The world is video-hungry.
Did you know that a third of the internet flocks to YouTube each month? That’s a whopping 2 billion people searching for video content in almost any and every niche you can imagine.
It’s hard to imagine a world without video. It’s become a quintessential part of life. In fact, Google found that seven in 10 users turn to YouTube to solve a problem related to their job, studies or a hobby.
Question is, how can you capitalize on this trend?
How can you create videos that convert?
Here’s the thing:
To create a high-converting video, you’ll need to plan, just like you would any other marketing initiative. You’ve got to be strategic about who you’re targeting and your objective.
In this blog post, I’ll dive into how to create a video that converts. I’ll cover how to use strong copy for your video script, how to grab and hold your audience’s attention, and how to leverage call-to-actions to generate the best possible outcome for your video and brand.
I’ll also share valuable tips on optimizing your videos and where to promote them for maximum exposure.
Start With Personas
It’s no secret that personas are a must for effective marketing. Whether you’re monetizing Instagram or Facebook, they help marketers slice through the thicket of assumptions and biases about their ideal customers. And that’s why you should lean into them to create high-converting videos.
But don’t gloss over them.
Really dig deep.
If your videos are going to convert, you’ll need to know what pain points, challenges, needs and desires your ideal customer has when thinking about a solution like yours.
Here are questions to ask to gather strong intel on your ideal customer:
- What values drive their decisions?
- Do they have any preconceived ideas about your product, service on the topic you’ll cover?
- What would it take to persuade your ideal customer to take action?
Collect answers to these and other questions. Develop an intimate understanding of who you’re creating your video for. This way, you can rest assured that your message will resonate with your audience.
Use Powerful Copy
Your copy and script must be strong, concise and value-packed to be effective. Whether your video is for a B2B or B2C audience, your viewers are people and they still respond to emotion-based messaging.
Sure, B2B messaging will be more logic-driven, but you can still appeal to emotions related to selecting the right solution or the consequence of not.
Here are four valuable tips for creating effective copy for your video:
1. Start out With a Bang!
Hook the audience quickly. Start your video with a strong statement or question that shocks or intrigues your audience.
To do this right, you’ll need to really know your target persona. Zero-in on their pain points and challenges.
Nick Nimmin opens his video with a powerful statement. He tells viewers that he is going to share six ways to get more views on YouTube. If you’re a YouTuber trying to build a large audience, Nick’s hook immediately appeals to a strong desire you have to be successful on YouTube.
2. Hold Your Audience’s Attention
It’s true that people’s attention spans are shorter than they were a decade ago. In fact, research by YouTube points to the first 15-seconds of a video being critical to success. If you lose a viewer at the start, they’ll never get to see what you had to offer.
After the first few seconds, you’ve got to keep viewers from wandering off.
The solution: pattern interrupts.
Pattern interrupts have their roots in neuro-linguistic programming. When the human mind is presented with a sudden or unexpected idea, it can’t help but focus on and try to understand it. The new idea literally interrupts the brain’s thought pattern.
Pattern interrupts come in various forms. From graphics and subject positioning in a video, to a change in music or an increase in sound volume.
Brian Dean shows how simply switching from a medium shot to a medium close up shot can keep a viewer engaged.
And interrupts work.
Buffer used pattern interrupts to grow their YouTube channel by 59% in 30 days.
3. Keep It Simple
You may be tempted to roll a lot of ideas into your video, from examples to additional pain points and solutions or long-winded copy.
Focus on the simplest version of the idea but deliver the goods. If you’ve promised steps or tactics, provide them.
Just don’t over-deliver or you could overwhelm your audience. Give viewers just enough to take the next step in the buyer’s journey. This could be to download a guide and become a lead, or just enough incentive to visit a video sales letter page.
4. Leverage Post Copy
If you’re posting your video on social media or YouTube, be sure to craft a message that resonates with your audience. Speak to a pain point or challenge and position your product/service as the solution.
Neil Patel does a great job of using the space Facebook provides. He engages his audience by shattering a misconception (the need to spend money to be successful at SEO).
He also uses a strong video title, one that’s specific and something his viewers will be interested in.
Incorporate Your Brand Identity Throughout the Video
From thumbnails and copy, to the graphics and calls to action, branding is all about association. The more you can associate your brand with ideas and solutions for your target audience, the better that chance of driving conversions over time.
Marketers and business owners are no strangers to the rule of seven. The rule of seven dictates that buyers need to experience your brand at least 7 times before taking action. Through various touchpoints (including video) brand association strengthens your brand and message with buyers.
So don’t shy away from branding your videos. Include your logo on each frame and in your intros and outros.
Use Strong Calls to Action
Let your viewers know what steps you want them to take and what’s in it for them. This means building a strong value proposition for the next step.
The best way to think about constructing a powerful call to action is to answer a simple question:
How does taking the next step elevate your viewer’s position in life?
While this may sound like a big question, possibly way too deep for a simple marketing video, it’s not. As marketers and business owners, you must believe in your product and how effective it is to be able to sell it.
Ryan Diess, the co-founder and CEO of DigitalMarketer said best, “people don’t buy products or services, they buy transformations.”
And if you know how it fits into your ideal customer’s life, and the value it brings, finding your answer will be easy.
For example, if you call to action is to visit a video paywall that gives your viewers access to exclusive content, how does this content help them solve a major problem or move one step closer to doing so?
Optimize Your Videos
While strong copy, pattern interrupts, the right number of ideas and powerful calls to action will definitely separate you from the masses, there’s more you can do to produce high-converting videos.
Here are five ways to optimize your videos for maximum impact.
1. Go Native
Platforms (think LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter) are prioritizing video. They also want to keep their users online for as long as possible to generate revenue through ad-spend.
Using native video is likely to work in your favor, and better yet, help position your video higher on platform search results.
As you consider which platforms to use when publishing your content, take the extra step and upload it as to each platform. Adding a YouTube link is easier, but if you really want to see results, and leverage each platform’s algorithms, go native.
2. Try Vertical Video
As OTT video evolves, it’s making viewing content more intuitive for audiences. Take vertical video. Since its introduction, it’s become more obvious that turning your smartphone to landscape view is a pain. In fact, research shows that people love vertical videos. On Facebook, they get 13.8% more audiences than square videos and eclipse posts with embedded images by a staggering 90%.
Also, going vertical makes for a smart idea on social. Around 96% of Facebook users access the social network via their smartphones, making vertical videos a perfect fit for their screens and ideal for consumption.
3. Length Matters
How long should your video be?
According to Think Media, as long as necessary and as short as possible.
The length of your video is really dictated by the information you’re trying to communicate. For example, if you need to explain a three-step process for resetting an iPhone, that can be done in under 2 minutes. Anything longer is unnecessary.
And while using only the time you need is important, research shows that a sweet spot between 6 and 12 minutes is developing for online video content. Apparently, videos longer than 12 minutes experience engagement decay. People lose interest and easily become distracted.
How can you use this information?
Aim for videos with a 12-minute length at maximum. If you want to share more information and go beyond 12 minutes, create two videos or a series that your audience can follow along. After all, the more your viewers get to engage your brand, the closer they come to taking action.
4. Caption Your Videos
Did you know that more than 85% of people watch Facebook videos on mute?
It’s common for people to scroll through their feeds looking for content that catches their eyes. And if they’d rather not hear what you have to say, by want to read captions, you should be able to engage them with strong copy.
Caption your videos, words could mean the difference between a high-converting video and a missed opportunity to engage your ideal customer.
5. Use Engaging Thumbnails
The right thumbnail can produce better results for your marketing videos. According to Adspresso, it can have as much as a 2x difference on your cost per acquisition on Facebook.
But how do you pick the best thumbnail?
Go for the most engaging image. In Adespresso’s study, they tested a graphic and an image of a person. It turns out that the most effective was the graphic.
While “engaging” isn’t the most telling term to use, it hints at practice marketers and business owners are familiar with: testing what works.
Test variations of thumbnails to find which generates the best results.
Share Your Videos in Many Places
Creating a high-converting video is much like sharing any promotional message with the world. You’ve got to share in as many places where your audience is to generate results.
Here are four to help you get the widest reach possible:
- Use all social media accounts
- Connect with partner brands with similar audiences to use their social media accounts
- Motivate staff and team members to share your video
- Plan email drops (and leverage partner brands)
Videos that convert are highly-specific and value-packed. They include all the right elements that appeal to a target audience’s concerns, needs, wants and desires, and do so with strong copy. As you plan your next video, include these elements to create something stronger.
And don’t forget to test video lengths to find what works best, use closed captions to stand out, and give viewers a clear, value-packed next step, one they can’t ignore and share your video far and wide to reach as many viewers as possible.