What do we always say is the most important thing?
Breakfast. Obviously, it’s breakfast. But a close second for marketers is – and always should be – video. Now, video may not be able to satisfy a serious craving for biscuits and gravy, but it does satisfy business needs and drive real engagement outcomes. And like breakfast, video isn’t so much a thing as it is a powerful collection of elements coming together to drive results. So, whereas the first, most important meal of your day may be breakfast, the first, most important element of your marketing strategy should always be video.
So, pour a glass of fresh squeezed juice, sip a steaming cup of joe and get ready — because we’re about to give you a big old scoop our “Video First, Video Always” marketing strategy.
A million reasons why you need video
Have you ever googled “Video Marketing” or “does my brand need video?” If not, give it a go. Among the billions of results, you’ll see page after page of extremely topical lists: 5 important ways, 8 powerful strategies, 16 vital reasons. And let’s not forget about all the so-and-so’s guides to growing your brand with video. Lots of blogs, plenty of videos (because obviously videos), a whole lot of statistics and opinions. In other words, the web is full of experts, resources and reasons. And you know what? Some of them are right! Here are a handful of the best stats we’ve come across:
With all that in mind, here’s our take: yes, the evidence is there to support the impact video can have on your brand, across a variety of channels, at literally every stage of the marketing funnel. Which means we’re not going to give you a list of our reasons why you need video.
You need video — full stop.
Instead, we’re going to share our experiences to help you understand why you need to incorporate video earlier in your marketing strategy. And why the best results come when you think about it constantly. Like, now. And also now. Not just because this is how we do things, but because it works.
Video is more overlooked than it should be
Wait, if everyone knows how important video is to marketing, how could we possibly label it as overlooked? Well, you may remember moments ago when we cited the billions of hits you get for branded video search queries. Despite the overwhelming evidence, people still need convincing. Sounds kind of weird, right? Well, in a way, people overlooking or questioning the need for video is precisely why there are billions of search results. In very practical terms, we see it all the time with clients and prospects — heck, we’re writing a blog about it right now!
But on top of a general awareness issue, plenty of people aren’t exactly sure how video can help their business or their brand. Or what types of content live under the general umbrella of video. See, not every video project is the same or designed to drive the same results, but the billions of search hits don’t always make those distinctions for you. Unfortunately, video always gets lumped into this one monolithic thing. And it’s not.
How to enjoy the whole buffet, one bite at a time
Historically, when a client comes to us asking about “video,” we work closely with them to understand the various types of videos that could help them specifically with their goals and what outcomes to expect at different stages of the marketing funnel. We call this a video audit, and we regularly run them for clients. We recently shared a version of this audit, complete with a simple scoring system to help you see gaps in your own video marketing. See how your video marketing strategy scores on the 2022 video guide here, or reach out to us for a customized audit and strategy discussion using the form below.
Because video is more than just video
Breakfast is a lot of things to a lot of people. Eggs, pancakes, bacon and beyond. Cocoa Puffs, Quaker Oats, whatever grits are. Heck, some folks eat a whole boiled tomato or a pile of baked beans. And while that may be enough to stuff a wary ax-man or lumber-Jill, it’s nowhere near a comprehensive or complete collection of comestibles. Your breakfast options can seem endless, but the combination you crave depends entirely on your needs/wants.
Video is functionally similar. We talk about it like it’s a thing, but the work that goes into almost any video can be immediately repurposed into a veritable smorgasbord of other content elements. Here are a few examples:
- Once you’ve invested the time and effort needed to research and write a video, you basically have a blog. Take the video script, reformat it to fit blog standards, and — like celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse would say — BAM! You’re ready to post well-researched, thought-provoking blogs.
- It’s easy for static web content to go by the wayside in favor of flashier, more topical content elements. But new video content, like interviews and product details, can give you the ingredients for refreshing content before it gets stale. New perspectives and voices go a long way in keeping your site fresh.
Podcasts and audiograms
- Podcasts are an amazing engagement tool. Maybe you already know that — we sure do! But did you know you can use the audio from educational vids, webinars, interviews and more to create podcast content? They’re a particularly potent way to serve your brand and messages up to hungry customers, and they yield even more sources of content, like poignant soundbites and impactful audiograms for social feeds.
- Your video is great. It’s full of useful, well-researched information. And people want to consume it. Why not take that information – along with the visual identity you’ve created with the video – and make infographics? You can build interactive white papers, impactful PowerPoints and more with very little extra work.
Social media images and GIFs
- Social posts benefit from visuals, and with your video, you have a whole repository of new imagery to play with. From the video itself, you can pull screenshots, audiograms and GIFs to put on social. And from the work that went into the video, you’ve got animation elements (characters, etc.), behind-the-scenes production stills and more. Use these to engage your audience not just with the output, but with everything that went into it.
Like our list of breakfast items, the list above is by no means exhaustive. The benefits of a video-first strategy extend into nearly every part of your overall content marketing strategy. Here are some more of the benefits, in short:
- Ties in with forward-thinking, mobile-first strategies
- Harnesses the incredible SEO benefits of video
- Speaks directly to younger, video-native audiences
- Makes for a more efficient social marketing process
Finally, it’s time to put video first
In spite of its impact, more often than not video is an afterthought, relative to other content types. The chocolate cake to the blog post’s steak. Sure, it’s delicious, but you may not have room in your stomach (or your budget) after splurging on the aged porterhouse.
But what if you were to eat your cake first? Or just have it on the table at all times for a nibble here and there? Well, that would be novel. Here’s how this delicious scenario might play out in an engagement with us.
- You approach Matter asking for video that can be broken out into a variety of content types and delivered throughout the year. Ultimately, you want blogs, thought leadership, newsletters, social posts, etc. We run you through our video audit, and you recognize a few holes in your content strategy. No big deal — we can fix that! Plus, you see there are even more content types you can leverage from the video program, like podcasts, live branded experiences, infographics and video variations. And those other content types are built into the cost of production — nice. With a fresh budget to back your efforts up and a recognition that this investment will continue to drive engagement and conversions over time, you sign a contract and begin a long-term relationship with Matter.
In other words, when you take a video-first approach, you get your cake and can eat it too.
Video is a delicious and sustainable effort
Video isn’t a thing, so much as it is a process by which you can see real results. It’s sweet like chocolate cake or marionberry pie, sure. But it’s more than dessert — video is the whole meal. A well-executed, video-first strategy will carry your content efforts and satisfy your content needs, because video is the content that keeps on giving. It’s efficient, impactful and helps grow your brand at every stage of the funnel.
So, if you stop thinking about it as a thing, and start planning with video front-and-center, our kickoff question may be moot. Because, after all, breakfast may be the first, most important meal of your day — but video is what feeds your brand and sustains your marketing strategy.