Video should form the core of any content marketing strategy, but high data costs in South Africa means marketers are not getting the return that they should. ERNST WITTMANN of Alcatel SA, believes this will however begin to change.
If you want someone to remember your message, show them a picture. If you want them to act on your message and convert them to customers, show them a video.
Research has found that 65% of business decision makers visit a marketer’s website after viewing a branded video, and 64% of customers are more likely to buy a product after watching a video about it.
We’re addicted to videos. They transmit messages faster, they’re engaging and we’re more likely to retain information that’s presented to us visually. It’s no wonder that video has become a huge focus for social media channels, with 300 hours’ worth of video being uploaded to YouTube every minute, and Snapchat and Facebook, respectively, streaming two billion and four billion live videos every day.
Video should form the core of any content marketing strategy but high data costs in South Africa means marketers are not getting the return from video that they should be. Consumers are frugal with their data and video is the hungriest of them all. With options to turn off automatic video playback on social media in order to save data, it’s not likely that you’re getting the reach with your video marketing efforts that you could be.
But that could change soon.
The Independent Communications Authority of SA (ICASA) is conducting an inquiry into high data costs amid a growing demand by civil society that.
A drop in data charges will be a boon for marketers, especially with the continued roll-out of high-speed fibre across the country.
When consumers are not hamstrung by high data costs and low Internet speeds, video consumption will skyrocket and marketers can fully execute – and reward from – their video marketing strategies. In some instances, it may very well be groundbreaking.
Here are a few good reasons why every business should consider video content marketing:
· It boosts your search engine optimisation (SEO). Content is 50x more likely to make it to the first page of Google results if it includes video.
· It increases engagement. Social videos generate 1200% more shares than text and image combined.
· It supports revenue growth. Marketers who use video grew revenue 49% faster than those who didn’t use video in their campaigns.
If you don’t yet have a video marketing plan in place, here are a few things to keep in mind:
· Keep videos in line with your brand. Logos, fonts and colours should remain consistent.
· Include a video on your landing page. Ideas include product demos, a different take on the ‘about us’ section, testimonials, how-tos and explainers. This could increase your conversion rates by an astonishing 80%.
· Incorporate video into your email marketing for a chance to boost clickthrough rates by 200-300%.
· Keep videos under five minutes. Videos up to two minutes long get the most engagement.
· Tailor your content to the channel. Social videos have more engagement than any other content format but each platform uses video differently, e.g. Snapchat creates a sense of urgency and YouTube supports longevity. Understand these nuances to ensure you have maximum impact.
· Optimise for mobile. Keep videos short and use compression technologies so that they load quickly and aren’t data hungry.
· Include subtitles. Some 85% of Facebook users watch videos without sound. Including subtitles ensures that your message still comes across.
· Tell a story. People relate and engage with stories more than brand or product messaging. Stories are also more shareable.
With an increasing number of high-quality, free video editing tools available today, getting started with your video marketing strategy has never been easier or more cost-effective. Start playing around today and experimenting with lighting, styles and content so that you can hit the ground running once those data costs drop.
- Ernst Wittmann, Global Account Director MEA & Country Manager – Southern Africa at Alcatel
3D printed room-service? Visit the hotel of tomorrow
To mark its 100th birthday, Hilton predicts the trends that will change travel and hospitality in the next 100 years.
Intergalactic getaways, fast-food nutrient pills, 2-3 hour working days and adaptable, personalised rooms that can transport guests everywhere from jungles to mountain ranges. These are some of the predictions for the next 100 years that the Hilton hotel group has put together in celebration of its 100th anniversary.
In a report supported by expert insight from the fields of sustainability, innovation, design, human relations and nutrition, findings reveal the impact of the growing sophistication of technology and climate change on the hotel industry in the future.
Key predictions for the hotel of the future include:
Personalisation is King
- Technology will allow every space, fitting and furnishing to continuously update to respond to an individual’s real-time needs – the Lobby will conjure up anything from a tranquil spa to a buzzy bar, giving every guest the perfect, personal welcome
- From temperature and lighting, to entertainment and beyond, microchips under the skin will enable us to wirelessly control the setting around us based on what we need, whenever we need it
The Human Touch
- In a world filled with Artificial Intelligence, human contact and the personal touch will be more critical and sought after than ever
- Technology will free up time for hotel staff to focus on what matters most: helping guests to connect with one another and building memorable moments
‘Sustainable Everything’ – The Role of Responsibility
- Only businesses that are inherently responsible will survive the next century
- Sustainability will be baked into everything about a hotel’s design – from weather-proofed domes, to buildings made from ocean-dredged plastic
- Hotels will act as the Town Hall of any community, managing local resources and contributing to the areas they serve with community-tended insect farms and vertical hydroponic crop gardens
Menu Surprises and Personalisation
- Our diets will include more plant-based recipes and some surprising sources of protein – Beetle Bolognese, Plankton Pies and Seaweed Green Velvet Cake will be menu staples!
- Decadent 3D-printed dinners and room service will provide unrivalled plate personalisation
- Chefs will be provided with biometric data for each guest, automatically creating meals based on preferences and nutritional requirements
Futuristic Fitness and Digital Detoxes
- Outswim a virtual sea turtle in the pool, or challenge yourself to climb the digital face of Mount Everest, your exercise routine will be as unique as you are. What’s more, exercise energy generated from workouts will be used to power the hotel, providing a zero-impact, circular system. Guests could even earn rewards based on reaching workout targets
- Pick up where you left off with trackable workouts and holographic personal trainers
- Offline will be the new luxury as we seek to find moments of tech-free time
“Since its inception in 1919, Hilton has pioneered the hospitality industry, introducing first-to-market concepts such as air-conditioning and in-room televisions. Last year, Hilton also became the first hospitality company to set science-based targets to reduce its environmental impact,” said Simon Vincent, EVP & President, EMEA, Hilton. “We enter our second century with the same commitment to innovation, harnessing the power of our people and technology to respond to guest demands. Our research paints an exciting future for the hospitality industry, highlighting the growing importance of human interaction in an increasingly tech-centric world.”
Futurologist Gerd Leonhard said: “In 2119 we will still be searching for unique experiences, but they will be more personalised than ever. As technology shapes our lives we will seek out moments of offline connection with others, including hotel team members who will help us truly get what we need from our stays. 100 years from now hotels will have to create opportunities to converse, collaborate and connect, delivering moments that matter, individually, to each and every guest.”
Gadget ed to chair Digital Council
Specialist financial services provider Sasfin Bank has established a Digital Advisory Council to provide the market with industry-leading expertise and insights on trends shaping the use of technology in financial services.
Digitalisation is one of the most powerful forces for change shaping Finance today. This has turned Fintech into one of the most vibrant sectors in both information technology and among start-ups, generating billions of dollars in investment and development globally. The South African fintech space is dynamic, and Sasfin is playing a leading role in the transformation of local financial services and the resulting enhancement of customer experiences.
“We have been investing in fintech development in-house and acquiring or integrating fintech start-ups,” says Sasfin CEO Michael Sassoon. “Over the last year we have built further digital offerings, integrated via APIs into leading businesses and invested in fintechs. We built and launched B\\YOND, an innovative digital business banking platform and SWIP, a digital wealth and investing platform. We have invested in Payabill, an online SME lender and DMA, a digital trading platform. We recently announced our alliance banking relationship, leveraging open banking, with Hello Paisa to offer seamless banking to the unbanked. We feel that there is a huge opportunity to improve the experience of South African businesses and savers through using technology. We have therefore created an independent forum to assess how to even better improve financial services for South Africans by leveraging the digital economy.”
Arthur Goldstuck, founder of high-tech research consultancy World Wide Worx, editor-in-chief of Gadget, and a globally respected technology analyst has accepted Sasfin’s invitation to head up the Sasfin Digital Advisory Council, an independent think tank that will help Sasfin and its clients decipher the fintech present and future.
“The Sasfin Digital Advisory Council is broader than providing only the bank with a source of insight on how digital services are evolving and lessons from across the world,” said CEO Michael Sassoon. “Sasfin has been involved in fintech investing for many years and we are leveraging this experience as well as the experience of independent experts such as Arthur to provide insights and guidance to interested stakeholders in this space.”
The team appointed to the Digital Advisory Council is being selected for the breadth and range of knowledge they would bring to the table, with further appointments to the Council being announced soon. There will also be room for the Council to co-opt specialist expertise as it is required.
Goldstuck, who has been covering the fintech sector as an analyst, commentator and columnist for many years, says he sees the role as a welcome challenge.
“There has been a long-standing need for a clear understanding of the impact being made by fintech today, and the exponential change it will cause tomorrow,” said Goldstuck. “My role will be, partly, to curate the wide spectrum of fintech and digitalisation knowledge and insights that the members will bring to the Digital Advisory Council, and help create scenarios that businesses and policymakers may use to navigate the future – both inside and outside Sasfin.”