Every brand has a limited marketing budget. As much as we’d like to shower cash on a wide variety of different approaches, the reality for most businesses is that every last penny has to work hard. You have to create content that grabs the attention of your audience, and then convert that attention into purchases, queries and subscriptions. Content that grabs attention and makes you stand out from the crowd without appearing too gimmicky and contrived is the sweet spot where video marketing is concerned. Getting it right takes real skill. When it works, however, the rewards can be great.
One such cost effective strategy for making conversions is video testimonials. In fact, 89% of marketers say they are the single most cost effective content marketing tool.
What is a video testimonial?
Customer endorsements are honest appraisals of your product or service by people who have already used them. They are the principal behind review sites such as Tripadvisor and CheckMyTrade and can have a powerful impact for good, and sometimes ill, on the success of your business. The statistics around online reviews are striking. 93% of people say that online reviews impact on their buying decisions. 91% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. 90% of people take time to read reviews before visiting a business.
You can have more control over the testimonials and reviews you place on your own website and social media channels, and video testimonials take that one step further. When it comes to building trust, seeing someone vouching for the quality of your products and services in person can be incredibly powerful.
A video testimonial features a real person speaking honestly about the experience they had with your brand and the problem you helped them solve.
People prefer video testimonials
Video testimonials are always appealing to customers. Someone who is looking at your social media channel or website and wanting to know more about what you offer will be drawn to video testimonials. When they watch a video testimonial they will be asking themselves, perhaps subconsciously, is this person like me and can I relate to what they are saying? The chances are the person featured in the video testimonial will have something in common with your interested would-be customer. That person is then vouching for what you can provide in an immediate way.
It’s not just ordinary consumers who find video a more immediate and accessible way to consume online content. Time poor senior executives also tend to favour video content. So, if you offer products and services to other businesses your video may need to be tailored slightly differently, but the principle remains the same.
Video testimonials help to build trust and credibility
Word-of-mouth recommendations are recognised as perhaps the single most powerful marketing tool that any business has at its disposal. It’s one reason why review sites are so influential. They may lack the immediacy of someone you know and trust sharing a positive experience with a brand, but they operate on the same principle.
Video testimonials fill a gap between the review sites and the in-person recommendation. They also help the viewer to engage on a personal level. They see the pleasure, relief and happiness of the person in the testimonial video and respond to it emotionally. Our brains are full of what’s known as mirror neurons. These essentially trigger an empathetic response to the emotions of others. It’s the reason why we can get so involved in films and TV. Video testimonials essentially showcase how people felt when they used your product or service and trigger in the viewer a similar response. It may be subtle and go largely unnoticed to the viewer themselves, but it is powerful and can prompt them to act.
Video testimonials are seen as more authentic
Increasingly, consumers are becoming savvy to the manipulation of review sites. They understand that businesses can use them to build trust through the use of fake testimonials. They also increasingly understand the impact that people with an axe to grind can have on the reputation of a local business. Taken together, this is leading to a much more discerning, sometimes even cynical, approach to text reviews.
Video testimonials get around this potential cynicism by showing a customer in the flesh talking animatedly about their experience. This is a real person who is willing to associate their name and face with your brand. The more people you can feature, the greater the impact will be. You might be able to get one person to lie on camera, but how about a dozen? Real customers talking honestly about your products and services can have a real impact.
Videos get shared
Video content is much more likely to be shared than text. This applies to video testimonials as well. Initially, you may find that the people featured in the video are keen to share your content. This immediately acts as a personal recommendation to their social media networks. Make your video testimonials interesting enough and you may find that they take on a life of their own.
Video testimonials are classic social proof
One of the cornerstone texts of modern marketing is Robert Cialdini’s 1984 classic, ‘Influence: Science & Practice’. Social proof is one of the 6 key principles outlined in the book and it relates to how people look for evidence that your brand really is what it says it is. If, for instance, you are building a brand based on trustworthiness, what social proof is available that will prove your brand can be trusted? Video testimonials can act as a social proof. By featuring people in your video testimonials who are reflective of the broader customer base you can strengthen their social proof impact. If you are selling products to the construction industry for instance, your video testimonial should feature a construction buyer from a reputable company.
While we all like to think we are cool-headed and rational, emotional responses play a huge part in our consumer decisions.
Eight Engines can help you create powerful testimonial videos
At Eight Engines we are an experienced Manchester based video production company who give our all for our clients. If you’d like to find out more about how we can help and how video testimonials can give your online marketing a boost, why not get in touch today?