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At the beginning of this year, I saw a familiar headline. 2019 is the year of video. I vaguely remember seeing that promised for 2018. For 2017 ….
Let me start with the simple statement. Yes, video is huge and it’s extremely popular. To show you the big picture, here are a couple of stats I found on video consumption”
500 million hours of videos are watched on YouTube daily.
Cisco projects that 80% of all Internet traffic will be video by 2021.
(Although, I can only wonder how many of those videos are of cats and humans doing stupid things.)
Video Consumption Varies
A while back, I tweeted a frustration of mine. It was a result of seeing so many “talking head” videos coming out—basically, people creating a video about a subject vs. writing a post.
One of my major frustrations with video is the fact that I cannot easily scan the post to see if it’s content worth my time nor if its a question that can be answered having to watch the whole thing. From my tweet I discovered that many people felt the same way. Of course there are many variables for what works and what doesn’t. Also, individual learning styles play into that.
Videos and Your Products
I was doing a bit of research on this. One statistic said:
65 percent of customers are more likely to make a purchase after watching a product video.
90 percent say video helps them make buying decisions and 64 percent say that seeing a video makes them more likely to buy.
Helps? More likely? A lot of gray area.
The bottom line, though, is that video is becoming a more critical piece of the eCommerce space.
Help Me. I Cannot Put This Together.
I want to share an experience I had.
I had bought a studio softbox kit of three lights. They weren’t the most expensive, nor the cheapest. The shipment arrived and I unpacked all the pieces. Now if you have ever put together a photo softbox, it typically consists of four metal rods and the material for the softbox.
Within the box I also found printed instructions. I opened them up and discovered a three panel guide that some person had obviously could have created in two minutes, possibly late at night with a few cocktails in them. They were worthless instructions. I fought with the lights for some time.
Finally I tossed the instructions (wish I had saved them to scan in for this post). I turned on my computer and headed to their website to see if they had more info. Well, they offered the same instructions. I was hoping they also had a video to show me how to do this.
You know, that medium that is growing in the product space?
No luck. Only videos showing me how to position the softboxes once they were fully put together.
When I moved on to Google, I found a perfect video via YouTube. This guy saved me hours of grief. He pointed out that these were a real pain to put together, the instructions were worthless, and that you had to do some aggressive bending and manipulating to complete the task.
Sure, I had to stop and replay a few times to catch everything, but that video did the job for me.
It would have been difficult for the company to show me how to do this via printed instructions.
But on the other hand, maybe they didn’t want to show me a video because they would have to:
- Show me how to do this but ignore the fact that it’s not easy.
- Show me how to do this and explain that it can be a hard to put their product together.
Ask Yourself: Why Am I Doing this Product Video?
Let me be clear about one thing. I am not bashing video nor am I suggesting you shouldn’t do it for your products. In fact, quite the opposite. It’s obvious that video can be a huge bonus when it comes to you products.
Just make sure that you ask yourself why.
It’s All about Options
If your video is simply someone talking about the features of your product, make sure you aren’t creating content merely for the sake of content. Or that it’s just easier to push in out as a video and jump on the video bandwagon.
If you choose to create something like this, or even a pretty video with moving graphics and music, make sure that you also give your customers an alternative, a way to simply read what the features are.
Or if it possible, show your customer why those features are great and why they will benefit them.
Give your customers the choice of how they consume your content.
Yes, Quality Will Matter
Remember this statistic I shared earlier in the post?
90 percent say video helps them make buying decisions
The key word here is decision. A video that is vague, uninteresting or boring will obviously help the customer make the decision not to buy your product. This puts added pressure on you. You need to make sure The that adding video to the mix will help you with your sales.Or else why do it?
Even if it’s really an ad in disguise, or you get creative with humor, it still needs to work. Don’t cut corners simply to create that video.
There Are So Many Opportunities
If done right, as a store owner you have a lot of opportunities to add video to your mix in both marketing and education.
This can be demos of your products which can expand on other content you have.
Creating how-to’s is an excellent way to give customers ideas for using your product (as long as they can put it together).
Stories of clients and testimonials. Visually, a story might work better, but don’t rule out those well-written stories as well.
Obviously, this list could go on and on.
I hope this gives you more food for thought if you are in the early stages of adding video to your mix. And who knows, 2020 just might be the year of video.