In the ever-evolving digital landscape, the potency of video content continues to surge, a trend prominently noted back in 2017. Wistia’s intriguing statistic revealed a 17% increase in video usage during that year alone. This trajectory has only steepened, with YouTube now recording over 500 million hours of video consumption daily. Tubular Insights’ projection that 80% of internet traffic will be video-related is a testament to the medium’s growing dominance.
The proliferation of video content underscores its critical role in contemporary digital strategies, where it’s not just about leveraging existing platforms but also innovating new ones. However, creating lengthy, episodic series akin to television productions is not feasible for every marketing campaign. This gap is where the concept of micro-video marketing becomes invaluable.
What Is a Micro Video?
The definition of a micro-video is somewhat contentious and has evolved over time. Initially, it was perceived as any video lasting 15 seconds or less, a format popularized by platforms like Instagram and the now-defunct Vine. This definition, albeit traditional, captures the essence of a micro-video.
However, the term has broadened to include videos up to five minutes long for some marketers, though this extension seems excessive considering dwindling attention spans. A study by Microsoft in 2016 famously cited the human attention span as dropping to 8 seconds, down from 12 seconds in 2000. Though debated, these findings do resonate with our everyday experiences, particularly when scrolling through social media feeds.
Thus, a more pragmatic approach defines micro-videos as ranging from 5 to 30 seconds. This duration strikes a balance, offering enough time to convey a message while maintaining viewer engagement. Key Media Solutions echoes this sentiment, advocating for concise Facebook videos, around 30 seconds, with the initial 3 seconds being crucial due to auto-play features. YouTube videos can afford to be longer, but retention rates typically dwindle with increased duration.
For this article, we shall adhere to the 30-second upper limit when discussing micro-videos.
Why Add Micro-Videos to Your Content Marketing Strategy?
Micro-video marketing’s allure isn’t just in its brevity. Here are several compelling reasons to incorporate it into your content marketing strategy:
- Ease of Production: Creating micro-videos doesn’t necessitate elaborate scripts or costly software. As you gain proficiency, the production time decreases significantly.
- Versatility Across Platforms: Micro-videos are well-suited for major platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. They are easily digestible, shareable, and ideal for repurposing in advertising campaigns.
- Diversification of Content: They allow you to engage with a broader audience and utilize video-centric platforms such as YouTube and Vimeo.
Great Examples of Micro-Videos
Micro-videos can range from Netflix trailers to standalone content. Examples include Apple’s “Just Text Them The Money” (15 seconds) showcasing iPhone’s payment feature, Starbucks’ “Upstanders” series (30 seconds), and General Electric’s “What Matters” campaign (30 seconds). Each of these examples effectively communicates their message within a concise format.
A mini story by Apple, the point was to show off the pay-by-text feature on modern iPhones.
It does it by showing a quick conversation via text by two people where one offers a payment via text which is then countered with a money request for more by the person they were paying. Simple, effective and very quick, it immediately conveys the product.
Just Text Them The Money by Apple (15 seconds long)
Starbucks is an example of a company using micro videos in a series context with their Upstanders series. They interview incredibly strong people who make a difference: “people who are demonstrating extraordinary courage and inspiring a better America.”.
It personalizes their brand well and shows a bit more of their mission statement in a visual form that connects with those on the customer side.
Starbucks Upstanders (30 seconds long)
Another series, What Matters shows how General Electric is innovating all kinds of spheres of life bring technology that helps people. But the reality is, those people don’t care. What matters to them is the health of their kids, access to education, and the ability to see their family.
What Matters: 30 seconds long
Tools For Creating Your Own Micro Video Content
There is no single way to create a micro video. It can be done in any format, style or genre that works for your brand. It is up to you and what works within the boundaries of your campaign. Videos offer far more creative options than most content formats.
Don’t be intimidated by my examples above though: Micro-video campaigns are affordable and doable and there are quite a few powerful tools that can help you put them together with no extra skills required.
Animoto is one of the first micro-video creation tools on the market. It’s also one of the most affordable and easiest options out there.
Animatron Wave is one of the most advanced micro-video creation tools on the market. There’s a free trial for you to play with the tool. With the paid account you get access to their huge library of video footage, music, and stock photos. There’s a variety of fonts, titles, and video transitions to use. You can use one of the available templates or start from scratch.
Both of tools allow you to upload your own files to use in the videos, including your screenshots, stock, and royalty-free images, and video footage. Having these handy will save you money and let you create truly original images.
Lumen5 is the micro-video creation tool that lets you turn your text content into videos. Give it your URL and the tool will extract images and quotes and put them together in a cool video.
Tips For Creating Your Own Videos
Define Your Objectives Precisely
Before embarking on your micro-video creation journey, it’s crucial to establish clear goals. What is the specific outcome you’re aiming for with these videos? Instead of a vague objective like “increasing website traffic,” set a measurable target such as “boosting site traffic by 15% by year’s end.” This approach allows for effective tracking of your campaign’s progress and necessary adjustments along the way.
Select an Appropriate Tone and Style
Consider what message or image you want these videos to project about your brand. Are you aiming for a tone of authority, humor, entertainment, or education? Use this decision as a foundational guide in determining the style of your videos.
Develop a Consistent Branding Guide
Consistency in branding is key. Each video should reflect a uniform tone, and visual appearance, and incorporate specific branding elements. For example, include a consistent watermark and a defined color scheme. A title screen and a clear call-to-action should be standard features in every video, reinforcing brand recognition and viewer engagement.
Craft a Well-Structured Script
While some may prefer an impromptu approach, a structured script is often more effective. Crafting a detailed script, even for segments intended to appear off-the-cuff, ensures a focused and coherent message. This holds true for interview-style videos as well, which benefit from a well-thought-out outline.
Optimize Video Metadata for SEO
When your video is ready to be uploaded, pay close attention to optimizing its metadata:
- Ensure the video description contains well-researched, targeted keywords.
- Utilize relevant tags and hashtags to improve discoverability.
- Choose a title that incorporates your primary keywords effectively.
- Name the video file with a keyword-rich title.
- Make sure your video channel is SEO-optimized before posting.
Implementing these SEO best practices, akin to those used for website content, is essential for enhancing visibility on video hosting platforms.
Leveraging User-Generated Videos in Your Marketing Strategy
Incorporating user-generated content (UGC), especially in the form of videos, can significantly amplify your marketing strategy. Here’s why and how to effectively utilize UGC:
Enhancing Authenticity and Trust
- Builds Credibility: UGC videos offer an authentic glimpse into real-life experiences with your product or service, providing potential customers with relatable and trustworthy testimonials.
- Boosts Engagement: User-generated videos often resonate more with audiences, as they see real people, not actors or polished advertisements. This authenticity can foster a deeper connection with your brand.
Expanding Reach and Content Variety
- Diversifies Content: UGC brings a variety of perspectives and stories, adding richness and diversity to your content.
- Increases Online Presence: When users share videos featuring your brand on their channels, it extends your reach to their networks, effectively amplifying your brand presence organically.
Strategies for Incorporating UGC Videos
- Encourage Sharing: Motivate your customers to create and share videos by hosting contests or offering incentives. Hashtag campaigns on social media are a great way to aggregate UGC and increase visibility.
- Feature UGC in Campaigns: Integrate user-generated videos in your marketing campaigns, whether on social media, in email newsletters, or on your website. This not only showcases real-life brand advocates but also provides fresh content for your campaigns.
- Maintain Quality Control: While UGC adds authenticity, it’s crucial to curate and select videos that align with your brand image and message. Quality control ensures consistency and professionalism in your marketing efforts.
Making the Most of UGC
- Acknowledge Creators: Always give credit to the original creators of the UGC. This not only fosters good relationships with your customers but also encourages others to share their content.
- Analyze and Adapt: Monitor the performance of UGC in your campaigns. See what resonates with your audience and adapt your strategy to include more of such content.
In 2023, the relevance of micro-video content in marketing strategies is more pronounced than ever. Their ability to concisely convey messages and adapt to various digital platforms makes them a valuable tool in a marketer’s arsenal. As the digital realm continues to evolve, micro-videos stand as a testament to the power of brevity in an age of information overload.