If you feel like you’ve been seeing a whole lot more video content online over the past couple of years, it’s not your imagination. Video content has proliferated in recent months and the expectation is that it will continue to grow at a rapid pace in the coming years. Just consider the following statistics and data points (as curated by WordStream):
- Nearly 1 in 2 people watch more than an hour of Facebook or YouTube video per week.
- More video content is uploaded to the internet every month than all major U.S. TV networks have created in the last three decades.
- 87 percent of online marketers use video content, while those that do grow revenue 49 percent faster than non-video users.
Dozens of additional statistics could be highlighted… but you get the picture. Video marketing isn’t optional. From a marketing perspective, it’s integral to success.
“There’s simply no substitute for video,” says Nate of Squareship, an animation and motion graphics company. “Psychologically, the human brain responds to video in an overwhelmingly acute manner. Practically, video content is easily consumable and utterly shareable. This makes it the ultimate content medium for cutting through the noise and reaching today’s over-stimulated internet users.”
Lessons From the Most Popular Product Awareness Videos
The question most marketers have is: how do you excel at developing and disseminating product awareness videos that generate a robust ROI? What does it take to get one of those “viral” videos?
Well, you can start by learning from the best. Here are some practical takeaways from five of YouTube’s most viewed product awareness videos of all-time:
1. Purple: Raw Egg Test (107.1m Views)
Despite being the most recently published video on the list, Purple’s Raw Egg Test demonstration video is far and away the most popular product awareness video ever published.
Not only does the video do a good job of grabbing your attention from the get-go, but it also uses unique, compelling imagery to suck you in. (Who doesn’t want to see if an egg is going to crack on a mattress?)
Biggest Lesson: When you think about it, the science behind the Purple mattress is actually pretty detailed and complex. But instead of publishing a video that discusses all of the technical specs, Purple takes a humorous/informative approach. By the end of the video, you’re not just interested in the product – you’re also interested in the brand.
2. Poo-Pourri: Girls Don’t Poop (40m Views)
If you haven’t seen this Poo~Pourri video yet, check it out. It’s unique, hilarious, and surprisingly bold. Hopefully the team behind this video received promotions and raises, because they certainly deserve them. It has received more than 40 million views and tackles an unpopular subject. (Similar spin-off videos for the company have done remarkably well, too.)
Biggest Lesson: Just because you sell a product that’s unsexy or taboo, doesn’t mean you can’t be wildly successful with marketing. This video tackles an odd subject – poop and bathroom spray – and does surprisingly well with it.
3. Dollar Shave Club (25m Views)
By now, it seems like everyone has seen the Dollar Shave Club promo video that first circulated in 2012. It has over 25 million views and is considered one of the best brand-intro videos of all time.
Despite being just 93 seconds long, the video perfectly explains the pain point Dollar Shave Club solves. It does so in an in-your-face style that’s indicative of the brand’s voice and identity.
Biggest Lesson: It’s easy to get so caught up in branding that you forget about the importance of humanizing your company. Dollar Shave Club uses its actual founder, Michael Dubin, as its spokesperson in an attempt to build an immediate and recognizable connection with customers.
4. Blendtec: Will it Blend? – iPad (18.5m Views)
Blendtec was one of the first brands to truly recognize the value in video content – and specifically the YouTube platform. In 2006, the company’s new Director of Marketing decided to launch a video campaign in which the company’s CEO blended up different non-food items in the company’s Blendtec blenders. What started with items like lab coats, marbles, and garden rakes, has since evolved into even stranger items – like iPads.
This iPad blending video, published in early 2010, is by far the most popular of the series. It has more than 18.5 million views and is still quite popular in terms of social media shares.
Biggest Lesson: If you want to reach the masses, you have to do something that nobody else is doing. Not only are the Blendtec videos unique, but they grab your attention. Why would anyone blend a perfectly good iPad into dust?
5. Dropbox: What is Dropbox? (11.2m Views)
Imagine trying to explain what Dropbox is to your grandparents who are still using a Windows 95 computer to check their email. When Dropbox wanted to develop an explainer video for their product, this is the angle they took. They wanted to make it as simple as possible.
This 67-second product awareness video does what a blog post or interview can’t – explains cloud file sharing in a manner that anyone can grasp. It worked for them and is still a good lead generation resource for them more than two years later.
Biggest Lesson: You don’t need a lengthy video to be successful. In fact, in today’s social media climate where short-form content thrives, one-minute spots are ideal. Dropbox understands this and cuts out the unnecessary fluff.
Let Product Awareness Videos Elevate Your Brand
Every leading brand in your industry is using video as a part of their marketing strategy. The question is, are you? Successful brands have come to rely on video for one simple reason: it works. As these five popular videos show, there are numerous approaches you can take, so don’t get caught up by the notion that you have to fit a specific mold.
Stick to your brand’s voice and see what happens.
About the Author: Tony Tie is a “numbers-obsessed” marketer, life hacker and public speaker who has helped various Fortune 500 companies grow their online presence. He is also a marketing and entrepreneurship lecturer at various universities.