Chat Factory's Jodene Shaer and speaker at Madex 2019 (#TheOriginalMarketingExpo). Picture: SUPPLIED/SPECIALISED EXHIBITIONS
Chat Factory's Jodene Shaer and speaker at Madex 2019 (#TheOriginalMarketingExpo). Picture: SUPPLIED/SPECIALISED EXHIBITIONS

Social video content continues to explode, especially vertical video, which is created to be viewed in portrait mode, where the image is taller than it is wide. This is because people mostly hold their smartphones vertically to scroll and tap through stories.

“If, as a brand, you have not yet embraced social video to communicate with your customers, do it now,” says Jodene Shaer, co-owner of social media company Chat Factory and a speaker at this year’s Madex 2019 (#TheOriginalMarketingExpo).

“Video content is becoming a vital part of the algorithms across the networks. It is also becoming increasingly difficult to get away with a last-minute social media campaign or simply posting images and a stolen quote and expecting large engagement,” says Shaer.

“The social networks have started to shift more emphasis and heavier visibility onto video, and soon it’s going to be the only medium that will stand you a chance to reach your audience at all.”

Although social networks, as well as fantastic apps for creativity and editing, are available to all, even the best software can make a story fall flat. The reason is that consumers can spot a fake faster than a socialite can point out a counterfeit luxury handbag.

“To attract consumers’ attention and get them to truly engage with and trust your brand, you need to be genuine. Luckily, this is another plus for using social video: if done right, video can clearly communicate your authenticity,” says Shaer.

Keep it real

Perfection does not make us human. Perfection and zero faults are what we look for in robotics and computer programmes. Traits such as empathy, passion, humour and frailty make us human. Ironically, it’s often through showing imperfections that trust is created among consumers, as opposed to a super-polished and (very expensive) edited campaign video.

It’s the video that speaks to someone’s humanity that is the one that will be the most shared. Building trust online is tough, which is why connecting on a personal level is important.

Opportunely, this is another bonus for social video communication. In the world of social networks, everyone has a chance to succeed. Social video is a medium that levels the playing field for large corporations, small businesses and everyone in between.

Small businesses can, for example, target the same audience as big brands. Also, consumers are savvy and can quickly differentiate between real and advert, which means the “real” leads to sales as much as, if not more than, the blatant advert. It’s a matter of who did it best and not who had the biggest budget.

In this context, if video killed the radio star, then it can also be foreseen that the social network storefront – be it on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter or LinkedIn – is quickly killing the display window of a brand’s website, with more and more consumers first either checking out or being lured in by a brand’s social media presence.

Of particular advantage to businesses is that social networks allow brands to know their customer is “walking through the door”. According to TechCrunch, one in five Instagram Stories shared by a brand receive a direct reply.

The opening line

“When trying to figure out where to start with video content, take the gentler route and turn to Instagram Stories and the growing Facebook Stories platforms. Playing around with short videos and filters allows for short bursts of creative video content. Remember, there is no expectation of the perfect video, thanks to the demand of authentic storytelling and the consumer’s call for behind-the-scenes content and real-life brand experiences,” says Shaer.

Perhaps you’d like to promote an event, introduce your team, demo a product or answer a frequently asked question? To begin with, always be yourself, be confident and speak naturally, and own your usual surroundings and imperfections – don’t stage it.

Design your templates to match your brand voice and personality – know your type, so to say. Perhaps you’d even like to add a sticker, caption, voiceover or soundtrack to the mix.

Most importantly, though, make the switch to social video today. Social networks move fast.

To hear more words of wisdom from Shaer, as well as the more than 50 on-point topics under discussion within the two Madex seminar theatres - The Fundamentals and The Marketing Academy, register to attend Madex 2019 by visiting www.madex.co.za.

  • For more information on this year’s incredible range of speakers who will gather at Madex to share their insights into the world of marketing, click here.
  • Madex 2019 takes place on June 5 and 6 2019 at Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg. Entrance cost is R50 online or R100 at the show, giving you access to all of this content, the interactive exhibition floor, giveaways, competitions, the colour-in wall, the new products display and more.
  • Madex 2019 is co-located with Africa’s premier promotional product expo, Markex. This by-invite-only expo celebrates its 32nd edition in 2019 and showcases the best and latest in the highly targeted promotional product space.

Join the Madex WhatsApp broadcast list to receive the latest in show news. You can also download the Madex app from the App Store or Google Play to have all the show updates and highlights at your fingertips.

Contact Natasha Heiberg at Specialised Exhibitions Montgomery on +27 11 835 1565, email info@madex.co.za or visit www.madex.co.za.

This article was paid for by Specialised Exhibitions.