Video: the fast-track to online customer engagement

With more than 80% of senior executives saying they now watch more online video than they did a year ago, and according to Forbes, 75% of executives are watching work-related video on a weekly basis, this communications channel has risen to a stellar level in recent times.

And until recently, video was seen as a 'nice to have' channel but with research showing that using the word 'video' in an email subject line increases open rates by 19%, click through rates by 65% and reduces unsubscribes by 26%, it's now impossible to ignore.

Strategic social media and SEO benefits

If you then consider that over the past year, Facebook video viewership grew from four billion views per day to eight billion, then video in a FMCG and B2B context not only makes sense, but becomes central to both prospect and customer engagement.

Video also now has a massive impact on search engine optimisation and online visibility, with rich media such as video being favoured by search engine algorithms, and with Google's ownership of YouTube, video has become almost explosive in terms of channel growth.

Slick delivery drives engagement

But even with such huge opportunities for market development, many smaller enterprises often take big risks to save money through making video presentations internally. But caution should be exercised here because without professional-standard equipment and appropriate lighting, video can go from potentially very engaging to just plain annoying.

Cheap equipment can cause system or extraneous noise to be present on the audio channels, and bad lighting or inappropriate camera angles can render video productions mediocre – and that will reflect badly on your brand and any potential MROI.

Strategy-focused story-lining

While these quality issues need to be avoided, so quality in strategic story development and market messaging are also critical to a successful outcome. Scripting needs to be done professionally to ensure crystal clarity and optimum pace in message delivery.

If you are wise, and engage your digital agency to develop your story-lines and scripts, they will want to understand your brand strategy and build on this in the video story to drive brand strategy as an integral part of your marketing plan.

Joining the strategic dots

Given the compelling statistics at the top of this post, it is plain to see that if you integrate video into your marketing strategy, you are driving your brand message though an extremely powerful communications channel.

And if you have stuck to the guiding principles laid down here and delivered information quickly, engagingly and in a memorable way, there is little reason why your video work shouldn't thrive on your brand-site, and even YouTube, and go beyond this to achieve viral success.