Instagram started out as a graphics-focused and visually-driven platform that, at the time, was different from its text-forward competitors. You could say it was perfectly poised for the new world of video marketing.
Over the last few years, video marketing has continued to rise in popularity and effectiveness, unlike any other methods before it. Platforms like TikTok, YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram have all transitioned into a strong, video-focused delivery system. And the market loves it!
On Instagram, there are no less than five ways to leverage video content as part of your marketing strategy. Whether you’re investing in long-term, organic video marketing or if you’re creating ad campaigns, video is a critical must in today’s online landscape. But it all starts with your objectives and the strategy to meet them.
Set S.M.A.R.T. Objectives for Instagram Video Campaigns
S.M.A.R.T. is a mnemonic acronym that provides a significantly practical framework for creating campaign goals and objectives.
SMART objectives refer to goals that are:
You need to establish a very specific goal that involves a specific number, benchmark, or outcome. This goal must be something that can be tangibly measured and realistically achieved. Your campaign goal should be highly relevant to your overall business vision and big-picture objectives, and it should have an expiration date.
Using these parameters will help you set up an Instagram video marketing campaign that will move the needle on your business and create the success you need to see.
If you need to increase awareness for your brand, collect more followers, and get the word out about who you are, what you do, and why you’re the obvious choice, your campaign should be designed to match. An awareness campaign will have a wide reach with engaging content and may or may not have a call to action.
You’re looking for the maximum amount of post and video views. Conduct detailed market research and learn what your target audience is looking for and create video content to match. Develop a custom hashtag that you can track. Use influencers to promote your videos for you to a specific audience. These are all strong awareness campaign tactics.
To get more of your market to interact with your brand, you need video content designed to increase engagement. An engagement-focused campaign will spark a desired action, such as likes, shares, comments, or follows. These videos should include a clear call to action to move viewers in the right direction.
You’re looking for a strong engagement rate that considers the number of views vs. the number of desired engagements. If your video reaches 1,000 views and receives 50 different types of engagement, that’s a 5% engagement rate. In most cases, this is a respectable number.
To increase traffic to your website, landing page, shop, or other platforms, your campaign must be designed to encourage viewers to leave Instagram. Your video should show them what they’ll find on the other side and why they should click. It must be engaging and inspire action.
Once they leave the platform, ensure what they find matches why they clicked. Remain consistent with visuals and messaging. Encourage them to continue navigating your website or shopping online with other calls to action on your site. Track your rates based on the number of views your video received vs. the number of website visitors you received.
Conversions are the ultimate campaign objective. You’re asking them to make an off-platform commitment of some kind. This could be anything from registrations or lead generation to appointment scheduling or sales.
After they leave Instagram, what you want them to do next should be unmistakably clear. There should be little to no distractions and only confirmation that they’re in the right place, and this is what they should be doing. Keep it simple. If you’re trying to increase sales conversions, don’t send them to your entire storefront but to the product that led them to click.
Track your Instagram video marketing campaign conversions by measuring the amount of traffic you got from Instagram and the number of sales made from that traffic.
8 Tips for Successful Video Marketing
Now that you know what your goals are, you’re ready to create the video content to match. But there’s so much more to it than simply filming. Here are my top 10 tips for creating a successful Instagram video marketing campaign.
1. Scroll And Learn
Study your competitors and professional influencers or content creators. What kinds of videos are they posting? What do their ads look like? You can easily scroll through the Meta ads library and see what video ads have been running for a long period of time. If the advertiser is still paying for the ad, you can have confidence that it’s converting.
Watch for trends that reappear. While trends may be fleeting, the day you see them is the time to jump on them yourself. This takes the stress out of the creative process as you simply participate in the trend with the twist that fits your market and prioritize narrative over gimmicks.
2. Brand Your Videos
This is especially important for awareness campaigns. You want your audience to not just see your content but recognize your brand. To create this effect, include your logo on posts, videos, and stories. Use consistent color themes that match your brand. Create matching or similar thumbnail graphics that give the impression of cohesion and intention.
3. Tell Stories, Don’t Just Sell
While we’d all like to close sales on Instagram, that’s not what the platform is intended to do. Instagram’s primary use objective is community and connection. The best way to maintain this goal in sight while still creating content that is aligned with your campaign goals is to incorporate storytelling.
4. Hook the Audience
You only have 3-5 seconds to connect with your viewers. Your primary message should be front-loaded in your video to keep their attention. Use captions to ensure the message is received even if the sound is off.
5. Engage With The Audience
While you can “Set it and forget it” with your content, this should only be to ensure consistent posting. If you’re trying to build a community, you must engage with comments, likes, and messages. Follow some of your followers and engage with their content too.
6. Create Lively and Exciting Videos
High-quality content results in high-impact engagement. Keep your videos interesting and use transitions or other Instagram video features to enhance their viewing experience. Don’t get too comfortable with the same background, the same setting, or the same filing angle but shake it up.
7. Leverage All of Instagram’s Features
You have so many options to choose from for Instagram videos, from Feed posts and ads, Story posts and ads to Instagram Shops, Reels, and Live Videos. Choose whichever option is best suited to your campaign objectives.
8. Track Performance
If you don’t track your performance, how do you know what works? If you’re objective is engagement, keep an eye on these numbers and make adjustments to your content as needed.
And here’s a bonus tip for you: run ads behind successful organic content to get even more traction.
Launch your Instagram video marketing campaign. Use these tips to create a video campaign that moves the needle in your business.
Author: Torrey Tayenaka, co-founder and CEO of Sparkhouse.