With wireless Internet available just about everywhere and faster-than-ever speeds for public consumption, videos are more popular than ever. YouTube currently sees over 300 hours of video uploaded every single minute, with over a billion users signing in to view that content. Obviously, uploading a video doesn’t mean it’s going to be seen by a billion people, but the visibility potential of online videos is massive.
Still, many content marketers are forgoing a video campaign for one reason or another. They’re seen as expensive, or difficult to manage, or out of the marketer’s core expertise, so they’re forgone as a content marketing element. Certainly, there’s an advantage in knowing your strengths and playing to them, but is the elimination of videos from your content marketing campaign a wise move?
First, let’s take a look at the ways videos can assist your campaign
Remember that the more visibility you have online, the better. Getting involved on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn is going to be a bigger boon for your business than just Facebook. Similarly, any video-sharing platforms you can get involved on, such as YouTube, are going to help. Even if you only get a few hundred views per video, several of those few hundred viewers will wind up as referral traffic to your site. In this way, each video could generate between dozens and thousands of new visitors, and that will only grow and compound with time.
Alternate mediums for audience segments
Not everybody has the time, patience, or inclination to read a lengthy article. Some people would rather get a digestible version in 30 seconds, or have a medium they can listen to while multitasking. Failing to offer videos completely alienates that segment of your audience. Including videos, in contrast, greatly increases the number of people you can reach through content.
Video content can also give a boost to your SEO campaign. First, remember that videos count as an additional form of content, and the more content Google finds on your site, the better. Embedding your videos in blog posts and throughout the site can actively increase your core site’s domain authority. Plus, YouTube videos often come up in Google search results—if a user inputs a query that matches your video’s description, chances are your video will be one of a few to pop up. It’s a way of expanding the territory you own in SERPs.
Of course, no medium is without its drawbacks, and you must consider them before pursuing videos as a medium.
Time and Money
The big consideration for most content marketers is the amount of time and money it takes to produce a video. However, I’ve found that marketers generally overestimate the level of effort it takes to make a decent short. You don’t need to hire a team member, nor do you need to consult a freelance expert (unless you’re serious about stepping up your game). All you really need is a smartphone camera and an Internet connection. Even simple videos, with one person speaking to the camera, are often enough to get the video component of a content marketing campaign rolling. You just have to have something unique to say.
Some marketers are also intimidated by videos as a new and unfamiliar medium. Don’t be! Today’s technology makes it unbelievably easy to record and publish videos on the go. A YouTube account and a simple video file are all you need to make your video online and public—and uploading is a matter of clicking a handful of buttons. Once published, you can embed and share your video across other mediums easily as well.
It’s also worth mentioning that video content is not a fad. It’s not going to go away anytime soon. In fact, the trend is only going to rise over the course of the next decade.
Consider the fact that the Internet continues to grow faster and more accessible with each passing day. The more people have Internet and the faster that connection is, the more people will be willing and able to watch videos online. Consider also the fact that Google, Facebook, Twitter, and other major online platforms have slowly begun to favor videos over other forms of content in the past few years. For example, Facebook and Twitter feeds now auto-play videos in an effort to get more people posting and viewing. And Google is introducing video ads in search results for the first time ever. They realize that videos are only going to become more popular, and you should too.
Whether you got here by reading the above sections or whether you skipped here because you wanted the bottom line: the answer is yes, you should be using videos in your content marketing campaign. You don’t have to go crazy and produce a new professional video every day, nor do you need to hire an expert. But if you don’t take at least some effort to capture the video viewing audience, you’ll quickly start to fall behind the competition—and that’s only going to accelerate as technology advances.
The more diverse you are in the form and function of your content, the stronger and more loyal an audience you’ll be able to build. Do your best to produce great videos, but don’t be intimidated if you don’t have a perfect production quality.
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.