Remember when you were in school and you took every opportunity to get free food? (Okay, maybe you still do this, I won’t judge). But at the family potluck, you’d pile your plate so high, your aunts and uncles might’ve questioned whether or not you’d eaten for the past 3 weeks.
And when you came back home for the holidays, your hands were always in the cookie jar.
Chances are, if you’re in marketing at a small business, you’ve got your hands in all sorts of jars. From product marketing to content creation, social posts to event presence, you name it: it’s on you.
So why would you want to try and add video to your plate, too?
There are 17 good reasons why. But do keep in mind that if your plate is already full, adding more to it isn’t necessarily going to make for a better dinner. You’ll probably just end up with rogue mushrooms rolling around on the dining room floor.
In other words, you’ll have to learn to prioritize.
Pick things to focus your time on that are going to generate awareness, educate your customers to prime them for your offering, build demand, create shorter sales cycles, promote a free trial, etc.
Once you’ve prioritized, then it’s time to shift some things out and add video in. Why? For the following 17 reasons.
1. Get on the second largest search engine in the world
If you didn’t know, YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world. So you better be there when your potential buyers are searching. The greatest opportunity here is educational-style videos, especially since “how-to” searches are up 70% year over year in 2016.
2. Rank higher in search
While YouTube is the second largest search engine, Google is the first. Adding video to your website can increase your search rankings on Google (and others like Bing and Yahoo) significantly. The truth is, adding a video to your website actually makes a first page Google result 50x more likely.
3. Increase the understanding of your product
Sometimes products can be complex, especially when you try and describe what your product or service does in only a few sentences on your home page. Lucky for you, viewers’ understanding of a company’s product tends to increase by 74% when they watch video instead of read text.
If you don’t have one yet, a product overview video of what your offering is and the problem it solves is near the top of our list for recommended videos to start with, so you should create one of those!
4. Offer your consumers the medium they want
Today’s consumers spend more time consuming digital video than on social media: 1 hour and 55 minutes per day versus 1 hour and 44 minutes. On top of that, 4 times as many consumers would rather watch a video about a product than read about it, according to eMarketer.
Without a doubt, video is your audience’s medium of choice.
5. Boost email click-throughs
Including the word “video” in the subject lines of your emails can increase open rates by 7-13%. Plus, including the video splash screen in the actual email itself can increase click-through rates by 2x.
I feel it’s important to note here that including video in email is normally more about placing the splash screen in the email body as an image and not embedding the actual video. This is because most email clients don’t actually support inline playing of the video.
Instead, use the image that looks like a splashscreen and link out to the player on a separate page. You can even set the player to autoplay for the fewest clicks!
6. Build stronger brand affiliation and connection
Watching a video provides both audio and visual stimulation. The mere activation of both of these areas of the brain means that viewers are more engaged and therefore naturally develop stronger affiliation and interest in the content they’re consuming. As a small business striving for that brand recognition and so dependent on loyal customers that keep coming back for more, this is crucial.
7. Capitalize on the low barrier to entry
I know, I know. You probably thought that the barriers were high, not low for video marketing. A lot of small businesses (or businesses in general, actually) think that there are high costs associated with video and a long list of equipment that just makes getting into the video marketing space so tricky. I’m here to tell you that that’s a myth. Chances are, you have a 1080px camera in your pocket or on your desk right now. Or maybe you’re even reading this post on it. All you really need to get started is this camera and some basic editing software … even something like iMovie can be all the muscle you need to get started. So play with the big kids — you’re already all set up to do so!
8. Show up more in social feeds
Social feeds (Facebook and Instagram, specifically) do a great job of showing only content that people want to see. And it’s getting harder and harder to show up there as a business. But that’s also why more and more video posts are showing up in people’s newsfeeds and why, if you create video for social, you’ll be more likely to end up there, too.
9. Create more low-touch education options
You don’t have a big team … even outside of marketing. So the more you can encourage your audience to educate themselves and help themselves throughout the purchase journey, the better — and the more efficient your sales process will be.
Video can help with this.
If you don’t have a sales team and your transaction happens online, then the faster that will happen, too!
10. Tell a stronger story
There is no better way to share your story than with video. And there’s no better way to reel buyers in than with a compelling story.
Just think of any successful Kickstarter campaign (like the two below) and consider that the videos were the starting point that boosted them to fame. But the story was the starting point even before that.
11. Increase conversions
4.8% is the average conversion rates for website using video, whereas those that don’t use video see only an average of 2.9% conversion rate.
Your website is dying for a play button.
12. Get more purchases
40% of consumers state that video increases the chance that they’ll purchase a product on their mobile device. And website visitors are 64% more likely to purchase on an online retail site after watching a video. Need we say more?
13. Track potential buyer consumption patterns
Videos linear nature means you can track how long people are watching for. You can see areas of you video that viewers re-watched or skipped. And what’s even better is if you’re using a video platform that’s integrated with your marketing platform, like Hubspot, you can see this info for each potential buyer you’re working with. Meaning you can create more targeted follow-ups or have better information on who’s interested and more likely to buy. Also, if you have HubSpot, check out our new integration with them.
14. Easily create a multi-purpose asset
You can create one video for multiple different uses pretty easily. Film the first and then cut it up in different ways for different platforms or distribution mediums. Shorter for Instagram or maybe mash clips together for Facebook to create a teaser-style video.
You can cut it pretty easily in iMovie or other simple editing software.
15. Make friends with authentic video footage
While you may think that high-budget, Hollywood-style videos are the ultimate goal, they may actually not be. And your smaller budget might actually pay off.
Today, buyers want to connect with brands and livestreamed or real, barely edited video can start to build that relationship. Without the red tape and legal restrictions behind your small business, you are one step ahead of large corporations in being able to satisfy this need.
Get your CEO behind the camera and get going!
16. Create great content in a short amount of time
All the video agencies want to tie my hands behind my back to get me to stop typing right now! But hey, not every video needs to be a masterpiece and according to point #15, those that aren’t can be phenomenally successful. The time it takes you to set up your camera, press record (or even just press record on your phone), and give the footage a quick edit is less time than it’d take you to write a short blog post. And plus, you’ll get all that extra data afterwards that you wouldn’t get from a blog post! (ahem … see #13)
Sure, there’s definitely ample opportunity for high-production value video. But it doesn’t all have to live up there.
17. Get more “bang for your buck”
Companies that use video are growing revenue 49% faster than those who don’t. That’s a compounding of a lot of the other 16 factors I listed here, but whew, is that a significant amount! Why would you want to miss out on that?
Now that you know the 17 reasons why small businesses need (more) video, just remember that it’s not only using the medium that will see you rising to stardom … it’s how you use it. Check out the 10 Ways Small Businesses Should Be Using Video (with Examples!).