Email marketing and video: should you use video in email and how?

Nowadays, email marketers get the advice to focus on relevant and share-worthy content. However, content does not have to be written. An image is content too. However, in email marketing written content is king and on top of that don’t we have to keep our emails, their content and their design simple, to the point, concise, focused and short?

On the other hand, I notice an increasing focus on using video in emails. Video is a rich and more sophisticated type of content. However, the web surfers are embracing it so why not include it in email? Some email marketers are using it, and if we can believe some recent data (see further) it works. However, it surely is not mainstream yet.

But the attention the topic gets is growing fast. The number of press releases, ESP initiatives, seminars etc. about video in email marketing increases rapidly. Should we start doing it or is too soon? Some facts and considerations.

Several questions arise when looking at integrating video in emails.

One of them is the “what’s in it for me and what’s in it for my recipients” questions. Yes, video is a very engaging format and people like to interact with it online but what are the benefits for you and your recipients?

As always, doing it because everyone is talking about it, is not a good idea. The key question to answer is if it will engage your customers. And as always, it depends. Asking it to your customers and testing on a small subscriber base is never a bad idea.

How to ‘integrate’ video in emails?

Another question is how do you integrate it? You have the simple solution like making an image of a video that’s on your landing page, play arrow included, and linking to the real video on the landing page. An animated GIF can be a solution, although it gives problems in certain email clients, and then you have Flash, which is considered as a very bad idea.

Whatever solution you choose: again, consider what your audience wants and test on a small part of your list. Furthermore, consider the impact on your bandwidth.

There’s an increasing number of companies that jump on the video in email topic (sometimes it looks more as a hype) and provide solutions.

Earlier this week ESP Net Atlantic announced the addition of VideoHere to their suite of email marketing solutions. 

From the press release: “This integration offers Net Atlantic email marketing users the ability to seamlessly utilize video in their email campaigns, creating a highly relevant and engaging marketing message”. 

VideoHere allows users to point and click to upload, customize, embed play buttons, and track videos used in their email marketing campaigns. But the video is not IN the email: it uses an embedded image and links to add video in your email and link to a video in your library.

According to Net Atlantic adding video to email campaigns “will improve lead quality and increase conversions”.

What’s in it for you: increased conversions?

Increased conversions. Now, here is something I heard before.

End of last year Implix, owner of the email marketing platform GetResponse, claimed that video emails increase click-through rates by 96%. The internal study (GetResponse allows integrating video in emails) analyzed almost one billion video emails. 

The emails containing video received, on average, 5.6 percent higher open rates, and 96.38 percent higher CTRs than non-video mails. 

To use it, you need GetResponse’s Multimedia Studio that lets you record and store up to 100MB of audio and video.

Video in email is a hot topic, but if you do it, you best go for simple solutions that don’t eat up your bandwidth and that link to your video that’s hosted on your landing page, a multimedia library of your ESP or a social media site such as YouTube.

If anyone  has good cases or examples, always happy to learn about them.

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2 thoughts on “Email marketing and video: should you use video in email and how?”

  1. Constant Contact, Getresponse, and benchmark email are one of the best. Stream Send doesn’t offer many features and that’s why I have never endorsed them. iContact offers low deliverability rates, so that’s not a good choice either. Most people buy because of how popular an email marketing software is or how good looking their website is, but that’s not the right way to judge their competency.

    What you need is an intelligent analysis of what they have to offer – features, email editor, deliverability, support, pricing etc.

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