4 Essentials of Video Content Marketing

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I’ve touched on video a few times my past couple entries, so the way I see it, I may as well give it its own post entirely!

Just to open up with however, here are a couple statistics.  Demand Metric has recently published a study that shows 70 percent of marketers are currently using videos in their marketing strategies.  On top of that though, 82 percent of them indicate that it’s proven successful.  Personally, I’d say that reward is well worth getting involved!

That being said, if you do plan on integrating video into your current marketing plans, there are some things to be aware of in order to be successful.

First and foremost, identify what your goals are.  What do you aim to accomplish with your video marketing strategy?  Will you be using it to draw attention to your products and services, are you using it as a recruitment tool, or is it simply to make more people aware you exist?  Whichever it is, it’s so important to define these goals because that’s how you’ll be determining if it succeeded or not.  Will this be defined by how many times it’s viewed, or are you more concerned about it being shared?

Second, keep it relevant to your audience.  What’s important to them, and how can you portray that?  If the Super Bowl’s taught us anything, is that you shouldn’t be scared of getting a little creative to reach out to your audience.

Third, be sure you have some sort of call to action.  Ultimately, what do you want your viewers to do after they watch your clip?  This is something that should be both visual and audible, but the absence of it could cause your video to fail regardless of how it was produced.

Finally, no matter where you plan on this video going ultimately, don’t over look your social media.   It’s a great place to share and promote your videos, as well as optimizes.

Video is on the rise and more and more people will be viewing them in the years to come.  Be sure to get in the game while the game’s still young!

For a continued reading on the matter, click here to view Entrepreneur’s article in its entirety.

Tips To Incorporate Social Media Into Event Marketing

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Social media and events go hand in hand, and they always have.  I still remember back in high-school when the band drove up to Toronto and the elevator at the hotel stopped with about five people from my bus inside.  It was on Twitter immediately and everyone instantly knewIt took a close to an hour for it to start working again and for everyone to get out, and I remember the firemen threatening that next time it happened they’d use the Jaws of Life as soon as they got there.  Beyond that though, it just went to show how well people respond to interesting, new exciting things across social media, especially when they were happening right now.  Half the shows I watch now pop up with little hashtags as it’s airing so fans can talk and be hyped with each other, but this isn’t something that should only be reserved for some sort of misfortune or TV.  You could easily use it to create a stir around your own company event.

First thing’s first though, you really do need to let people know that it’s happening.  If it’s your event exclusively, create a hashtag, or if other people are involved, use theirs.  Be active in the talks of the event and promote that you’ll be there.  On top of that though, make your own company specific hashtag for what you’ll be doing there.  It’ll get you more visible and draw in interest.  Creating a Facebook event page would also be wise, and then share that across the networks.  If you know media people, get then involved as well.  If not, try meeting some, get to know them and even give them some story ideas they could write about about your event.  Video is huge right now, bust out some teasers, and then make sure that you even have a specific page for it on your website.

While it’s actually occurring though, snap plenty of pictures and take some video of what’s occurring, especially of what’s happening near you.  Additionally, because trade shows for example can become extremely busy, be sure to have some tweets and posts scheduled as you may have difficulty finding a free moment to type them up normally.  If you know ‘x’ is going to happen at ‘y’, then that’s definitely one to set up ahead of time!  Furthermore, as long as social media and your event are connected, set up some giveaways and contests, which could drive more people to your booth and even get others to post pictures of what you’re doing on their account.  Lastly, if someone’s especially excited to be there, ask them if it’s okay for a testimonial video!  You can share it across the networks and post it on your site in a great endorsement!

Your discussion shouldn’t be over the moment your even ends either.  Set up some follow ups and make them personal, both with people who reached out to you in person and on social media.  Another thing to do is write up a blog entry about the experience, which would also be a great place to share some of the content you had been gathering throughout it!  Finally, send out a an email to everyone who visited or wanted to, recap and link your blog post and include links to all of your media accounts and encourage them to connect with you there!

Are you planning any company events in the near future?  And if so, what?

For more information on these tips, click here for Marketing Land’s article on the matter.

6 Things to Know about Social Media

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I feel like at this point I’ve listed off more rules than NCIS’ Gibbs, but I’ve got a fresh batch for you this Friday afternoon!

First of all, despite what you’ve been hearing, Google+ actually is important.  While it is true it doesn’t have the thriving audience of some of the other networks, it’s the one that has the highest in searches.  I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it was strictly because of the obvious bias Google would have to it, but it’s important to post on it regularly and use hashtags that are relevant to what you’re doing.  One or two posts a day will do a great job helping customers find your content, and as a result, your business.

Second, building off that, don’t forget to use hashtags in general.  They’re an easy way to categorize your content and keep it all searchable.  Not only that, but they can also be extremely useful industry events and conferences.

Third, make sure that your pages are easy to find.  If it’s in your website keep it in either the header or footer, and if it isn’t, add and then link them.  Have the links on your blog as well, and then have the pages link between each other as well.  Feel free to tell people in person as well, and that you’d like to connect with them.

Forth, don’t worry about scheduling posts, but if you do be sure you’re there to monitor them.  Real time responses can make your brand and are critical to your strategy.

Fifth, timing is important.  As much as you should be aware of what you’re posting, you should be conscious of when you’re doing so.   For Facebook, the most popular time is Wednesday at 3pm, and the time from 1pm to 4pm would be the best to post on other days, as well as at the top of the hour.  For Twitter, key times are Monday-Thursday from 1pm to 3pm, Thursdays being the most important.  LinkedIn is best at noon or between 5pm-6pm, weekdays being best, and finally Google+ works best between 9am and 10am.

Lastly, measure the results of your success and set expectations.  Numbers aren’t everything, what matters more is having quality followers, specifically those who fall into your target demographic.  If you’re drawing in the wrong group, you may need to rethink your strategy.  Similarly, watch for what content is getting engagement as apposed to what isn’t.  If something continually don’t get any results, you may want to scrap it.

Follow these tips, and eventually you’ll find what works best for you!

For a continued reading on the matter, click here for Talkin’ Cloud’s article on the matter.

Social Partners

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At the moment there’s a guy on YouTube with 33,946,673 subscribers with 2,206 videos, the latest of which from 22 hours ago already has over 1,900,000 views.  Most of me finds this terrifying.

PewDiePie is just one of several YouTube personalities who’s achieved massive amounts of success, and this isn’t just through dumb luck.  Several of these people partner with one another, which in turn introduces one groups fans to something they may have never heard of before, and usually these team ups work great.  As an example of that, I remember last summer when a couple of my friends where crushing on Lindsey Sterling, a well known violinist on YouTube, and while they were showing me some of her music videos we stumbled upon her collaboration with Pentatonix, an acapella group, covering Imagine Dragon’s Radioactive.

Here’s the thing though.  This isn’t a YouTube only strategy, it’s something that you can use to your benefit on any of your social media pages.  Simply find some brands that you aren’t competing with with a following around the same size as you and propose the idea.  That way you’ll both be on an even level and can offer each other the same value.

After the two of you have established your partnership, you should both appear in each other’s posts on occasion, and take product photos of each other’s products together.  If you own a restaurant for example, you may want to partner with an ice cream parlor and advertise how well they go together.  Similarly, you could work with a spa and apparel store if you advertise the dating angle.

And that ‘and’ brings me to the next point.  This isn’t just a one and done sort deal, you can build your brand even stronger if you integrate into more and more of your community.  People usually don’t do just one thing every day, they can go through the entire alphabet before getting back home for the night!

It’ll do a lot of good for you, including aiding in the organic growth of your social following, increase your brand affinity through the positive association with the other brands in your area, acts as a travel generator, keeps you relevant, attracts new audiences, is authentic and even free!

Great things are built when people come together, so make one of those things your brand!

For a continued reading on the matter, click here to view Huffington Post’s article in its entirety.

Twitter Marketing Tips

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As I’m sure everyone knows, all the social medias are a bit different from each other, some more so than others but they all carry their own distinct flavor.  For Twitter, in addition to the @ & #, I think we’d have to say it’s the character limit.  Let’s be real real quick, 140 characters isn’t a lot.  Well, maybe in a movie, I mean I can’t even remember the names of all the Dwarfs in the Hobbit, but I mean individual letters.  It can be difficult to convey a clear and precise message with just a sentence to two, but that’s really not all that Twitter’s about, and its benefits far outweigh learning curve it comes with.

For one thing, you don’t need permission to enter into someone else’s conversation on Twitter, you can always just jump right in, but make sure you use a hashtag somewhere in your area of expertise so you can keep track of it, and on the topic of hashtags, go ahead and put some in your profile, not just tweets.  Just make sure you’re keeping them relevant and it’ll help you get you and your tweets some reach.

And as far as that reach is concerned however, don’t make a big deal out of little things.  Tweets only have a shelf life for 30 minutes max, so it doesn’t matter if it’s perfect.  What matters is that it’s out there, but on a similar note, because they expire so fast, don’t pump them out at night.  If your target audience is asleep, they won’t be much use to you.  You best bet would be to catch them when they’re most active, such as their lunch break or when they get off work or school.

While it shouldn’t be the primary thing you’re tweeting about, it’s alright to sell things on Twitter, so things like limited time offers work out greatly there!

Lastly, make sure you fill out your Twitter bios, they’re read surprisingly often so be sure to add in lots of  keywords for your SEO and link back to your other pages to you can build up those email lists!  Be sure to have a fun handle too!  People like knowing they’re talking to a person!

Time to spread those wings and fly everyone!

For more in-depth information, click here to see an audio book on the subject.

How to Improve Social Media Marketing in 2015

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There’s a new year on the horizon, a new beginning dawning on the dusk of 2014 and when we trade out the starry night sky for midnight fireworks it’ll mark a night of new beginnings.

Now I know I’ve said this time and time again, but if your business still isn’t on Social Media, it’s still not too late and it’s very important for a multitude of reasons.  Now is simply the perfect time to join, it is a time of change and goals, after all.

Having a strong campaign across social media will raise people’s awareness of your brand, as well as give it even more exposure to your clients, customers collaborators and connections.  From there, it builds a loyal group of people who trust in you and your message, leading to new opportunities and leads, as well as giving you a better insight to your target audience.

To get to that point however, there are certain things you need to be doing.  First and foremost, be social.  This is sort of a given at this point, but be sure to ask and answer questions, provide resources and helpful hints and give them a chance to connect with you.

Additionally, you need to keep showing up and be present for the conversations that are occurring as they happen in real time, or if that’s not possible, at least maintaining a steady stream of consistent presence.  So you don’t go crazy checking constantly, there are quite a few applications to help you monitor you feeds, which can be found here.

Something else you should find out is simply where your target audience actually is.  Not everyone is on all networks, so you may want to research to know where your target dominates, and then place some key focus there.

Next off is don’t force it.  Just because something is trending doesn’t mean you should make your next post, tweet, comment or whatever about it.  Especially if you haven’t looked into what it actually means.  DiGiorno’s Pizza for example, landed in major trouble after a mistake such as this.  Pizza’s good, I like pizza and if a day with my friends is wrapping up, the idea of picking some up would be a sure fire way to make everyone stick around for a little while longer.  They had the same frame of mind and they used a trending hashtag in their lighthearted post.  Lots of people saw it.  #WhyIStayed is about domestic violence and people sharing their own, very personal experiences on it by the way.  You can imaging the resulting backlash.

Lastly, make a plan.  Like most things in life, organization breeds success.  Decide where you’ll be, how often you’ll be where as well as laying out a variety of content.  Make tweaks and changes as necessary, but most importantly, give it shot!  We’ll drink to it on New Years!

Well.  I can’t yet.  But still!

For a more in-depth reading, click here to view Tech Cocktail’s article on the mater.

5 Trends That Will Change Social Media in 2015

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If any of you have tracked down the other blogs I manage, you may have noticed I’m not exactly stoked about the snow.  It’s cold you guys.  It’s really cold, and it’s signaling months we’re not in yet.  It’s like its in the middle of an identity crisis and doesn’t know who it is anymore.   The radio’s been telling it it’s Christmas since Halloween though, so I guess in all fairness I’d be a little confused to.  If you know, I was a cloud and paid attention to that sort of thing.

And besides, there are other things I need to be paying attention to, as I sit in my four jackets, limbs scrunched together in a tight ball in a desperate ploy to conserve the maximum amount of warmth they provide.  Specifically, the coming changes to social media.

We can all agree that it’s changed a lot, to the point that it can feel like it’s a television set that someone’s channel surfing, but there are some massive waves incoming that are promising a wild ride.

Seeing how we already have phone apps for most of the networks out there, social media’s already gotten into our pants, but now it’s going for our wallet from there.  I half expect me to to edit that line out retrospectively, but what I’m getting at is that several places now want to be manage your money.  Apple has introduced an Apple Pay app, Square and Stripe are trying to make waves, the seasoned Paypal of course, but now even Facebook is trying to get in on the action.  A recent hack showed their plans of a hidden payment feature https://twitter.com/andyplace2/status/518503570950209536/photo/1 although a this stage of the game it isn’t entirely clear what their goals are, beyond money transfer services.

Another massive change, is that we may be getting some additions to the usual suspects.  New networks have been popping up all over, most notably Ello, which vows to never sell use data, Yik Yak, which lets people exchange anonymous posts with people who are nearby, and tsu, which promised to share ad revenue with users based off the popularity of their posts.

The biggest challenge they have ahead of them is gaining enough of a user-base to feel alive and active, the same thing Google+ still struggles with.

Similar to the phone wallet from earlier, shopping is going to finally come to social media.  Both Twitter and Facebook have been beta-testing “buy” buttons which will appear beside certain posts and tweets to allow users to make a purchase without ever leaving the site.  This is likely a response to all the businesses that have joined the medias.  The happy, receptive audience is there, now’s the time to capitalize on it.

You may have heard of the watches google’s been advertising lately or other smart devices, but there’s currently a push to get them to make notices on social media.  While this might seem irritating now, if they continue to make strides forward they could become extremely helpful, especially when the small things slip your mind.

Almost in response to people’s name being stabled everywhere, spanning from Facebook to YouTube, anonymous networks have been receiving a bit of a surge lately.  Snapchat, Secret, Whisper, Yik Yak and Telegram have all been on the rise, but with the repeated hacks to Snapchat resulting in thousands of sensitive pictures being posted on the internet and Whisper’s saving of user posts and locations, the demand for real anonymity and privacy became even more powerful.  As a result, Facebook for one introduced new chat app Rooms, which let people create rooms around shared interests without having to give name or location.

The game keeps on changing and it’s not going to stop.  We’ve got a heck of a year ahead of us, let’s make it a great one!

For a more in-depth reading, click here to view the Times article in its entirety.