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How to use video to effectively promote your business

September 19, 2018

Why Video?

Reach your customers in the format they’re most used to seeing: Americans on average spend more than 10 hours per day or just about two thirds of their waking hours looking at some kind of screen. With more and more of our media consumption coming from digital sources, the fact of the matter is this: if you’re not effectively reaching out to your customers through digital media, you are missing out on business.

 

All of the time Americans spend viewing digital media presents a great marketing opportunity for businesses and one of the best ways to capitalize on that time is through video content. Take Facebook for example; much of their $500 billion business is based around providing relevant content to their consumers and their algorithms prioritize video content above all else. If a picture is worth 1,000 words, a well-executed video is worth many more. Don’t waste your time trying to re-create the impact of video through alternate means – “cut out the middle man” and market yourself on the ultimate platform of the digital age.

How to Create Effective Video Content

Keep it short and sweet: One of the first things to consider is the length of your video. Generally speaking, the shorter the better. When looking at engagement rates over time, 2 minutes or less is the sweet spot for most videos; after that, you can expect to see a sharp drop-off in engagement.

 

Front-load your content: It is an incontrovertible truth that viewership drops off over time. Regardless of the total length of your video, it is important to get the most pertinent content and message out there as soon as possible to ensure it reaches the largest number of viewers. This technique also helps “hook” your viewers into watching more of your video. In 2016, Facebook found that 65% of viewers that watched the first 3 seconds of a video continued to watch for at least 10 seconds and 45% continued watching for 30 seconds. What does this tell you? If you can front load your content and hook them right off the bat, it’s likely that you will get additional time to get your message out. However, if you don’t start your video with engaging content, you may never get the opportunity to drive your point home, regardless of your video length.

 

Is brevity always best? Most of the time, yes. But if your video is so dense with content that cutting time does more to truncate than elucidate, you may be better served keeping a longer run time. While you will see drop offs in engagement with increasing lengths of videos, the relationship between video length and engagement is not linear; there is generally a plateau around 50% engagement for videos between 6 and 12 minutes. In other words, if your viewer is sticking around for the first 6 minutes, the content is typically relevant to them and they will remain engaged for at least the next 6. From this, we can learn that while brevity is best if possible, if you need the extra time to explain a concept or go into further detail with your content, take it; the viewers