- New York
Sure, it may have killed the radio star, but video has become an indispensable tool for getting your message across in an engaging way, with maximum impact.
Increasingly, adding video to your website is a key part of content marketing. In fact, according to a Cisco report, video will account for 82% of all consumer internet traffic by 2021.
But some asset managers and financial services firms have been slow to fully embrace its capabilities. There are a few reasons why this might be so – compliance considerations, reluctance to spend resources on relatively short-term topics, or even the perception that video is perhaps not a serious enough format to talk about weighty financial issues.
It’s worth remembering, though, why video content has become a vital asset in virtually every other industry: it’s inherently sharable.
Social media is a key part of any marketing strategy, and videos are more likely to be shared – and viewed – than other forms of content.
More than 90% of people who view video content on their mobile phones share those videos with others. What’s more, research shows that video marketing works: 52% of marketing professionals worldwide cite video as the format that gives the best ROI.
Staying on script
Of course, for video content to make an impact, it needs a solid script behind it — especially given the amount of competition.
So, how can asset managers decide what makes for good video content, and what doesn’t? Short-term commentaries on the markets have a very brief shelf life and are generally not good candidates for video, unless it’s a clip from a programme or financial news report that one of your fund managers has appeared on. Otherwise, it may not be worth the time and expense.
On the other hand, some short and medium-term video content can make for great video ideas: fund-specific commentaries, longer-term economic overviews, regional analysis geo-political events, sectors and asset classes, monetary and fiscal developments.
These can be single-person, talking-head videos that aren’t overly long in duration but can get the point across quickly, or round-table discussions where a team of experts share their thoughts. These types of clips can provide a feeling of immediacy that positions your firm as an expert on the subject at hand. And setting them in an appealing background (such a conference room where you can still see a hive of activity happening) is a great opportunity to find ways to visually reinforce your brand. What’s more, not a lot of expensive production is required such as music and sound, visual effects or editing.
AB Global is a great example of asset managers using video content effectively to talk about market conditions and outlooks, in a down-to-earth and accessible way. On AB’s Insights page, for example, you can watch portfolio manager Sammy Suzuki speak engagingly about protecting capital in emerging markets and the impact of protectionism on his team’s stock picking − in less time than it takes to stroll to the kitchen and make a coffee.
This is an optimal way to reach busy advisors and investors: it’s quick and interesting, it captures the value-add of AB’s emerging markets team and reinforces their brand, and it gives IFAs or brokers talking points to bring to clients.
Longer-term or “evergreen” topics give you the chance to go all out. This is content that you’ll want to have on your website for a substantial amount of time, such as your brand’s ESG efforts or a Careers video showing what it’s like to work for your company. Industry-specific topics could include anything you might cover in a white paper – and bearing in mind the shareability of video, consider what is most likely to get shared and who is most likely to share it.
This rather lovely example from BlackRock creates a compelling picture of one, what it’s like to work at BlackRock; two, how its proprietary technology sets the firm apart from competitors; and three, how the BlackRock teams see innovation to be an essential component of value-creation – again, the complex message lands in less than three minutes.
Once you’ve created and posted your video, you’ll want people to be able to find it in an internet search. Anything that might be termed a “long-tail” search query (‘Investing for Millennials’ or ‘How do I plan for Retirement?’) would be good candidates. Think about the questions your investors or sales teams might have for you and let the ideas flow!
Video scripting hints and tips
- Get your brief locked down
Why are you creating the video, what do you want to accomplish with it, who do you want to reach, and what do you want the audience to do after viewing it?
- Have a story to tell, offer advice or have a compelling point to make
Whether it’s “How a reflationary environment impacts your investments” or “What Brexit means for the markets” or any countless number of topics, make it topical, relevant and chock full of information.
- Use language your audience will understand
Especially if it’s aimed at retail clients. Forget the buzzwords and investment jargon, and remember your goal is to get a message across as quickly and naturally as possible.
- Write the script in two side-by-side columns
One to show the words that are being said, and one to show what’s happening on screen.
- Get a compliance review of the script before you begin filming.
Trust us, this will simplify things.
- Provide a transcript
Ensure it’s rich in the relevant search terms, and add tags that include long-tail queries: “how do I?”
- Include subtitles and closed-caption options
Use supported text transcripts; this further highlights searchable keywords as well as makes your content more accessible.
- Offer options for action
Such as subscribing to newsletters or getting in touch with you for more information.