Boost social media marketing success with video ads
It is easy to forget that the dynamic online social universe we know today began in 2004 as a simple profile-centric, text-based network for college students. Eighteen years later, Facebook and the many new platforms that followed have evolved into multifaceted entities with billions of active monthly users, offering a myriad of ways for businesses to reach them.
The emergence of each new social network can make a distinct impact on the others that came before it. So, it is not surprising that the recent meteoric rise of TikTok has helped propel short-form videos across all platforms. Smart marketers are taking notice and revamping their social strategies to add or increase use of video ads with much success.
Undeniable consumer demand for video content
In a late 2021 survey, 88% of respondents said they had been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video. When asked how they would most like to learn about a new product or service, 73% of respondents said they would prefer to watch a short video, with only 11% saying they would rather read a text-based article, website or post. It’s no surprise that the same survey found 86% of businesses now use video as a marketing tool, up from 61% in 2016.
With consumers preferring videos and engaging with them more often, brands and businesses of all sizes are integrating organic and sponsored videos into their social mix. While videos offer a great way to stand out in a crowd of static image posts and an excellent opportunity to make an emotional connection, there are important factors to consider when producing them.
Video ads that work on social
Social media algorithms often reward “native” videos, meaning videos that are uploaded to or created directly on a specific platform, as opposed to links to videos hosted elsewhere. Why? Because they provide for a seamless, effortless user experience that keeps users right where they are.
Along these same lines, businesses should aim to create video ads that grab attention while fitting in nicely with the rest of the host platform’s content. Video ads should feel “at home” among the rest of the content or risk being scrolled by without viewing, liking, commenting, sharing or clicking. The balancing act here is to create eye-catching, informative and entertaining ads that align with your brand, but also integrate well into selected platforms.
In other words, one size does not fit all.
Customize social video ads for best results
Before you set off to match your video ads to platform formats, carefully consider which social media options best meet your needs. Each social network has the ability to target a different range of audiences and each has unique characteristics that endear it to its users. Be sure to embrace those qualities. For example:
- Facebook delivers a wide range of global users across all ages, including a large group of Millennials. Inspirational and entertaining video ads typically work well here and can be run in the target’s newsfeed, stories or in-stream. Adding captions to Facebook videos is imperative because many like to scroll this site with the sound off.
- Instagram also delivers a large user base with many targeting options. A particular advantage is that Instagram’s advanced e-commerce features perform well among its users. Businesses may want to add a “shopping bag” icon to their videos to link consumers directly to their Instagram Shop. Video-based “Reels” is a prime location where businesses can be promoted and discovered.
- LinkedIn is the premier professional social network, offering an ideal option for B2B video ads. It is a great place to generate leads and conversions. According to LinkedIn, four out of five members drive business decisions. Video ads can effectively position company executives as thought leaders, share a brand story, promote products and services and attract qualified job candidates.
- TikTok is the place to reach a younger audience, such as those in the trend-setting Gen-Z population. This user group loves the platform for its short-form videos, so video ads must be very short and snappy. Sound is key and brands should consider using fast-paced music and sound, as well as special effects, to blend into the platform.
- YouTube is all about video and its huge user base represents everyone from Gen-Z to Baby Boomers. Many organic YouTube videos are about solving problems, so video ads with “How to” themes should do well. Some video ad options include skippable and non-skippable in-stream ads, discovery ads and bumper ads.
Selecting the right social platform may seem straightforward, but targeting opportunities within each one can be quite intricate. However, once you understand what users expect from and enjoy most about a particular site, you will be well on your way to creating video ads that entice and engage those who scroll into them.
Accessibility and affordability prevail
Today, businesses of all sizes are finding their way into the game as the cost of video ad production becomes more affordable, though it depends on preferences and goals. Since video ads that run on social media do not have to appear highly produced, even the smallest companies can afford to create basic ads using free video creation tools available within various platforms.
Brands can choose to create authentic videos that feature live action (recorded on phones), animation or screen recordings. There are many third-party apps that can make things easier and video specialists for hire can help save valuable time.
Improve your social media metrics
Social media video ads have much to offer to brands and businesses longing to connect and engage with target audiences. Attention-grabbing videos that fit the platform can help build brand awareness, generate leads and convert prospects. It’s a great time to consider introducing video ads into your social marketing strategy, or adding more to the mix, to improve performance across a range of metrics.
Read this article originally published in bizjournals.com