Video Can Take Email Marketing to the Next Level

October 8, 2015

Why say it when you can show it? With the popularity of sites like YouTube and Vimeo, and apps like Periscope and Vine bringing content to life, more and more people are seeking video as their medium of choice. It can showcase training, product reviews, entertainment, and much more. Video provides an engaging and creative way to speak to audiences, which is why it’s become an integral part of many marketing strategies.

Meanwhile, email continues to be a powerful tool for speaking one-on-one to customers and prospects in a trusted and consistent way. This is why video and email marketing together can be such a powerful duo.

Why Video?

Video is a great way to communicate expertise and build trust. By putting a face to your business or even by sharing personal reviews or testimonials, your brand isn’t just a name or a logo — it’s something that customers have interacted with and can feel more connected to. All of this creates character and personality that can really enhance your brand.

For example, let’s look at professional photographers. Adding that element of real life to their marketing can not only show potential clients how they do business, but can also provide them with examples of past work. These could include testimonials from happy clients and behind the scenes action shots.

Another example is in the home improvement industry. Videos can showcase expertise, past work, before and afters, and establish trust by delivering a DIY teaching video.

Whatever your industry may be, video marketing works because it inspires action. The proof is in the video marketing statistics.

According to this infographic by QuickSprout, an internet marketing company:

  • Video marketing makes viewers 64% more likely to buy a product after watching

  • 46% follow a call to action

  • Video advertisements can increase the customer’s understanding of your product by 74%

  • 51% increase in subscriber-to-lead conversion rate with an email that utilizes as a video

Plus, Classy, a fundraising platform for nonprofits, reports that videos in email increased click-throughs 300% over emails that did not. Marketing automation software company, Oracle Eloqua, reports that providing content regularly and using videos, can reduce email opt-outs by as much as 75%. Two-thirds of the world’s mobile data traffic will be video by 2016, says Cisco. A sales and marketing consulting company, Brainshark, reports that video equals higher viewer retention. The information retained in one minute of online video is equal to about 1.8 million written words.

These kinds of numbers can be found all over the internet. And for good reason. Video – when done strategically and effectively – can be one of the most powerful marketing tools we have.

Video Marketing Tips for Email

Make it Easy to View

Before you spring into action, it is important to find out if your email service is compatible with video playback. There is also consideration that those viewing your email may also not have the ability to watch a video. However, there are several creative ways to get viewers to check out a video without pressing play directly. For example, animated GIFs are second-long moving images that can give a snippet preview of your video. Using a play button that links back to your site can drive more traffic from the actual email to your webpage, improve your click through rate (CTR), and make it easy on the user to access the video.

Use Powerful Messaging & Clear CTAs

Your video should also contain a strong message and theme. Don’t use video just to show something — tell a story, create a picture, educate. For example, if your business is selling gardening supplies, avoid filming the bags of mulch or someone raking. Instead, make a how-to video about growing a small herb garden using a specific gardening product.

Finish every video with a clear call to action that provides next steps for viewers. Some video upload providers like YouTube feature call to action overlays that will link the call to action to a product page, an inquiry form, or a landing page on your site.

Make Tracking a Priority

With overlays, you are able to track actions taken on your video as you would with analytic tracking. Third party programs and tools such as Ooyala, Vidyard, and YouTube Analytics can look at your video as it goes from online video advertising to a viral video. Measuring audience behavior, especially how long they watch before they pause or close a video, can determine engagement and help you understand what is working and what isn’t.

Keep it Short

Under 3 minutes is best for video length, according to Stephen Byrne, and anything over ten minutes should be cut into parts. This isn’t an absolute rule of thumb, but it’s a great place to start if you are just trying out video for the first time. Keep your message short and make it impactful. Prove to your audience that it’s worth their time.

Think Mobile-Friendly

Be sure to think about mobile when creating your videos and don’t add text or graphics that won’t be legible on a smartphone or other handheld device. Also think mobile when figuring out how you’ll play videos. Flash cannot be viewed on smartphones or tablets, so it’s best to stick to HTML formats.

Let Them Know There’s a Video!

It’s also recommended that you use the word “video” in the subject line of your email to increase opens and clicks.

Start With the Holidays

think with Google shows that 80% of holiday shoppers use YouTube and other video platforms to extensively research products and gifts and to see reviews and descriptions. If your business lends itself to product, or even service, review videos… give it a shot this holiday season.

Get Started With Video Marketing Today

If you make the decision to incorporate video into your marketing strategy, start small. Don’t overthink it or assume you need to have the most expensive production. Test out your customer base by dabbling with some videos that align with your industry and brand. Promote them heavily via email and encourage feedback from trusted customers and partners.

Some great places to start include:

  • Client testimonials

  • Product demos

  • Q&A with a member of your team

  • Educational how-to

Be sure what you’re doing isn’t just gimmicky and a waste of your time. It should align with your marketing goals and be trackable. Follow these best practices and don’t be afraid to learn as you go.