Marketers live and breathe the three stages of a customer lifecycle. This is mainly because the end goal of retention cannot be achieved if the first two stages fail. One important factor that may not be considered when planning the entire customer journey is how to keep all of the stages engaging and impactful. One simple change that can make a dramatic difference is to include video at every stage.
It is known that video continues to dominate the internet, and by 2020, 80% of consumer internet traffic will include video. This trend alone speaks volumes about what consumers really seek and value. In a sea of static ads and pages and pages of content, marketers need to embrace the growing importance of video, and leverage this knowledge by including video in every step of the customer journey. Even a partial integration in only one or two of the stages will provide weaker results than adding them to the entire customer journey.
Stage 1: Stop Potential Customers in their Tracks with Video Ads on Key Platforms
The first stage of the customer cycle requires advertising that stands out, is engaging and dynamic and stops users in their tracks—in this case stops their fingers in their tracks so they don’t “click” onto another page.
Facebook and YouTube are Loved by Billions
Facebook has more than 2 billion monthly users and YouTube has over 1 billion users that watch 1 billion hours of video each day. These stats remove all of the guesswork on where to focus a large portion of advertising. YouTube’s pre-roll ads allows advertisers to capture their target market through dynamic video retargeting for a few quick seconds before the desired video begins to play. This is a powerful tool.
The launch and growth of Facebook Live follows the video trend and exposes its billions of users to the magic of video. This puts static ads at a disadvantages as they easily blend into all of the exciting Facebook features. Facebook users have lots of distractions with events, posts, notifications, Facebook Live, so only a video ad can compete.
Stop the Scrolling Passed Your Ad
Standard, static banner ads, which we still see on various web pages, were once considered revolutionary for the internet. They were great advertising strategies for attracting new users as they appeared across various websites in retargeting campaigns. They have become quite outdated. This QVC video banner ad, for example, stands out on a web page as it automatically replays a five-second ad that is quite eye-catching, so much so that you cannot look away. Try to look away from the ad when you cick on this page. I dare you!
Any of these video ads form a solid strategy for the initial advertising stage of the customer journey.
Stage 2: Provide a Memorable Experience for Users with Product Videos
Your website can offer a memorable experience for users. If you provide product videos that not only showcase each product, but also explain and simplify the best features in a short and engaging video, it will keep customers in this stage just long enough to consider a purchase. An effective product video gets the message across in the most interesting way, and in the shortest amount of time. This shows visitors that you value their time online and that you want to provide them with as much information as they need in a timely manner. By using video instead of just photos, it also shows them that you have invested the time into making the information engaging and easy to understand. This is a clever strategy for moving customers along the purchasing journey.
Stage: 3 Make Customers feel valued and Cherished with Loyalty Videos
Customer satisfaction will ultimately decide on how successful your company ranks during the final, critical retention stage. This is not the time to drop the ball. This is the time to thank your customers, explain your services further if appropriate, offer them an incentive to make a purchase again or even just wish them a “Happy Birthday.” Any of these gestures can be incorporated into personalized videos. The key is to create videos that address them by name, let them know that you are still part of their journey and tailor the video to their specific needs. These types of videos can easily be sent by email to each customer thanks to the power of big data. Since you already spend time and money on recommendation engines and rely on algorithms to automate your marketing, all of that smart information can be applied to personalized loyalty videos.
By making customers feel special through loyalty videos, they are more likely to choose you over the competition, therefore clinching the final stage of the customer journey and building a lifetime of loyal clients.
The Video Customer Journey is Already Here
Businesses always weigh the pros and cons of every marketing plan. There are often a variety of strategies that can work to achieve the same goal, and they must be considered. But with internet users chasing after video in all aspects of the online world, it appears that consumers themselves have already chosen their own path. Their preferred journey for their day-to-day lives and decision making already includes video.