different things and one is 10 seconds long, another is 1 minute long and the last is 3 minutes. Take a look at the different places you can deploy that video and pick the right one for each!

Some other video creation hints and tips!

One of the first things I get asked by clients when I talk to them about creating video content is – do I need expensive kit? The answer is no! If you have an iPhone or similar smartphone the camera will be all you need to get started. If you want to throw a tripod, microphone or gimble into the mix, then you can pick those up on Amazon for next to nothing.

Lighting is quite important – test film a little bit then check it back to ensure the lighting works and it’s easy to see what’s going on. Another great tip is to try to check whether filming in landscape or portrait works best for the platform you’re posting the video on.

Finally, when you’re planning that video content always consider ‘why’. Why will someone watch your video? What are you offering them, why should they like or share it? That will help you make sure you’re adding value with video. If you’re not sure and want to talk it over with the experts, drop me a line!

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