Despite the limitations that the pandemic put on our firm’s ability to meet with clients and prospects, there was an unexpected silver lining: The video we’ve been able to capture and share as a result of the switch to virtual work has taken on a starring role in our marketing strategy.
We realized the potential of video from the moment we all switched to Zoom at the start of the pandemic, and we haven’t slowed down since. While events were canceled, virtual webinars, meetings and discussions all represented new opportunities to create high-quality marketing materials that have lived well beyond their original purpose and that have inspired us to do even more.
Here is what we have learned in order to make the most of this treasure-trove of content.
3 Easy Ways to Turn Your Video Assets Into Marketing Material
- Talk like no one is watching.
- Repackage your content — with feeling!
- Track your progress across channels.
Talk Like No One Is Watching
Like nearly every other company on Earth, the tool that became most important to the continuation of our meetings was Zoom. Now that everyone is comfortable with video conferencing, using the tool for most recorded sessions is a no-brainer.
The benefit is that even partners in our firm that were relatively shy about being on stage in the past are now quite comfortable talking on camera for a video call. Because of this, we’re not only recording all of our webinars and other events using Zoom, we’re also using it to record things even when it’s not explicitly for external viewing.
Of course, the first and easiest step is to simply record a session that is already scheduled. This could be a thought leadership webinar, a talk by a partner or a Q&A with a client. The technology is easy to use, nearly everyone has it installed, and people behave more naturally in front of their own computer screens as compared to a professional camera setup. That’s the added bonus: Marketers should seek out partners and other experts who are not usually the first ones to raise their hands for events and encourage them to record sessions that add depth to the company’s content.
Recording a short clip generally requires less of a time commitment from the executive than creating other forms of thought leadership, such as articles. We encourage our partners to be authentic, conversational and not overly scripted in the videos — which cuts down the time needed to prepare. We always do a few takes. The presentation is usually more polished after a couple of attempts, and the alternate takes come in handy if there are any issues with the video quality.
Our partners tend to be most confident talking about something they know very well. And in some cases, it’s possible to take something a partner has previously written or presented and repurpose it in video form. For example, we had a partner who had developed a useful checklist for his clients. We released a weekly short video clip expanding on each of the points in the checklist. This helped generate interest in downloading the checklist over a longer period of time, and it also resulted in a number of direct leads.
Next, it’s important to edit and share the content broadly both internally and externally. This helps everyone see the real value in using Zoom and will help encourage a greater variety of partners to create content.
Repackage Your Content — With Feeling!
For marketing purposes, once an asset is created, it can be sliced and repackaged in a number of ways:
- Videos can live on your website as a series.
- The audio can become a podcast.
- Assets can be embedded into email newsletters and shared on social media.
In particular, our partners have become much more active on LinkedIn. That’s where networking is happening when in-person access to conferences and other events has been limited. With video content at their disposal, they have more interesting posts and generate more responses from prospects.
One of our partners has become particularly successful using video on LinkedIn. Before the pandemic, he was relatively quiet on the channel. But once he started seeing responses from clients and prospects, he embraced his role as “content creator.” He recently created a series with very short content snippets that could be quickly recorded and shared right from his own computer. The marketing team adds some branding, and the content is ready on the same day. This approach has made it much easier for partners to react to newsworthy events and provide timely commentary.
We also have a number of partners with industry-specific expertise who have been able to generate a broad array of targeted content much more cheaply and easily by tapping into their personal experience than if we had used outside resources. And when in-person events rebound, we will have plenty of content to share with producers in order to place more of our partners on stage — and more of our partners will be comfortable in that role.
Video has been so successful for us that we’ve started to up our game. We’ve already invested in creating a more professional “TV approach.” In each of our major offices, we have installed a room dedicated to video recording, and we have employees who are training to be engaging hosts.
In addition to the positive uptick in LinkedIn activity for our partners, we have experienced a 50-percent increase in our newsletter subscribers base. We’ve gained thousands of new subscribers because of our multimedia approach that was surprisingly budget-friendly. We’ve seen such a positive response that we’re planning an entire video series to tackle hot topics.
Track Your Progress Across Channels
While each channel — social, email and our website — all matter individually, it’s how they work together that creates the best response. We share all recorded content on our site in a regular email publication, and after each webinar, we share the recording with all registrants to make sure anyone who missed it can still view it.
What’s more, we’re starting to notice a new pattern: Many people register for a webinar without intending to attend live. They’ve come to expect that they’ll get an email with the recording in their inbox for them to view when they have time. That email also makes it easy for them to forward and share the content to colleagues.
These small but important observations have helped us make the most of our push into video across marketing channels. When we see positive momentum or a change in behavior, we pivot to make the most of it. Our firm is energized to keep evolving our approach and our clients and prospects are along for the ride — and we hope the power of video can take your own marketing strategy to the next level.