Video content has become an increasingly crucial component of the modern digital marketing mix. As YouTube and other online video platforms continue to grow in adoption and importance, users now expect brands to have a video presence, and brands must compete within a video-enabled landscape.
Increases in mobile bandwidth have contributed to this trend. Today, mobile users have no problem streaming video content, and in fact, over 70% of YouTube traffic now comes from mobile devices!
The importance of video content is not diminished in the B2B arena. Video content is used by brands to communicate authority and thought-leadership, and explain complex products and solutions efficiently. In this post, we’ll discuss these and other issues, to help marketing and sales executives understand how best to use video content for lead generation.
Get the Content Right
Different videos serve different purposes. You might want to embed a video on your homepage to give prospects a quick and digestible introduction to your business. For this type of “elevator pitch” video, make sure production values are high, overall length is short, and the overall message is focused. Remember to measure user engagement rates on your web pages where an elevator pitch video is featured. If the time on site declines, ensure the video does not have auto-play enabled.
Not all videos need to fit this theme, however. Savvy professionals and executive buyers might be happy to sit through a 30-minute conference presentation video, even if the production values are low, as long as the content fits their precise needs. On the other hand, longer videos with higher production values (like recorded webinars) can be a good lead generator.
In general, businesses should ensure that the content, tone, and length of video content matches the needs and expectations of their audience. Do as much research as you can into competitors, market trends, and customer preferences, and use this data to guide video content strategy.
Get on YouTube
For most brands, YouTube is the ideal channel for video distribution. While there are certainly other great video platforms that should be considered, such as Vimeo, for most brands, YouTube is still the primary choice.
When building a YouTube channel, you’ll want to take traditional social media marketing advice to heart. Fill up your profile as fully as possible, including a logo image, cover photo, company description, and social media integration.
As you upload your videos to YouTube, pay special attention to all of the text fields that you can fill out. This includes the title of your video, the description of the video, video tags, and even the category. Apply standard SEO concepts to these fields - they should all be keyword rich, accurate, and descriptive, without being “spammy” or unreadable.
Leverage Video Transcription
Remember - search engines can’t watch your video! However, they will understand a text-transcription of your video. By including a transcription of your video on the same page that your video is embedded, you can gain a serious SEO boost. You’ll also be better serving any users that may be hearing impaired or otherwise unable to watch your video. A great example of a company doing this well is Moz, which creates a complete text transcription of all of their videos.
Note that YouTube will automatically generate captions for your video, which can be useful in a pinch for those brands that don’t have the resources to create their own transcripts. However, more often than not, YouTube’s automatic transcripts will contain errors that need to be corrected. Generally speaking, unless your company has a massive amount of video content, it’ll be worth it to create your own transcripts, or use a 3rd party video transcription service.
Integrate Video Content Effectively
Video integration doesn’t end with simply copy/pasting the embed code. There are some technical optimization tactics marketers can apply to really maximize embedded video value. The first is using using Video Sitemaps, which are great for helping Google crawl your video content. The second is using Schema.org video markup, which will help search engines understand more details about your video.
While both of these items are somewhat technical, and may require the support of your webmaster or SEO agency, they’re strong activities that can help brands get more value from their online videos. It's also important to note, that in order to do both of these tactics with YouTube videos, you’ll need to use the “old” version of the embed code. This uses Objects, rather than iFrames.
Keeping these techniques in mind will help your business use video content to effectively generate leads. If you’ve followed these tips, you’ll have relevant and well optimized video content, that’s hosted on YouTube as well as embedded onto your site effectively.
Executing this strategy will help you not only generate more leads, but also project a strong brand across the increasingly important landscape of online video.