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12/14/2015

Are You Tapping the Full Potential of Online Videos?

Trevor Rasmussen December 14th, 2015

If a picture paints a thousand words, how much more impact does a video have? For financial institutions looking to engage new and existing account holders, a video’s impact could be measured in its ability to drive the FI’s bottom line. What’s more, a study by Synergistics Research indicates that video has the potential to strongly influence consumers — especially Millennials — who are seeking financial information about banking products and services.

Synergistics video viewershipAlthough the percentage of surveyed consumers who had viewed financial videos was somewhat small, the impact of the videos on viewers was significant. Just 42 percent said they’d watched a financial video anywhere online, and slightly more than half of those viewers were Millennials (ages 18–34). Yet among those who did view a video, 74 percent said they were influenced by it, and 40 percent made a serious financial decision based, at least in part, on what they’d seen in the video. Twenty-nine percent opened or applied for an account because of the video. I can’t think of many other types of content that can boast numbers like that!

Synergistics sharing sitesClearly, video has enormous potential to help financial institutions engage consumers at all stages of the FI-customer relationship, and it could be especially useful during acquisition and onboarding. The fact that more than half of the consumers surveyed by Synergistics hadn’t seen a financial video may well be due to a dearth of available good content rather than a lack of interest. It seems likely that if FIs provide more quality video content, more consumers will be eager to watch it.

Go where consumers are watching

You may already have some video content on your FI’s website, but to truly use video effectively, it’s necessary to expand your reach.

Just 16 percent of video viewers said they’d watched a video on a financial institution’s website. In fact, finance-related websites such as the financial areas of web portals (14 percent), financial media sites (10 percent) and other types of independent financial sites (7 percent) were far less popular sources for financial videos. The majority of those who watched financial videos did so on news sites (27 percent) and sharing sites such as YouTube (19 percent).

Distributing quality video content through sharing sites may be one of the most impactful and cost-effective marketing tactics you’re not yet tapping! If you are spending big bucks to make high-quality videos, don’t forget to leave some money in your budget for distribution!

Leverage video to target the most challenging age group

On this blog, we talk a lot about the importance and challenges of marketing to Millennials. It’s particularly noteworthy that Millennial-aged consumers represented the majority of those watching financial videos online. Fifty-one percent of viewers were ages 18–34, 42 percent were ages 35–49, 38 percent were ages 50–64, and just 31 percent were 65 and older.

Millennials were also most likely to view financial videos on user sharing sites.

Multiple studies have defined Millennials as interested in managing their own finances but lacking in the knowledge and information they need to do so with confidence and success. We also know that Millennials are profoundly connected, spending a great deal of time online. They are very comfortable with digital transactions, social media and sharing websites. Informational videos on topics of interest to Millennials — checking account basics, credit management, mortgages, etc. — distributed on a sharing website could drive young consumers seeking products or services to your financial institution.

Financial institutions need to proactively use online videos to engage consumers and communicate the FI’s value propositions. Video can be an effective way to acquire customers and build market share, but a word of caution: online viewers are savvy and will quickly detect and discard video (and other content) that is solely promotional in nature. Make sure your video — and all your online marketing content — provides useful information, contains minimal branding, and establishes a clear, easy-to-follow call to action.