When I'm scrolling through my newsfeed, I will always stop to watch a video. I may not watch the whole video, but I will definitely watch it for a few seconds at least. That's more time than I spend reading text updates or looking at pictures.
This is the power of video: we skim text, and we glance at pictures. But, we watch video. We will give it our full attention as long as we are entertained or learning something.
Video is engaging. It's easy to consume. Video can show who you are and communicate your value proposition that can't be done with text. It's also fun!
Why should you add video to your agency marketing plan?
• Visitors who view videos stay on websites an average of 2 minutes longer. (Source: comScore)
• Video on landing pages can increase conversion by 80 percent. (Source: Unbounce)
• Videos in email marketing increase click-through rates by 55 percent, which results in 44 percent more time reading the email and 24 percent higher conversion rate. (Source: Socialmouths)
Video is incredibly powerful. People will engage with video. It's easy to consume. It creates a strong connection between you and your audience.
If video is not currently part of your online agency marketing plan, it's time to add it.
Questions to Answer
Like with any marketing strategy, you need to do some legwork before you get started. Every marketing tactic works best when you establish goals and have a clear direction. Otherwise, your efforts will become disorganized and not at all effective.
Before you start shooting a bunch of videos, ask yourself these questions:
• Why do my clients choose my agency over other options?
• Do I want to build brand awareness? Increase website traffic and leads? Engage with my clients?
• How will I create my videos?
• What is my budget? (Do I have a budget?)
• Will I host my videos on YouTube or Vimeo?
• How will I know if my videos are a success?
Tell Your Story
The best marketing, regardless of channel, doesn't talk about what you do. The best marketing doesn't feel like marketing because it's telling your story.
Your agency has a story. Video is a great way to share that story.
Types of Videos
People don't know much about insurance. It's a complex subject that is complicated more by the fact that it is an intangible product.
Show off your expertise in a series of educational videos. You'll educate your clients while showing who your agency is.
Your viewers will learn and be more likely to think of your agency first next time they need insurance.
Here's an example of a video explaining why it's better to choose an independent insurance agent.
Commonly asked questions make for a great blog topic. They also make a great video topic.
Make a list of frequently asked questions. Then turn each question into its own video. Spend a few minutes - I recommend no more than five - answering each question.
You can easily create 10 videos at one time.
Here are some great examples.
Alan Galvez Insurance
Engage your audience with a webinar. Find a topic that will be interesting.
You have a lot you can teach people. Or you can have a guest speaker. The point is to find a subject your clients will want to sign up to learn more about.
If your agency marketing budget is a little tight, good news. You don't have to subscribe to webinar hosting software to have a webinar. You can use Google Hangout or Skype (up to 25 people) as your hosting platform for free.
You don't need a bunch of fancy, expensive equipment to create videos. A smartphone with an external mic can do the job. If you don't have a steady hand or someone to hold the camera for you, you'll want a tripod.
If you want a camera other than your smartphone, you can find some good ones that won't break the budget.
There are apps - like iMovie and PowerDirector - you can use to edit a video on your phone. You might prefer to edit video on your computer. There are some affordable options out there like Movavi and WeVideo.
My point is you don't have to use what the professional video firms use to start creating videos. With some time and effort, you can create some good videos yourself.
If you're still intimidated at the thought of creating videos, you can take a smaller step first.
Social media is a great place to start playing with video. Use it to try different ideas, and see what works best for you.
Twitter launched video app Vine in 2013. You capture and share six-second looping videos. You may think six seconds isn't much time. But if you check out the app, you will see some creative ways people are using these ultra short videos.
Instagram started as a photo app but added video capability in 2013. Like Vine, Instagram offers short videos. It used to be 15 seconds, but a couple weeks ago Instagram announced that they were extending their video length to 60 seconds.
Another app that Twitter created and owns, Periscope is a live video streaming app. You basically announce to your Twitter followers that you're doing a live stream. They can then open up Periscope and watch your content as you record it.
What to Share
• Record the nice things your clients say in video testimonials
• Take people behind the scenes and show them your office
• Interview members of your team about their favorite ________
• Celebrate holidays and other important events
• Share your community pride with videos of the local events you attend
I once saw an insurance agent use Periscope to show the various risks around a backyard swimming pool. It was a great use of video to showcase his expertise without talking specifically about insurance.
The 15 minutes he spent on that live stream was worth it because of how engaged his followers were. They commented as he talked, and he answered their questions live. I guarantee you some of them will remember those tips as well as him.
Don't Give Up
The more you try, the better you will get at it.
The most important thing to remember is to not give up. Video does take time and effort. More than likely, your videos won't be perfect. But that's okay.
People will watch a video even if the quality is not so great. If the sound is good and the video is entertaining or education, you will still get views.
And don't forget to have fun!
About the Author
As vice president of marketing, Becky Schroeder oversees ITC’s growth through marketing and drives the overall marketing strategy for the company and its products. Her specialties include advertising, social media, email marketing, content marketing and public relations. Becky has a master’s degree in integrated marketing communication from Emerson College in Boston and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Texas A&M University. Becky is a big Texas A&M football fan and enjoys cooking, reading and spending time with her husband and their three daughters.Follow on Twitter More Content by Becky Schroeder