Video Marketing in 2017
It’ll be about interactivity and analytics.

Gary Vaynerchuk constantly iterates that marketing is about “following where consumer attention is going.” Today, consumer attention is focused on video. In 2015, digital video surpassed social media as the top online activity for US adults. Adults spent on average 115 minutes consuming digital video content, versus the 104 minutes per day spent on social media. This represents a 34% increase since 2011, signifying the rapid growth of video over the past decade. We already live in a digital age where video is king.

What these signals mean for marketers is that deploying video marketing is no longer icing on the cake reserved for large corporations with big teams and marketing budgets — it has become a necessity for companies of all sizes that wish to stay relevant.

This boom in video is a double-edged sword for marketers. With more and more video content being published online than ever before, there is mounting competition for consumer attention. You have to able to differentiate your content from that of your competitors. Posting that one-off trimmed video of your CEO speaking at a conference to YouTube, sharing it on social media, and praying for views simply won’t cut it anymore.
Interactive Videos

That is why we believe interactive videos are the future. By allowing the audience to interact with the content in the video, interactive videos take viewer engagement to a whole new level. That increased viewer engagement can be the X-factor that differentiates your content.

How this new technology works is through injecting different interactive components on top of a video. For example, when a video references a certain product, a button can appear in the upper right corner that links you to a site with more info about the product. Or, when the narrator in a video asks a question like “What current cleaning products do you use?” and the video pauses automatically, waiting for the user to choose from a list of cleaning products that hovers right over the video. Recently, the Consumer Electronics Association released deployed interactive video to advertise their well attended International Consumer Electronics Show (CES). They overlaid interactive components directly over their videos, like presenting conference schedules and hotel options. And here’s an another example of basic interactive content in action.

Why is interactive content the future? Think back to one of the overarching goals of marketing — to communicate with potential customers and understand their needs and goals. Communication in marketing is supposed to be a dialogue between marketers and customers, but traditional video marketing has been more like a monologue rather than a dialogue. Save for the comment section and likes, viewers haven’t been able to communicate with marketers through the video and share their more info about themselves. The shift towards interactive content is making video marketing what it should be: a dialogue.

Moving forward, it’ll also be interesting to see how interactive video content plays out on mobile, especially since that’s where consumer attention is shifting. 46% of video content is played on a mobile device. With smaller screen sizes and different input sensors (touchscreen vs mouse), smartphones and tablets may call for different ways to interact with the video content than current methods.
Analytics

Interactive videos also create new opportunities for companies to better understand the customers and the market. Looking at those poll results mentioned earlier, a company like Clorox can determine what their most popular cleaning products viewers use are and who their major competitors for a certain product line are. And, from the other example, you can determine how a future product might be received by different customer segments, based on how frequently viewers from each segment click on the “more info” button.

Catalyzed by more sources of data like those collected from interactive elements, analytics for video marketing will continue to evolve from measuring impressions to measuring ROI in 2017. Over the past few years, we have been moving away from views and comments as the main KPIs to more granular data, like the duration viewers spend on a video or the actions they take after viewing your content (ie: visiting your landing page). Insights like this help you prove the impact that video has in achieving your business goals, from lead generation to lead nurture.

So what are they key takeaways? TLDR: In 2017, video marketing is about advanced analytics and interactivity.

If you still don’t have a game plan for video marketing, the time is now. But, don’t panic to find the budget for a marketing agency, productions studio, and a video marketing team. Fortunately in 2017, you no longer need Fortune 500 marketing budgets to deploy video marketing campaigns. Current video marketing services and tools enable a lone marketer to produce quality video content with interactive components and quickly deploy effective campaigns. It’s not too late to start leveraging video to deliver business value.

This article originally appeared here.