5 Secrets to Succeed at Video Advertising

Whether the intent is to entertain, inform or persuade, there are many things to consider before setting out to create your next video campaign.

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By Alex Debelov

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Video, if done right, is one of the most powerful storytelling formats in the world. Indeed, sight, sound and motion elicit great emotion. It has the power to make us laugh, to cry, to contemplate big ideas and call people to action. With video advertising expected to grow 21 percent annually, it has never been a better time to be a content creator.

Whether the intent is to entertain, inform or persuade, there are many things to consider before setting out to create your next video campaign.

Here are five ways to maximize a video initiative in order to make your video advertisement go further.

1. Go beyond the 15- and 30-second spots.

Everyone knows that consumers are migrating to a multi-screen world. As people spend more of their leisure time on digital devices, advertising dollars should follow the eyeballs. For marketers, you are no longer constrained to the formats of old standards that TV once held firm. By thinking outside the 15- and 30-second box, you can create rich and compelling stories for viewers that are emotional, memorable and impactful.

Related: A Checklist of 8 Best Practices for Successful Video Campaigns

Digital browsing is usually done at leisure, which means that consumers have more time to engage with longer form videos that can be up to three minutes in length.

2. Compel your audience to an action.

Your video may be the bait but the call-to-action is the bite. When activating your video campaign, it's important to identify how you want your audience to react for maximum ROI. Include a call to action at the end of your video that reminds the viewer to visit your site or subscribe to your channel. For a relatively low cost, you can also use companies like my business Virool to create custom banners and video overlays with one-click social sharing buttons.

3. Retarget in order to re-engage.

One of the biggest mistakes that marketers make is assuming that people will immediately make a purchase after watching their video. Think about it: When was the last time you did that yourself? Customers need a reminder across multiple touch points before they make a buying decision. Retargeting companies like AdRoll or Criteo can help re-engage your viewers by targeting them with banner ads down the line. Your video is the hook to get people excited about your product, but it will take a few reminders before they return to your site and make a purchase.

Related: How to Advertise Your YouTube Videos

4. Use data to find an audience and place it programmatically.

There is an amazing amount of consumer data available on the web that can be leveraged to find your ideal audience. Make the most of your budget by combining three different types of data parties:

  • First party: Also known as your data or the CRM data that you own
  • Second party: Is someone else's data, whether it is publisher data or data from the distribution platform that you partner with.
  • Third party: These are like BlueKai or Nielsen, the behemoths of the data world.

If you package these together, you'll be able to effectively target an audience with little to no waste. If you can understand who reacts to messages and under what circumstances, you can optimize your campaign and replicate your success with other like-minded consumers.

5. Video is hard but it is not impossible.

What good is a video if no one is seeing it? Be smart about your video and activate your campaign by partnering with a trusted company that can help you reach your audience across multiple publishers and platforms. Always identify your KPIs before you begin. Do you want more views, social engagement, a high click-through rate? Once your video is up and running, keep a close eye on the performance and pause it if you're not happy with the results. There are many small adjustments that can be made to optimize the results and give you the most bang for your buck.

Related: The Overlooked Advertising Opportunity Small Businesses Should Not Miss

Alex Debelov

CEO of Virool

Alex Debelov is CEO of Virool, a video distribution platform for marketers.

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