Your company may have a favorable amount of Facebook followers, tons of Tweets, and ingenious ideas for Instagram. But if you’re not using YouTube, you’re falling short socially.
For the past ten years, YouTube has become the premier platform for hosting visual content and is now one of the most valuable marketing mediums on the web. Your YouTube page can be easily integrated into your existing marketing strategies, and provides you the opportunity to create content that is cool, compelling and effective.
If you’re new to the world of YouTube and want to effectively use the platform, consider the following success stories of 3 major companies who mastered the art of video marketing:
Red Bull: Be Relevant
Famously claimed to “give you wings”, Red Bull is flying high with over 1 billion views in the last 6 years and having more than 4 million subscribers worldwide.
Visiting the Red Bull channel, you’ll be immersed in 5-minute-long videos that perfectly encapsulate its brand. The energetic, activity-advocating content comes in the form of athletes and adrenaline-junkies performing physical activities or amazing stunts. This strategy is on point having to depict exactly which type of customer they cater to and what their business is all about—energy.
What You Need to Do: Keep it relevant. It’s a simple marketing science. When you’re advertising, you wouldn’t want to risk coming off as confusing for the sake of mystery and creativity. Big companies tend to give less effort on marketing because they are already household names. For start-ups, however, you have to be clear with what you’re trying to sell and with what your company is all about.
This doesn’t mean that you need to literally reiterate your company’s service for each video. Instead, ensure that the content you put on your channel fits nicely under your brand’s umbrella. Filling your channel with engaging content that demonstrates the importance of your brand can positively affect consumers and makes them more likely to patronize your products.
Lego: Inform and Entertain
To get consumers’ attention, the Danish household giant uses its YouTube channel to put their products under the spotlight. Their videos include demos with kids playing their toys and animations where the toys come alive. You’ll find the same video posted several times but in different languages.
Not only does Lego inspire loyalty and communication to its non-English speaking customers, they also give importance to reaching out globally with helpful content.
They post up to 70 videos per week garnering approximately 5,000 to 8,000 views in a matter of 7 days. That’s a total of about 35,000 to 56,000 views. Assuming most of those views are from paying customers, it’s no surprise that Lego is 2015’s largest toy company by revenue, earning about US $2.1 billion.
Lego animations are more popular amongst non-English speaking viewers as the ongoing Lego Chima animation videos exceeded 90,000 views in the Asian language section compared to only 5,000 views in the English language. These statistics give Lego an important insight into the tastes and choices of their customers.
What You Need to Do: Create video content that offers “service” to the viewers. Lego crafts videos that show users how certain parts work together, which leads to two things:
- Customers trust Lego for its professionalism and customer service.
- Customers will be more than happy to buy again if they can access concise and entertaining information that will help them with their purchased products.
If you’re a retailer selling DIY equipment, you could create videos that show customers how to use their purchased tools, or indeed how to use other tools that they haven’t yet bought. Chances are, they’ll be more than happy to pick another product from your shelf knowing you looked after your customers with helpful videos.
Lego’s production values are high, their animations are on point, and they know how to keep their viewers engaged. So, if you’re making a video to educate customers on your latest power drill’s safety issues, make it attractive. Sprinkle some comedy (within reason. Remember, be relevant!), or perhaps hire actors to create drama sequences that deliver the message in an entertaining way.
And remember, Lego does not forget it’s global audience. If you ship a lot of products to customers in another country, don’t forget to communicate to them too. Show them you care and they’ll reciprocate.
The formula is to “inform everyone while entertaining every time.”
Dove: Go Viral
Just a month after being released, Dove’s “Real Beauty Sketches” gained more than 114 million total views, making it the most viral video ad of all time.
The short film was about how women’s perception of their own beauty was less desirable in comparison to how people actually see them—others deemed them more beautiful.
An FBI-trained sketch artist would first draw women based on their own perception, and then later draw them based on the description of a stranger. The latter sketches were always closer to what the women actually looked like and indeed, were always more beautiful than the former.
The film ‘went viral’ is an understatement. Its pride-pumping message resonated with a huge global audience and was seen in more than 110 countries, having been uploaded in 25 different languages to 33 of Dove’s YouTube channels.
If you’re a new brand struggling to stand out in a competitive market, viral videos are a fantastic, almost-instant way of increasing exposure and driving traffic.
What You Need to Do: Unfortunately, creating viral videos is not a sustainable strategy. It’s often a matter of luck, however, you can increase your chances by following some important steps:
- Keep it concise—Viral videos avoid waffle and the unnecessary. You’ll find that a lot of social media texts cater to the short attention spans of online users; Facebook and Twitter users are often using their phones to swoosh, swipe and scroll for information in a timely manner, so their attention needs to be grabbed and smashed with your content and message.
- It must be unique—The very existence of a viral video is based on its uniqueness. Consumers are more likely to share videos with concepts they haven’t seen anywhere else. It pays to pique people’s interest by doing something amazing, funny, weird or mind-blowing.
Many viral-wannabe videos out there are vying to be the next big thing. You must always keep in mind to be on your toes when brainstorming your video’s content. Yes, you must aim to deliver something fresh, original and shareable, but at the same time, don’t forget to drive home your product.
- Evoke emotions—The biggest reason that Dove’s “Real Beauty” campaign became a huge hit was because it evoked a huge emotional response from viewers. If you can create content that “speaks” to a viewer on a personal level, then it’s likely that they’ll not only pay close attention to your service, they’ll happily share it with friends as well. Remember that feeling when you listen to a song that “speaks to you?” You must’ve had that track on repeat.
In an interview with Business Insider, David Waterhouse, the global head of content and PR at Unruly Media, reiterates the crucial role of “emotions” in making the Dove video so successful:
“I think what made this campaign perform particularly strongly is the content, which elicited the intense emotional responses of ‘warmth, ‘happiness’ and ‘knowledge’ from its target demographic—one of the key factors behind a video’s sharing success. Brands have to give people a reason to share the video.”
Note: Creating a viral video needn’t be a difficult task if you follow certain production steps and remember some important points, as explored in the article: Go Viral or Go Home.
YouTube in a Nutshell
It may sound more surprising than it actually is, but YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world. Now, couple that with the fact that 33% of all online activity is spent viewing online content along with 75% of users visiting a marketer’s site after viewing a video.
And what does this give you?
An undeniably strong reason to use YouTube to market your service. But don’t just “use” it.