Video marketing has been around a long, long time, and keeps being reinvented for the modern marketer. But is it right for your business?

Video marketing is almost as old as the moving pictures themselves, and people then, just like now, aren’t immune to its effects.

Even as children we were subjected to it. Think back to that breakfast cereal commercial during Saturday morning cartoons. The cartoons themselves featured characters that were also available in toy form. Or that catchy “Let’s all go to the lobby” short before the movie started. Those are both examples of using video to market something.

Speaking of the movies, have you noticed that not only do we have to sit through trailers before the movie starts, we now have to sit through commercials too? Yes, even that innocent-looking snowman stuck in the refrigerator is video marketing in disguise.

And, as of late, even going to the bathroom in your favourite restaurant exposes you to “well-placed” video ads.

So why are we inundated with videos everywhere we go? The answer is simple: because video marketing works.

Why Does Video Marketing Work?

Why wouldn’t it work? Hypnotic, flashing lights, catchy music, happy, attractive people doing things they love and, most importantly, solving a problem by way of buying a product or service. If you have great written content to enhance the video and are able to target the right audience, you could have a monster (or snowman) on your hands.

But that’s a surface observation. Like many things, science and human physiology play a big role in the success of video marketing as well.

“Using video in your marketing mix is the best way to build emotional relationships with your audience online,” says Michael Wood, Corporate Video Creator and Video Marketer at Helium Marketing. “People are hardwired to pay attention to eye contact and non-verbal communication. Viewers are able to process information faster with better retention by engaging both auditory and visual stimulation. For these reasons, videos are 12 times more likely to be watched than text and have significantly higher click-through rates.”

How many times have you watched a video over and over again? And then clicked through for more? Capturing and delighting their target audience is every marketer’s dream.

Lights! Camera! Action!

Finding the right video production house that understands your needs is key to your video’s success. As with anything, referrals and word-of-mouth advertising within your network are very effective ways to find the perfect service provider. Ideally, they’ll be able to understand your vision, bring it to life, and have a keen sense of what generates the right response from your audience.

Knowing what works in video goes beyond the on-screen action itself. It also involves graphics, sound effects, and music. Also, a production house should be able to offer a scriptwriting service to really help your message hit home with viewers.

But wait! Are you the do-it-yourself type? I am. I love developing new skills and showing people what I’ve accomplished. But one thing I’m not really good at is taking photos or creating video. I have no idea why this skill escapes me. You could give me the best camera in the world and the pictures will still turn out horrible.

For the rest of you intrepid DIYers living in this age of empowerment, it’s easy to find tools to make your own videos. If you have a smartphone, you probably already have a video camera. But does that mean you should create your corporate videos using your handheld device?

“When promoting your business, it’s important to send the right message,” Michael explains. “You want to show off your product or service in the best possible way. While doing a DIY video is inexpensive, if the quality is not representative of your brand then you will be doing more harm than good. A professional also offers specific skills that will help the video creation process run smoothly and get maximum impact once it goes to market.”

In other words, you could have the best product in the world, but if you promote it with a poorly-made video, you risk leaving a bad taste in the mouth of your customer.

Avoiding a DIY approach can also apply to marketing your video, as a great video production house will not only create an amazing video for you, they will also be able to suggest the best channels to get it in front of the right people.

But if you do plan on marketing it yourself, at least get a marketing plan from a professional, so you can maximize the return on your investment while delighting your audience with your great new video.

Go for an Epic? Or a Short?

Have you ever sat through a video wishing for it to be over? Chances are, it was overly long and stuffed with filler information that didn’t engage you. Conversely, a video too short might not have included enough information to be compelling, leaving one wondering if that was all the business had to say. How do you determine that optimum length?

“Over the years, there have been statistics showing that short videos have higher engagements,” Michael says. “This may be because over the overwhelming amount of short and silly video clips that are shared every day. We have found that long-form videos have achieved results surpassing competitive short videos because of the quality of the content and level of detail. A video should be no longer than it needs to be, but you should not sacrifice content for a target video length.”

A great video production company will be able to help you determine the appropriate length of your video, ensuring that it contains just enough of your core message to initiate direct contact from your audience.

Be Found More Often

One of the best aspects of getting your video seen doesn’t mean purchasing expensive airtime anymore (although it would be cool to be seen during the Super Bowl). You can simply host your video on your website, as well as upload to such video hosting platforms as YouTube, and promote it through social media and other channels.

But did you know that your SEO rankings can dramatically improve with video too?

“Statistically, videos are 50 times more likely to rank organically in search results,” Michael says. “This relates to videos hosted on platforms like YouTube, but having a video on your website will also increase your website ranking. This is because of how the video will influence your website traffic.

“High-ranking positions in search results are awarded to websites that offer longer session times, high click-through rates, and a mix of media content. Presenting a video for visitors to watch will increase your session times, while also giving you higher conversion and click-through rates.”

That’s a Wrap

Clearly, almost any business would benefit from even having just a short introductory video on their home page. Investing in something your customers enjoy goes a long way towards building brand loyalty, and increases the chances for additional revenue.

Who knows? Maybe I’ll see you at next year’s Webby Awards.