Originally published on Forbes.com on April 17, 2015 By John Rampton
Online video is undoubtedly changing the way audiences engage with content, ads, and brands, and small businesses and enterprises alike are starting to take advantage. As more and more platforms are allowing for video, and more devices are putting cameras in the hands of consumers, videos are becoming a new way for people to communicate, and a way for small businesses and brands to communicate online and on mobile. Here are why and how you can use video to better tell your brand story.
People Love Online Video
In 2014, audiences engaged with video at a 43% growth rate, and 3/5 of their viewing was on a mobile device. Youtube attracted the most unique visits per month (800 million), making it the #1 video site, however, Netflix is the site where viewers spend most of their time. When you watch a YouTube video, you may see a pre-roll or mid-roll ad run by Google’s own ad platform. More small businesses are interested in the unique targeting capabilities that Google affords.
Not only do people love online video, but millennials are now “cord cutters” choosing to end their relationship with traditional cable companies and migrating to Netflix and Hulu. Traditional TV viewing is down by 17% by teens and millennials, as they are opting to use digital sources rather than cable.
Video Engages Audiences
According to a 2013 UK study, online video is far more engaging than a text article, with adults reporting adults are more likely to share (39%), comment (36%) and ‘like’ (56%) online video over a basic text blog. I recently spoke to an agency head in LA who informed me that brands are willing to pay between $15,0000 to $1 million for a 15 second SnapChat “commercial” due to the value of the audience and the novelty of the engagement.
What makes a video engaging? In my experience, you have 10 seconds to engage your audience before you lose them, so those first few seconds are incredibly precious, and you must have a solid hook. Never have a video longer than 2 minutes if you’re on desktop, and with mobile you’ve got an extra 30 seconds. Videos that are are 15 seconds are more likely to get shared, so the shorter, the more viral.
Marketers Are Moving Budgets
With video dominating content marketing, 64% of budgets are moving towards video content. Brands are willing to spend more and more on video, especially if they are targeting millennials, and if its millennials they’re after, that budget is going towards mobile platform spends. Agencies now have the ability to buy spots using “programmatic” spending, where a computer bids on best times, audiences, and can buy up the best pre-roll and mid-roll times at the best price for brands creating a cost effective solution.
Brands will even skip programmatic buys and go direct if the content is exceptional, and this means top quality content. Brands will put aside 15% of budgets for these types of buys in this climate. If you’re interested spending top dollar to get in front of a ton of eyeballs, digital is no different from television – you can spend a high CPM (cost per thousand) for events like the Super Bowl or other sports content, or go to apps like CBS, NBC, or Hulu, and target high impression shows.
Make Better Videos
One new tool that’s caught my eye is Fyu.se. It’s a selfie mixed with video, which is an incredibly engaging experience for a small business audience. It captures a person’s selfie and the motion around the person, and can grab a 360 degree view so that the audience is interested in the video, and it’s grabbing one object with different angles. They took this concept at Katy Perry’s “Prismatic World Tour at Epix” event and let her fans use it, and of course, the pop start even used it herself.
Small Businesses can put aside a small budget and use apps and editing tools these days to make 15 second videos for their social media accounts, and make a brand difference.
John Rampton is an entrepreneur, investor, online marketing guru and startup enthusiast. He is founder of the online invoicing company Due. John is best known as an entrepreneur and connector. He was recently named #3 on Top 50 Online Influencers in the World by Entrepreneur Magazine and has been one of the Top 10 Most Influential PPC Experts in the World for the past three years. He currently advises several companies in the San Francisco Bay area. I’m a connector. I love connecting with like-minded individuals for a greater good. I can be found online at Google+ or @johnrampton.