Small business owners face a tremendous challenge in generating interest in their products or services, which are typically highlighted on their websites.
To rise above the competition, businesses turn to social media marketing. So, they follow the advice of social media gurus and other small businessmen in creating Facebook and Google+ pages, LinkedIn and Instagram accounts.
This is unfortunate for at least two reasons. First, a recent survey of small business owners revealed that 61 percent are not getting any results from their social media efforts. Second, the average attention span of a consumer on a website is eight seconds — not a lot of time to catch their attention, hook them and reel in a sale.
What can be done? How can small businessmen do a better job of engaging visitors?
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Post a video on your website, then use social media and emails to entice consumers to view the video.
When compared with websites without video, those who visit websites with video:
• Spend more than 600 percent longer viewing the Web page (called “dwell time”).
• Click 2.3 more Web pages on a website.
• Are 73 percent more likely to purchase a product or service.
• Tend to visit such websites more frequently, gradually increasing their popularity in search engine results.
Additionally, studies have shown that including video in an introductory email to prospective clients reduced the number of subscriber opt-outs by 75 percent.
If you think that it’s too expensive to shoot video, or that it requires considerable technical skills, think again.
With today’s technology, you have everything you need — in your hands — to boost website and social media engagement. The more engaging the video, the better your chances of capturing leads and increasing business.
You can shoot a simple, short video on your smartphone. Using YouTube’s free Creator Academy, you can learn expert tips about how to edit your video, stimulate engagement, develop your audience and build your brand. You can even learn about more in-depth topics, such as copyright law, analytics, gaining more subscribers and much more.
YouTube’s free audio library lets you add crucial background music, which you can filter by genre, mood, instrument or duration. YouTube also allows you to add hyperlinks to videos (so visitors can more easily visit your website) and makes it easy to embed videos into your website, customer emails and social media posts.
Videos don’t need to be elaborate productions. You can shoot videos of satisfied customers, transforming a ho-hum endorsement into a real-life video testimonial. You can shoot an interview of yourself explaining a product or service.
Videos also don’t need to be long. One study that found that 85 percent of video viewers watched an entire 30-second video. Half of viewers make it all the way through a 2-minute video. That’s why many online videos tend to be one minute or less in length.
Although video is not a sure-fire solution in every situation, any small business owner would be smart to evaluate if video could be useful in courting prospective customers.