If you’ve spent any time at all learning about marketing, hopefully one thing that has jumped out to you is the focus of video marketing. It makes sense. We all carry in our pockets everything we need to create, edit, and publish our own video content.
Prior to the smartphone, the cost of producing and distributing video was immense. Most small businesses couldn’t afford to do video marketing. Video was dominated by major brands that had the budgets to make professional videos and air them during commercial time on TV.
In so many ways, the smartphone changed the rules of the game. And for once, it stacked them in favor of the little guy, not massive corporations. No where is that more evident than with video.
Now, a small business owner can create and publish a video in a matter of minutes and reach hundreds, thousands, or even millions of people.
In this article, we’ll discuss why video is so effective for small businesses and ways your small business can take small steps to begin video marketing.
Do Your Customers Really Care About Video?
While video marketing can be low effort, it’s certainly not no effort. And let’s face it, as a small business you already have more on your plate than you can handle.
Why should you invest your time and resources into video marketing?
The answer is simple: because you’ll get more customers if you use video.
We recently conducted a survey to try and better understand how, why, and where consumers went about researching and ultimately patronizing small businesses. We wanted to hear from the consumers themselves what was important to them, so that we could help small businesses better understand where they should focus their limited resources.
One of the most startling insights we gleaned from the survey was just how important video is for most customers.
51% of consumers said they were more likely to patronize a small business if they were able to watch videos introducing the company and/or highlighting their products/services. Only 16% of respondents said the opposite.
So whether you are a retail store selling jewelry, a catering business selling wonderfully curated meals, or a dentist selling healthy teeth and gums, video should be a part of your marketing strategy!
Why is Video so Effective?
Clearly video works, but why? Much of it has to do with how our brains are wired.
Video can elicit an emotional response that other mediums simply can’t and studies indicate as much as 95% of purchasing decisions are done subconsciously on an emotional level.
Reason No. 1: We Process Images Faster Than Words
One clear reason video works better than other forms of communication is that our brains can process images much faster than words. In fact, MIT researchers discovered the human brain can process an image in just 13 milliseconds.
Not only that, but our brains can process images simultaneously, whereas it processes words in a linear manner. Why does that matter?
Because if it’s easier to process information, it’s easier to retain information.
Studies show that we retain 95% of information from video versus only 10% from text. And when it comes to advertising, what good is it if they don’t remember it?
Reason No. 2: Seeing People’s Faces Evokes Empathy
Again, it comes down to how we are wired. Our brains have what are called mirror neurons. These neurons fire when we observe the facial expressions of others, causing us to empathize with them.
We basically see ourselves in their shoes.
And speaking of shoes, now do you see why Nike commercials are so powerful? For a few brief seconds, you can literally feel greatness because they so artfully portray people and acts of greatness.
Here’s a great example of a small business creating the same psychological effect. How can you not envision yourself enjoying this winery after seeing the joy on the faces of their customers in the video?
How Can Your Small Business Get Videos In Front Of Potential Customers?
Before we jump into the how-to’s, let’s be clear: videos don’t need to be professionally produced and edited. This article isn’t about creating a commercial for TV. We’re talking about making and distributing videos where your customers are most likely to be found. Unlike the good ol’ days of TV dinners, consumers are likely not glued to the TV screen during commercial breaks.
Understand Who Your Customers Are
Hopefully you’ve already created a customer avatar and understand who your customer is. Understanding who your customer is is the first step in understanding where they spend their time.
For example, a CPA offering tax services for wealthy individuals has an audience that looks vastly different from someone selling beauty products directly to consumers.
Who They Are Informs Where They Are
Once you know who your customers are, you can then start to understand where they spend their time online.
In the example above, which small business owner is better served creating a weekly insights & advice video series and promoting it on LinkedIn?
And which owner should be pumping out quick video testimonials of happy customers and product reviews on Facebook and TikTok?
Remember, video is a form of content marketing, which is designed to attract and retain an audience. That way, when it comes time to buy, you’re top of mind.
That can’t happen if you don’t get your video in front of the right people.
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So Where Are Customers These Days?
While there’s well over a billion websites online these days, the reality is that a majority of people’s time online is spent in one or multiple of the following places:
- Email inbox
All of these channels provide the ability for you to reach your audience en masse with whatever videos you wish to create. There’s no shortage of resources out there to help you understand how to optimize your video strategy to reach more of your target audience for each of these platforms. Make sure you understand the best practices for whichever platform(s) you choose.
What Types of Videos Can Your Small Business Create to Attract New Customers?
Now you know why videos work. You’ve done your homework to find where your customers spend their time. You’ve even educated yourself on how best to get your videos in front of them. Now you need to decide what type(s) of videos you want to make.
Here are 4 of the most effective low cost and low effort videos you can produce:
If your small business sells products, create short demo videos allowing people to see how those products solve their problems. Video is the perfect way to explain how those products work, so that people can see them in action.
Remember when we talked about potential customers putting themselves in the shoes of the person in the video they are watching? What better way to sell your products or services than to allow potential customers to imagine themselves in the shoes of one of your happy customers.
Next time you’re with a happy customer, plop out your cell phone and ask a couple of simple questions about their experience with your company.
These can be great if your small business offers a service of some type. As a service professional, you obviously have a wealth of knowledge that people pay you for. Offering up some of that knowledge in the form of a video allows people to better understand their situation, but also allows them to see you know your stuff.
When it comes time to hire a professional, you will have already created a level of trust with the potential customer that makes it more likely they will come to you for help.
Company Story Video
Especially when it comes to small businesses, people buy from people. You aren’t some massive, stale corporation. You’re a small business with a unique story to tell. Use video to tell customers…
- Who you are
- Why you are so passionate about your business
- What they can expect from you
Let them see and feel how much you love what you do. There is simply no better way to do that than with video!
Now It’s Time To Push Record
So what are you waiting for? While diving into video can feel daunting, there’s no better time than the present to begin. Your customers prefer video over other mediums. And you can create a huge advantage amongst your competitors by making the type of content they want! So get that iPhone out, press record, and start having more meaningful engagements with your potential customers.