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Show Your Story, Gain Customers: How using video can hook more customers

When you think videos on the internet, you think cats. I can’t blame you, it’s what the creators of the internet intended. But what if I told you that video could also be used for marketing on your website? What if you used video to tell a story instead of sell facts and products? Commercials are one thing, hooking the customer and keeping them is another. Video represents a huge chunk of the internet, right around 74%. YouTube itself is the second largest search engine on the internet behind Google. 76% of marketers have said that video has had a direct impact on their business. But, there is a strategy to video and I’m going to break it down by telling you about three different styles of videos. Also, I’ll give some basic “dos and don’ts” when it comes to video on a web page from a marketing standpoint.

The first thing to remember is that when you use video, you want to invoke emotion. This doesn’t have to be some big emotional swing. No sizzle reel or highlight package is going to win any awards or bring audiences around the globe to their feet, especially for a business website. The idea is to get the customer to feel something good about the product or business. A wall of text can’t do that. Of course, making a video for the sake of doing it doesn’t work either. There are three types of videos that a business should consider making: “about us,” testimonials and product & service.

“About Us” videos are a good place to start. Another way to look at it is as a “first impression video.” Don’t use this as a sales pitch. This is the story of the business. What is the companies vision? What makes your business stand out amongst the competition? Keep the stats and numbers out. Placing a video at the top of the page will get more attention than text. Have the video feature employees talking about the business. This puts a face to the company and helps create a connection with the customer. It may sound counterintuitive but not having a call to action in this type of video isn’t a bad thing. All you are trying to do is get the customer excited about your business. Always remember that video is used to invoke emotion first and sell second. “About us” videos are a good example of that practice.

The next type of video involves the customer, and those are testimonials. If done right these are very powerful tools from a marketing stand point. What a better way to get customers hooked than with other customers telling their stories about your product or service. But you must be careful because potential customers can spot a fake from a mile away. Scripts only stir emotion in Hollywood films, these have to be real. Also, stats and figures should be left out completely. When putting these together you should remember that you are looking for stories and the stories will convert to sales. Customers will connect with other customers well before someone giving a sales pitch. As for placement of these videos on your website, there are a few different options. The home page is a good spot because most of your traffic is there anyway. If you have a “Customer Feedback” page or something along those lines, placing it there is no brainer. Whatever you do, don’t bury the video. Make sure it can be seen and it’s one of the first things people see.

The final type of video is the Product and Service video. The other two types of videos avoided using stats and figures, this style will need those at some point. But the song remains the same, you want to hook the customer with a story of some sort. Don’t start throwing out figures, dimensions, flavors or any kind of pitch first thing. If you do that, you are a commercial and there is no emotion created to help the customer buy into what you do or sell. This type of video should be placed where needed. Especially if it is about a specific product or service that you provide that has its own page. If you have one overarching video talking about your products or services, use the home page or the “about us” page.

Some things to remember about these videos is placement and length. If the video is on your main site the length should be somewhere between 2-3 minutes. If you are placing the video on a social network site you are looking at a minute or less. You also want to remember that placing the video on YouTube won’t get you huge organic traffic numbers, but the video should be there. These should be used on the main page to sell the story of your business and create a connection, not to get clicks. To build off that idea, make sure the video is embedded on your page and not a link. That causes traffic to leave your website and defeats the entire purpose of the video. The video on YouTube or another social media site should have the link to your page highly visible.

In conclusion, video has the potential to be a very powerful tool for any business. You just need to remember that what makes you unique, your story, gets sales not stats. Authenticity wins every time. No matter what you sell, you have a story. You may think you don’t have a big enough audience to justify investing into video, however, if the customers are searching for your company, they are the right audience. There is one important thing to remember, if while reading this you thought to yourself, “why isn’t this a video?” I may have proved my point after all.