We’ve worked with numerous brands to create videos for social media, so we know first hand how powerful videos can be when you want to engage with an audience online. And while no two videos are alike, there are five basic types of videos that brands can use to build and engage their audiences.
1. Live Social Media Videos
Quite a few people are using Facebook Live video to engage their audiences. Facebook Live, YouTube Live, and other streaming services make it easy to connect with your followers, though it does require that you already have a fairly significant following. Live streaming video gives you the opportunity to start a dialogue with your users. A few examples of powerful live video include:
- Question and answer sessions. Q&A sessions can be used to answer “ask me anything” interviews so your audience can get to know you, your team, your products and your brand.
- Behind the scenes sneak peeks. You can take your audience “behind the scenes” at your business, to experience everything from the sales department to the manufacturing floor.
- Fast updates. If there are updates that don’t merit their own video content, you can use live video to give a brief overview of the changes taking place. This keeps your followers aware of new and on-going situations.
- Deals and promotions. Time-sensitive information such as limited time deals and other promotions can be distributed via your live broadcast. Not only does this get the word out faster, but it also gives your audience the feeling they have been part of something exclusive.
Tips for adding live videos to your social media marketing:
• Always test your live videos ahead of time, to make sure all your technology works.
• With live video, lighting and sound are going to be incredibly important. Invest in the right technology.
• Advertise your live video streams on your social media account well ahead of time.
• Use scheduling tools, such as Facebook’s “premiere” tool, to make your video more visible.
• Consider live streaming at a scheduled time every week to gradually build up interest.
By including your followers in your company’s daily operations, you’ll be able to foster a long-term relationship with them. The more your customers interact with your brand, the more invested they will ultimately be.
2. Tutorial Social Media Videos
As you may have noticed on social media, tutorial videos are among the most frequently shared. These videos can directly relate to your products and services or can be broader spectrum topics that relate to your audience and demographics.
Tutorial videos need to be clear, educational, and entertaining. They need to be long enough to show every step of the process, while also being short enough to still be engaging. Most users don’t want to watch videos that are longer than a few minutes — and the most important information needs to appear within the first minute.
Absolut created a series of tutorial videos featuring short snippets of drink recipes featuring their vodka. They are interesting, entertaining and shareable. Absolut is an excellent example of finding a topic that has nearly unlimited possibilities. Recipes are types of tutorials in high demand and consistently shared.
Tips for adding tutorial videos to your social media marketing:
• Ask your followers directly about the tutorials they are most interested in.
• Make sure to remain active in comments and when responding to messages, as many followers may have questions.
• Keep your tutorials as clear and to the point as possible, so they’re easier to follow along.
• Don’t rely too much on tools or techniques that your followers aren’t likely to have or understand.
• Have a clear call to action after your tutorials regarding the products or services featured.
3. Informational Social Media Videos
When building out your initial content archive, you may want to produce informational videos on a variety of topics. These informational videos should have something unique, clever, or insightful about them.
When adding video to your social media, you need to concentrate on the content that is most likely to be shared. Your content has to have something valuable to make it worth the viewer’s time. Informational videos can come off as boring or dry if they aren’t produced correctly. Your content should not only be interesting to the viewer, but also provoke the viewer to want to share it.
Notarize’s popular “explainer video” needs to explain the entire premise of its application. It’s able to do this through its sense of humor and absurdity, explaining exactly what their app does without taking it too seriously. The same information could have been displayed in a much more professional tone, but that likely wouldn’t have appealed to their core demographic. Those likely to take notarization seriously are those who likely have a notary already.
Tips for adding informational videos to your social media marketing:
• Try to infuse your informational videos with personality that matches your brand identity.
• Don’t make your informational videos too long or too detailed.
• Look at which informational videos perform the best to determine the videos you’ll make in the future.
• Invest more time and money in your informational videos, as they’ll be cornerstones of your content.
• Pay attention to what people say on social media: what do they want more of?
4. Behind-the-Scenes Social Media Videos
Behind-the-Scenes videos are a great way to make your company and yourself more personable. You can highlight your day-to-day operations, your offices, your manufacturing processes, and more. You can interview employees, talk to the vendors you’re closest to, or speak with your best customers. All of these things are designed to give prospective customers a better idea of how your company works and who you are.
This type of video is primarily designed to build trust and brand identity. When followers interact with brands through the internet, they may not have a very firm sense of the brand’s identity. It is difficult to convey the personality of a brand within just a few characters on a screen. A video really gives the opportunity to dig down into what makes a brand exceptional.
A memorable Behind-the-Scenes video will build the relationship between company and customer—and if the video is entertaining or informative enough, it will also be shared. Honda Manufacturing has managed to achieve hundreds of thousands of views on its car videos, as they are well-produced, informative, and insightful. Honda’s manufacturing process is something that the ordinary person would know nothing about: consequently, it’s something they are interested in.
Tips for adding behind-the-scenes videos to your social media marketing:
• Don’t be afraid to infuse these videos with a little personality; you’re defining your brand identity, after all.
• Think about little things you do throughout the day that your customers might find interesting.
• Behind-the-Scenes manufacturing videos are often educational and informative.
• Often, you can use Behind-the-Scenes videos to show what’s truly special about a product or service.
• Consider incorporating your existing customers, vendors, or employees into a Behind-the-Scenes video.
5. User-Generated Social Media Videos
User-generated content is quickly becoming a fantastic and easy way to engage an audience. You can request content directly from your users, such as videos of them using your product. Your users can then be encouraged to tag these uploaded videos with your hashtags; this will help your tags trend. Encouraging users to tag your own account will give your account more exposure.
User-generated content is a brilliant way to develop an audience because users are very inclined to share their own content. Every time a user generates content for your marketing campaign, they will be exposing that content to all of their followers. You can offer prizes for the best content or simply encourage users with praise. Viewing the content that users generate is also an excellent way to get a feel for their personalities and what they’re interested in.
When requesting user-generated videos, the most important aspect is to directly interact with and acknowledge your audience. Your users are going through some effort to produce content for you; they need to be rewarded. Praise the best content, share all of the content, and make sure that all of the users involved are properly attributed. Encourage users to share content they like (not just their own), and make sure you track your own hashtags.
Tips for adding user-generated videos to your social media marketing:
• Encourage users to get creative or silly in their user-generated content.
• Make sure to properly attribute each user and thank them when using their content.
• Encourage featured users to share the videos that are posted with their friends.
• Ask other users to vote on content or to share the content they like the most.
• Consider a giveaway or contest that is linked to user-generated videos.
Bonus: Testimonial Social Media Videos
Testimonial videos are among the most trustworthy videos that a company can produce. In a testimonial video, an existing customer or client can talk about how the business, its products, or its services impacted their life. Testimonial videos give real insights into the benefits of working with a company — and they build trust because they are authentic.
Consider regularly posting highlights of your most popular products — and asking your existing customers whether they would be interested in providing a testimonial. Often, the less scripted a testimonial is, the more likely it is to feel authentic and meaningful. Customers who are sharing their real stories will also have key insights into what your prospective customers are looking for and what their major concerns may be.
Building out a marketing campaign isn’t easy, but you can build the foundation of a strong video marketing campaign step-by-step. By consistently producing different types of videos, you’ll be able to create a broad spectrum marketing campaign that will bring in users from a number of different platforms and demographics. Different types of video appeal to different types of user, and over time, you may find that different types of content are more important with your audience base.
A healthy content marketing and video marketing campaign is going to have a number of different video types, ranging from the more ephemeral live videos to longer-lasting tutorials and informational videos. A healthy mix of video content is essential to making sure that your content campaign continues to grow—and your social media continues to attract followers.