Video is growing in popularity among both consumers and organizations. The use of video as a marketing tactic continues to soar, according to the State of Video Marketing 2019 by Wyzowl.
The study, conducted in December 2018, revealed that 87 percent of businesses now use video for marketing compared to 81 percent in 2018 and 63 percent in 2017. Further, 91 percent of marketers consider video an important part of their marketing strategy, up from 85 percent in 2018 and 82 percent in 2017 (https://www.wyzowl.com/video-marketing-statistics-2019/).
Video saves time and money. It is an effective educational tool that can reduce time spent in one-on-one conversations, training, or other marketing materials. The Wyzowl study found that 41% of marketers say video has helped reduce support calls. Video can also increase website traffic, generate leads, or keep visitors engaged on the company’s website, thus moving them along on their journey.
WATCH THESE 7 METRICS
Even with the right strategy and tools, video marketing still demands time and resources. From small mom-and-pop shops to large multiple-location retailers, businesses want to know their video strategy is working. To help you evaluate the success of your videos, watch these seven metrics.
1. View count
A basic measure of success, view count is the raw number of times a video was viewed. This indicates of reach, the number of people who will be exposed to the message at least once. Note that views are counted differently across platforms. For example, YouTube counts a view after a video has been watched for 30 seconds. On Facebook, a view is only three seconds. Keep this in mind when aggregating data and presenting metrics.
To boost view count:
» Share your video on social media.
» Share your video with key customers and industry or market influencers. » Feature key customers in videos, and they’ll share them for you.
»Pay to promote your video on social media and other channels where customers already spend time.
Don’t obsess about view counts; reach is good for awareness, but it’s only the first step in measuring effectiveness.
2. Social shares
As the name implies, social share is a measure of how much people are sharing your video content, usually measured by numbers of shares across social channels. It also indicates how appealing a video is to the target audience. The more people like your video, the more they’ll share it, and the more views you’ll get.
To increase social shares:
»Ask viewers to share your content. That may be all it takes.
»Create content that is shareable. Videos that are educational, entertaining, emotional, unique, or even controversial are more likely to be shared.
»Jump-start social shares by sharing your video with key customers and industry or market influencers.
Track shares on each platform and compare them to see which videos and platforms perform best. While you’re at it, look at qualitative data such as likes and comments to see how people feel about your videos.
3. Play rate
This is the percentage of page visitors who clicked play and began watching your video. It indicates how relevant the video is to the location where it’s placed, as well as how enticing it is to watch. Play rate is relevant if you’re particularly concerned that people actually watch the video. For example, you may want to know what percentage of customers watched a video about a new service.
To increase play rate:
»Increase the size of your video or place it more prominently on the page. »Choose a more interesting or relevant thumbnail for your video.
»Add descriptive copy that accurately reflects the video’s content and encourages viewing.
»Move the video to a more appropriate page.
Note that play rates will vary depending on the video’s attractiveness, intended audience, and breadth of its appeal.
Expressed as a percentage, engagement measures how much of a video viewers watched, on average. It’s a more advanced measure, and one of the most telling. Engagement graphs visually illustrate how the audience watched, re-watched, or stopped watching the video. This information can help you create better, more engaging videos in the future, and even edit existing videos to keep viewers involved.
To improve engagement:
»Keep content short, clear, concise, and to the point. Eliminate unnecessary content.
»When producing longer videos, keep viewers engaged with new information, interesting graphics, frequent scene changes, an engaging host, and other best practices in video production.
»Make sure the production value is sufficient to ensure that viewers aren’t distracted by bad acting, inconsistent sound, or poor video quality.
Engagement is the holy grail of video marketing. Only when viewers watch your entire video do you succeed in getting your complete message across.
5. Click-through rate (CTR)
CTR is the percentage of viewers that click on the call to action (CTA) in a video. CTR measures how successful your video is at encouraging viewers to act. The challenge is making sure viewers remain sufficiently engaged to reach the CTA, especially if it’s at the end. If the goal is driving the viewer to take action immediately after watching the video, the CTR is especially important
To improve CTRs in your videos:
»Place the CTA at different or multiple places in the video.
»Make your CTA visually appealing and exceptionally enticing.
»Keep the CTA relevant to the video’s content.
The CTA should correspond with the video’s content; fit the tone, look, and feel of the video; and make it abundantly clear how the viewer should proceed.
6. Conversion rate
This is the number of leads or customers gained that is directly connected to a specific piece of content. Conversion is expressed as a percentage of all viewers that convert — called the conversion rate. Viewers convert by subscribing to a service, newsletter, or list; completing a form or request for information; or making a purchase. Conversion can be difficult to track because it usually requires separate analytics software and a model for determining how much you’ll attribute the conversion to the video. For example, the “last click ” attribution model assigns 100 percent of revenue generated to the last customer touchpoint before a purchase. The “linear” attribution model states that every interaction is equally responsible for the conversion, and attributes revenue equally across all marketing interactions.
Improve conversion rates by:
»Creating videos for various stages of the sales process or funnel, and making content relevant to that stage. For example, in the initial stages, buyers want information about the product or service, and how it compares to competitors.
»Be sure to answer questions and overcome objections or fears.
»Place videos in the right medium or the right place to move viewers along in their buying journey.
Video can be a valuable tool in the conversion process. How you attribute revenue to that tool is up to you. To learn more, search for attribution modeling in digital marketing or digital marketing attribution online.
Many social media platforms enable comments and other reactions to your videos. While positive feedback is nice, you’ll learn more from negative feedback.
While you can’t change the quality of content, you can encourage feedback by doing the following:
»Ask for feedback and make it easy to respond.
»Respond to feedback in a humble, grateful, and encouraging tone. »Address both positive and negative feedback.
Monitor and analyze comments, likes, emojis, and other forms of feedback to improve future videos and further customize content to appeal to various types of buyers at each stage of their journey.
PICK YOUR METRICS
If you’re new to video marketing, focusing on too many metrics at once may be intimidating and impractical. Start with view count and social shares to make sure your video strategy is working. Once you’re comfortable that your videos are reaching the intended audience and being viewed, focus on play rate and engagement. Next, turn your attention to click-throughs and conversions.
Even experienced video marketers don’t fixate on all seven metrics for every video. Strategic marketers focus on two or three that are most-closely aligned with their goals or each individual video or campaign. If you want assurance that your videos are getting attention, look at view count and play rate. If your goal is to assess how involved viewers are in your videos, track play rate and engagement. To find out how videos contribute to sales, follow click-through and conversion rates.
Measuring marketing effectiveness in any form is just good business. And even the smallest attempt to measure effectiveness is better than none at all. Don’t expect immediate results; but over time, with consistent effort, your numbers will begin to climb and you’ll see the payoff in awareness, relationships, and sales.
Katrina Olson is a marketing consultant, trainer, writer, and principal of Katrina Olson Marketing + Training. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.