When you're creating marketing videos to share online, there are several types of content that you should consider. Different types of videos should be used for different purposes and target markets. Here are three types of video content and how to use them to most effectively market your business:
Social Media/"Viral" Videos for Business
Many businesses approach video marketing in the context of so-called viral videos. A true viral video is a video that is rapidly spread and shared online - videos like Charlie Bit My Finger or the more recent Pumpcast News from the Tonight Show. Many businesses use the term in the context of making a funny or silly video that they want to go viral.
But the truth is, virality should not be the singular goal. While many people dream of "going viral", a good creative business video should be used as an entertaining brand-building opportunity. The video content should be, at the very least, tangentially related to your business (take, for example, HubSpot's parody of Gangnam style, which they titled Inbound Style, below).
Having on-point content helps you generate views from the right people, potential customers who, after seeing your brand, might visit your website or connect with you on social media. As great as it is to see the number of views on your website go up, remember that the ultimate goal should be seeing the visits to your website go up, too.
Promotional Videos about Products and Services
You should make promotional videos to achieve some sort of goal, like driving visitors to your online store or announcing a new product or service. They work most effectively when they're basic, high-level overviews. Promotional videos frequently target prospects in the top-to-middle of the sales funnel. They introduce a product or service and call the viewer to action, helping businesses convert prospects into customers.
Here's one of Holdcom's videos, promoting our custom Audio eGreeting Cards. You'll see that the service is explained and examples are shown, then the viewer is asked to contact us for more information:
Educational and How To Videos
By definition, educational videos are designed to instruct viewers. They frequently explain how to do something and are not made to directly sell any particular product or service. The content in an educational video should help clients and prospects. Ultimately, educational videos deliver ROI because they build brand awareness, increase customer loyalty, and establish your business as an industry thought leader.
The Combined Approach
Is it possible to combine two of these video types? While a promotional how to video might sound like a good idea to businesses, it's an approach that's likely to backfire. Instead of becoming more interested in your brand because of helpful, useful content, viewers will be frustrated that you're trying to sell a product to them.
There are some exceptions. A new product or service launch can be announced in creative ways; a how to video could have a funny spin that makes it go viral. Check out this video featuring Jesse Tyler Furgeson for the nonprofit TieTheKnot.org: