Video is the fastest-growing advertising trend, and brands big and small are using it to promote everything from sneakers to, ahem, Squatty Potties.


If a picture is worth a thousand words, how about a video? Analyst Dr. James McQuivey has an answer. According to his estimates, one minute of video equals 1.8 million words.

Video isn’t just efficient. It’s engaging, shareable, memorable and popular—with people and companies. It is the perfect medium for showcasing your brand’s story and voice or for demonstrating the benefits of your products or services with subtle storytelling or overt explainer videos.

 

Now the fastest growing advertising trend, video is a staple in an increasing number of companies’ content marketing strategies. According to a recent infographic from Hyperfine Media, which also includes the aforementioned stat from Dr. McQuivey:

  • Including video on a landing page can increase conversions by 80%
  • Combing video with a full-page ad increases engagement by 22%
  • After watching a video, 64% of users are more likely to buy a product online
  • 65% of executives visit a marketer’s website after seeing a video
  • 80% of users recall a video they viewed in the last 30 days

And the better the video, the better the results. The research also shows that when people enjoy what they watch, their purchase intent increases by 97% and their brand recall by 139%.

Here’s a look at some exceptional examples, including a surprisingly successful video from a creative small business about, how do we say this…pooping.

  • Puppyhood by Purina
  • Purina partnered with Buzzfeed to create a video about a man finding his best friend in an adorable Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy named Chloe. The video has been viewed almost 13 million times, and its popularity led to a series that chronicles the adventures of the charming man/pup duo. The stories are cute, funny and relatable, and Purina expertly works in product placements without compromising the narrative.

  • The Digital Eagles Programme by Barclays
  • The British bank released a series of resources to help people get online and become more comfortable with digital tools, including informational YouTube videos presented in a friendly and fun fashion, free training courses, and how-to guides on everything from using Skype to setting up an e-mail account. In addition to the content, Barclays offered “Tea and Tech” sessions throughout the U.K., in which they invited people to join digital experts for a complimentary beverage and a chance to ask their most pressing tech questions. The content conveys the brand’s commitment to helping customers, and future customers, keep up with the times.

  • “25,915 Days” by Reebok
  • You won’t hear a single spoken word, but Reebok’s message is clear: Life is short, live every day to the fullest. The title, 25,915 days, is a nod to the lifespan of the average person. Life’s journey is encapsulated by a woman’s ongoing relationship with running. The video, made all the more powerful by the music choice (Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats - I Need Never Get Old) makes you want to get up and do something. And in case you are unsure how much time you have left to do so, the video links to a landing page where you can estimate your remaining days, which is not actually as morbid as it sounds.

  • “A Hair-raising Message” by The Barcancer Foden
  • To raise awareness about children’s cancer, The Barcancer Foden created a captivating and heart-wrenching metro station ad based on a well-known campaign from Apolosophy by Apotek, a shampoo brand. You have to watch the surprising parody to really understand its effectiveness. And you won’t be the only one. The YouTube video has been viewed more than 12 million times. Its viral nature helped the foundation expand it fundraising efforts far beyond a single train station.

  • “World’s Toughest Job” by American Greetings
  • Spoiler alert: The toughest job in the world is being a mother. American Greetings’s production is a viral sensation, in part because it took viewers by surprise. The video chronicles real job interviews with candidates who responded to a fake job post.  The candidates scoff at the demanding nature of the position (Unlimited hours? No breaks?!), then get emotional when they realize those outrageous job requirements are those of a mother. The teachable moment for marketers is to elicit emotion and to consider a plot twist.

  • “French Kiss” by Marriott Hotels
  • We got to speak directly with Marriott’s Vice President of Global Creative & Content Marketing David Beebe about the hotel conglomerate’s expansive content marketing program. “French Kiss” is a short movie about a business traveler’s love story in Paris. It has been viewed more than 6.1 million times on You Tube and proves that Marriott understands the importance of the soft sell. There are no unnatural brand references here. Rather, the video conveys the magic of travel and the merits of Marriot by showing, not telling.

  • “The Unicorn Changed the Way I Poop” by Squatty Potty
  • You don’t have to be a huge company to use video in your content marketing. Squatty Potty proved that in a big way by showcasing the science behind its product in a bizarrely convincing video about a unicorn crapping out soft-serve ice cream (because how else do you make it okay to talk about bowel movements?). The video raises awareness about the problem the product solves while making you LOL all the way through. The best news is the video worked. The brand reports it increased online sales by 600 percent and retail sales at Bed Bath and Beyond by 400 percent. Nothing shitty about that.

Mediaplanet can help brands of all sizes create videos to showcase their products in creative ways, a la the pooping unicorn, or with more professional and traditional tactics, a la this recent video project we just wrapped up in Germany. Give us a call, and we can talk about which strategy is best for your needs.