Socialcam is an app that lets you instantly share video content. Touted as the "Instagram for video" it has seen great traction, logging 36 million members as of May 2012. A large segment of that user population, though, is comprised of brands using video content as a marketing tool. Top brands range from the New York Jets to General Electric.
Big companies find success on Socialcam by letting fans and the general public behind the scenes of the well-known brand and providing customers the chance to interact with makers of the product. But this strategy isn't reserved for big companies. Small businesses can also create conversations around their brand by emulating the core techniques these leading brands have established.
Socialcam CEO Michael Seibel shares his insights on the best ways for small businesses to increase their reach through Socialcam. Check out his tips below.
1. Post often. Socialcam is one place where it's quantity over quality. Take advantage of the app's easy interface to keep a continuous flow of content on your page. Instead of crafting the "perfect viral video" with significant editing, time, energy and money, Seibel says, do videos that are simple and interesting; most importantly, post to your page often.
Don't wait two to three weeks between each video, but instead, post two to three videos each week to "sit in the sweet spot," Seibel advises. Since Socialcam provides users with an activity newsfeed, the more you post, the more your business name will appear in the feed and draw users to your videos.
Sierra Mist, the sixth highest rated brand on Socialcam, does a good job of filling its page with quick and fun videos, such as magic tricks using its soda. The production quality is low and the videos are easy to make, but they do generate buzz around the product.
2. Repurpose existing content. If your small business doesn't have manpower to consistently create new content, use pre-existing ads. Just make sure to take advantage of Socialcam's filters and soundtracks to produce a video with a different vibe than the original.
Seibel says The Brooklyn Nets—the No. 1 brand on Socialcam with more than 960,000 followers—do a great job of using television content or previously made promotional ads to create short teasers on Socialcam.
Small businesses can now easily create ads they may not have had resources for before, while also building up a follower base on Socialcam. Or, if ads aren't fitting for your small business, try uploading videos of how products are made (like General Electric's video of a jet engine being built).
3. Encourage interaction. More than anything, Socialcam is about creating interaction. The key to finding success with the tool is to make sure your followers are encouraged to participate. Use probing questions in videos and invite followers to answer with their own videos. The more buzz around a video, the more likely other users not familiar with your business will come across the footage.
But make sure that you don't start a conversation and then abandon the video for the next one. Continue to moderate comments and answer questions (with new videos—even better!). Seibel has seen car dealership companies on Socialcam interact with potential buyers' questions about cars with actual footage of the car. Once people start making connections and getting responses, it's more likely they will stick around in the future.
One of the best parts about Socialcam for brands, Seibel says, is that people can finally put a face to the name and feel a personal connection. With that in mind, make sure your videos have a personal feel. Use footage of interviews with members of the team or their family (if it's relevant to your business) so people can feel like they are getting to know the brand and the people behind it. For startups especially, bring cameras to idea meetings so the public can see how the team interacts and brainstorms. Giving tours of your office space will provide followers a sneak peek into the company culture.
4. Become a VIP. Reach out to Socialcam to find out more about the VIP program. VIPs on Socialcam receive vanity URLs and short descriptions of their product and brand on their page to give users a better experience. If you want a boost to your page and are prepared to post a lot of video content, then being a VIP will help to attract initial attention and build a following.
Read more on how to use online video in your marketing here.