Yes or No? Video in email?

in Email,Video Online

Should you include a video (embedded or link to watch on a landing page), within an email message or not?  It depends.

Video is engaging.  Video can illustrate and demonstrate like no other media can. 

However, whether it’s your monthly newsletter or a weekly message sent via email, your readers are inundated.  One study showed that people have 300% more new or unread messages in their in-box than they did 4 years ago.

Translation: People can’t keep up with the volume of email.  And time is precious.

Given that, how likely is it that they’ll take time – even less than a minute – to watch a video?

Video has its place

I’m NOT saying: Don’t put video in email.  I’m recommending you to be strategic about how you use it. 

First: Recognize that a sizable portion of your subscribers won’t take time to watch it.

Nonetheless, you have a great video.  How do you introduce it through email?

For the most part, make your newsletter/email video secondary to the copy and any other images that readers can quickly scan without clicking.

Tell subscribers HOW LONG the video is.  Set their expectations. 

You may think, “Yeah, but if I can just get them started watching this 3.5 minute video they won’t want to stop.  I won’t tell them how long it is; just how great it is.” 

Wrong thinking!

There’s a group of people who won’t click without knowing. Period. Opportunity lost if you rely solely on your video to convey the message.

There’s a group of people who will click and get ticked off because it’s so long and only watch a few seconds.  Now you have an annoyed subscriber. 

There’s a group of people who click and don’t see the wonder in your work of art and abandon it in less than one minute.  They’re disappointed.

And there’s a very small minority who click and watch the entire video.

Describe clearly what they get.  Tell your precious subscribers what’s on the video.  WHAT VALUE WILL THEY GET FROM IT?  You’ll get more clicks this way.  You’ll have more happy viewers because again, you set the expectations and delivered on the promise.

Carefully choose your video preview image.  Don’t let it default to a blank screen or the first frame.  Give them an enticing and informative sneak preview.

Used correctly, video can be used in your email newsletter or other email messages. It can be a powerful communication tool.  Just don’t bet the farm on people watching it.  Use it sparingly in email.  Develop a strategy.

You’ll have more success with video in email when you follow the guidelines I shared with you today.