Jerry Seinfeld may have been on to something…

In a popular episode of “Seinfeld”, Jerry once told a rental car agent: “You know how to take the reservation, you just don’t know how to hold the reservation, and that’s really the most important part of the reservation, the holding.”

As marketers, we can relate to Jerry. We know how to make the two-minute video, but we don’t always know how to get people to watch the video…and that’s really the most important part.

We’ve been using a solution called the social teaser. This is a 15 – 30 second “trailer” of sorts, targeted to your audience on social media, that piques their interest to click and watch your full video.

We often make these social teasers in a series of three by re-purposing the best sections of the longer video. And it’s not that hard to justify reserving some budget dollars for these cut-downs, particularly if you plan for them in advance. And having three additional short videos can mean more engagement and better SEO. Here’s an example of a recent social teaser, and the full video that we teased.

The Seinfeld in you might be thinking, “That all sounds great, but does it work?” One of our healthcare clients told us that promoting teasers for a recent social media campaign greatly increased the click rate and engagement of their longer video. They also tested each teaser to determine which one drove the most clicks and engagement. Social teasers have become a standard part of video strategy on social for many of our clients.

Tips to consider: Keep it visual, because much of your social audience will be viewing with the sound off. Large animated text headlines and provocative subtitled soundbites are particularly engaging.  Have your editor or animator occasionally reduce their workspace to the size of a phone, so you can visualize what your audience will most likely see as you create the teasers.

So don’t just target your audience with video – capture and hold your audience, with a social teaser mini-campaign. Because Jerry’s right…the holding is the most important part.

Inspiring Purchase + Purpose: Why Video Matters

Companies today, large and small, face a daunting communication challenge.  First, you’re looking to establish a clear identity in a very crowded and noisy marketplace.  Second, you’re looking to attract relevant prospects, convert them to buyers, and encourage their loyalty and advocacy.  Third, you’re looking to attract and motivate the talent you need to grow. And to complicate matters, the old channels of communication have been supplanted by a plethora of new media that seem to multiply every day.  What’s an organization to do?

There’s no silver bullet, no one answer.  But one new medium has clearly emerged as dominant in this new world, and smart use of it is key to success in any and all of these business goals: video.  We’ll spare you the endless stats showing the explosive growth of video consumption (cf. Youtube, Brightcove, Hubspot, etc., etc.). What we want to call out is that video can be used effectively for all of these critical business goals, and further, that a little video strategy can get you a lot more bang for your video buck.

The beauty of video is that it is ideally suited to the new world of digital communication.  On your website, it can be the dramatic cornerstone of your identity, telling the story of who and why you are.  In your sales efforts, it can lend support at every stage of your customer’s journey, across all mediums. Origin stories, customer testimonials, product/service explanations and more can be used on your website, on social media, at events, in targeted advertising campaigns and directly by your salespeople.  And when it comes to projecting your company’s culture and bringing a diverse workforce together, video again has a unique power to tell compelling stories that inspire response.

We see our clients using video in all these ways.  We also see that when clients formulate a clear video strategy – which video types, which channels and when – they get a much higher return on their video spend.  In general, a shift away from mass media to targeted digital is the start. Specifically, leveraging a video production to produce multiple assets expands value across media.  With one shoot we can produce an anchor video for a campaign microsite plus multiple teaser videos for social media. Or a video template with different versions for different target audiences.  Or a suite of related videos that drive home a common message. It’s all about formulating a deeper, longer-range video plan that’s aligned with your marketing plan.

We don’t have to convince you to use video – that’s a given.  But tapping into some video making and marketing expertise can help you use video more effectively.