social video marketing

What Is Social Video Marketing? The Social Video Experts Weigh In

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social video marketingWith the heavy convergence of social and video, and video with online marketing, have we now reached a point for a new definition that combines all three? Is social video marketing just about creating videos for social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter and YouTube, or is it much more than just that? We put together a special panel of video experts, along with our own ReelSEO staff, where we all take a crack at giving our own definition.

Why Have A Definition For “Social Video Marketing?”

You mean, beside the hope my publisher is forecasting it will be a popular keyword search phrase, and wants to get an article by ReelSEO out early so it can show up at the top of a Google search? Well, as of this date, a Google Search for “social video marketing” already returns 19,800 results. So the next question would be, how relevant are those results?

Google’s Top Search Results For “Social Video Marketing”

AdAge - social video marketingThe #1 search result on Google is held by Advertising Age, in their story from July 2009 titled, The Rise of ‘Social Video’ Marketing. The writer defines “social video” as “the use of video as the central organizing element for social interaction and storytelling online. It’s just a one-paragraph article, but the video that comes with it does a good job about explaining social video for marketing purposes, with a good example we can watch – Samsung’s “HD Camera Phone Trick.”

The #2 search result on Google points to a site that has this to say: “Social video marketing simply means that you create videos to use on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter,” for the purpose of “selling yourself, your product or a service.” I find that definition to be rather empty for this main reason: It doesn’t actually say anything about what makes the video social in itself; it just simply assumes that by putting up a video on a social networking site, that automatically makes it a social video. But clearly, if I was to put up a repurposed television commercial on Facebook or Twitter or YouTube (a lot of which are just straight sales pitches), that certainly wouldn’t qualify in my mind as “social video marketing.”

After checking out what’s already showing up in Google, I decided it that the phrase “social video marketing” could use a much-needed improved definition. So I enlisted some video marketing notables to take a crack at it:

  • David Murdico, Executive Creative Director for SuperCool Creative, a creative agency specializing in online video creative and production, viral marketing, video seeding, integrated social media campaigns, viral videos, branded entertainment and webisodes; and a guest columnist for ReelSEO.
  • Steve Garfield, author of the video marketing book “Get Seen: Online Video Secrets to Building your Business,” Host of SteveGarfiled.TV on the Pulse Network, one of the longest professional video bloggers around, and a regular interview guest of ReelSEO.
  • Matt Fiorentino, Director of Communications for Visible Measures, a metrics company whose digital measurements including online video marketing campaign performances. (Visible Measures was featured in the #1 Google search result for “social video marketing, from Advertising Age’s video interview.)
  • Mark Robertson, some guy who says he runs a website called… RealSEO? ReelSEOue?
  • Myself, because I tend to insert myself into any article about other video experts, making it seem like my own opinion will carry more weight.

So, let’s hear it from our panel: How do you define “social video marketing?”

The ROI Perspective For Social Video Marketing

David Murdico of SuperCool Creative says:

David_Murdico“I would define as using online video content that is created and optimized specifically for social media sharing to increase brand and product awareness and encourage various calls to action.”

The Silo’d Perspective For Social Video Marketing:

Steve Garfield says:

“I have to separate Social Media, Video, and Marketing in my definition. When I think about social media, I think about interacting with people. Video helps to enhance these interactions with authentic and compelling content. Marketing is a result of these video interactions.”

The Brand Perspective For Social Video Marketing

Matt Fiorentino of Visible Measures says:

“Social Video is a segment of online video that allows consumers to freely choose the brands they want to watch and interact with before they buy. Social Video Marketing, through built-in social behaviors, such as commenting, rating, copying, spoofing, reposting, sharing, and more, is designed to inspire consumers to choose your brand.”

The Psychological Perspective For Social Video Marketing

As for my own definition (well, the short version at least, until my next post where I ramble like a maniac full of himself), I would say that social video marketing is about the things that are a part of social media and social networking (online), and applying that to the existing technologies available with online video, towards a clear understanding of the target audience with a measurable business objective. I also say that it’s very much about understanding the behavioral (psychological) aspects of what drives people to be social, through the increasing power and accessibility of online video, which brings forth new communities of it’s own.

The “Reel” Perspective For Social Video Marketing

The nice thing about being a publisher of a blog network is that you get to say, “Grant, I want to have the final word on this topic.” (And, you also get to read everyone else’s definition in advance, so you can make yourself appear with your own definition, “more smarter-er”;) So here’s how my editor and publisher Mark Robertson defines “social video marketing”

In order for video content to be successful in the social sphere, one needs to consider, at the very least, 2 overarching strategies.

  1. Create video content that taps into those psychological triggers, which drive people’s desire to share that content with others.  In other words, producing video content that when I watch it, I immediately think to myself, “Wow, Grant needs to see this as well.”
  2. Leverage and optimize the technology which enables video content to be easily shared. Thankfully, most social networking sites as well as video sites now include this functionality already. That being said, there are still guidelines and best practices which can be followed to better leverage such functionality. (One good example is Grant’s article on Faceboook video marketing tips.)

Those 2 strategies are necessary for any video to do well in the social sphere.  Now, to take it to the next level and be successful with “social video marketing,” – the message will need to be a marketing one (duh).  In the end, the only way to judge “social video marketing” success is through measuring conversion and ROI….

Coming Up This Week On ReelSEO With “Social Video Marketing”

I’ll be featuring a few extended interviews on this subject, plus going into defining criteria for social video marketing, and a video from one of our “Expert Fans” sharing his own current attempt at social video marketing we can all watch and comment on. Stay tuned!


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