Do more video now. That was the message of Social Media Marketing World in San Diego. From the opening keynote to Gary Vaynerchuck’s closing remarks, video and live video were on everyone’s lips. We’re a long way from the days when social media marketers viewed video and YouTube as a small piece of the content marketing pie, at #SMMW16 video took its place as king of online content.

Live video streaming, Facebook video ads, YouTube influencer marketing, and Snapchat all received ample stage time from credible sources. Some presenters showed huge results from using video with traditional Facebook marketing techniques. It was the first time in my career that I’ve seen social media thought leaders and video marketing experts share the stage harmoniously.

Top Video Takeaways from Social Media Marketing World

Those of us positioned in video as Creators or Marketers have a lot to gain with this new momentum. I’ve listed below the top takeaways from the Video Track at #SMMW16 and how they might apply to a video creator or a video marketer. If you’re in video whether growing a channel or video marketing, I’d bookmark this article.

#1 Live Video Will Rule 2016

Michael Stelzner is the president of Social Media Examiner who hosts the event. In his opening keynote, The Stelz jumped right into some very important numbers:

  • 50% of marketers plan to use live video
  • 50% want to learn more about live video
  • 14% of marketers already using live

For Creators: Add more live video into your mix. Whether to build community, increase subscribers, or sell product, use your favorite trending platform (Hint: Instagram and Vine may not be your starting point). Consider YouTube live, Facebook live, and Snapchat.

For Marketers: Start testing live stream videos in your Facebook timeline and with your YouTube audiences. Discover which formats do well for which industries and create packages for your clients to start purchasing. Here’s an example of white board video that we recorded live.

#2 Marketers Must Take Notice of Facebook Video

Everyone is on Facebook and the rest are lying. Combined with their extremely sophisticated targeting platform, Facebook is going to be the #1 place for short videos and other formats. While I’m not convinced vloggers or tutorial channels (like mine) will do well on Facebook video, I’m extremely confident in using worksafe videos, blog trailers, and other shorter form content to convert my Facebook audience over to YouTube.

More subscribers means more revenue potential. Here are some exciting stats:

  • 73% of marketers are increases their use of video
  • 21% claim it’s the most important form of content marketing
  • 58% want to improve their knowledge of YouTube
  • 67% Will increase their Facebook marketing in 2016

For Creators: As more brands and companies want to use video on Facebook, they will naturally seek out YouTube and other video personalities. If you’re an influencer channel or a video production specialist, you’ll quickly find yourself getting more phone calls. Put together some pricing (if you haven’t already) for speaking with brands and TV producers.

For Marketers: Start networking with bigger channels. Create synergy and collaborations with Creators across different platforms. Interview them on your blog and create those relationships now. Find Influencers that you can connect to your client base. The video marketer who can creatively bring together companies and Creators will do phenomenally well.

#3 TV Producers are Looking at Online Video

NBC’s hit show The Amazing Race was in trouble. Down to only 7 million viewers the producers wanted to cancel. Then something brilliant happened – the show launched it’s next season with video influencers from YouTube and Vine. Tyler Oakley, Burnie Burns, Matt Stefanina, Erin Robinson, Blair Fowler, Brodie Smith, Cole LaBrant, Zach King, and Cam Benson each joined the ranks (along with a couple others). In total, they brought a combined audience of 33 million people to the table. The show is doing phenomenally well and many good people kept their jobs… Because of online video.

For Creators: Make yourself available for sponsorship even at the 10k or 20k subscriber range. Even less if your view counts are high. You should be very confident in your audience at this point. This might include getting your feet wet with Grapevine or Famebit but should really focus more on higher level sponsorships directly with a brand.

For Marketers: Start learning the language of brands and MCNs so that you can better represent a video influencer. Know how to talk about CPM and use Socialbluebook.com as a starting point to negotiate an influencer’s worth. By learning this new language you’ll be better positioned to work with influencers and agencies.

#4 You Must Get to Know Video Analytics

The deep insights provided by the Facebook and YouTube video platforms allow you to understand your audience unlike ever before. Having an intimate knowledge of who is watching your video content will better prepare you to deliver content attracting more of that audience. This is how you’ll grow your subscriber base.

Additionally, video entrepreneurs and influencers and being treated more like personal brands. As you engage with MCNs, Consultants like me, and other potential business allies, it pays to know your numbers like you’re in the Shark Tank. This includes:

  • Your demographic
  • Avg view duration
  • 10 second views
  • Sound on
  • Sound off
  • Clicked YouTube Cards
  • Clicked Annotations

For Creators: Understand the numbers that determine your value in working on an influencer campaign. Many influencers find this part of the job boring and choose therefore to work with a consultant or MCN. Not a bad idea. Travis Chambers is a viral video creator. Speaking at CVX Live in Utah he said, “Working with a MCN can get you up to 30% more per brand deal.”

For Marketers: Know how to present analytic numbers in a presentation. Gone are the days of fluffy sales presentations. Instead, you’ve got to present your numbers in a meaningful way and focus in on the value of your unique channel. For one channel, their watchtime might be the selling point. For another, their view count might be the hook.

video analytics

#5 Snapchat is a Major Player

This awkward little app is making waves and causing dissention between traditional ROI marketers and Social Media Marketers. Perhaps the “YouTube” of portrait video, the financial success of video artists Shaun Ayala and Shaunduras proves that Snapchat audiences can deliver a return (both are sponsored by brands). Carlos Gil’s presentation on Snapchat was honest and every seat was packed. Opening the event with his trademark, “Hey Snapchat family!” he delivered these key takeaways:

Takeaway 1: Snapchat isn’t for everyone or every business, Marketer’s should only be looking at Snapchat if they’re willing to invest in the long term play of growing a channel from the ground up and create native content. There’s no instant ROI on Snapchat

Takeaway 2: Snapchat is intended to be original and unique, it’s not Facebook or Twitter. Brands using it are looking at Snapchat as a medium to drive awareness amongst Millennials and not as a channel to drive sales — not yet at least. Marketers need not look at Snapchat as a clone to other social networks b/c it’s not. It’s however a great tool to create mobile, video content and build loyalty with younger audiences. Need more info on how to get started with Snapchat – here’s a video we did earlier.

#6 Win the click

Tim Schmoyer of Video Creators delivered an outstanding presentation on “winning the click” – a marketing expression that refers to a user clicking on a video based on the thumbnail and title. However, this same term might apply equally well to Facebook video which plays silently until the video is clicked. He emphasized the importance of choosing titles that are both accurate to the video content and outlandish enough to be noticed. Combined with a similarly designed video thumbnail, Tim suggests a thumbnail should be planned before the video editing is even finalized. In a post session interview, Amy Schmittauer recaps the presentation with Schmoyer here:

For Creators: Think about your Thumbnails first. Far from being an optimization afterthought, your thumbnails should be more than just a DVD cover for your video. For your next project, plan your thumbnail before you shoot and finalize it in Photoshop at 85px tall – approximately how big they appear in the Related Videos section.

For Marketers: Experiment with different thumbnail designs. From Rainbow Barf (thanks Jeremy Vest for that phrase!) to more professional designs. Test at least 2 thumbnails per video using Display Ads and experiment with user engagement on Facebook to increase the amount of “sound on” video views.

#7 Use Remarketing Lists in AdWords

In perhaps the #2 presentation of the event, Derral Eves dropped a load of impressive date from his success with the Harmon Brothers on the Squatty Potty video. Entitled Unicorn Poop, Derrals presentation explained the use of remarketing lists for targeting highly qualified traffic to your videos.

Found in adwords, remarketing lists enable Creators to push videos to viewers of previously watched videos. You can also target viewers based on their behavior toward your videos. Adwords also allows for custom combinations of remarketing lists to create super qualified targets such as “viewers who have viewed a video but have not subscribed.” When combined with the Google Display Network, remarketing lists are a powerful tool.

For Creators: If your audience is large and growing, seek out a consultant or YouTube marketing specialist for help in setting up these campaign. By segmenting your audience you’ll be able to more accurately capture brand deals and sponsorship opportunities.

For Marketers: Start creating your lists now. The larger your remarketing lists are, the more valuable you become to your clients and to marketing partners. Create playlists based on interest and target user groups IE: Women interested in fitness or 18+ who watch gaming on YouTube. These lists may become your income.

Social Media Marketing World: Conclusion

Largely an event for Social Media Marketers, the Social Media Marketing World Conference this year was almost identical to a video marketing conference. From the opening keynote to the closing, speakers spoke on video, live video, video ads, and video marketing. Video Creators and video marketers alike are well positioned to capitalize on the growth of video on social media but should also be prepared to speak with traditional TV producers as well. I’m certainly excited to be a consultant in the field because our phone is already starting to ring off the hook.