Why your marketing strategy needs video

first_imgThis is a post from a member of the Freelancers Union community. If you’re interested in sharing your expertise, your story, or some advice you think will help a fellow freelancer out, feel free to send your blog post to us here.A few years ago, video marketing seemed to be in its own lane. Only a few brands and businesses were creating video content to reach a select audience.Now in 2017, video content is everywhere you look online. If you haven’t already thought about or started planning on incorporating video into your marketing strategy, here’s why you should today.Facebook favors videos over anything elseIf you were active on Facebook this past year, you’ve noticed how much video content is now displayed on that platform. From full music videos to short-form video content, Facebook highly favors video over images, links, and text. According to Buzzsumo, in just a year the average total of shares for video content on Facebook has more than doubled and so has the number of videos published.Go LiveNow with the Facebook Live feature enabled for every page, there is even more room to get engaged with your fan base through video marketing. People spend more than 3x more time watching a Facebook Live video on average compared to a recorded video. Fans are more likely to actively engage with you when they can talk to you, and ask questions on the spot versus watching something pre-recorded.Facebook also enabled a feature that allows your fans to be notified every time you launch a new video. So you don’t have to do any extra legwork.Think about it this way, as a consumer, how cool is it to be able to interact with your favorite brand from the comfort of your home/office? Being more accessible allows you to develop a stronger bond with your customer base, without really having to spend top dollar for video content. And there are endless ways you can start creating your Facebook Live video strategy.For example, you can host weekly or monthly Q&A sessions, bring in guest speakers, host “online office hours”, etc. The bottom line is that it’s now easier than ever to speak with your fans directly through video.Don’t forget about adsAmplifying your Facebook video strategy with ads will get your video to a wider audience without costing you a lot of money, if done correctly. Potential consumers are more likely to engage with short-format video content explaining your service or offer, versus an image with a lot of copy.There are a lot of good resources that will help you run a video ad campaign. If you need help with setup, management or campaign reporting, get in touch with me. If you want to learn more about optimizing campaigns on your own first, check out this informative guide from Social Media Examiner.YouTube: The Second GoogleLet’s be honest here, have you gone to YouTube in search of figuring out how to do something? If you answered “yes”, then you are among the billions of other YouTube users who watch over millions of hours of video. Want to reach these billions of people? Start by creating compelling video content they can discover through a YouTube search.Of course, this all depends on your video’s topic and how well you optimize for search engines, but we’ll get to that soon.YouTube has become a phenomenal educational platform for the “do-it-yourself” consumer. Because of this, it allows brands and businesses to really maximize their impact by creating “how-to” and “thought leadership” videos for their audiences.For example, if you own a branding business, why not create a short “how-to” video on the five most important branding guidelines a business must follow. Not only will this content be more engaging than a presentation, it will also help separate you as a thought leader in your industry and make you more discoverable.Going back to SEO and search ability of your video, YouTube has their own algorithm that focuses on watch time, keyword relevance, your number of subscribers, customer reactions including likes and dislikes, and video length. To optimize your YouTube videos, you want to capitalize on these criteria. See how these techniques can help by reading Search Engine Land’s video optimization guide.Like with Facebook, YouTube ads helpYou can also reach a massive amount of YouTube viewers by running one of YouTube’s wide range of advertising options. This can include banners, ads before the video begins, sponsored videos in the sidebar, and many other types of campaigns you can create to appeal to potential video consumers.YouTube ads are generally a bit more expensive than Facebook and can take more optimizing and adjusting. But they can be very efficient if you run them correctly. If you’re looking to start a YouTube advertising campaign but want more information on best practices, Hubspot put together an easy-to-follow guide for getting your campaign up and running.Showcase your business using videoDon’t get me wrong, creating a diverse content strategy consisting of blog posts, images and more is always going to be important. However, if you haven’t added video to your strategy, you need to start now. Video is only going to get bigger so don’t wait around and let a competitor take your business.Max Pete aka One Hand Wonder Man is a freelance website designer and digital marketer. Max Pete also specializes in social media management, email marketing, content creation, and paid advertising. You can check out his work and get in touch with him via his portfolio www.maxpete.co.last_img read more

How to Pay off Student Loan Debt

first_img Post navigation Share this:TwitterFacebook College was a blast, right? You partied, made a few friends and might’ve even learned a thing or two. But now that your final semester is in the rearview, it’s time to think about how you’re going to pay for that hard-earned education.If you’re in your early twenties and part of the class of ’16, your student loan debt is likely the largest bill that’s ever had your name on it. That can be a bit intimidating, but there is good news: You’ve got six months from the moment you throw your mortarboard in the air until your student loan grace period ends and your first payment is due. So if you haven’t done so yet, put your college smarts to good use and learn how to pay off student loans fast by following these tips to tackle debt.Make Sure You’re On the Right PlanBy default, most student loan repayment plans are based a 10-year schedule that evenly distributes debt across 120 months. For most new grads, this standard plan is manageable enough and makes the most sense moneywise. But if you can’t swing the monthly payment, the government offers a few alternatives to help you make ends meet while your career gets off the ground.If you know you’re going to have a hard time making payments when your grace period ends, switch to one of the government’s income-based repayment plans. These plans extend the length of your loan to 20 or 25 years and reduce your monthly bill to a fixed percentage of your annual income. Keep in mind that aside from affecting how long it takes to pay off student loans, these plans result in more of your money going toward interest. On the plus side, any remaining balance at the end of your term is forgiven…but you’ll still have to pay taxes on that amount.Find Out If You Qualify for ForgivenessDepending on what line of work you plan to pursue, you might be able to have part—or even all—of your debt forgiven once you’re a few years into your career. If you land a job working for the government or a nonprofit organization, you could see your loan balance slashed or even eliminated completely after a certain amount of time. The specifics about forgiveness plans depend on the terms of your loan and the type of organization you’re working for, not necessarily on the exact nature of your job. So if you plan on devoting your life to public service, you could end up paying a lot less than many of your fellow graduates.Minimize Expenses and Maximize IncomeIt almost goes without saying, but the less money you spend on things you don’t need, the more cash you’ll have leftover to pay toward your loan. So whether it’s canceling that gym membership you’re not using, or cutting back on how many times you eat out each week, saving a few bucks here and there can shave years off your loan repayment. Budgeting apps help identify areas where you might be over-spending. And seeing how those caramel macchiatos add up over time can change your habits in a heartbeat.In addition to cutting back on your expenses, look for other areas of your life where you could earn some extra dough. Maybe you can convert a hobby into a small side business, or perhaps there’s something you can do at work to pad your paycheck. In any case, just be sure to put your extra income toward your loan before thinking about ways to spend it.Automate Your PaymentsFrom dinging your credit score to increasing the amount of interest you owe, missing a loan payment doesn’t have many upsides. By automating your payments ahead of time, you won’t ever have to worry about getting off track. If you’re not already doing so, use a bill-pay service to determine which day of the month you’d like funds deducted from your account. Just “set it and forget it,” so you’ll never miss a payment.Also, if you haven’t already done so, make sure you check your credit score so that you know where you currently stand.Refinance Your LoanIf you’ve established a respectable credit record after a few years of paying down your student loan, there’s a good chance you could refinance your balance for a lower interest rate. Not only will this save you money in the long run, but you’d be able to pay off your debt faster too. So even if you don’t currently have the credit score needed to get a reduced rate, knowing that this option exists is a good incentive to make sure you don’t miss any payments. And if you’re already a few years into your repayment plan, check out Mint’s new Loan Center for student refinancing options that might be perfect for you.Having a plan to pay off your loans will help you breathe easier and could save you a mountain of money in the long run. So why put it off? See your student debt disappear by following these tips to eliminating what you owe.last_img read more