Video is the new darling of consumers and social media advertising. The rise of TikTok spurred Instagram and YouTube to expand their video options. Consumer love videos, from the shorts you find on some social media platforms to full tutorials and deep dives most often found on YouTube.
Video content empowers consumers to enjoy the information they want, when and where they want it. If a car owner wants to learn how to change the oil in their 2021 Mazda CX-5, a quick search on YouTube will deliver a tutorial they can watch, stop, replay, and follow.
Shoppers increasingly rely on videos to help them sort through the products and services on the market. At least 40% of shoppers watch videos from a specific brand as part of their decision process.
This article shares current and upcoming social media marketing trends in 2023, so your business can stay ahead of the curve.
Video Marketing Is Growing Fast
Online video consumption has been growing steadily for years, but during and after COVID, it’s begun to reach a critical mass. If you’re unsure if video marketing should be an essential part of your social media strategy, here are some statistics, summarized by Oberlo, to put it into perspective:
- 80% of shoppers have purchased software or app after watching a company’s video
- 91% of people want to see more video content from companies
- More than half (66%) of people watching videos on a social media platform prefer short-form videos
- Of video marketers who use video, 92% report a good ROI
- 82% of internet traffic worldwide came from video streaming and downloads in 2022
What Can Social Media Videos Do for Your Business?
Video is a highly engaging, highly consumable form of content. Whether on Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, YouTube, or another social media platform, videos from your business reach consumers to do the following:
- Improve traffic and lead generation
- Increase brand awareness
- Increase sales
- Decrease support calls
- Improve how well prospects and customers understand your products and services
Here are the key social media trends for 2023:
1. User-Generated Video Content Is Key
Whether it’s actually generated by a user or created by the brand to emulate user-generated content (UGC), videos that feature a real person who has experience with your product or service are engaging and effective. Consumers like to hear about how they use the product or service and its impact on their lives.
UGC can follow a testimonial format or follow the user as they demonstrate your product or service in action in their lives. This type of video content feels authentic to users. It helps them get familiar with the product or service, answer questions that may delay their purchase, and imagine using it in their lives.
A study by Stackla reports that 90% of consumers consider authenticity an important factor and are 2.4 times more likely to consider UGC content authentic when compared to branded content.
2. Multiple Social Platforms Are Needed to Reach Your Audience
Social media platforms and the audience you reach on each continue to evolve. For example, since its 2016 launch, TikTok’s audience has skewed younger. It is still predominately 18 to 35-year-olds, but a higher percentage of older adults are adopting it.
If you were to focus solely on Facebook or Instagram, you would miss out on a base of potential customers. At least 40% of TikTok users do not have a Facebook account.
Whether you are using a social media advertising strategy or growing your audiences organically, it’s generally better to focus on one or two platforms at a time and then add additional platforms as you master each one. The exception to this strategy is if you have a big team that can consistently create and format content for each platform.
Videos are relatively easy to repurpose across platforms. The length and dimension requirements can change depending on your social media channel. Still, if you want to impact the social media space, you need to engage users on every platform heavily used by your target demographic.
3. Educational and Informational Videos Build Loyal Fans
According to Think With Google, “how to” is one of the top four categories on YouTube. People turn to video content to learn new things, understand how your products and services are used and how they can benefit from them.
Watching a video is often easier to learn than reading a blog or listening to a recording. Particularly if there is a demonstration, video is a superior learning format. Educational videos don’t have to be boring. People learn more quickly when they are entertained and engaged.
The keys to creating effective “how to” video content are the following:
- Decide on a single product or service as the subject of the video.
- Ask yourself, and maybe your sales and customer service teams, about burning questions prospects have about this product or service.
- Plan the scope of the video and the content you want to share. Pick a fairly singular focus for each video.
- Create a script. It doesn’t have to be word-for-word, but an organized script will prevent you from leaving out crucial material.
Educational content lets shoppers get to know your brand while they investigate their purchase options. It establishes your company as an authority in the field, solving your audience’s pain points and making your team and brand approachable. Education builds trust and delivers value before and after the (first) sale.
4. Social Commerce
Social commerce, or eCommerce on social media, is a growing trend. Every social media platform is continually refining its eCommerce capabilities.
For example, on Instagram, consumers can purchase items from participating businesses without leaving the platform. TikTok has continued to enhance its eCommerce capabilities. It now includes shoppable ads and livestream shopping videos.
What does this mean for businesses that are active on social media? Social media is growing from a top funnel activity, where you build brand awareness and community, to an all-funnel activity. Some of your social media videos can target people ready to buy.
5. Bring Prospects and Customers Behind the Scenes
While not new, behind-the-scenes videos are becoming more popular with marketers and audiences. They are an effective way to build connections, offer valuable information, and develop the customer-brand relationship.
Behind-the-scenes videos can be very engaging because you’re letting viewers in on things they might not otherwise see. You can use these videos to do any of the following:
- A Day in the life of your brand
- Introduce a team member, maybe with an interview
- Invite viewers into the planning or production process
- Share your brand story
- Bring viewers through some of the challenges your brand faced and overcame
Behind-the-scenes videos create an authentic, approachable feel. They invite viewers into the company and present the people and process that makes the products and services happen.
6. Live Video and Virtual Events Remain Popular
Virtual events allow people to gather based on interests rather than proximity. It’s a powerful tool for marketers, who can use live video to gain better engagement rates than pre-recorded videos. Additionally, live events can be repurposed into social media video content.
Live videos allow businesses to do all of the following:
- Share an in-person live event with followers who cannot attend
- Share the development journey or launch of a new product or service
- Host interviews with influencers, industry experts, and thought leaders
- Take followers behind the scenes
- Answer audience questions
The biggest strength of live videos is the ability to interact in real time with engaged prospects and customers.
7. Search-Optimized Videos
Video marketing is getting more popular, and social media platforms are increasingly saturated with video content. To stand out, it’s essential to optimize each video for SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Including this step as you publish each video ensures that users searching for your content can find it.
To optimize your videos for search, use relevant search terms in your:
- Video title
Create custom, high-quality video thumbnails rather than allowing the platform to choose a generic one for you. You can add text to your thumbnail, but keep it to a few large, bold words that are easy to read, even on a mobile phone.
Include transcripts for videos you post on your website. While you can host your videos on YouTube or Vimeo and embed them into your website, don’t use the same video in different spots. Make each video unique.
8. Repurpose Your Video Content
Whether you use a professional editing team or in-house software to produce your videos, repurposing the same video content is getting easier every year for different platforms.
You cannot simply publish a single video and post it everywhere. YouTube requires horizontal videos for long-form content and a vertical format, similar to TikTok’s, for its new ‘shorts’ channel.
In addition to format changes, you may not want the same video length on each channel. Repurposing requires some work and thought, but it’s much simpler than making separate videos for different platforms.
A single long-form video or recorded live event can be transformed into:
- A podcast
- A blog post
- Shortform video content for TikTok, YouTube shorts, or Facebook and Instagram stories
- A carousel — capturing stills from the video to highlight important points
- A teaser with a length to the full video on YouTube or your website
Repurposing video content allows you to develop your presence across multiple platforms, even with a relatively small team.
9. Influencers Remain Important
Who does your audience admire? What other brands or individuals besides yours do they subscribe to?
Teaming up with influencers gives you access to their audience. It also lends your brand a familiar face and name, building on credibility.
After all, influencers had to understand their audience to build a substantial following and keep them engaged. When you partner with the right influencer for your brand, the combined audience sees your company through a new lens.
Video Marketing is No Longer Optional
Video marketing is not a replacement for paid search advertising or email marketing, but it is a growing part of the digital marketing landscape, especially on social media platforms. If your brand is not currently using video, think about how to use the format to engage with and offer value to your customers.
If you have any questions about the best social media platforms for your business or how to drive more traffic to your website, our team of experts is here to help.