Marketing professionals are always looking for that extra edge to give their campaigns some momentum. One way to do that is to build strong brand awareness for your products. Another is to generate more (and better) leads for sales teams. To that end, marketers must know how to leverage digital channels to reach their key audiences, and that means mastering the ins and outs of Facebook and YouTube, among the biggest and most influential of all.
Booming Markets for Businesses
We all know that Facebook is big on the consumer side, with billions of users worldwide providing ample opportunity for marketers. But Facebook is huge for businesses too. More than 70 million businesses are now using Facebook pages, and more than 5 million businesses are actively using paid advertising on Facebook. Meanwhile, more than 95 percent of social media marketers say that Facebook delivers the best ROI among social networks. That’s a powerful testimonial to Facebook’s reach and influence across markets.
As for YouTube, which now has 1.5 billion users, the video platform has never been more popular with businesses and consumers. According to Hootsuite, more than half of U.S. marketers run YouTube video ads, and 62 percent say they plan to increase their YouTube video spend in the next 12 months. Moreover, YouTube now accounts for 27 percent of digital ad spend share among U.S. senior marketers. These are compelling numbers for any business that wants to connect with their prospects and customers on the most pervasive online platforms.
The Growing Importance of Video Marketing
YouTube is the well-known king in the video space, but Facebook also touts huge growth in videos used for marketing purposes. Facebook users now watch 100 million hours of video every day, more than 65 percent of which take place on mobile devices, according to Hootsuite. Product-related videos are becoming one of the strongest tools businesses use to grow awareness of their product lines. According to Hubspot, 90 percent of users say product videos are helpful in their decision-making process. And companies using video enjoy 41 percent more web traffic from search than non-users. And now, live streaming is continuing its rise in popularity among users. Last year Forbes reported that 80 percent of consumers would rather watch a live video from a brand than read a blog, and 82 percent would prefer live video to written social media updates. Marketing teams now have multiple options on the two biggest video platforms to raise awareness and generate leads.
Targeting Business Audiences
The user base on Facebook is becoming increasingly appealing to B2B marketers, as 77 percent of U.S. adults with at least some education now use Facebook, compared with 56 percent of those who have a high school education or less. Facebook users are also fiercely loyal to the platform, 71 percent of whom visit the site every day (vs. 51 percent of Instagram users who do). And when it comes to targeting and reaching business decision makers, Facebook is the platform of choice. Business decision makers are twice as likely to be daily users and are 40 percent more likely to have more than 200 friends, which makes them excellent conduits to a larger prospect and customer base.
Enhance Lead Quality
Facebook and YouTube are great for awareness and visibility of your products, but they also help you in a tangible business sense: they can give you more and better leads when you incorporate video in your marketing plans. Including video on a landing page, for example, can increase conversion rates by 80 percent, and after watching a video, 64 percent of users are more likely to buy a product online. YouTube is purpose-built for just such a strategy: seventy percent of U.S. marketers are confident they can create YouTube videos that lead to a purchase, and 81 percent say they can create better engagement with YouTube videos.
Marketers must also keep conversion best practices in mind, such as including calls to action in their ads. Currently (and amazingly) only 56 percent of Facebook ads include a call to action, which tells users exactly what they should do next to get them further down the path to a purchase.
Leverage Testimonials on Facebook and YouTube
Your existing customers are key assets to use on the marketing front, and customer testimonials are becoming one of the most popular tools to help you pitch your value proposition. Customer testimonials were cited in a Forbes report as the #1 most effective type of video content. Customer-supported content on both Facebook and YouTube must be part of your approach as you master these critical platforms.
Once your teams have learned to employ Facebook and YouTube best practices, they’ll be able to better target the right business audiences, create effective ad strategies, improve conversions, and maximize the value of their digital marketing budgets. Facebook and YouTube online training is ideal for mastering these important skills and cementing your brand firmly in the social media space.