native videoAs a small business, the emergence of native video can only be a good thing. Being able to add branded video content to the likes of Facebook and Twitter directly makes it potentially much easier to engage with your target audience. Of course, you have to cut through the noise of everything else being posted, so the pressure is on to produce quality content to gain attention. But if you can do that, native video can be another powerful addition to your marketing toolkit, a way of showing your brand personality and enabling people to get to know you better – and customers absolutely respond to the more human aspects of a business and love digesting content through the video format,

So how do you go about using native video?

Here are 9 ways to get you started…

1. Give your followers a behind-the-scenes peak at your business, perhaps you can explain a process from beginning to end, something that will give your audience greater appreciation of what is involved in your business.

2. Show an interesting aspect about what you do or introduce a key member of staff.

3. Share the story of your brand, give people the opportunity to believe in the brand and the confidence to buy from you.

4. Use video content created by your clients/customers that promote your service or product – brand advocacy is potent and highly influential.

5. Create some excitement or anticipation around a new product or service you’re about to launch.

6. ;Demonstrate how your product or service has been of benefit to a particular client or customer – even better if you can arrange to record an interview with them.

7. Promote seasonal offers with a fun video.

8. Planning a presentation? Give clients a sneak preview of what’s in store if they attend.

9. Ask your audience what they want to know and respond to those questions (without getting involved with trolls, of course).

And where should you use native video?

Amazingly, Twitter is no longer about well chosen words! Using the Periscope app you can create a video up to 30 seconds in length and link it effortlessly to your Twitter account. The statistics are fairly basic – including the amount of viewers, how many replayed your video, how many hearts (likes) your video has received – but helpful in assessing how successfully you’re reaching your audience. You can use the Meerkat app as well, but you don’t get the same stats. And given that Twitter owns Periscope it’s fairly obvious which app is better supported.

Native video on Facebook has pretty much gone through the roof, with several billion views every day. Not surprisingly, it’s a really good way to connect with your audience. Meerkat seems to be better integrated with Facebook and allows users to watch streams directly on this platform.

Quickly adopted by teens since it was launched in 2011, Snapchat is a fun messaging app where video can be shared but can only be viewed for up to 10 seconds before disappearing. You might wonder what is the point, but there is nothing quite so potent as creating a sense of urgency, that ‘miss this and you’ll miss out’ moment. Yes, it can take a bit of getting used to, but given that in May 2014, 700 million photos/videos were sent per day via Snapchat, there is a vast audience out there – just think about how Facebook has been adopted across all age groups.

Twitter Vine
Short on time? Twitter Vine is a mobile service that lets you capture and share short looping videos. Like Tweets, the brevity of videos on Vine (6 seconds or less) demands creativity. It can capture motion and sound and gives you a useful platform to capture a fleeting moment by video and use to build your brand. Great for behind the scenes action. Vine is currently available only on the iPhone and iPod touch from the App Store.

Have you found ways of making native video work for your business? It’d be great to hear your success stories!