Video content is hot. Across all industries, companies are working on new ways to stand out by incorporating videos into their marketing strategies across all platforms, even email.
You might be thinking, “People still use email marketing?” The answer is over whelmingly yes. The platform with a reputation for being old school and outdated is actually driving more conversions and higher engagements rates than ever. Email marketing remains one of the strongest and most reliable tools for communicating. Now more than ever, companies combine email marketing with video to optimize their emails, delivering fun and exciting new content directly to their audience.
Even with all of the data to support email marketing and video marketing individually, there are a few hesitations around using videos in an email, especially worries that embedded videos might get lost in translation or be flagged as spam. While that may hold some truth, it shouldn’t deter you from considering all of the benefits of using video in marketing emails. According to data from Email Monks, 58% of all users can access videos from an email no matter what client or application they’re using.
So what are some of the perks of using videos in your email? Well, videos can nearly triple the ROI over emails with only text or images.
Video also has a significant impact on email KPIs. Some notable statistics from a study by Campaign Monitor show that videos boost an email’s open rates by 19%, boost click-through rates by 65%, and reduce unsubscribes by 26%
A few different video formats can instantly make your emails more exciting and engaging. Appealing to millennials and Gen Xers? Try GIFs and subtle animations. Focused on engaging a more professional crowd? Put together some testimonials or promotional videos announcing exciting news and updates. Either way, you’ll generate engagement.
Here are some examples of different video formats and great emails that incorporate video elements into their campaigns.
The route most companies take when first incorporating video into their email strategy is by creating static thumbnails of a video and placing it into their emails. And it works! Video marketing platform Wistia did an A/B testing campaign when integrating video into their email strategy and found some pretty clear results.
To determine how their users interacted with different types of video links in emails, they sent two versions of the same email. Each had the same copy and subject line. The only difference was that one version featured a thumbnail image with a play button, indicating that it linked to a video, and the other one featured the same image with no play button. The email with the video thumbnail generated 40% more engagement than the email with the standard image.
Other brands, such as Monica Vinader, Hours, and HootSuite, have successfully used this strategy to circumvent incompatibility and create a diversity of content within their emails without overcomplicating the process.
Animations and GIFs
Many retail brands and companies in creative industries are creating colorful and quirky animations to advertise new products, announce promotions, or accentuate their brand’s overall aesthetic. Using animations and GIFs allows them to showcase their products or services in creative and eye-catching ways. If you want to take a baby step into the world of video email marketing, and don’t have a specific message to get across, using animations or GIFs can brighten up an email header and highlight something in a way that’s much more exciting than text or a static image.
You can also leverage existing video. With a short GIF that shows a clip, you can give viewers a nice teaser of content in a way that’s easy to consume—and easy to get more.
Here are some companies who have successfully incorporated GIFs into their emails.
If you have the capacity to tackle some of the more technical aspects of using video, embedding videos directly into the email can ensure maximum exposure. It is much more technical and time-consuming to go this route, and you do run the risk of your video being incompatible with some email platforms or being marked as spam. A few guides that break down the process of how to correctly embed a video in an email.
While videos are proving to be an excellent tool for engagement and conversion, keep in mind that not all email clients will support video formats, so it’s critical to make sure the email makes sense without the video. Adding an alternative link to the video elsewhere in the email also helps.
It might seem overwhelming to add yet another medium to your marketing strategy, but there are so many types of valuable content that companies can easily create in video format that there’s no excuse not to be experimenting with video. Videos that make great material for emails include customer testimonials, quick teasers for new products, how-tos, team announcements or messages from company leadership. When deciding what kind of video content to create, remember that above all your videos should add value to the viewer. Otherwise, it turns into a wasted effort.
Keep in mind a few things when adding video to your email marketing strategy.
Research the optimal length for videos on the platform you’re publishing on. While many people are using emails to promote webinars and longer form content, shorter videos on social media platforms produce better engagement rates.
Most people are viewing emails on their phones or mobile devices, so always be sure to make the video, animation, or thumbnail responsive and test it on various devices. When including a video, animation, or link to a video, try keeping text to a minimum.
Use the word “video” in your subject line to make it very clear that the email is going to include a video. The subject line is your first impression, and we all know how vital those are..
If you choose to embed videos into the email body, avoid autoplay. Admit it—you hate opening an email and experiencing the mild heart attack when you realize your speakers are all the way up. Let your customers decide to play the video themselves. Unless you want the risk of an irritated unsubscriber.
See? Email marketing is still essential—and can even be exciting. Get people’s attention and engage your audience more effectively than ever.