Words Are No Longer Enough … The Future Is Video
Vignette’s Guy Westlake explains why the Internet really is the new television.
With the UK economy now officially in recession, companies have to work even harder today to retain their existing customers while attracting new ones. As websites are now consumers’ preferred channel of communication with brands, it is imperative to have a site that stands out and truly engages customers. In order to achieve this, organisations can tap on video to create a dynamic and interactive online experience for customers that not only retains interest but also helps foster loyalty.
Video for consumers
Video has been an integral part of advertising for quite some time. The internet, however, now enables organisations to use video for a wider variety of marketing purposes to increase a brand’s profile with the public. People tend to respond better to visual stimulus therefore video is a great medium to introduce consumers to a company as well as to educate them about its products and services.
If engagement is the first step, converting that engagement into sales is the end goal. The use of video can help the consumer visualise a product or service in action and lead them to crave what they are viewing. The fashion website, ASOS.com, uses video to show what the clothes look like on the catwalk, bringing the clothes to life in a way that static images cannot. Another retailer that has successfully deployed video to convert web traffic into sales is John Lewis. In fact, research has unveiled a 40% rise in online shoppers who watch retail videos in the last 12 months. Video can clearly be the final push a consumer needs to make a purchase.
Ensuring that customers return to make new online purchases is possibly the biggest challenge given consumers’ shrinking wallets in 2009 and increased competition. According to a recent survey, almost half of consumers cite communicating with their peers as important to attracting them to return to a site (through forums, recommendations and community ratings and reviews). Video encourages interaction by enabling users to share comments, join forums and network. In particular, the rise of content ‘snacking’ and user-generated content means video segments are increasingly being tagged, shared and commented on across user communities. Not only does this extend an organisation’s reach, it provides excellent ROI as consumers help to create a buzz at little cost to the business.
Video for employees
While video can substantially enrich consumers’ online interaction with brands, it can also be used to great effect within a business, specifically for internal communications and training. Employee training via video can help reduce the costs often associated with it such as travel. By ensuring that all staff receive the same information and consistent corporate messaging regardless of their location, this can unify disparate departments of a business. Another way to stay connected with employees is through monthly CEO video blogs. These can be posted on the corporate intranet to keep everyone informed of company developments and demonstrate to each employee that they are valued as part of the larger team. In this way, videos can inspire a passion and emotional response to the business that words simply can’t.
Video key to engaging online experience
In today’s challenging economic climate, businesses cannot afford to be complacent. They need to constantly innovate in order to deliver a rewarding online experience, not just for customers, but also for employees. Video can go a long way to achieving this.