Getting your OTT service discovered by the right audience, at the right time, with the right content is critical to your success.
In the last installment of our OTT Marketing Essentials blog series, we provided recommendations to help ensure your service is visible within the major search engines, and we covered tips for getting started with paid search campaigns. This time around, we’re providing pointers and best practices for building your content repertoire and establishing a presence on social media.
As with any launch, the first step should be to conduct an audit of your available assets to see what else needs to be created in order to engage with your target audiences. Assets can be trailers, images, content reviews, behind the scenes footage, roundtable discussions, and influencers providing testimonials of the service. Mix it up a bit; don’t promote only video. Utilize text whenever possible to create a good balance for viewers.
When starting the content audit, the question to ask yourself is, “What content do I have to promote the service?” Filling in the gaps to create engaging, thought provoking content will help create an attractive experience to keep viewers coming back for more.
Creating a blog is a great place to house your content. Establishing a regular cadence will help drive more organic traffic and engage existing audiences. Start by building out a blog calendar, laying out the topics and themes that interest your viewers. When writing these blogs, naturally incorporate keywords and phrases identified via Google AdWords.
Remember, producing high-quality posts is more important than quantity. Some ideas for blog content include program reviews, sneak previews of upcoming programs, and behind the scenes information and interviews. Be sure to include a call to action to guide viewers to the next step, whether it’s a subscription offer, a free trial, or a preview of the newest content.
Social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are playing an increasing role in building audiences and driving conversations for major media brands. These networks can also be very valuable for smaller content owners in helping drive awareness and conversion.
Social platforms provide an excellent testing ground to see what type of offers and content will resonate most with your audience. Once you see what resonates best on your own organic platforms, you can elect to explore paid promotions on the channels. All of the major platforms offer self service, pay-for-click campaigns that require just a credit card to launch. Additionally, all of the major social networks offer advanced targeting options, which allows you to reach your desired audience with specific messaging.
With more than one billion active users around the world, Facebook is where you’ll find the largest audience. Setting up a Facebook page for a business is easy and allows you to connect with fans and subscribers. When posting to Facebook, include images and videos in each post—they draw viewers in and make for engaging content. Post trailers, clips, and interviews regularly on this platform.
Instagram is a visual platform with over 800 million monthly active users worldwide. Creating engaging posts that utilize images and video is the first step. The second is finding and incorporating the right hashtags into your captions.This increases the likelihood of your posts being found by users. Once you have a few posts on the platform, start following people and grow your follower base. This can be done by finding services similar to yours, identifying their core influencers, and then following them too. You can also search relevant hashtags to see who’s posting about themes and topics relevant to your service. Establish a regular schedule and aim to post at least once a week.
Building a Twitter community can be challenging and time consuming at first, but there are many benefits once you get into a rhythm. Growing your following takes time, but if you are sharing thoughtful, engaging content and using hashtags, your audience will find you. Ideally, Twitter is where you want to share any press coverage, press releases, new shows, trailers, and industry articles.
Like Facebook, Twitter allows you to interact directly with your audience on a more personal level. You can respond in real time to tweets and messages, and join conversations that are relevant to the topics your service covers.
Here are resources we found helpful for getting started and creating a strategy for each platform:
Acquiring more viewers is the objective of any OTT marketing campaign. It is critical to measure your campaign effectiveness and understand what content and channels are most effective. There are a number of analytics tools available to assist, including Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager, both free services. Are your blog posts reaching a growing audience, or does your content attract the same readers over and over? Are your social campaigns driving click-throughs that lead to a trial of your service? The ability to quantify your marketing effectiveness will be valuable in determining where you should optimize your time and budget to acquire more viewers.