Seeing is Believing: Video Marketing for Nonprofits

According to Digital Sherpa, the average internet user is exposed to about 32.2 videos per month. Compare this to the amount of text average internet users are exposed to, and it’s easy to see how videos can help you stand out more effectively. Their findings also show that 80% of online visitors will watch a video, while only 20% will actually read content in its entirety.

Why it Works

Aside from these telling statistics, why is video marketing such a powerful tool? There are a few things videos do better than other kinds of content, like text or photos.
1. They give more context. If potential supporters stumble upon your Facebook page and like it, this is the first step to engagement. However, they still know little about who you are and what you are trying to achieve. Videos give viewers access to employee personalities, volunteer experiences, your global or local impact, and anything else you choose to include.
2. They’re direct. When you see a billboard, you may not feel compelled to act based on its message. Much like social media statuses, billboards are posted up for the world to see. While the same goes for videos, you have a unique opportunity to speak directly to each viewer, even if thousands of viewers watch the video. Basically, videos feel more like human interactions than anonymous ads.
3. They serve as icebreakers. One of the best things about video marketing (and probably one of the biggest reasons it works) is that it doesn’t seem like marketing. There’s no need to try to squeeze donations out of viewers, or intensely reiterate why they should care about your message. You’re simply breaking the ice by letting them in on some interesting aspects of your nonprofit. By doing this, you naturally attract those who are interested in supporting you. Videos can even be informative and beneficial to the viewer, which will let them know you are trustworthy and worth their time.

How to Utilize Video Marketing

Getting your video marketing up to snuff isn’t rocket science. You just need to remember a few things and put yourself in the viewers shoes.
First, viewers aren’t looking for stiff, ultra-professional content. They’re looking to get to know you. So focus your videos on areas in which it is easy to be both enthusiastic and casual. If a certain program isn’t going great, focus on another that will inspire people. Don’t worry about developing a script or analyzing every second of your video. People are most intrigued by videos that offer a conversational, down-to-earth tone.
If you’re serious about video marketing, you’ll want to work out a schedule so that viewers will know when to expect your content. It doesn’t have to be constant, but it should be often enough that your audience remembers you since the last video. Social media platforms are now including video apps to make sharing easier. Twitter uses Vine, and Instagram now has a video feature as well. Even cell phones can be used to record videos if better technology is not available. It’s also a good idea to designate the task to a particular staff member or group that thoroughly understands content marketing.
So now that you’ve considered the benefits of video marketing, consider how you can incorporate it into your marketing plan. Think not in terms of what you’d like to advertise, but in what your audience would be most interested in learning about your nonprofit. By doing this, your videos will create a new avenue for your nonprofit to engage people more directly.

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