Welcome to Part 1 of Kahn Media’s KM 101 series, where we provide easy-to-understand information and guidelines for businesses that want to pivot to a “digital-first” model or enhance their online marketing efforts. Click on the links below to read our other KM 101 articles.

Video is inescapable, and if you’re not using it in your marketing then you’re leaving money on the table. On average, people spend more than 100 minutes a day streaming video. On YouTube alone there are more than 2 billion users worldwide, and more than 90% of internet users in the U.S. aged 18-44 watch videos on the platform. And then there’s Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Vimeo, TikTok and LinkedIn.

There are 5 Keys to Success with Video Marketing:

1. Know Your Audience
Only by knowing who your audience is — their demographics, their preferences and tastes — can you create content they’ll want to watch and will stimulate engagement (2nd key to success). There’s so much content out there that if what you create doesn’t resonate with your audience, then they will tune out and you’ll waste time and money. And when we get the 5th key to success (track your analytics), the data will show us where we have succeeded and what changes need to be made. 

2. Know What to Create
Knowing your audience guides the video content you create. Good content should answer one or more of the following questions: Who? What? When? Where? Why? How? The following are examples of the types of content you can create.

  • Special features: Medium to high production values; cadence is monthly or quarterly; creates awareness; call-to-action is data gathering (sign up)
  • Binge-worthy: High production value and incorporates various media; viewers might watch multiple shows in a row, so it’s good for engagement.
  • News and updates: Lower production value; often used to answer questions (“Did you know?”); call-to-action is click/sales driven

3. Understand the Video Funnel
Videos should be created and organized to move viewers through a funnel, as shown in the graphic below. First you create awareness, then you generate interest, provide education and  — after a conversion (sale) is made — you build customer loyalty.

  • Awareness (who we are): This is the storytelling phase that tells the audience who we are and what we stand for. The goal is to cast a wide net that will capture the most eyeballs. Content should provide entertainment and hook the viewer.
  • Interest (why we do it): These are videos that present a challenge we have a solution for, including comparison videos and client features/profiles.
  • Education (what we do and how we do it): These videos include product features, testimonials and sales video for website landing pages (not for social media). Once viewers get this far down in the funnel, they are ripe for conversion (making a sale). At this point the audience knows the brand, knows we have a solution for them and wants a specific item.
  • Advocacy (build customer loyalty): After the conversion, the relationship begins. By keeping the customer engaged and making them feel connected to the brand, you gain a brand advocate. These videos are relationship-driven content that fosters communities, such as thank you’s, milestone callouts, etc., that can be used in the next campaign.

4. Use the Content Cycle
Creating a piece of video content, posting it once and calling it a day is a waste of resources. To get the greatest marketing value out of video content, it should go through a full content cycle, as shown in the graphic below.

  • Copy: Video content should be published on all relevant channels as-is. This is inexpensive and requires little effort, and it can be offered as “freemium” content. Publish the entire video on both YouTube and Facebook because YouTube is the second largest search engine and native Facebook uploads get more shares and views than non-native content. 
  • Excerpts: Breaking content into smaller pieces for different platforms is a great way to feed traffic back to the original content. Excerpts should highlight key points and provide easily shareable content, which are ideal for Instagram and Facebook Stories.
  • Update: Extend the life of content by refreshing video thumbnails, titles and descriptions to keep it up-to-date and relevant. 
  • Reformat: Great content is great content. Create new content based on the original by re-editing, using new media or repackaging to capture a new audience. Or turn a successful written feature into a video and vice versa. 
  • Curate: Create playlists and highlights that feed into the video funnel in a sensible order.
  • Multiply: If a video works for one group, then it might work for others. Transitioning a successful formula from one demographic to another gets more mileage out of your content. For example, if a product sells across multiple verticals, don’t use a single approach. Adapt the content to the different verticals by changing imagery, tone and text while keeping the overall message the same.

5. Track Your Analytics
Just as you need to know your audience to know what content to create, you must track your analytics to understand the recipe for success — or lack thereof — for your videos. If you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it. And the most important measures are impressions/views, retention and click-through.

  • Impressions/views: By using YouTube’s analytics tools, you can see where the traffic to your video comes from online, by region and by demographics (age, sex and more). Using this data we can see how well we hit our target demographic and how we need to adjust future efforts.
  • Retention: Use YouTube’s backend retention graphs to determine where people drop out of videos and what triggered them to do so. By identifying drop-out triggers, you can adjust future edits to remove those triggers and further refine the content to what your audience wants to see.
  • Click-through: Based on total impressions, test different thumbnail/title combinations on YouTube to see what content drives more clicks. Was the call-to-action and/or content interesting enough to click through to a desired result?

Bringing It All Together
The five keys to success with video marketing — know your audience, know what to create, understand the video funnel, use the content cycle and track your analytics — can’t be done in isolation. Doing only one or two and avoiding the others is incomplete and ineffective. To get the most out of your video marketing, you need to use all five. They depend on each other, and as you go through the process, you should start back at the beginning and run through the cycle again, learning from past experience and making improvements.

Kahn Media’s in-house creative team of videographers, photographers, editors, designers and writers provides video marketing and integrated marketing services for dozens of clients. If you need help, email us at Help@KahnMedia.com.