Retailers of all kinds – local, international, online or those with ‘brick and mortar’ shops – should embrace new ways of connecting to shoppers if they want to continue to grow brand awareness. A great way to generate new and lasting business relationships is by exploring different marketing strategies, including video marketing. With video predicted to account for 80 percent of all web traffic by the end of 2019, the significance of this marketing tool for retailers cannot be overstated. In fact, the rise of video marketing is so widespread that 77 percent of businesses planned to increase their video content creation last year.
Creating shopping experiences that will keep your customers coming back means making your brand visible wherever your target audience is looking. If video isn’t already a part of your retail marketing strategy, your business is losing an opportunity to be seen (and remembered) by a growing and diverse audience. Let’s review five ways you can use video to help improve your retail business.
Improve Customer Service
There would be no such thing as retail shopping without a strong, returning customer base. So, it’s important to keep them satisfied and informed. Video can provide important information in a way that’s easy for customers to understand, regardless of the channel they receive it on.
Video communication, like live video chats or video calls, can be used to address issues in a direct and human-to-human format. And, video can make answering common questions more interesting. For example, you can address FAQs in an authentic voice and context. Check out how eye-glass gurus Warby Parker use their YouTube channel to answer inquiries.
By answering questions via video, you give your shoppers the opportunity to see if their problem matches others’ experiences while receiving an answer that’s supported by action and words instead of just text.
Engage and Inform Shoppers
A successful video marketing strategy includes tools and approaches that should accomplish more than just selling your product: your videos should also engage your customers’ minds. For example, make videos that let them experience your product or services before they’ve purchased it (this is also called ‘unboxing’). Show clients how your product is handled or used in real-life situations by using the product yourself or hiring actors to create a scenario around your product. Through a professional-looking and informative video, your customers will see how many perfectly sized pockets are in a particular leather bag or just how many pairs of shoes will fit into that storage container.
As a brand, North Face excels at video marketing. They make videos that share information about an outdoor lifestyle or feature sponsored athletes telling personal stories. If you’re interested in improving your video marketing skills but don’t have the same budget as North Face, you can try experimenting with a video editing app. There are plenty of apps out in the market to choose from, but one I like is Instasize. Editing apps let you adjust the lighting, composition, color and more, and will help your video will stand out amongst the millions of videos that get posted online every day.
Deliver More ‘Shoppable’ Options
‘Shoppable videos’ have been around since about 2010, but advances in technology have improved their effectiveness and made them more retailer-friendly. The new tools allow you to design click-to-buy ads, which direct viewers to a product page on your website. Visitors can then ‘click’ on products shown in videos, where they can purchase the item almost instantaneously.
Here’s how it works:
- To start, locate the segments of the video that you want to use to highlight your product. Then search in the Adobe content finder to find existing assets, including the thumbnails used on the screen.
- Then use Adobe’s drag and drop interface to associate assets with the segments of the videos you selected. For example, you could tie an asset to a quick view of the product using the SKU value, category or color.
- Or you could tie a thumbnail to a particular URL associated with a landing page, lead generation content or campaign form. For more instructions check out a video tutorial made by Adobe.
This type of video marketing can increase conversions and boost sales as shopping via mobile device is convenient, direct and hassle-free. Plus, you can even post your ‘shoppable video’ to your Facebook or Instagram story; a major video sales market. Major fashion designers like Kate Spade and Ted Baker are amongst the most successful retailers using shoppable content, primarily due to the visual appeal of clothing, bags and jewelry. Remember, even if you have a brick -and and-mortar store that sells car tires, making video ads with shoppable content is beneficial as more viewers will be directed to your website and store location(s).
Influence In-Store Shopping Too
You might not be aware of the potential of video to reach shoppers while they are shopping. Mobile video in the shopping aisle can increase sales, improve customer shopper experience, and leverage other high return on investment marketing methods due to:
- Proximity: If a consumer is near the product when it is advertised, she could bery well be more likely to purchase it.
- Scarcity: Customers may watch a video and feel they should pick the product up right away when they know it’s in stock, rather than risking it being sold out in the future.
- Message retention: By delivering marketing content via mobile, brands increase the likelihood consumers will actively watch the video, helping to improve brand retention.
Integrate Across all Channels
Videos are viewed online via websites but also on various types of social media. In addition to Facebook viewers, 82 percent of Twitter users view video on the platform.
Including high quality, professional looking videos will increase KPIs across all your channels. For example, adding video to emails can increase click-through rates by 200 to 300 percent. Or, if you run a social media contest, more entries can be earned by requesting entries via a compelling video. Alternately, the entries themselves could be user-generated videos that promote your brand. Winners of the contest could be announced via video, that can then be shared across social media channels or email – the possibilities are endless.
Video marketing is a powerful tool. Its versatility and attention-grabbing format make it a fun and easy way to engage customers and promote brand awareness. Since shoppers of all ages and locations are watching video on every device, companies can use it to establish themselves as trustworthy thought leaders while establishing and nurturing a personal connection with their clients.
About the writer: Natasha Ponomaroff is the Senior Marketing Director of Instasize – a content creating tool kit for anyone editing photos and online content on mobile. A weekly contributor on the site’s blog, Natasha tracks social media trends and updates the millions of “creatives” who are currently using Instasize to curate awesome online content. When she isn’t writing up the latest trend, Natasha is overseeing a team of 10 over at the Instasize HQ – ensuring that the marketing content on the app’s various social platforms is ready to go.