By the end of 2019, 80% of all global internet consumption will be video content. Staggering, right? When it comes to summer camp marketing, you know a picture is worth a thousand words. But what about a video? Video marketing is a critical aspect of great summer camp marketing, and adding it to your strategy can improve your efficacy, impact, and messaging.

Video is ideal for capturing special moments, supercharging your organization’s mission, and creating authentic content. As such, it’s an excellent addition to any camp marketing strategy.

Here’s what you need to know.

Video Marketing, by the Numbers

What’s the big buzz around video marketing? Here are a few statistics from Renderforest to chew on:

  • 86% of online marketers use video content in their marketing plans

  • Marketers who use video grow their revenue 49% faster than non-video users.

  • 81% of companies feature their video on their brand’s website.

  • Marketers who create and employ video earn 41% more organic web traffic than non-users.

  • 52% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with the best ROI.

  • 43% of marketers said they’d create more video content without obstacles like time, resources, and budget.

  • Marketers who use video content get 66% more qualified leads per year.

  • Video in email leads to a 200-300% increase in click-through rates – which is excellent news for any camp that sends out annual registration reminders via email!

  • Landing pages that include videos get 80% more conversions.

  • 70% of marketing professionals say video is their highest-converting type of content.

  • Simply adding a video to your website’s homepage can boost your conversion rates by an average of 20%…or more.

  • Internet users spend 88% more time on websites that have videos on them.

  • Replacing an image with a video on a landing page boosts conversions by 12.62%

  • 45% of people watch at least 60 minutes of video per day.

  • Every minute, users upload a collective 72 hours of video to YouTube.

  • Compared to other video links, native videos on Facebook have ten times higher reach.

  • On Facebook, posts with videos see a 135% greater organic reach than photo posts.

  • 64% of users are more likely to buy a product or interact with a brand after watching their video content.

  • 92% of internet users say visuals are the biggest factor that impacts their purchasing decisions.

  • Online shoppers who view demo videos are 1.81x more likely to purchase than non-viewers

  • When shopping online, 70% of Millennials like to watch company videos.

  • 92% of mobile video viewers go out of their way to share videos with others.

  • According to YouTube, mobile video consumption rises about 100% year over year.

How to Add Video Marketing to Your Camp Strategy

Video is dominating the modern world of digital marketing- and it’s not limited to YouTube. As this Oberlo graphic demonstrates, four of the top six channels viewers use to watch video are social channels:

Where People Watch Videos

As if that weren’t enough, some social platforms are estimating that the majority of their content will be video in just a few years. The tides are changing, and it’s time to hop aboard. Here’s a simple guide to adding video marketing to your camp’s digital strategy this year:

1. First, Know Your Audience

As is true in all marketing, knowing your target audience is essential for video production. If you’re going to create excellent video content, you need to understand who will be watching it. In summer camp marketing, videos speak mostly at campers and their families. To ensure you understand those audiences inside and out, though, you may want to create a target persona.

A target persona serves a few important purposes.

  • It helps you outline the demographics that define your target audience, including age, location, income level, and more.

  • It allows you to define the primary concerns of your target audience. For example, if you run a college preparatory camp, you’re speaking to an audience that is laser-focused on preparing their children for the SATs and similar tests. Addressing these concerns directly will boost your camp sign-ups and conversions.

  • Target personas allow you to segment your messaging, speaking personally to each audience you work with.

Once you’ve defined your target persona, you can clarify your video’s messaging, format, and more.

In some cases, you might have several different target audiences for your videos. Make a persona for each, and update them anytime anything changes.

If you want your videos to be successful, they need to support a goal.

2. Define Your Goals

If you want your videos to be successful, they need to support a goal. Because of this, defining the objectives of your video should be your first approach.

Do you want to increase awareness surrounding your camp? Get people to sign up for your upcoming season? Or simply share the most memorable moments from the season that just ended?

Whatever your goal is, being clear on what you’re trying to achieve is the first step to creating targeted videos that communicate your message.

3. Decide on a Type of Video

Video marketing comes in all shapes and sizes. No two videos are created equal. For example, if your goal is to get funding for your camp, you might make a dedicated marketing video.

This video would use professional video equipment, a staged scene, and interviews with counselors and administrators. If you’re looking to capture the moments your camp creates, though, your videos will likely be candid and shot with smartphones.

Just like you have to decide on the goal of your video, you must also determine the format of the video. This will ensure the video you wind up with is the one that’s most useful for your brand.

4. Decide how to Share the Video

Next, it’s time to consider how to share the video you’ve created. When you get to this step, you’ve got a few great options:

  • Social Platforms. Social platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube are excellent options for sharing your original video content. On Facebook, videos are the single most-shared type of content, with 89.5 average shares per video. No matter where you choose to share your material, tailor it to the publishing platform. On Instagram, for example, videos can’t be longer than 60 seconds.

  • Campanion. Campanion is an excellent platform for sharing original videos of your camp. The app connects campers and their families to the camp experience. The tool creates daily, personalized streams of content, complete with auto-tagged images, updates from camp, digitized letters, and more. Campanion organizes photos and videos from camp in easy-to-browse albums to help you feel connected while your camper is away. View albums and tagged photos, so camp families can get curated content without having to dig for it.

  • Your Website. Your website is also an excellent place to share your original videos. This is an excellent option for anyone who wants to use their videos for marketing purposes. YMCA Camp Tecumseh does a great job of this. They create weekly videos and upload them to their social channels, Vimeo, and their website to create a compelling video diary that showcases the culture of their camp:

Do You Need a Professional Camera?

One thing that tends to keep camps from creating video is fear surrounding equipment. Camera equipment is expensive, and most camps don’t want to invest thousands in a DSLR or camcorder. Fortunately, you don’t always have to. Here’s a breakdown of when to buy a professional camera, and when an iPhone will do:

When to Invest in a Camera

If you’re committed to creating video marketing content for your camp, you may want to buy a designated video camera. The number one reason for this is the features. While it’s possible, today, to shoot video on DSLRs, mirrorless cameras, and iPhones alike, none offer the following video-specific features of the camcorder:

  • Zoom Range. The zoom range of camcorders is unmatched. Most camcorders offer a 20x or longer zoom, which is ideal for filming everything that goes on at your camp. Additionally, the zoom on camcorders is slow and smooth, with none of the shakiness of manual zooms on smartphones.

  • Record Time. On most modern cameras, the available record times are limited to 29 minutes and 59 seconds.  On camcorders, though, there are no record time limits. This means you can record live performances, presentations, sports, and anything else where you need unlimited bandwidth.

  • Battery Life. The battery life of camcorders is larger than photography cameras. If you need more battery life, you can purchase high-capacity cells and larger battery adaptors.

  • Audio. Last but not least, camcorders offer outstanding audio capabilities. Thanks to things like XLR inputs, camcorders record clear, crisp sound that’s ideal for summer camp marketing videos.

While camcorders may seem like defunct technology, they’re an excellent investment for camps that intend to create a great deal of video content from now on.

When to Shoot With a Smartphone

For most camps, smartphones are an excellent method of shooting video marketing material. If you want to record the occasional camp video, but don’t intend to make it your complete marketing strategy, sticking with an iPhone is fine.

In addition to being affordable and portable, smartphones come with dozens of available video accessories. Depending on your goals, you can purchase additional video accessories, including lens systems, mounts, tripods, and more to expand your shooting capabilities.

5 Tips to Shoot Great Videos

If you’ve never taken camp videos before, getting started can be confusing. Fortunately, these tips help simplify things:

1. Use Lots of Light

Light is your best friend when you set out to make videos. Even if you’re shooting on a cell phone, light will take your videos from looking amateurish to looking professional. Fortunately, you don’t need a big fancy light setup.

Natural light is your best friend when it comes to video creation. For best results, shoot your videos in the late afternoon or early morning, when the light is softer and more flattering. During the middle of the day, thee light comes from directly overhead and can cast harsh shadows onto your subject.

If you’re filming indoors, look to shoot near a window or another source of natural light. If you anticipate shooting interviews or testimonial videos, you may want to invest in a ring light.

2. Pay Attention to the Background

The background you use for filming is critical to the ultimate quality of the photo. With this in mind, be deliberate about the background you choose. Here are a few tips:

  • If you’re shooting outside, put your subject in front of an attractive natural background, like a lake or forest.

  • Limit distractions in the background of your video, especially if you’re creating a video for marketing purposes.

  • If you’re shooting against a stationary background, like a paper backdrop or a wall, keep your subject a few feet from the wall to avoid casting shadows.

3. Use a Tripod

When it comes to video marketing, there’s nothing as bad as shaky footage. If you shoot by hand, just holding your camcorder or phone, you’re going to get shaky footage pretty much no matter what.

Fortunately, there’s a better way. By investing in an inexpensive tripod, you can shoot stable footage from either a cell phone or a designated camcorder.

4. Add a CTA

Many camps forget to add CTAs (calls to action) to their video content. Unfortunately, this cheats you out of some of the usefulness of your camp videos. If you want your video content to be as impactful as possible, you’ve got to give viewers a “next step.” The goal of your video, of course, should define the next step.

Check out how Twin Lakes Camp in Mississippi has done this on one of their sign-up videos:

No matter what the CTA for your company is, be sure to make navigating to the next step easy for your customers. Embed a link to your website, for example, or offer a clickable sign-up form right there at the end of your video.

5. Get Creative

The great thing about video content is that it allows you to showcase the heart of your camp in an authentic and accessible way. With this in mind, don’t be afraid to get creative with your video content. Capture the things that make your camp unique, the counselors your campers love, and the landscapes surrounding you.

If you run a horse program, for example, take a video that introduces campers to each horse and highlights a few of their funniest moments. Videos are an excellent way to create excitement and get your campers and their families ready for the upcoming season.

The Case for Camp Video Marketing

When it comes to something as dynamic and exciting as camp, images are critical for marketing the experience accurately. While photos are a vital form of summer camp marketing, videos are the form of content that can take your camp to the next level.

Even if you’ve never shout summer camp video marketing material before, getting started is much easier than many people imagine it to be. By following the tips in the post above, and choosing a few smart places to share your videos, you can create a robust following for your beautiful, dynamic content in no time.

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