Brands in the consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry are leveraging social media to not only drive sales, but also to gain visibility, extend brand reach and engage customers. For an industry that depended heavily on traditional marketing and tentatively tested the “social media” waters, the progress has been remarkable. Big names in this space like P&G, Colgate-Palmolive etc. are marketing on channels like Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest to strengthen their social footprint. However, when it comes to strengthening brand presence, CPG brands have understood that videos are highly valuable online marketing assets. Recent studies show that:
- Online videos viewership in the CPG category increased 44% in Q3 2012; a sharp rise when compared to the previous quarter (33Across).
- When it comes online video ad spend, CPG brands appear to be leading the pack, accounting for almost 25% of all dollars spent in 2012 (YuMe)
With CPG brands investing heavily towards video marketing, it’s unsurprising to see them turn to YouTube. YouTube boasts +800 million monthly unique visitors and +4 billion hours of video watched every month; and CPG marketers know that this is where their
Cosmetics and beauty brand, L’Oreal, for instance, is devoting considerable marketing dollars to digital, especially YouTube; and it seems to be paying off. The company has several successful YouTube channels, including its brand channels for Garnier Canada and Maybelline (created on Thismoment DEC). According to L’Oreal USA CMO Marc Speichert, among the initiatives that have been quite meaningful to the brand are the beauty channels created on YouTube.
Winning Big with YouTube: 3 Best Practices
Besides functioning as the perfect platform for “how-to” videos and commercials, CPG brands are turning to YouTube because it’s cost-effective, flexible, and is great for deploying those UGC campaigns. For digital marketing professionals in the CPG space, Thismoment suggests three best practices for winning big with YouTube.
- Designing Your Brand Channel: A well-designed YouTube brand channel is important for creating that crucial first impression on consumers’ minds. It’s pretty simple; if a channel fails to impress, it’s unlikely that visitors will stay long enough to watch those ads or further engage with your brand. Here are some things you need to keep in mind during the design phase:
- Include all the crucial information like pricing, product description, “buy now” option etc.
- Feature content that’s an extension of your brand and features products in a virtual showroom format
- Organize videos into categories using playlists. This makes it easier for users to access videos that interest them.
- Optimize videos for mobile viewing.
Check out Gillette’s customized YouTube channel, powered by Thismoment, to see how it’s done.
- Looking Beyond Product Demos:Just about every SMB or enterprise brand today uses YouTube to showcase product demos and “how-to” videos. While these are important, YouTube has potential for a lot more. The video-sharing site has evolved into a platform for creating an engaging brand presence through interactive campaigns, especially UGC contests and campaigns. UGC campaigns don’t always have to be contests. Considering the impact of recommendations on people’s buying behavior, it’s a good idea to feature customer testimonials and stories as well.
Powered by Thismoment Distributed Engagement Channel (DEC), the YouTube channel for P&G’s laundry brand, Tide, features customer testimonials, along with other interesting ads and “how- to” videos. For P&G, this unique UGC campaign has proven to be highly beneficial in terms of creating product visibility, increasing brand reach and engaging with audiences.
Whether it’s UGC contests or campaigns, Thismoment DEC’s UGC engine can help CPG brands launch engaging, creative and interactive campaigns on YouTube (among other digital channels). Brands can also enable voting/rating, and allow users to vote or rate their favorite videos or products.
- Rules of Engagement: On YouTube, campaigns’ success is not just defined by the number of views, but also by the time-on-site. More time-on-site translates into increased engagement opportunities. Leading home and personal care brands, for instance, registered an average time-on-site of 6.68 minutes on deploying campaigns powered by DEC. When compared to TV spots that reach consumers for 30-60 seconds, engaging consumers for over 6 minutes, on average, translates into maximum engagement.
Brands in the CPG industry can improve their YouTube engagement rates by following these simple, but crucial “rules of engagement”:
- Fresh Content:Like every industry looking to win with YouTube marketing, it is important for brands in the CPG industry to focus on keeping their YouTube content fresh. Fresh, original content is necessary for increasing viewer engagement and giving users a reason to come back to your channel. Consumers, for instance, looking for what’s new in the hair styling category may abandon your YouTube channel because of outdated content or campaigns.
- Include Links:Including links in the description box is a good idea. Links direct interested consumers to your brand site and facilitate viewer browsing and discovery and pave the way for
- Encourage Comments: Encouraging viewers to share their comments on your YouTube brand channel will give an insight into your campaigns’ performance. By responding to relevant comments, you can build and strengthen relationships with audiences and convert them into consumers. While some comments are positive and some can be perceived as constructive criticism, you always have the option of moderating
Although no longer playing catch-up, brand marketers in the CPG space know that establishing a strong brand identity is more important than ever. To do this, they are not just strengthening their social presence on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter, but are also leveraging YouTube to more than just deploy commercials. While YouTube will see its fair share of “how- to” videos and product demos, CPG marketers have evolved to the next level by launching UGC campaigns, live- streaming sponsored events and focusing on creating a unique, engaging brand presence on YouTube. This change in YouTube marketing strategy means we can expect to see the CPG industry focus more on improving “time-on-site” through engagement and less on measuring success by the number
- Shama Ahmed