Our collective global attention span has been steadily decreasing for the last 40 years; it’s getting harder and harder to pique people’s interest - and when we do focus on something, it tends to be for shorter and shorter periods of time. In 2013, for example, a Twitter trend would last on average over 17 hours, and just three years later this was down to an average of 11 hours. So how can you gain, and then, crucially, retain people's attention? Targeted video marketing is by far the most effective way to spread a message. Social video gets shared 1,200% more than text and video combined (G2 Crowd), and people retain 95% of a message when they watch it in a video, compared to just 10% when they read something (Insivia). Video marketing is clearly the most effective strategy, but in order to keep consumers interested, it has to be the right video format for your target audience; hiring a video production company is a sure-fire way to get it right.
Understanding different types of audiences is the key to effective video marketing – it's crucial to identify which video formats resonate the most with your target audience. Understanding your target audience and creating video content which really speaks to their specific demographic is a guaranteed way to ensure that consumers give you their attention in the first place, and that this attention won’t be short-lived.
You can try to sell to everyone, but you won’t establish meaningful connections if you’re trying to relate to absolutely everyone. People in your target audience will have certain characteristics in common, for example demographic, shared interests, and behaviours. The most effective video marketing will make a consumer feel like they’re ‘in’ on something, or a part of something, that not everyone else is. This is achieved by understanding, and using the language of, your target audience. For example, Boohoo’s marketing appeals specifically to people in their mid-teens to early twenties, and their video marketing is hugely effective. The reason for the massive success of Boohoo is that they understand their target audience – 68% of teenagers now shop via their smartphones, and 63% of millennials shop on their phones every day (MediaPost). Boohoo’s understanding of how their target demographic prefers to shop means they focus almost entirely on digital and video marketing and in turn report very high engagement with social media posts. The reason for the high levels of engagement is that they’ve perfected the art of using social media influencers (or ‘#BoohooBabes’) to promote their products because this type of influencer advertising is what resonates most deeply with their target audience. This is a prime example of digital marketing being used in exactly the right way for the intended target audience, and is what you can do too with video marketing.
In order to establish an emotional connection with your target audience, you first need to consider how you want your audience to feel. Video, when it’s done right, can be extremely emotive; the John Lewis Christmas adverts are so effective that they don’t even mention John Lewis, yet are one of the most popular marketing campaigns ever run. This is because audiences engage so much with them - because it makes them feel something. In the case of the John Lewis adverts, the feelings evoked are usually warmth and nostalgia because that’s what most effectively engages their target audience during a certain time period. This is exactly the kind of marketing that video lends itself to, and that people really want to be seeing more of – 85% of people to be exact! (Hubspot)
Because video uses both visuals and sound, the range of techniques that can be used to provoke certain emotional responses from consumers is huge. Upbeat pop music combined with visuals of people dancing and a punchy slogan will engage people far more than any one of those components used on its own. Using a video production company to produce the content for your video marketing is the best way to kick off a great video marketing campaign, as they can most effectively achieve the visuals and sound that you need to appeal to your target audience.
Using social media platforms is absolutely essential in order to reach a wide audience with your video marketing – 6/10 people would rather watch online videos than on the TV! This is a trend this isn’t going to change any time soon - mobile video consumption rises by approximately 100% every year, meaning that by 2022, online videos will make up more than 82% of all consumer internet traffic – 15 times higher than it was in 2017 (Cisco).
It is therefore crucial to establish an online video presence and start engaging with consumers in this way in order to maximise the time spent building connections with your target audience and finding the exact tone and video marketing strategy which resonates and with them most strongly.
So, we’ve established that video is far more engaging than text, but the type of video is also key. Facebook is the most used platform for social marketers (Sprout Social), and 85% of videos watched on Facebook are played without sound (Instagram). This means that the style and visuals of a social marketing video need to be really appealing to grab people’s attention, and the language used has to be captivating and relevant in order to maintain interest.
Different types of audiences will respond differently to certain linguistic styles so it’s vital to understand and utilise the language your target demographic will relate to. Using slang, acronyms and expletives, for example, may work well if your target audience is teenagers and young adults but could quickly alienate other demographics.
Some recent news which really shows the direction consumerism is going in is that Topshop has gone into administration (BBC). It has been widely and publicly speculated that this is because they ignored the rise in online shopping and marketing, and failed to keep up with the trends and preferences of their target audience. Meanwhile, other clothing brands were fighting for (and winning) the attention of teenagers and young adults by focusing their attention on cultivating a very specific online persona. Follow ASOS and Pretty Little Thing on Twitter to see a great example of brands doing this well. This is why it’s such a good idea to hire a video production company to create your video content – video marketing is such an effective tool that brands like Boohoo and Missguided have become majority stakeholders in their industry almost by using this strategy alone, but as with any marketing technique, it is only this effective when it’s done right.
To find out a bit more about how to use video to connect to your target audience, contact the team at RAW Pictures, and see how a video production company can help.