ball-563972_640Just about everyone today knows the power of social video; however, some do not know how to articulate the top reasons why marketers should incorporate video into our marketing campaigns. I have combined my 15 years of experience in marketing, communications, e-commerce and social media management with degrees in Videography and Public relations to compose the top 3 reasons for integrating video. These top three reasons will help you modernize your marketing efforts by giving you best practices in video that will not only enhance your marketing budget/efforts but will also extend your ROI by way of greater adoption through engagement and reach.

1.It’s Your Hook to Your Purchase Path

The first reason to use video and / or animated content (in the form of .gifs) is to hook your viewer back to the purchase path. What does that mean? When you create a social video you want to make sure it is entertaining and value adding enough to have your target audience inquire more about your content. Additionally, if you have a case study or white paper published on a website, a short video (15 sec or less) will help drive awareness and adoption. An example of what I would put in a social video is just one tweet-like message, that’s right- we’re talking about 140 characters or less. Why so little? Because people have a short attention span; people scan and move on to the next thing. That’s why your video content needs to be short and to the point. Articulate one main message then your website or your blog can help unpack the rest. Think of this video as the “appetizer” before the first course, “the soup” which is your blog or the “main dish”, your website.

2. Illuminate Your Top Value Prop

When creating a social video here’s your opportunity to highlight your one (hopefully just one) top value prop or solution to entice your customer to learn more or buy now. For @CiscoDC, we’ve created 15 -second Instagram-ready videos called “snackables”. Snackables are very sharable on Twitter and are made to be published primarily on Instagram and or embedded into a blog. They’re created by utilizing around 140 characters of text (essentially a tweet) into a condensed 15 second video, fully animated with music.

*Pro Tip* In order to upload these with ease they need to be max size 2MB. Here is a 15-second videos on Instagram to show you what they look like:

3.Live stream – Discussions and Q&A

You’re ready to launch a product, service, or e-book and you have next to no budget. You now have an opportunity to create buzz around the reasons why this product was created. Creating a Blab or Periscope video is a good opportunity to tell the “Why” and answer any questions from your customers. A few best practices for either a BlabCast or Periscope:

  1. First decide which platform is better for you: Blab (shown below) is preferred if you have more than one person you’d like to have in the discussion. Blab utilizes a four-person format where you could have 1-4 people discussing a topic at the same time. In short, Blab is a 4 person to many persons format while Periscope is a one person to many format. You could have two people interviewing on Periscope but in that format you miss the whole interaction piece.
  2. If you go with Periscope or Blab it’s imperative that you have a script prepared. Decide before hand, what are the main 3-5 points that you’re going to go over? What are the questions that you’re moderator is going to ask? Make sure to make time to answer questions that are coming in through the chat.
  3. Speaking of answering questions; you need to interact with your audience. For Periscope and Blab, in order to manage correctly it’s almost always a two or three-person job:
    1. Person #1- Manages the discussion and asks the questions
    2. Person # 2 – Answers the questions
    3. Person #3 – Welcomes attendees to the discussion, keys up questions that are coming across in the chat and tossing them over to person #1 .It’s a balancing act that should be practiced to get a good cadence.
  4. For a Blab, if you’re having a hard time finding a co-moderator, Blab just launched a new feature to help you find someone for you to help co-present. Just tweet @BlabHostFinder for help.

Finally, repeat. You’ve done just one Blab or just one Periscope and now you have 100 followers this means you have started a community that needs to be nurtured. Have a calendar and a regular cadence of topics to keep your community engaged and wanting more.

I’ve just scratched the surface for Blab and Periscope. The great thing about Blab and Periscope is that both platforms have a community of people who are always willing to help you and answer any questions. You just need to get out there and make mistakes and have fun trying.

Now you have three great reasons to start thinking about integrating video into your marketing campaigns. Experiment, have fun and create something you’d love to share. Comment below and tell me how you’ve been using social video and let me know your experience.



Melanie Kraintz

No Longer with Cisco