January 21, 2019
It’s been three years since Mark Zuckerberg predicted the rise of video content. At the time he predicted that video would replace text content but the way things are looking, that may have been a gross underestimate. Video platforms like Youtube and Vimeo are taking up ever larger amounts of web traffic, and content marketing is moving away from text and image only.
Here a few predictions for how marketers will utilize video this year.
In the past, just as social media and email marketing before it, video marketing has been seen as a gimmick, not to be taken too seriously. Interestingly, it has been the general public who have signaled the way in which marketers should be using video to extend their message.
Twenty years ago, advertisers sought high profile names to advertise their brands. But times have changed, and we’ve seen the rise of the viral video star. This has meant that ordinary folk, armed only with a smartphone, have been able to get an audience that brands can only dream of.
Brands now turn, not to high profile, high-quality video content, but to a more relatable, more authentic material to show off their products and services. In the coming year, we will see brand diversify their video content to include simple, cost-effective videos utilizing emerging video technology.
Optimized for Mobile
“People are spending less time in front of their computers and more time scrolling the feeds on a smartphone,” writes Mary McMahon, author at Researchpapersuk and Last Minute Writing, “It used to be the case that only desktop computers would offer high quality, high definition video, but smartphone technology has very quickly caught up.” Developers of smartphones have recognized that desktop computers and laptops are now used more often as work machines rather than entertainment systems.
People are accustomed to using mobile video content. They watch on the bus, train, on their lunch break or even in the bathroom. Marketers should take note of this. Increasingly we’re seeing video content with captions for when people are watching content in a public place, and we’re seeing square-formatted videos instead of the traditional rectangle.
Early in the days of Youtube, companies feared that using video platforms that could also be used by the public would dilute their brand. Some believed that a market saturated by user content would delegitimize any brand content that came out on it.
But an understanding that customers engage better with relatable content has seen brands start to create a friendlier, less polished image. It used to be that you would find video content only on company websites, but now we find that even the most stuffy of brands have their own Youtube or Vimeo accounts. Videos on these channels feature backlinks, targeted advertising, and in video calls to action which help convert viewers into customers.
Longer Videos, Video Sequences, Live Streams
As marketing strategists look for ever more ingenious ways to use video content to their advantage, we are likely to start seeing longer messages. In TV advertising, messages have often been short, no more than 30 seconds. In part, this has been to do with the costs of production, as well as the cost of airtime.
But internet video content has done away with a lot of the cost of production, and paid advertising on social media platforms are a fraction of the cost of TV advertising. Companies are starting to understand the scope of possibility that this has opened up for marketing.
“Brands have begun to realize that in these days of binge watching, we have the freedom to innovate,” says Brenda S Helmsley, regular contributor to Draftbeyond and Writinity, “This means longer videos, whether it’s product demonstrations, tutorial videos or brand exposure.”
We can load messages into a video series to better expose our teams or services. We can utilize customer testimony, and we even see user-generated content which we can backlink to.
In 2019, we will start to see companies find ever more ingenious ways to utilize live streaming. Live streaming is now firmly ingrained into internet culture. Brands such as Cosmopolitan, Nestle, and Royal Caribbean have already taken advantage of live streaming content, and we’ll see an ever more diverse range of brands taking up the opportunity.
SEO and AI integration
Finally, as marketers race to keep up with the innovations in digital technology, we’ll find many brands pouring resources into ensuring that their video content gets picked up by search engines. Integrated AI and SEO will be more firmly linked to video content, and we’ll start to see better-targeted advertising in our videos. User content will feature voice recognition software that will offer specific recommendations dependent on the content being viewed.
James Scoville is a consultant for small businesses and startups in brand exposure and conversions. He is a regular contributor and digital marketer at Lucky Assignments and Gum Essays, academic websites.