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Time for Businesses to capitalize on the new Trend

Only a small percentage of businesses have realized the current scale of opportunity open to them through video marketing. This article explains how and why video is becoming the most powerful tool in marketing and how Irish businesses can really benefit from the medium. Check out our video here.

Online commercial video is growing at a phenomenal rate.  In 2008 only 18% of the 50 top US retailers used videos on their websites. In 2009 that figure has risen to 68%. (Forrester).  In 2010 the figure will probably get close to 100%. There are strong reasons for this:

  1. 5.5 billion videos were viewed in the UK in 2009 up 37% on the previous year. (Google)
  2. 2 billion videos are viewed on YouTube every day. (Google 2010)
  3. By 2014 selected traffic will be 6 times larger than in 2009 – Cisco

Watching video online has become a normal pursuit for internet users. And it is becoming more normal by the day. Online commercial video is being compared to TV advertising and there are obvious similarities but we believe that it has its own personality and is suited to a whole new range of professions and business. It allows potential clients to quickly get a deeper insight into the business and the quality of their offerings.  It is the closest one will get to a potential client except for meeting in person. If it is done right then trust, respect and most of all a personal connection is made that a client will act on. The figures speak for themselves…

  1. Visitors who view product videos are 85% more likely to buy. (Internet Retailer 2009)
  2. Online Video Adverts are nine times more effective than static Adverts (Google/Aol 2009).
  3. Conversion rates increase 30% or more – (Practical e-Commerce 2009).
  4. Decrease returns 25% or more – (Internet Retailer, 2009).

Properly marketed video has another very profitable and interesting side effect. It has to do with the way search engines respond to uploaded videos.  Essentially, if it finds a video under the keyword search of the user it will bypass the regular sites to feature it. Forrester Research recently found that video increases Search Engine Optimization results by up to 53 times. Social networking sites and free video platforms like YouTube and VideoEgg play a vital role in this whole phenomenon. Their existence means that businesses can distribute videos throughout the internet for free.  It also means that they can target their message to groups, organizations and individuals that are freely accessible through sites like Linked In and Facebook.
And if you think that the online video audiences are just kids, then think again.

  1. 33 percent of executives under the age of 50 said they view work-related web video daily on business-related sites (Forbes Insights in association with Google 2009).
  2. 67% of online adults ages 30-49 used video sharing sites in 2009 (Pew Internet Report).
  3. Among internet users ages 50-64, 41% watched video on sites like YouTube in 2009 (Pew International Report).


Substantial Benefits

Online Video is not just for international business. There are more than thousands of groups related to Business on Linkedin and Facebook. With just a few clicks any video can be posted directly onto their pages, for no cost. Think about it. If you search for a service or product online, say a local solicitor, and you find 20 competing options. And on one of those sites you find a video featuring a well informed, articulate solicitor.  If you like what you see, who are you going to give the business to?

Hidden goldmine

With video the right tactics will pay off handsomely. Let’s take YouTube as an example. Most people think of YouTube as a flimsy and amateur option to market goods, but there is definitely money to be made.

The Monty Python team set up their own channel on You Tube. Under each clip they created an Amazon link to buy the full version of each performance. Within a month sales of Monty Python dvd’s had risen an astonishing 1600 percent. 

YouTube campaigns are particularly suited to any venture centred on selling publications and downloadable products. The campaigner does not require a website to capitalise on this. A link to a place of sale such as Amazon or Ebay is all that is needed.

Here are some other numbers to look at if you still need convincing. They come from a 2009 survey carried out by Google and Aol.  The responses came from 2,394 online users between 18 and 54 years old: 64% of respondents have taken action after seeing an online video, 44 % going to the advertiser’s Web site, 33 % searching for a product or service, 22% visiting an actual off-line store, and 21 % discussing the advertised product with friends or family. So not only does online video bring in new business, it gets the ball rolling on that elusive buzz marketing campaign.

The study also found that online video ads result in 32 % of viewers describing the featured brand as innovative, 32 % as creative, and 30 % as fun.

The key is to put high value to the production style, script and marketing.  Embedding video onto homepages will increase conversion rates and will substantially reduce bounce rates but effective video marketing will multiply the number of visits. Video should be working for a business in multiple ways.  Even those who don’t have a website can look at doing video e-mail campaigns, which can have great results with the right mailing list. Video campaigns for selling books and dvds can be carried out with as little as a product link to Amazon.

And the cream on the pudding with all this is that all these activities are completely measurable. Analytics will tell how many people watch the video, how long they watched it for and if they took further action.