The most unfortunate situation I’ve witnessed is an excellent video marketing idea that lost its steam in execution or distribution. I’ve seen many schools, organizations, and businesses take their video marketing seriously, yet the results fall flat once the video is public. Most of the time, I credit these situations to a lack of knowledge and experience.
After all, online video marketing is still very new – it’s only about a decade old – and the lessons we’ve learned from video marketing through television no longer apply on many levels. For those who are looking to market themselves online through video campaigns, I’ve taken the liberty of creating a list that will help you avoid the most common mistakes.
1. Posting Links to Social Media
Social media is constantly evolving, so what is true today about best practices might not be true tomorrow. What will never change is the fact that social media platforms make money when users stay on the platform. Their mission is to keep users scrolling through their feeds for as long as possible, so they incentivize posting things that will keep users interested. On the flip side, posts that drive user traffic away from the platform are naturally unwelcome.
As a result, organizations that post links to their video campaign such as youtube or vimeo rather than uploading them natively onto the platform will not usually enjoy as much success as they hope. Video marketing campaigns get the best results when users can view them without clicking links. Unfortunately, this means you will need to spend extra time formatting your videos and crafting posts according to best practices for every platform you choose. The only time you should provide a link is if your video is too long to post or if the content is not your own.
2. Low-Quality Thumbnail Graphic
Thumbnail graphics are the pictures you see on a video before you click the play button. Thumbnail graphics must be engaging and informative to captivate potential viewers. Oftentimes, an organization won’t see satisfying results for their videos because they have a bad or boring thumbnail.
For example, some organizations decide to use their logo as a thumbnail, but this choice is neither engaging nor informative. If a viewer is on your website, they already know your brand, and the logo tells them nothing about what they can expect from the video. Another bad choice would be a shot of an interviewee caught in the middle of a sentence with an awkward face.
The best thumbnails have text describing the point of the video and use B-roll relevant to the topic. For example, a school marketing video could use a scene where students are playing outside, and a business could use a shot of a smiling employee for its hiring campaign. Thankfully, a bad thumbnail graphic is easy to fix – most platforms allow you to quickly switch your thumbnail out for another.
3. Hosting Your Video On Your Website
The explanation for this mistake can get technical, but you should always upload your videos to another video hosting site such as Vimeo, Vidyard, or YouTube rather than on your own site. Instead of using your website as a host, embed your video with a link to use it on the correct pages of your marketing or sales funnel.
For a number of reasons, most organizations’ websites do not have the capacity to host videos without becoming extremely slow. When visitors click on your site, they will expect immediate gratification, so a below-average load time could frustrate them and cause them to leave. Further, video hosting platforms provide in-depth analytics that will allow you to extract data and analyze the success of your marketing efforts.
4. Unforgivably Bad Audio
It might come as a surprise that a videographer would give this advice, but I urge you to invest in a good microphone before you invest in a good camera. People subconsciously forgive bad visuals, but bad audio ruins a video. Viewers won’t last more than a few seconds if your video’s audio is crunchy, inaudible, or plagued with echos. A high-quality microphone is expensive, but it’s worth the investment. Without it, you’ll waste your time and money to get poor results.
There are plenty more mistakes that I’ve witnessed in video marketing campaigns, but the ones listed above are the most common and the easiest to avoid. If you think you’ve made any of these mistakes or you’re interested in a more detailed explanation, feel free to reach out to Monzo Media Productions with questions.