Guest post via Torrey Tayenaka – CEO, Sparkhouse
Though its shift from photos to videos was met with skepticism at the time, Instagram videos are some of the most watched across social media networks. The power of video is only growing for brands and businesses, especially with these four tips for creating a successful Instagram video marketing campaign.
Instagram Marketing Basics
On average, brands publish 4.55 posts per week on Instagram. If the number seems at all high, it’s really not, considering the visually driven social media platform boasts nearly 1.5 billion users globally. Instagram marketing usually falls under four strategy areas: organic content, paid content, influencer marketing, and shopping tools. Within those areas, you can use a range of content types to engage and entice your followers along with current and potential customers.
Stories are 60-second long photos or videos that can be standalone or enhanced with stickers, GIFs, and interactive elements like polls or questions. Good Instagram stories are authentic, creative, and short but have a consistent flow from start to finish.
Instagram Feed Ads
With up to 60 minutes to work with — though much shorter video ads are more effective — Instagram feed ads are known for blending in with the rest of your feed. Brands and companies use branding elements, high-resolution videos, clear product or service imagery, and a variety of objectives in these ads.
If your brand or company is in the eCommerce industry, an Instagram shop is an easy addition to a video marketing strategy. You have the option to set up a store within the app, complete with direct purchases or link to your website.
If you’ve lost more time than you’d like to admit scrolling through Instagram Reels, you already know how captivating these full-screen videos are. With features like interactive backgrounds and filters, Reels are a great way to showcase your business, employees, products, and more. Plus, they’re the most favored type of Instagram content, which means the platform is more likely to serve them to non-followers than other content.
Campaign Goals For Instagram Video Marketing
Set SMART Goals
SMART goals are common in marketing simply because the structure behind them works.
- Specific: A clearly understood, desired outcome.
- Measurable: Defined data used to measure the goal with a collection method.
- Achievable: Realistic goals are more apt to be met, especially if they’re broken into smaller pieces.
- Relevant: Align your goals with the company’s mission.
- Time-bound: Deadlines are one way to know if a goal was a success or a failure.
These goals give you and your team an Instagram-focused objective to work towards with identified strengths and weaknesses. With the deadline always in the back of your mind, you’re likely to stay focused and do what’s necessary to meet the SMART goal.
Common SMART goals are brand awareness, lead generation, and recruitment. But, it’s important to make your SMART goals relevant to your brand or company for the working time frame. A brand awareness goal could span your company’s fiscal year, while a lead generation campaign might run for three consecutive months.
Create A Marketing Strategy That Will Match Your Goals
#1 Define Your SMART Goals
Without knowing what you want to achieve with Instagram videos, you won’t create the right strategy to achieve your goals.
#2 Optimize Your Instagram Profile
Optimizing your profile helps it stand out among the thousands, if not millions, of other company profiles on Instagram.
- Set up a business profile: Instagram business profiles let you access analytics and CTA buttons, two features that are key to any marketing campaign.
- Determine brand creatives: Placing custom, brand-specific hashtags in your profile is an easy way to encourage follower interactions.
- Review your Instagram bio: The 150 characters you use should be a clear and concise description of your business with a CTA.
- Update your profile picture: A high-resolution and minimalist picture that’s clean and matches your branding is recommended.
#3 Identify Your Target Audience
Your target audience is current or potential customers who are most likely to buy from and/or interact with your company. They’re also most likely to engage with any video content you share and hopefully reshare with their friends and followers.
#4 Develop Your Instagram Video Content Strategy
Dive into your existing social media video analytics and learn what your customers engage with the most. Is it a behind-the-scenes timelapse from the factory floor? Or is it a question and answer session with company leadership and customer testimonials? The analytics should guide the type of video content strategy you use on Instagram.
#5 Consistently Publish Videos
Posting at random doesn’t work on Instagram anymore, as 59% of Instagram users log into their accounts every day. This means if you aren’t publishing consistently, chances are they won’t see your videos, and your brand or company will fall from the front of their minds for them. Look at the analytics in your business profile to find out when your followers are online and plan to publish videos during those times.
Every video needs a caption, and the caption should be compelling and include a CTA, your brand tone, and hashtags, especially branded hashtags. Instagram allows for more than 2,000 characters in a caption, so it’s a great spot to write a narrative about the video.
Tips for Successful Video Marketing
3 Ways To Hook the Audience
#1 Message In 3 Seconds
The main point of your video should be shared in the first three seconds. That way, it’s been put in front of the viewer whether they watch the entire video or keep scrolling a few seconds later.
#2 Cohesive Branding
Cohesive branding means that no matter the type of Instagram video, someone watching knows it was produced by your company. Always include your brand colors, logo, and the subject of the video in the clip. Don’t leave your viewers guessing as to who the video is from and what the point is.
#3 Value-Driven Content
Instagram video marketing is successful because brands and companies provide value to their customers and followers in each video. The value could be a multi-part question and answer session in Stories or a longer Reel explaining the benefits of a newly launched product. Many consumers use video to learn how to do things, use a product, or simply expand their understanding. They usually only do so with videos that provide value in return.
Create Relatable Content
Relatable content is the best way to connect and engage with your followers and customers on a regular basis. Not only do people want to be entertained on social media, but they also know when they’re being sold to and are more than happy to skip your videos. By publishing relatable Instagram videos, it’s easier for people to imagine themselves using your products or services, and it increases the likelihood of a sale or two.
Blend Into The Instagram World
While having someone in your company perform the latest social media production dance for likes counts as trend-watching, it’s easier than that. Keep an eye on what sounds or songs are popular at the moment, plus any filters or specific video styles. But make sure the trend is adaptable to your brand, so it doesn’t take your followers by surprise in an interesting way.
You and your followers might be far beyond bedtime stories every night, but people still love storytelling in videos. Producing narrative-driven videos helps engage your audience while making a connection. When planned and executed properly, these videos can drive brand awareness and subsequent sales.
Track Performance Metrics That Matter
Before clicking publish on the first video in your next Instagram campaign, make sure you’ve defined metrics to set around your campaign goals. Commonly used metrics include views, profile visits, followers, and saves. After your videos have run for a few days, it’s time to start looking at the data and metrics. Most campaigns need at least a week to determine what’s working and what needs an adjustment.
Instagram video marketing takes time and planning. But, with these tips, you’ll be able to establish the foundation to bring your vision and your goals to life.
Torrey Tayenaka is the co-founder and CEO at Sparkhouse, an Orange County- based commercial video production company. He is often asked to contribute expertise in publications like Entrepreneur, Single Grain and Forbes. Sparkhouse is known for transforming video marketing and advertising into real conversations. Rather than hitting the consumer over the head with blatant ads, Sparkhouse creates interesting, entertaining and useful videos that enrich the lives of his clients’ customers. In addition to Sparkhouse, Torrey has also founded the companies Eva Smart Shower, Litehouse & Forge54.