2 Big Challenges for Video Marketers in 2023 (And How to Keep Up)

In this article we explore the two biggest challenges facing video marketing professionals in 2023.

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Video marketing remains the most engaging way to connect with consumers—but it’s also one of the most rapidly changing areas in the marketing world. With upcoming trends and ever-evolving technology, video marketers face the difficult but rewarding challenge of keeping up with the times.

But businesses (including us) are doubling down on video marketing. Online video ad spend is projected to surpass $100 billion for the first time in 2023, and the growth of streaming services and social media platforms doesn’t seem to be slowing down.

Think about your favorite TikTok micro-influencers, Netflix shows, and YouTube podcasts. The amount of content produced and consumed is staggering.

So what do you need to know as a video marketer? We’ve identified two big challenges that you’ll face in 2023—and how to best combat them.

1. Video-First Social Media Marketing

Video-first social media marketing is a modern marketing approach that centers around using video content to engage with target audiences. This type of marketing utilizes the potential of online video platforms, like YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat, to reach customers and promote products or services. It also focuses on producing short-form videos

Social video generates 1,200% more shares than text and images combined, making video-first social media marketing a must-have for businesses. With platforms like TikTok, Instagram stories, and YouTube dominating the app space, marketers can no longer rely on just text and images to get their message across.

The challenge here is producing content that’s both engaging and consistent across all channels. For marketers to achieve this, they need to adjust their strategies based on trends, types of content, and the platforms they’re targeting.

Let’s take a look at some of the most prevalent trends in video-first social media marketing.

User-Generated Content (UGC)

User-generated content (UGC) is content that is created by consumers rather than brands or media. This includes reviews, comments, photos, videos, and other forms of content that are posted on social media platforms.

Examples of user-generated content include:

  • A YouTube video unboxing and using a new type of makeup product
  • A TikTok creator showing off a new toy they bought for their dog
  • An Instagram post featuring a customer wearing your brand’s latest fashion collection
  • A LinkedIn article highlighting a software product the author uses every day

The power of UGC lies in its authenticity and relatability. Consumers trust content from their peers more than they trust traditional advertising, making UGC the perfect tool to engage with customers on social media platforms.

A recent study conducted by Stackla [PDF] shows that consumers are more than twice as likely to view user-generated content (UGC) as authentic when compared to brands’ own created content. An astonishing 80% of people say UGC “highly impacts their purchasing decisions,” while only 13% report the same for content coming from the brand themselves. UGC provides companies with an enormous chance to enhance loyalty and customer experience (CX) and construct strong online communities.

How can businesses encourage user-generated content?

Of course, the authenticity of UGC is rooted in the fact that the brand does not control it. Hypothetically, UGC can be good and bad (and it usually is). But that’s what makes it so appealing.

That said, there are still ways to encourage and reward customers for creating positive UGC. Here are some of the most effective techniques:

  • Create a dedicated online space. Establishing a dedicated mobile-friendly area on your website where clients can give feedback and ask questions is key to eliciting precious insights. This will not only help brands devise more tailored customer experiences but also in the development of fresh products and services.
  • Engage with your customers’ existing video content. 53% of Americans would be more likely to buy from a company again if it engages with them online. And 45% say they’d be willing to interact with the brand’s community in return. If users are already posting content about your brand, don’t be afraid to reward them for it. Respond to their posts with likes, shares and comments – this is a great way to show appreciation and boost engagement.
  • Incentivize customers to create content on their own terms. Whether through discounts or simply recognition, encouraging customers to share videos about your company can be a fantastic way of gathering more user-generated content. Keep in mind that they should focus on empowering customers to tell their own stories, rather than trying to control what kind of content is created.

If you take the time to explore these opportunities, you’ll be able to create a powerful marketing strategy that leverages user-generated content and drives sales growth.

Micro-Influencer Marketing

Micro-influencers are social media personalities that have a smaller, but more engaged audience than influencers with millions of followers. These micro-influencers can be highly effective for reaching niche audiences and helping businesses to create brand awareness, drive conversions and increase sales.

Micro-influencer marketing is becoming increasingly popular due to its effectiveness and cost-efficiency—hence why micro-influencers had 91% of the market share in 2021.

These days, there are plenty of ways you can work with micro-influencers:

  • Partner with them on branded content. Around 70% of people follow at least one influencer, making branded content a great way to get your message across in a larger circle of followers. It also allows for more creative freedom since the influencer has control over the content they create.
  • Find influencers who use your product or service. With the sheer number of content creators, chances are some of them already use your products. If possible, engaging their content and offering them monetary or product compensation can become a great way to promote your brand.
  • Provide discounts or other incentives for their audiences. Micro-influencers often have loyal fans that are eager to try out new products, services and experiences. Offering discounts or other incentives is a great way to engage with their audiences and extend the reach of your brand.
  • Offer exclusive access or experiences. You can offer exclusive access or experiences to micro-influencers, such as early bird access to new products and services, sneak peeks at upcoming campaigns, complimentary tickets to events, or whatever fits your business and its goals.

Vertical Video Content

The more people watch content on their mobile devices, the more essential it becomes for brands to master vertical video content.

Vertical video is great for mobile-first platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok, as these platforms are designed for it. From eye-catching stories to full videos, vertical formats are gaining traction and will soon be the standard as more people watch content on their phones.

On Twitter, 90% of views come from mobile devices, and engagement with vertical videos is 2.5 times greater. On Facebook, vertical videos have 13.8x greater visibility compared to horizontal.

The good news for marketers is that vertical video content is often easier and less expensive to create. Since it’s made for mobile devices, the best way to film it is on your phone.

There are also plenty of apps and tools available to help you create professional-looking vertical videos (including AI tools that streamline the process).

Informational and Educational Videos

Have you ever looked on YouTube or TikTok to learn how to do something? So have we.

According to Think With Google, the “how to” category on YouTube has become one of the most sought-after topics across audiences. And for Gen Z, TikTok is the new search engine.

There are several ways brands can create their own educational content, including:

  • Filming product demos and tutorials. Product demos are a great way to showcase how your product or service works and demonstrate its features and benefits.
  • Recording interviews with industry experts. Interviews can be incredibly informative, as they provide insights straight from the people who know the topic best.
  • Creating a video series. Video series break complex topics into digestible chunks, making it easier for viewers to understand.
  • Posting tips and insights relevant to your audience. If you think your audience would find helpful insights and advice valuable, then posting them in the form of a video can be a great way to engage and educate.

The contents of your informational videos will vary wildly depending on the company you’re working with, but the goal should remain the same: Provide value and insights that will inform and help your viewership.

Live Streaming

Live streaming is only growing more popular as platforms like Twitch, IGTV, YouTube Live, Facebook Live, and Periscope become more widely adopted. It accounts for almost a quarter of global viewing time, and its limited, in-the-moment nature drives engagement.

Live streaming content involves broadcasting a live event, like a conference or product launch, or creating an interactive experience with an influencer. It can also involve broadcasting yourself (or another team member) talking about a particular topic.

Businesses can leverage live streaming in the following ways:

  • Creating their own Instagram/Facebook/TikTok Live events where they interact with fans, host giveaways, and answer questions.
  • Connecting with influencers to host live Q&A sessions or product/service reviews.
  • Working with relevant partners to create content for their platforms, like Twitch or YouTube Live.
  • Launching virtual events that people can attend from the comfort of their own homes, like webinars and exclusive workshops.

Securing product placements on influencer streams.

2. Streaming Services, Connected TV, and OTT

Streaming services have become a major source of entertainment for consumers, with global streaming subscriptions in the billions.

There are three main types of streaming services:

  • Subscription video services: This includes streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Hulu.
  • Ad-supported video on demand (AVOD): These are free platforms such as Pluto TV and Tubi that let viewers watch content for free with ads.
  • Transaction video on demand (TVOD): These include digital stores like Apple TV, Google Play Movies & TV, and Microsoft Movies & TV.

Connected TV (CTV) is a streaming platform that allows users to watch content on their television, usually via an internet connection. People use their streaming services via a CTV platform, such as Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Firestick.

Since many of these platforms are ad-supported, video marketers can use them to reach a larger audience and increase their ROI.

Here’s how:

Over-the-Top (OTT) Advertising

OTT (over-the-top) advertising refers to the delivery of video content and advertisements over the internet, enabling viewers to watch programming on any device or screen. This type of advertising is becoming increasingly popular with marketers, as it allows them to reach their target audience more effectively than traditional TV ads.

With OTT, marketers can deliver targeted ads to specific households or audiences based on demographics, interests, and behaviors. Additionally, they can track performance in real time, allowing them to make adjustments quickly if needed.

Superior Audience Targeting & Retargeting

Compared to traditional TV advertising, audience targeting and retargeting with CTV video campaigns is far superior. Video marketers can use sophisticated data sources to develop a better understanding of their target audiences and deliver more relevant messages that resonate.

Since they’re delivered via OTT platforms, marketers can target their campaigns at specific households or audiences based on demographics, interests, and behaviors. By leveraging advanced data points like lifestyle segmentation, video marketers can create lookalike models to identify new potential customers who are similar to existing high-value ones.

And using retargeting capabilities, they can serve ads to people who have already interacted with their brand, further increasing their reach and conversions.

High-Quality TV Advertising Content

Since those who use streaming services are doing so for high-quality entertainment, video marketers need to ensure that the ads they deliver are of similar quality. This means creating videos with engaging stories and visuals that capture people’s attention and compel them to take action.

This poses a few additional challenges for video marketers:

  • Streaming service quality standards are higher than those of social media platforms, meaning marketers will need to invest more effort into creating high-quality content.
  • Video creative needs to be tailored so that it’s optimized for the various connected TV and OTT platforms as well as different device types.
  • Marketers may need to launch specialized campaigns for different streaming services, as the requirements and capabilities of each platform may differ.
  • Filming media content with a storyline and ensuring it meets the industry standards of streaming services can be time-consuming and expensive.
  • OTT ad space is becoming increasingly competitive as more and more marketers are shifting their budgets to this platform. Video marketers must work harder to stand out from the competition and ensure that the right people see their content.

How Can Businesses Navigate These Video Marketing Challenges?

The challenges of video marketing for streaming services and social media platforms are far from insurmountable.

Here are a few tips for navigating 2023’s biggest challenges:

  • Budget according to company size and needs. TikTok content that can be filmed with a smartphone is inexpensive to produce, while TV-quality content can be costly. Avoid over-investing and ensure that campaigns are targeted to the right audiences.
  • Focus on building a community. Connecting with your customers, working with micro-influencers, and replying to comments will take you further than almost any ad campaign.
  • Avoid a one-size-fits-all approach. Content should be tailored to different platforms and audiences to ensure maximum success. If you aren’t sure where to start, consider enlisting the help of an experienced video marketing agency.
  • Take advantage of automation tools. Video marketing can be a time-consuming process, but AI, optimization, and automation tools offer the ability to streamline the workflow and free up time for other tasks.

Let Us Handle the Stress of Video Marketing!

The benefits of a well-rounded video marketing strategy are far from insurmountable—but the process can be.

Instead of guessing at the best way to tackle these challenges, work with a team of experienced experts who understand the nuances of this ever-evolving field.

Click below to schedule a free consultation—it’s the first step to a successful video marketing campaign.