Successful Video Marketing Doesn’t Mean Viral


It’s no secret that video is a popular marketing tool for many brands.  Don’t mistake good marketing and viral noise.  Most people I talk to live for the day their video goes “viral”.  But, is viral really what you want if you ultimately want to sell a product or service, after all most viral videos have little value and offer a short blip of entertainment which is fast forgotten.  While our personal pride might see a viral video as success, a true marketer sees target audience engagement and conversion as the real tell tale of success. So, how do we create a video which not only reaches the right audience but causes them to believe in your brand enough be one step closer to a purchase and advocate for your brand, sharing your video with their network?


Understand Your Marketing Goals

Your new video is given birth when the companies president says, “I want to increase market share by 5% within 24 months” and the Marketing Manager supports this goal by including brand awareness as a key piece of the marketing strategy and includes online videos as a tactic to support brand awareness (assuming that is the goal). The the creative team gets a hold of the project request for a video, at which point the initial goal of increased market share = increased brand awareness is replaced with , “how cool can we make this, since we want a viral video?”  At this point I must pause and say not all creative departments think this way. In fact, a well trained creative team will follow a branding brief to the letter.  But lets be honest, the internet is polluted with corporate video content which achieves no defined goal at all and thus no return on investment.  So, it’s important that you entire team understands your marketing goal, and is prepared to support them before the first frame of your storyboard is sketched.


Reach Your Target Audience

So while the creative team is working on your video, your digital marketing expert needs to know how and where the new video will be distributed. Hopefully you already have a strong social media following, this will make it much easier to get the content out to the right audience.  But don’t panic, if your twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram followers are sparse, you can deploy several other tactics which get the viewers in front of your content. Consider embedding your video on a unique website landing page, then drive traffic back to that page through SEO, PPC ads with search engines such as Google Adwords and social media ads, all of which allow you to define your target audience by  geography, demographics and interests.  Don’t forget you valuable CASL compliant email marketing list, embedded with a social share button so your contacts can send the content onto their contacts.  After all of that, be sure to see what worked best – easy to do with today’s analytic tools and be sure to work hard at building your social media following  so that you can expand your efforts next time around.  Here is my final tip on reaching your target audience; use your strategic industry partnerships to get the content out.  I value my relationships and if they value you, they are often willing to post your content and links on their social media platforms and use their email lists.


Add Value to Your Brand

Now you know that your video needs to support your marketing goals and you need to be able to reach your audience with the new content.  But what story will your video share which will support the marketing goals?  Successful content marketing can drive traffic to a website where you can be waiting with a strong call to action for conversion; it can also deliver value to the viewer so that they like you that much more and hopefully want to share your story.  There are a number of ways you can do this. Consider creating a story about your brand, a customer success story or the awesome people who work with you.  Consider how to videos or information which provides a solution to a pain point that your customer has to deal with.  Regardless of what information you deliver, make sure it supports your marketing goals, reaches your target audience and delivers value for you brand and to your audience.


It’s important to respect the goals, brand and target audience.  In doing so you are respecting the budget.  Finally, get the analytics. It won’t take long to identify what kind of video can achieve all of the for-mentioned and when that magic occurs,  whether your video goes viral or not, it will be a great success!




Posted by

Sherry Slejska, CM.

Director of Account Strategy





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