Generating Leads With Your Online Video Marketing

Online video marketing is not just a bunch of flash and movement that translates into nothing, it’s a viable way to promote your business and generate leads. Stop thinking about the stereotypes of online video, from stupid cat videos on YouTube to overtly fluffy art films on Vimeo, and look at the opportunity you have to connect with an audience.

This article is going to look at how you can connect with people through online video, and how you can drive them to your website to become leads.

Online video lead generation tactics

First: Think of it as social media

This is true for every video platform out there. Vimeo, Vine, YouTube, and even Dailymotion are all social media platforms in their way. Think of your video as your ‘status update,’ and the comments below as replies from your followers, friends, and fans.

That means that effective online video use is a conversation you’re having with people who are interested in you, your business, and your content.

One of the best examples of this conversation is the LEGO Creator series of videos. It’s a direct moment for the creators to speak with the fans about their products, and the fans respond:

That video has over 524,000 views, and with that LEGO have over 524,000 opportunities to sell that product. If you watch the video in YouTube you’ll see many comments from engaged fans who are participating in the conversation started by LEGO.

Views are great. We all love getting more views, and learning how to get them. But don’t forget how important it is to make your audience feel like they’re engaged with your brand. To feel like they’re even a part of your brand, just like your social media accounts should be doing. This is how you’ll truly generate leads, and lifelong fans that will remain leads. You can learn a lot from other social profile stats to build on for your video plan too.

Create content, not ads

When I am using YouTube, like many others, it’s because I’m tired of the TV format. I really only ever watch TV for live sports and the odd episode of (the old) Top Gear. Why is this? Mostly because I’m tired of there being so many ads! And I’m clearly not alone in preferring YouTube over TV.

What truly defines a brand successful at generating leads using online video is how they approach the content they make. Unless it’s the Super Bowl, TV ads are done. The style of content which worked there doesn’t work on YouTube. The whole point of TV ads were that you had to watch them to watch your show …but all forms of online video are just one click away from never being watched.

Instead you need to create content people want to watch. You’re setting up your own TV channel now, and you had better find a way to make your brand entertaining. Nike get it in this Vimeo clip:


It’s entertaining, it’s over 5 minutes long, and everyone is wearing Nike. Red Bull have ‘gotten it’ for years now on their action sports channel:

I’m sure that many of you reading this remember the video above, with its Red Bull branding all over it. This entertainment edge is something you have to acknowledge in your online video. If it isn’t entertaining, or useful, or informative, or adding value to the lives of your viewers …one click and they’re somewhere else.

Calls to action mobilize your leads

Ok, so online video has to be treated like social media, and it needs to be entertaining. What’s in it for you, besides instances like LEGO’s example, as someone who wants to make some sales happen? It’s all going to be in your calls to action when the time is right.

The types of calls to action which can work on YouTube include phrases like:

  • Go to our website to learn more.
  • Buy now and use this exclusive YouTube/Vimeo/Vine coupon code.
  • Our blog can tell you more.
  • Share this on social media to enter the contest.

Each of these involves the user choosing to take action after you tell them what it is they need to do. Each one is also a bit value added, either giving more information, a coupon, or the chance to enter a contest. There are still a number of different ways your call to action can work. Watch how many calls to action Vat19 use in this video:

Auditory calls to action, visual calls to action, and if you go to the YouTube video there’s a call to action in the description. You have to be considerate with your calls to action, the content and the entertainment still need to be the focus. The lesson is to use your calls to action at the right time, not all the time..

Branding with images in all the right places

Sorry, but online video isn’t 100% about video only! Your images still count, and in certain places they can count for a lot. Every online video platform is slightly different as to how and where they allow you to use images, but the basics are:

  • Some sort of profile image.
  • A header image, or large display image for when people are on your channel.
  • Thumbnail images which show before people press play.

Profile images are pretty much universal. They’re small, square, and usually feature your logo. You can’t put too much into them as they usually display quite small. You can’t really use them for much more than branding, like how Dunkin Donuts keeps it to the DD logo and that’s it:


Your most important image may be your header image. These are on YouTube and Vimeo, and you need to put some serious time and thought into what you’re going to do with them.

Let’s look at 2 examples of header images that will help with lead generation and making sales. First there’s Marvel telling people what their publishing schedule is so that people know when to come back and watch new content:


Then there’s the mighty, mighty Arsenal letting everyone know that the new kit is on sale:


I already stopped by the Emirates and picked up mine. If I hadn’t, this would have given me a push to do so!

Those are the two basic ways to use your header images: Either tell people your content schedule, or tell them your one most important piece of sales information.

Thumbnails are a bit more flexible, but every online video platform has its own version. A little text goes a long way towards explaining what the video is about more than the title can, like these videos on Vimeo:


Or you can go a little bit more colorful and eye-popping like these examples from YouTube’s own =3 Studios did with consistent text, some creative image creation, their logo, and a photo that wasn’t taken with a cameraphone:


They branded that show very well. When you brand a show very well it indirectly impacts your lead generation as people have an easier time remembering your show, to watch it, and to be exposed to your sales push.

Online video for lead generation

Online video has grown well beyond its old stigma of being for bored teenagers and silly cat videos (watched by bored teenagers). It is now a viable platform for finding new customers, generating leads, driving people to your website, and really making some more money online.

Follow the best practices above, be consistent with the content you create so that you build an audience, and don’t stop using smart calls to action to direct the behaviour you want to impact.

Matthew is the wrtier for the blog. You will find him there on Fridays analyzing the latest happenings in the social media world, or you can follow the @Devumi Gorilla on Twitter for updates all day, everyday!

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