Promotional Videos Looking Good as a Sales Tool

Video has already been accused of killing the radio star. Now it is taking aim at some traditional marketing tools as well. When you consider the following statistics from the Online Publishers Association, promotional videos should definitely be considered “armed and dangerous”:

  • 80% of Internet users have watched a video ad on a website they visited in the past 30 days; 46% of these users took action after watching the ad. Specifically, 26% sought out more information about the product featured in the video and 12% made a product purchase.
  • ComScore reports that website visitors are 64% more likely to buy a product from an online retail site after watching a video.

Make no mistake. Videos have the potential to effectively engage your target audience, educate consumers and create a buzz around your products, and in general reinforce consumers’ decision to associate with your brand. To get the most out of a promotional video, it needs to encourage a call to action or provide a compelling reason for someone to make a purchase. There is a fine line between a brand experience that translates into a sale versus something that is more of a product demonstration.

chipotle-scarecrow-580In September 2013, Chipotle looked to spice up its image with the launch of its award-winning “Scarecrow” video and accompanying game app Chipotle Scarecrow video. Since its premiere, the video has generated nearly 14 million YouTube views. At the time of the video’s release, Chipotle’s chief marketing officer Mark Crumpacker said,“We created ‘The Scarecrow’ game and film as an entertaining and engaging way to help people better understand the difference between processed food and the real thing.”

In the animated video, Chipotle pecks away at the competition by making a beef about how their food is processed while claiming Chipotle uses higher quality ingredients. Ultimately, the video has more of a documentary feel suitable for impressing shareholders rather than urging consumers not to cross the road to the competition for a chicken burrito or beef taco. We are not so sure that the video provides much of an ROI, particularly since its length of over 3 minutes makes it cost-prohibitive to air on TV, which limits the audience somewhat. Throw in the fact that ‘Scarecrow’ shooed away some consumers who agreed with a number of special interest groups that the video was unfair on a number of levels, and the true cost becomes even more inflated.

As part of a promotion for TD Bank, MRI strategically incorporated a video, requiring entrants to register and watch the short video detailing TD Bank’s convenient online banking in order to be eligible for prizes. This type of effective video integration helped TD Bank to increase awareness of the features and benefits of its new online banking site, and cash in on promotional video’s potential. It also provided further evidence that promotional videos may be worth your company taking a look at.