Is any video good video? Should you podcast to build your brand? Just what IS business media, and at what point does it serve the marketplace? At what point does it serve YOU?
Business media can include audio and video used for internal training tools, website visitor tutorials or explanatory how-tos, entrepreneurial podcasts, or elements of your sales funnel. For marketing purposes, video used for social media advertising or article contributions, whether digital or print, are all forms of business media. So are radio commercials.
As more and more local family businesses acclimatize to video, audio, and to a lesser extent, articles, as marketing elements necessary to engage consumers, it becomes super-important to focus time and energy on projects that bring in money. On the common sense side of things, most marketers realize the irony of social media marketing:
- Most social media marketing is marketing to other marketers – NOT consumers.
- Sponsored ads including video, rarely bring in revenue on limited budgets.
- ‘Free’ is relative when time is money.
While larger marketing budgets make up the majority of sponsored ads on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram, many locals take the free ‘live’ video route to sell coaching programs and personal brands associated with their company’s overall value proposition. Nationally known brands tend to pour advertising dollars into their sponsored ads to glean higher click through rates and engagement that ultimately help their brand become more recognizable. From the outside looking in, it’s easy to assume the ever-flowing faces speaking ‘at’ us from within our stream of contacts are making wise choices with their approach to the marketplace.
After all, they are getting their message out. Aren’t they?
A closer look at sponsored ads and you will see the novice rarely makes a connection between the short sponsored live or recorded video and the language used to engage an audience. It’s more common for friends of a ‘live’ creator to like and move on than to actually stick around, comment, or share the message being expressed. It ends up being more of a popularity contest than a marketing approach, and for the average business attempting to gain market share, is often a huge waste of time.
Why will people engage with a like or comment, and move on?
Why will some click on the offer, and not pay for the course?
Why will some click on the offer, pay for the course, and not take the instruction offered?
Why will the majority of people who see it, ignore the sponsored ad or ‘live’ video?
Ask most, and they will tell you they haven’t made any money, even when they’ve had millions of followers on YouTube, Facebook, or Twitter. Most podcasters don’t make money, even with sponsors.
But not to participate in the social arena is a dangerous situation. Consumers have been taught well to look for proof of validity through a social tour.
What is business media that makes a financial impact?
I would argue that effectiveness is measured beyond revenue generation or reach. The effectiveness of any approach is ultimately how the product, service, or point-of-view offered through that media is making a significant or long-term difference in the life of the audience.
Political action groups know this. They divide, ensnare, and highlight, question, and compare. They measure results in the actions that follow. People hate political ads, yet they are considered highly effective if the results get people to the polls.
In my experience, if a one-time action is a desired marketing result, you can probably achieve it if you reach enough people. When it comes to large expenses, that isn’t enough. People don’t part with money so easily, which is why the funnel has been so successful. But the funnel has run its course, and we’re tired of chasing rainbows only to pay dearly for the pot of gold. We’re unsubscribing quicker than ever before, tired of the promise of ‘in the next video’! Remember, time IS money.
Business media that moves the needle for today’s local family business is more than a face in the camera and a handful of their fan base liking the post.
Conversations allow the listener to understand the value of a business more thoroughly. This is especially important for financial advisors, insurance agents, residential service companies, and A/V services. The playing field is crowded, and though we need these types of services, when we can’t tell them apart, we go for the cheap guy. You can’t make money being the low guy on the totem pole. If you compete to be the least expensive, you will struggle too hard and too long for the chance to make a profit.
Local family business profitability is maximized when people are sold out for your offer, and until they experience you, that’s difficult. Talk TV or talk radio/podcasts, however, are popular ways to guide a hot market right to your door. Talk programs leverage 2-way conversation, and that gives the hosts of these programs opportunity to showcase business alliances and happy clients – giving the listener something to chew on. They can see themselves there. They put themselves in the picture. They are more likely to return, more likely to purchase, and more likely to purchase from the sponsored advertiser, too.
A programming approach changes the game. Everyone knows video and audio are important media for a higher-paying client base, but few know what to do with the show besides host a live series using an existing social platform. The problem with social media as the main player, is that it leaves too much on the table.
Social media has too much control over what gets shown where to who. Too much control over where advertising dollars can be maximized. The fastest way to get legitimate attention, more clients, and more sponsors, is to let social media play a backseat, with a hosted program and marketing direction that targets your ideal client in a comprehensive manner.
Talk TV and business talk radio are the easy choice for faster profitability and long term brand identification as the industry leader. Where there is not a clear choice, there is no choice.
Today’s consumer may be a business owner, have a family, and use social media primarily to engage with friends and family. Their behavior, and yours, is tracked and measured for the benefit of much larger corporate interests. While some marketers are successful at revenue generation using existing social media, they are also spending handsomely and riding on name recognition in most cases. For the locals, that works great for restaurants and bars, but not so well for others without significant ad spend.
And sure, it costs money to make money. Marketing ISN’T free. The fact that social media marketing through ‘lives’ and sponsored ads costs money is not the issue. The issue is, do you know anyone making money like that? I think the landscape has changed, and the emphasis must, too, for the benefit of the consumer who needs and craves what you have to offer.
When everyone is marketing themselves the same way, it’s difficult for the community to tell the difference between them. Talk television and conversational podcasts, programming – and a social approach that makes local sense – business media offers focused market exposure to an audience hungry for game changers they can trust.