We live in a time that marketers from previous generations could only have ever dreamed of. With a seemingly endless number of channels and platforms at our fingertips, from traditional media to digital and social, we can reach potential customers in more ways than ever before. This cuts two ways, however. Your audience is receiving signals from every conceivable direction. This makes it incredibly hard to cut through the clutter. It can also be hard to decide which medium to focus on. Do you want digital banners, web pre-rolls, paid search, or broadcast television? Whatever platform you choose, there is one definitive rule: video is king. Here are the top reasons why.
Video Can Use Visuals, Sound, and Text
Video has the advantage of being a combined medium. That means if you’re advertising something like the best cruise deals available for vacationers, you aren’t limited to visuals, sounds, or text. You can use all three. You can show the cruise ship sailing across the water, with a voiceover talking about the amenities and accommodations. You can use computer generated text to show price points, fine print, and other information that you may not have time to explicitly state or show.
Video Can Vividly Convey Emotional Experiences
It doesn’t matter if you’re working with a “normal person” or professional actor. If a camera is rolling on someone working with an item or having an experience, it’s usually very easy to see what they’re thinking and how they’re feeling about it. If they’re having a great time, it will come through in their smiles and body language. As viewers, potential customers will pick up on those cues quickly and associate them with what you’re trying to sell.
Video Can Quickly Show Your Range of Products or Services
Static images become cluttered very quickly when you try to put too much into a single frame, even with the most visually constructed layout. In an audio spot or text-based banner, words quickly lose their meaning if you try to list or include too much. The power of the moving image is that you can quickly move to another shot without disorienting the viewer, so long as the fundamentals of editing are observed. This can be done slowly with a single shot or several long shots moving through space, or this can be done with quick cuts rapidly moving between items. The tempo of the edit is often assisted by music, and many commercials on broadcast and online speed up as they go. In the nearly 150-year history of motion pictures, audiences have become accustomed to common styles of presentation; a viewer will follow a well-edited piece, allowing you to showcase more than any other media.
Video Can Use a Host to Create a Personal Connection (and Direct Appeal for Sales)
Many marketers want to have a “face” to their advertising. This could be a paid spokesperson or influencer, talking about a destination resort or beauty product. A funeral home or assisted living facility may wish to feature the first person a new client will see when they come in the door to spark instant familiarity. Of course, a proud business owner may want to put themselves front and center. After all, who can sell their products better than them?
In all these cases, the on-camera personality speaks directly to the customer, drawing them in more than a disembodied voice over. They can demonstrate products or tour a location. Perhaps most importantly, they can ask for the viewer’s business, making a direct appeal for sales that rivals standing across from them in a showroom. This can’t be done with still photos or even radio ads.
Video Can Include Testimonials from Satisfied Customers
Finally, the reverse approach is often effective. Rather than let a business owner or paid employee speak about their products, video testimonials enable real people who have experience using them, tell their story. A simple amount of legwork, tracking down an effusive customer who had a good experience, offering them a stipend, discount, or even meal, and having them consent to appear in a commercial can pay huge dividends in the long run. If a potential customer sees a video with a passionate real person using their own words to describe the benefits of a good or service, they are more likely to buy in. Of course, this must be as authentic and genuine as possible.
Video offers vision, sound, graphics, text, and personality. When these elements are combined, they become a powerful advertising force that is more effective and formidable than any other medium.