Why is constant communication so important now in this digital age?

Constant communication has become a norm once social media became a possibility for companies to talk to clients. The landscape for marketing, branding and communication has changed vastly due to this in 3 main areas. Here is why communication must happen more and more often than usual.

Cost

It used to be that if you want to communicate with your consumers, you have to make a TVC, create a roadshow and other expensive collaterals to go along with it. Now however, it has become simpler and cheaper to do so. Need to communicate with your consumers online? Set up an official instagram or facebook group and update constantly. 5 dollars a day to advertise to everyone so more people will like your page and stay for the update. Over a year, that is 1825 dollars a year, a far cry from spending a million on a TVC or a 50-100k roadshow and event. This method is not only cheap to collate people who wants to hear from you, but who you can also benefit from customers feedback. Remember in the “good old days” where you need to pay an agency to collate market data for you from peer group. Now, it is part of your cost of acquiring customers at 5 dollars a day. How good is that?

Ease

It used to take 2-3 months to set something up to communicate with your consumers. Going down the path of a TVC? 6-9 months from concept to actual delivery on TV. Need a print ad? Perhaps at least a month. And don’t get me started on roadshow. An assortment of vendors to communicate with is such a logistical nightmare. Now with social media, you can set it up in minutes, deliver message periodically and even determine the best time on the fly, with little exposure on your end. This means you can focus more on communicate the right message then figure out when, who, what, which and just focus on the how. This means better messaging that resonates with your audience.

Frequency

Remember when all you did for that year was to coordinate 3-4 times to communicate with your consumers and that was all the airtime you can get? Well, now you can do 100 times that and communicate daily (if you want to). Doing so not only provide a loudhailer for you 24/7, but also a platform for you to collate responses, justify which efforts pays off and when to target more aggressively. It takes the guesswork out of marketing and put concrete numbers that simply cannot lie.

Genuine

I placed a 4th point in for people who have read thus far. Being genuine might not be in every company’s approach but I seriously think that being genuine is the greatest asset a company can provide. People buy from people you trust and that stands true even when bad times are around the corner. Yes, obviously volume sales and profit will dip during bad times, but admitting to your mistakes makes your company human. This means that it destroys the crazy notion that no screw up can ever be made and makes you a fun and easy to talk to company that is open to consumer suggestions.

With these reasons on why constant communication is important, I hope that you will be able find social media a less threatening space and more of a multi-facet marketing tool for you to advance your business.

3 setbacks of video and how to overcome it

Even though video is an effective communication tool for marketing, there are some setbacks to be aware of so that you don’t find yourself in a compromising position jostling for control. Here are some facts to be aware of when doing video.

Price

The elephant in the room is definitely price, but it can really be something you can control depending on your intention for your video. A well versed production company will provide you with either a set of questions to create the best price point for you or price it in 2 to 3 different category so that you will be able to decide which suits your needs best. Controlling price on this can be done two ways; either with allocating a certain budget of your revenue or controlling where you want the video to be seen. Social media videos are generally more affordable due to the fact that the idea is the most expensive while in bigger formats like TVC, everything is fighting to be important at different times.

Messaging

The crux of a video is message. Sometimes marketers try to feed the audience too much and this results in them being overwhelmed. On the production house side, we try our very best to suit our clients but this results in costly mistakes such as change of message, message not clear enough or the wrong visual representation is used. Eliminate your list of 20-30 messages until you get the most important and then give it to a production company to brainstorm. This saves time, better allocate your resources and also results in a work that speaks clearly to your audience.

Distribution

Few people outside of the TV industry realise that different countries have different specification for tv. Same can be said for creating cross platform things like outdoor tv, social videos and cinema projections. Understanding where you intend to show it at the very start of the project will make sure that planning takes place for all the known methods of distribution compared to finishing 1 end product only to realise you have to undergo either a re-shoot for different platform or pushing it through a machine to hopefully come up with the right versions for the different platforms. This hassle is seriously unnecessary and it is something that is often overlooked due to the fact that most production companies don’t have tv background to understand it. Knowing this as a marketer prevents this ditch that can really put a dent and make your project come to a screeching halt.

With these 3 important factors taken into account, you can rest assured knowing that your project will go smoothly and in the ideal price point.

How do I distribute my video?

Now that you have made your masterpiece that distribute your message in an emotional and condensed way, what is next? Well, you need to know where exactly to distribute it to be seen of course. Here are some great ideas to ensure your video get the maximum amount of exposure it needs.

Youtube

The simplest solution is to go to the media congregator of videos now; Youtube. Depending on your direction, you could be doing anything from simply hosting on your youtube channel, buying distribution for it via sponsored ads and such or enhance your keywords in order to rank highly in your customer’s search results and become the next video to watch.

Youtube has an amazing leverage on your audience because most people binge watch. So short pieces works here very well. Something that has 1 singlet point, deliver it nicely and in the shortest time possible without leaving out content. Since people who go to youtube to watch video, they are expecting your message. The walls are therefore not up for your audience.

If you are in the business of buying youtube sponsored ad post, make sure that your vital information like subtitle, framing of shots on set and company details are not at the bottom right hand corner of the screen. This destroys the entertainment experience of your viewers when they try to click away from your ad.

Facebook

A lot of marketers these days are utilising Facebook due to its quick return on ROI and an easier way to gauge the success of a campaign. Putting a video on your Facebook page means that it disseminates your message to those who liked your page and autoplays it on mobile phones, making it easier for your audience to receive your message. Facebook is not without its flaws of a large part of content created get ignored due to the sheer volume of content that is uploaded. The idea to stick out on facebook is consistency and bring and bold statements like your description in your post, the thumbnail as well as the first 2 seconds of your video.

Instagram

It used to be that Instagram was the little brother of Facebook due to its 15 seconds limit on videos. Instagram has recently changed it to 1 minutes and that means that your audience are watching more stuff on Instagram as well. If you are already producing a content for Facebook or Youtube, use Instagram as another platform to drive traffic and interest to the main video while enticing them enough on Instagram.

Whichever platform you decide to choose at the end of the day, make sure that you are shooting in a format that is good for the end consumer (shoot in HD to ensure clear video that will not be easily compressed), shoot in the right system (PAL Or NTSC) as this could possibly look extremely distracting if it was shot on the wrong system

How do I make my brand relevant?

Every company that I have spoke to always brings up the aspiration of being household names, being recognised and rewarded with loyal customers. However, in this digital landscape, being famous means you have to be relevant to your audience and that is where most companies struggle with. Here are 5 tips to make your brands relevant to your audience across various platforms.

Ride Pop Culture

Even if your brand is one of luxury and sophistication, it doesn’t hurt the brand to be associated with pop culture, you just need to know which events to leverage on. If your target audience is 30-50s with high spending power, get to know what intrigues them. Is it the results of last night football match or the newest pop star to come out of Hollywood. Knowing which subjects bode well with your customers will make you relevant, not a brand that is left behind in time and is only here to get money out of people. Being human means that you will have to spend a considerable amount of time finding the right occasion to leverage upon. Hey, no one promise success will be an easy right, did they?

10 Year Old Talk

As marketers, we like to hide behind the facade of the works we do and distance ourselves with our industry mambo jumbo. Why must it be ergonomic design when it could simply be fits the curves of your hand? Is it because being simple makes us dumb to our customers? On the contrary, it exposes your brands to a wider target audience. Being tunnel-vision to think that people that can afford your luxury goods are only the educated is a passe. With globalisation accelerating wealth everywhere, you might just risk alienating your audience because you were hell bent on focusing on education and not wealth.

Localisation

With the world getting smaller, that does not mean that creating 1 message to be used in different countries/territories is the best option forward. Yes, it might cost a little bit more to understand culture and adapting your message to that territory, but would it not attract more people to your brand because it is so succinct in conveying your values in a way they can understand? Localisation is becoming a growing trend because it provides exclusivity to the core consumers in a certain region, making them believe the products they carry embodies luxury and sophistication, something that you are definitely aiming for.

Extravagance

From events to in store packaging, from digital communication to real life interactions, people are always looking for something iconic to remember your company by. If you are able to disseminate only 1 message this year, it is to be extravagantly your company brand. This could mean having a funky outfit for lighthearted events, to dressing it up overly formal for roadshows just to stand out from the crowd. The key is to take a simple expectation and give it a boost upwards for maximum traction and word of mouth.

Consistency

If all else fails and you don’t know what works, be consistent in stumbling around in the dark. Too many companies embrace the notion that a company cannot mess up and this creates an unhealthy work environment. It prevents you from trying something new and different because it could jeopardise the entire company. However, people are not loyal fans of yours for years and screwing up 1 ad does not make all of your audience go to your competitor. It will push them away no doubt, but if you do consistent slightly better than average works, people will return and in the truckloads. Being consistent is even more important now on social media because everyone is connected. The moment you stop communicating, you can bet your competitor is already outpacing you while you rest. It is this relentless push forward that separates great companies from the pile of good ones.

With these 5 habits implemented, I am certain you will bring your brand from glory to glory. With a distinct messaging implemented in all 5 steps, the company you work for will definitely thank you inmeasurably.

What should be my video length

With attention span getting shorter and shorter, the need to keep videos brief is also critical in the marketing industry. Here are some tips on how your video length should be.

Message Length

Too many times, we drown our viewers in our messages that we want to communicate. We are paying so much money to make 1 video, might as well dump everything inside right? From location, promotion, timing, corporate message, how to use, benefits and a whole lot more, we keep dumping it in. But guess what? Most audience can only retain 1 message, let alone the 12 features you mentioned or the list of worldwide location. It will simply become overwhelming and portray another tone in your video; cluttered and disorganized. In order to ensure maximum viewer engagement, strip your message down to a single one. It can be hard but it is achievable. Ask yourself, is there a need to tell them about our new location, our 12 other benefits that everyone in the industry is also providing, how to use this product or even the promotion this new product has? Once you have your single message, you can move on to point number 2 to improve your video length.

Platform

Video is like food, you need to tweak it such that it is acceptable at the place it is found. For platforms such as TV and Radio, the content is relatively short at below a minute due to the high cost it takes to distribute it. One key point that I have noted is to emphasise your company name 3-4 times in the ad and to have the last 3 seconds reserved for your company logo. This shows the maximum amount of viewers being able to recall your product. As for social media, the rule is around 2:30 to 3 minutes due to the online habits gathered so far. For videos such as corporate reporting or a corporate show and tell, try to keep it below 5 minutes; people tend to drift and treat it like background music if it goes on any longer.

Dramatisation

In order to convey some drastic actions and mood, you need a certain amount of time. Let us say you want to show that your product can prevent acne. Showing 3 different people having acne problems portray a message of how serious it really is and how hopeless the characters must feel. Holding 2-3 seconds before revealing your product while one character is thinking will dramatically improve your audience retention rate and provide the drastic effect it needs. Just like music, even a rest is a planned move in order to make your audience remember it better. The guideline for TVC is this; 7 seconds to tell a story/problem, 3 seconds to build up the anticipation and 10 seconds to say your message before wrapping it up in 5 seconds and leaving your logo on for 2-3 seconds.

With a deeper understanding of how video length is important, we hope that you will be even more successful in your video marketing pursuits and get an even higher ROI than you expected.

The benefits of hosting on Youtube

Youtube is a big ocean of videos and if you are up to the task of making constant content, then you are in the right space. Here are some benefits of hosting on Youtube that will give you the edge.

Frequency

If you intend to upload a video every week, then Youtube is definitely your best bet. Many YouTube channel have seen an incremental effect if their content is regular; meaning your views and subscription climbs exponentially the more times you upload. Make it a habit to let your audience know what is your frequency so that they will keep coming back for more.
Ad Feature

Maybe you did not craft your message to have people stumble on your channel to see it. Maybe you are looking to push your message out using ad space. Utilising Youtube Sponsored ads is a smart move especially if you phrase your message a certain way already. (highlight your company in the first 5 seconds). This feature allows your audience to immediately recognise your brand and decide then if they want to tune away or not. Compared to not branding your message at the start, more people will drop off because they don’t know if the sponsored ad is speaking to them, thus clicking away at the earliest moment.

Monetisation

What happens when the ad you make goes viral and start making money for you? Though this is rare at the moment, if you can create a great ad that resembles organic content with only slight references to your company to sway the bias, it might prompt even more audience to see your content and provide you a steady cashflow to off-set the expenses used to make the video.

Right Medium

Compared to Facebook, Youtube is a massive congregator of video watching audience. As much as it is possible for Facebook to host video, people mainly congregate there for post and comments. Having a video is nice, but it does not trend as well as Youtube. Facebook is better made for incidental videos; things other people film of your events or of you and upload with no pressure from your company. This will then spread much easier compared to a corporate driven video. That is the inverse for Youtube though. Storytelling is very important compared to just documenting what happened in video.

Now that you know what are the features of Youtube, maybe you would like to consider hosting your video there. However, let us also cover the features of Facebook so that you can make a better decision