Reading the tea leaves in the social space isn’t always easy. But think about what you’ve seen from those of us pounding the pavement with Facebook’s algorithms and the ever-growing challenges of earned media.
Every marketing hack and their brother has a podcast now. Most of them are video podcasts repurposed as audio as a supplement. Some people have both audio podcasts and short videos to drive their activity. And, if you’re paying attention, you’ve also noticed that the smart ones are using more and more images – specifically text on photo – to capture they eye as people scroll through their feeds.
Could it be that 2015 could finally be the year of multimedia in digital marketing? We’ve heard the talking head set say “this year will be the year of video” every year for about eight years now. Maybe all this earned media roadblocking is going to be blown up by those with better media to be social with.
The Case For Video
Video gives your brand a personality, a face and a voice. While there is still something to be said for production value, good videos don’t have to be complex. A smart person looking into a web cam and saying something smart is often good enough.
Maybe you can offer up a short customer tip of the day, commentary on a relevant industry news development or even current event or even a deeper effort with a webisode series focused on humor or even drama that is somehow relevant to your audience and brand. Having video in your content arsenal can make a lot of sense as you can distribute it as your content of the day on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, your blog, email, YouTube and more.
The Case For Podcasting
Not only is podcasting on the rise in terms of content being created, but also in terms of listeners consuming that content. Keep in mind, it may not be that everyone is plugging into iTunes, subscribing to a podcast feed and listening to them on the commute in. Embedding the podcast playback stream in a blog post is just as effective at delivering the content and is one-click service for the audience.
The on-demand iteration of radio continues to catch on and give people something different to consume and in a different way. Like video, your creativity and ability to come up with continual streams of information to engage your audience will be tested. But if you can find the right person to sit and talk about the major issues your customer face, the challenges of your business or industry or even lightly related events and news items for 20-minutes a week or so, you can take a piece of that ear-share.
And keep in mind, too, that with the right tagging and broad distribution, podcasts can open entirely new audience segments and channels you’ve not used before.
The Case For Imagery
Meme-like images – text on photo – are becoming more and more popular with consumers and brands. Someecards may have started the trend, but now many companies and even people are jumping on the meme bandwagon to deliver relevant messages in compelling, visual ways that stop customers in their newsfeed tracks.
Memes if done well are essentially miniature outdoor boards for your messaging. An attractive product shot or friendly face along with a compelling message, which links people back to a blog post or call to action on your website can be incredibly effective if done well.
I’ve even been experimenting with promoting my blog posts through Instagram by adding some teaser text to smartly posed selfies. At worst it reminds my network there I have some new content for them. At best, I’m driving an additional set of traffic to my posts on JasonFalls.com they aren’t aware of.
Do What Fits Your Capability
Not everyone can do video. Not everyone can do podcasting. Within each one of those, there can be a complex web of to-dos to plan, record, produce and publish. Sure, they can be done simply, but the more you put into them – as a general rule – the more you’ll get out of them.
Text on photo is super easy. My old business partner Aaron Marshall has made that possible with his app Over. You can do it on your phone or tablet, shoot it to yourself or one of your social networks and embed or distribute from there. The only thing preventing you from creating memes is your ability to work a camera phone. If you can’t do that you should probably consider out-sourcing your media creation. Heh.
The bottom line is that multimedia can be done by just about anyone and without a whole lot of time or complexity. So think it through: What content theme can you bring to life with more than just the written word in 2015? Now go do it.