Email marketing has resurfaced as one of the most effective ways to reach audiences. While many companies spend entire budgets trying to improve their social media presence and get heard above the noise, email campaigns offer a more personalized and direct approach, even when it comes to new audiences.
That being said, nobody likes spam. The current rise of newsletters as an informative and entertainment medium has proven that audiences are drawn to receiving content that’s not just interested in selling or promoting something.
And here is where the video comes in.
By pairing your email campaign with a video marketing strategy, you’re getting the best of both worlds by delivering valuable and engaging content straight to your customer’s mailbox.
In this piece, I’m going to guide you through the necessary steps you need to take to boost your email campaigns with video. We’ll see how to choose the right type of video for your newsletters, what are some of the best tips and tricks used by the pros, and much more.
Well, I’m glad you asked.
As you probably know, time is one of the most precious goods of the digital landscape. And video is the most efficient form of communication, cramming large amounts of information into just a few seconds of animation.
Plus, video is the king of engagement. You see it everywhere, from binge-able content and video tutorials to the recent popularity of streaming platforms such as Twitch and Tik Tok. Video is the preferred format of content for all kinds of audiences.
Marketers have been using the virtues of video content on their email campaigns for a while now, and the results speak for themselves:
- Including the word “video” in email subject lines has been found to increase open rates by 19% and reduce unsubscribes by 25%.
- Adding a video to your email can improve click rates up to 300%.
Choosing the Right Type of Video for Your Message
There’s at least one type of video for each of your marketing needs. So, you should start by determining your campaign‘s main goal and then work with a production team to create a piece designed to achieve it.
Here are some of the most effective type of videos for your email campaign:
New Product or Service Reveal
Newsletters are a way of showing your subscribers what you’ve been up to, and there’s no better news to share with them than the launch of a brand-new product or service. This comes in the form of a product video or demo that showcases your creation’s most important features and characteristics.
A great idea is to include your subscribers in the pre-launch phase of your campaign. That way, they get an exclusive treat before anyone else. This tactic can be especially useful for small businesses that are looking to build a loyal customer base and for brands that want to benefit from word-of-mouth marketing.
At the beginning of this article, I mentioned how audiences demand valuable content from the brands they follow, and no other type of video is more helpful than the explainer video. Just as the product video centers around the features of your product, the explainer video focuses on the benefits of your product and how it can better the lives of your customers.
Explainers are short animated pieces that usually don’t go over the 90-second mark. But suppose you need a long-form video that guides users through a lengthy process. In that case, you might want to consider making a series of tutorials or how-to videos that give specific and clear instructions on how to install your product or use it properly.
Many marketers make the mistake of talking way too much. But isn’t it more effective to let your happy customers do the promoting for you? Customer stories are honest and heartful testimonials from the people you’ve helped along the way. And what better way to deliver these powerful stories than directly to your leads’ inboxes?
Customer stories are at adding a real human face to your brand, humanizing your company, and making your customers trust you more. After all, people trust other people, as simple as that. Make sure your testimonial feels as honest as possible.
Promoting events through email just makes sense: it’s like delivering an invitation right to someone’s mailbox. And what better way to get your audience excited than with a stunning video.
Your vid doesn’t need to be lengthy; just an intriguing animation with your event’s date and location will do most of the time. If it’s a regular sort of event, you can also create a recap of last year’s edition to attract those on-the-fence attendees.
The Three Golden Rules for Using Video on Your Email Campaign
Like with any other marketing strategy, there are plenty of ways to approach using videos on your emails to great effect. However, that’s not the same to say that some practices and principles don’t tend to outperform others!
Here are some we recommend following.
1) Don’t Embed Video on Your Email
One of the most common first-timer mistakes is to think you should embed your video on your email, just like you do on your landing page. But if you’re subscribed to a couple of newsletters, you’ll notice that most of them rather use a thumbnail linked to the video hosted online. This is because many email clients often don’t support the technical requirements needed to play a video right inside the email.
But if you think this is a limitation, then turn that frown upside down. Think about it: instead of making your audience watch a video within the email itself, you can direct them to a landing page where they can watch the video and visit your online store next (or any other specific action).
2) An Attractive Thumbnail Can Make the Difference
Using a thumbnail is the most practical form of ensuring your subscribers will watch your video regardless of the device or email platform they use. So, it’s time to design an attractive thumbnail that intrigues your audience! There are a couple of ways to do this:
· Use a static picture with a play button
This is the easiest way. You can simply use a screencap of your video and insert a play button right at the center of the picture so that your audience knows it’s linked to a video.
· Use a short GIF of your video
GIFs are the closest thing next to actually uploading your video, giving the illusion of video but with the key difference that they are well-supported across email clients. And even though some platforms like Outlook 2013 and Windows 10 don’t play GIFs, they’ll show the first frame of your GIF as a static image.
Extra pro tip: Keep your thumbnail below 200KB, or below 1MB if you’re using GIFs. There’s a chance your email will be identified as spam if it contains heavy attachments.
3) Place Your Video Below the Copy
Before embedding your thumbnail, make sure you write a brief introduction. It doesn’t need to be too long, just a few words to introduce your piece. Formatting is super important in emails. A message with just a picture will look like spam.
The global lockdown has made many companies rethink the way they connect with their audience. Now more than ever, audiences demand valuable content from the brands they support, and an email campaign that uses video can do that.
The pandemic has also taught us how unforeseeable the future is and how things can change from one second to the next. While this article provides a comprehensive guide, it’s up to you to start figuring out what your own audience likes and dislikes, and what type of emails and videos are going to strengthen that bond. I wish you the bests of luck.