Hero Conf London Debrief: Attention Span Video Hack

by | Nov 9, 2017 | PPC

PPC Hero Conf London TakeawaysAs a marketer, one of the most exciting (and at times frustrating) parts of my job is trying to keep up-to-date with all the latest developments in the world of PPC. Be it a new ad format, a policy update, a new platform, a hack or new strategy to test, things never stay still for long in this industry. I’m sure many of you know how challenging this part of our jobs can be.

That’s why I really value the opportunity to attend events like PPC Hero Conf in London. Conferences like this give me the chance to step away from the day-to-day and focus on the big things happening in PPC; the things that are going to move the needle for our businesses.

The mission at events like this is simple: return home armed with new techniques and tools to execute.

But before we get onto that, the conference itself…

This was my second year attending Hero Conf in London and I have to say it was underwhelming. A lot of the ‘big ideas’ from last year (mainly voice search, AI and mobile) were almost lazily churned out again this year, with little to no thought put into how we might actually use these tools and processes in our businesses. Honestly, I felt like I had outgrown Hero Conf London.

All that said, I did take one big idea away with me this year that I feel justifies my two days in London.

The idea actually came about as a result of a conversation I had with an AMM member and colleague of ours, Joel Brooker, who flew all the way from Melbourne to attend this year’s event.

And I’ll admit, it was Joel who first said he was going to try this idea when he got back to Australia (so kudos to you Joel).

The conversation we had was sparked at a breakout session called:

How to Hack Attention Span with Video

Disclaimer: Even though this was my top session from the conference, I don’t think ‘hack’ is the right word to use when it comes to video. Video is simply another way of consuming our copy. We’re not tricking a person into consuming our content by using video, and a lot of the time we’re not even saying anything different from our text. We are simply delivering the same content in a format that is easier to consume. It just makes sense.

In any case, the session was really good and there were a bunch of good soundbites that I pulled from it. For instance…

  • On mobile, it takes 3.2 seconds for a person to scroll past a post in the Facebook news feed. That means your video ad has 3.2 seconds to grab someone’s attention.
  • For anyone still uploading YouTube videos to Facebook, STOP! Facebook and YouTube are direct competitors, meaning your videos won’t get the same reach as they would if you uploaded the raw file directly to Facebook.
  • Make sure your video is viewable without sound.
  • GO SQUARE with your Facebook videos – they get much more engagement (meaning it’ll cost you less) than landscape videos.

While these tips may not be new to some of you, there may be one or two nuggets there to get your video gears turning.

Let me ask you too, how long do you spend thinking about thumbnails? Not long, I bet. The art of thumbnailing plays a pivotal role in getting clicks to your video (especially on YouTube). Getting those clicks can be mastered using this simple yet effective technique.

Thumbnail Hack:

  1. Top left: Copy.
  2. Top right: Closeup images of a person’s face.
  3. Bottom left: Your logo.
  4. Bottom right: Any additional copy.

Why does this work? Because it’s the natural flow to how a person reads.

But now for the ‘‘big idea’…

Most people already know how the video sales letter (VSL) transformed several businesses in The Agora network. The businesses in this network were among the first to test the ‘talking promo’ way back in 2010. The results were insane with revenue from sales campaigns increasing by up to 500%. That’s an impressive statistic.

Fast forward seven years later and the statistic that stood out the most for me at this session was that by 2020, 80% of all internet traffic will be video (Cisco Market Research, 2016).

Mark Zuckerberg recognizes this phenomenon too and calls video a ‘mega-trend’. He says that in 10 years’ time we will look back and realize that video was as big a shift in the way we share and communicate as mobile was.

Beyond the VSL

This made me stop and think: are we (as an agency and member of the Agora network) maximizing video’s potential? What gaps could video fill in our business? And where haven’t we tested video further yet?

Sure, VSLs are now common practice, as too are webinars and video training series. We also run video ads on Facebook and YouTube (although from what we see they are still under-utilized); and there are one or two other ways we see businesses using video.

But, here are a few opportunities I see that very few businesses I’ve come across are using:

  1. Video welcome email
  2. Video gauntlet series
  3. Video testimonials – these can be much more believable than text
  4. Video abandon series

Imagine the credibility video could add to any one of these parts of the funnel.

And nobody, as far as I am aware, has a video only e-letter.

Boosting VSL view rates through video editorial

How would a video only e-letter do versus a traditional text e-letter? I don’t know. But I’d love to find out. Certainly, there’s an opportunity to at least increase the amount of editorial video content we produce.

Varying our editorial content with the use of video should help our response rates with VSLs too. Right now, many of our readers have become conditioned to associate video with promotional content. If they start seeing great editorial in the mix it should increase the view rates of VSLs.

And again, it’s just good user experience to provide content in the ways people want to consume it. If 80% of internet traffic is going to video by 2020, this growth is not going to come from video ads alone!

How to produce additional video content

The biggest hesitation we hear from people wanting to do more video is that they’re worried how they’ll actually produce this additional content. The easiest way to start is to simply repurpose your existing content.

As I stated earlier, video is simply another way to deliver your message. Just as VSLs used existing written promotions so too can the video content above.

If you have an editor or guru to read out existing content that can work really well, and the best part is it adds extra credibility.

And, if all else fails, you can simply create slideshow style videos just as you do with VSLs.

In short, start with one step removed to get things moving. You can always test and improve from there. Ready…fire…aim.

More PPC Hero Conf London Takeaways

That’s it for me this week. I’ll be sharing plenty more quick tips and tricks from the conference in our Facebook group. And AMM members listen out for next week’s Mastercast where Natalie and I discuss our top takeaways from Hero Conf London.

All the best,

P.S. Looking for some good video creation and analytics tools?

  • SoapBox – A free Chrome extension that allows you to record, edit and share high-quality videos in minutes.
  • Wistia – Video hosting and analytics tool. We see a lot of Agora businesses using this.
  • Tubular – A cross-channel, all-device, video consumption measurement tool.