We already know that video can be highly effective marketing strategy; investments in original video by advertisers have increased by 114% in just two years. Big businesses all have advertising on prime time TV and across all social media platforms cementing their brands as household names – but what if you’re a smaller business?

Can video marketing really make that much of a difference? The stats are saying that it can and the good news is that these big businesses have already done the leg-work for you as far as research goes. Here are some tips on what can be learned from the big shots and their huge video marketing campaigns.

Always: ‘Like A Girl’

The prime slot for any advertising campaign is of course the Super Bowl. Always’ ‘Like a Girl’ advert caused a stir there but we can learn just how much video advertising has changed in recent years from what happened after it was first aired.

Before video platforms such as YouTube really took off, all an ad had to do was have a catchy jingle or phrase to be memorable. These days, a successful ad campaign will be something that many people actively seek out to watch independently, not as just something they have to sit through before their TV show. As a result, much more creative and original thought goes into video production now. This means that adverts have the potential to be far more relevant in the long term and will remain embedded in the viewer’s mind in a much more meaningful way.

Always created a video that was bound to provoke discussion. By cleverly shooting a social experiment which highlighted an issue with gender equality, Always delivered a video that was likely to live on in the minds of the viewers. Moreover, the viewers were much more likely to share the advert, ask questions about the content and get into discussions with friends and family than your average TV ad. The potential for further engagement on the internet with a video like this is huge. This particular video now has over 62 million views on YouTube alone. It may have started on television but it reached its potential on the web.

Google Android: ‘Friends Furever’

This was the most-shared video ad of 2015 – and by a long way. It was shared nearly twice as much as the next video on the list. This is an incredibly simple piece of video marketing that shows how important subject matter can be. Android took note of what kind of videos get a lot of views and shares on sites like YouTube and Facebook, in this case lots of cute and cuddly animals in unlikely friendships, and made it work with a tagline that represents their brand. The tagline for this marketing campaign was ‘Be Together. Not the Same.’ 

While industry insiders found a dig at the culture that Apple promotes in this tagline and the Robin Hood soundtrack used in the video, most just saw something cute that they wanted to share. It was shared around 6 and a half million times and has nearly 25 million views on YouTube and since video ads have a higher click-through rate than any other digital format, 1.84%, each of those shares is important. This is a simple strategy that hardly displays original content, but is very effective.

Facebook ‘Tips’ Series

A way of expanding your video marketing presence is to provide ‘How To…’ or ‘Tips’ videos. These can give a unique insight into your company and will help viewers engage with you and your products. Positioning yourself as an expert in your field by making some of these videos will only move towards increasing customer’s faith in your product and company.

Facebook have done this extremely effectively by creating a series of 12 short videos, each about 20 seconds long, in which they explain certain functions of their platform. These videos aim to answer the questions that come up most often from users and focus on simple things such as ‘How to create a group’, ‘How to add a friend to a group’, or ‘How to turn notifications off’. They are presented in the shortest and simplest way possible, highlighting how easy Facebook is to use. 

These videos are an affordable way of developing your YouTube presence so it might be worth having a look at your frequently asked questions and seeing if something similar would be useful for your customers. As well as being able to demonstrate how to get the most out of your product you are showing that you really care about the service you provide your customers even after the original purchase.

These examples have shown that there are some simple guidelines to follow when designing a video marketing campaign that can be successful even on a small budget.  The technology to deliver video to a huge audience is there and the potential for engagement from users is higher than ever. Platforms such as YouTube and Vimeo open up opportunities for smaller companies that can’t afford to distribute their marketing on television. Keeping an eye on the trends and producing simple, yet well targeted videos can be highly effective method of marketing.