Great content campaigns utilize multiple mediums with a single unified brand voice and a coherent, comprehensive direction. They call on the power of written articles, photos, infographics, videos, and interactive items like quizzes and surveys to cater to many different audiences in many different ways. However, a startling number of content marketers still focus primarily on written content marketing, fearing the complexities and extra effort required by more advanced formats, like video.
Video content, when done well, can take a little more time, effort, and technical expertise compared to written content, but it’s an important piece to the modern content puzzle—and it’s about to become even more important in 2016. Can your content strategy survive without videos as little as one year from now?
The bottom line for content is consumer demand. Content marketing has only been successful in recent years because consumers have been hungry for more information and more entertainment. The past few years have seen an increase in interest in video content, and this upcoming year will spark even greater demand for the medium—some predicting that up to 69 percent of all online traffic will be for video content by 2017.
Why is this?
Faster, Greater Internet Access
It may seem like a minor thing because it happens so gradually and average Internet access is already pretty good, but increasing availability and speed of Internet is key for video content to develop even further. Written content is nice, but video content tends to be even easier to consume—it just takes greater data to transmit. Better, more ubiquitous Internet access means even more people will seek out video answers to their problems and questions over written content, especially when on the go.
Video Embeds in Other Channels
YouTube has over a billion active users, but it’s no longer the only social platform making good use of videos. Vine has exploded in popularity, and starting this year, other giants in the social media world are doing more to bring video content to their users. For example, both Facebook and Twitter now offer integrated, automatically played videos in their users’ newsfeeds. Over the course of the next year, expect to see even more features on these platforms that support and encourage others to post and share videos.
Greater Ease of Creation
Of course, the tools available for creating and sharing videos are continuing to evolve as well, prompting the circulation of more videos (and subsequently, the demand for them). Practically every phone in the country now has a video-capable camera and Internet access that can be used to share any videos captured. New platforms are emerging that make it easier for users to transmit videos, from bite-sized editing platforms like Vine to live-broadcasting apps like Periscope and Meerkat. These platforms are on an extreme upward trajectory, and they’re flooding the Internet with more video content than ever before.
One of the most important goals of any content marketing campaign is getting more shares, which results in greater brand exposure, greater domain authority, and greater search ranks. Already, video content dominates in the content world, getting more shares than their written or pictoral counterparts. As it becomes easier to share this medium, it’s going to become even more popular.
The short answer is yes, but only on a small scale. If your brand enjoys a niche spot with limited competition and a pre-existing audience that thrives on a medium other than video, there’s nothing so radical that will happen in the next several months that will make your entire strategy collapse. However, if you have any competitors, or if your reach is at a point where thousands of people have the potential to view your material, video content will start becoming crucial to your campaign. You might still get a trickle of readers and followers sharing your written content as video content continues to rise in popularity, but you won’t see a fraction of the potential that you could see while including it.
Unless you’re a part of that tiny minority capable of commanding large audiences without any form of video complementing your efforts, the time to adopt a video element in your content strategy is now.
Most people who haven’t yet adopted a video content marketing strategy have avoided doing so because they’re intimidated by the medium. They don’t know what they would create with a video, they don’t know what tools to use, and they might believe that they need professional video editing training in order to be successful.
Fortunately, creating videos, from the ideation process to final production and syndication, is easier than ever before. As long as you have a smartphone and a little bit of time on your hands, you have the potential to create a quality piece. The type of content is still largely up to you—you can do simple tutorials, a rant or rave, reviews, interviews, or even just introduce some of the people you work with.
You also don’t have to do anything crazy, like producing a new video every day. Start small by creating new videos occasionally, and make an effort to learn the countless new tools available to video marketers. Your audience will thank you for it, and you’ll have a much better chance of survival in 2016.
Want more information on content marketing? Head over to our comprehensive guide on content marketing here: The All-in-One Guide to Planning and Launching a Content Marketing Strategy.