Why Your Company Culture Is Essential to Building Your Brand

The corporate culture at Google is so iconic that it’s actually been featured in a movie. In “The Internship,” the employees are shown enjoying what can only be referred to as an adult playground — a place where desserts are unlimited, desks are optional and massages are given on demand. Little wonder so many people want to work for Google in real life.

As the Google example shows us, strong company culture can help your business in many ways. Companies are driven by the idea that when their employees are happy, they will work harder. More people will also want to gain employment with your business. Every year, magazines make lists of companies with the best culture, with perks ranging from free haircuts to exquisite gyms.

Something those lists often overlook, though, is how important corporate culture can be to building your brand. This give-and-take will form the backbone for the strongest companies.

What Constitutes a Good Brand?

Good brands are more than just a good-looking logo. While Apple’s bite-from-the-apple logo has become ubiquitous, the company wouldn’t have achieved success if it were just the fruit. What makes Apple a model for other companies is the products it produces, the way it predicts trends and its focus on aesthetics.

To understand how business culture can enhance branding, you have to know what makes a good brand. Google is, of course, a prime example. The company has a clearly defined purpose — to organize information and make it accessible to everyone. The implementation of that mission has changed over the years, moving beyond search results and into communication, social media, video and more. But through it all, Google has continued to deliver on its original promise of informing and remaining accessible.

As a brand, you should decide what you stand for and what you want to do for your customers. Your company culture should then reflect those aims.

Turning Your Brand Inward

Turning your brand inward is just another way of saying you should practice what you preach. If your branding focuses on quality, then your corporate culture should reflect that devotion. Oftentimes a great brand is judged by how strong the company behind it is. If you have good ideas but weak implementation, or strong beliefs that aren’t reflected in your hiring policies, then you will fail at branding.

Living your company values will make hiring easier. Your reputation will attract top talent to your door. When you keep these people happy, you reap the benefits of their loyalty.

But I have a small company, you may be thinking. What if I can’t afford to dole out free desserts? Corporate culture isn’t just about perks. It’s also about showing that your employees mean something to you. So perhaps you give your workers a day off each quarter to volunteer. Maybe you offer free daycare services at the office, or you allow employees to telecommute three times a week. You do what you can to show you value the people who work for you.

Company culture makes your business unique. Other people may have the same products or similar services as you. It’s the way you offer them and the motivation behind them that stands out. Show that your business culture mirrors those things, and you will have succeeded in establishing your brand. Interested in learning more about branding? Contact PixelFish for more information.

Best Practices for Optimizing Your YouTube Videos

Your company made a super YouTube video. It’s funny, relevant to your industry, motivating and concise. You put it on your channel and wait for the likes and shares to roll in. One problem — nothing’s happening.

Here’s the rub when it comes to YouTube. Making an outstanding video is only half the battle. To engage your audience and connect the video with the people you want to see it, you also need to optimize. What does that mean? It involves deploying a slew of best practices that will boost your video higher in searches, improve your conversion rates and bring in all those likes and shares. Here are a few tricks to help you with video optimization.

Use a YouTube Keyword Tool

People find videos, along with other information online, by using keywords. You want to tag your video with keywords your target audience might use in their searches. So, for instance, if you make a video about dog food, you will want to see what sort of keywords related to dog food are the most popular.

If you have an AdWords account, you can use a Google tool to find these. Otherwise, just look for a YouTube keyword tool on Google and search for the best keywords using it.

Include a Call to Action

Your video may be fun to watch, but it’s not effective if you aren’t telling people what to do when they finish watching it. You want to have a call to action directing them to your site or to specific product pages. When you provide this information, you give your audience directions that can help them further down your sales funnel.

Use Video Overlays

A video overlay essentially lets someone watch two images at once. Video ad overlays pop up during your video and can help with marketing and branding. Your click-through rates will rise when people have a chance to engage directly with this type of advertising.

Create Playlists for Your YouTube Channel

YouTube wants to keep people on its site for as long as possible, hence the appearance of related videos on the side and after the first video has played. You can ensure YouTube guides people to videos you have posted by creating a playlist for your channel. Be sure to use descriptive text in your playlist listing so as to grab greater search engine optimization benefits.

Publish Videos on a Regular Schedule

People will grow disinterested in your YouTube site if you do not publish new content consistently. The best way to foster your audience is to post regularly and create expectations and excitement for your next video. You might choose a day of the week to put up new content or start a series to keep you on task. Plus, the more your channel gets updated, the more the YouTube algorithm will favor you. Google sites love fresh content.

You can use these tips for optimizing video to increase your audiences and improve your conversion rates. Need more guidance on video? Contact PixelFish today to set up a consultation.

How to Utilize Educational Videos Within Your Company

Every company has a particular way of doing things. Whether you run a warehouse, make shoes or provide medical billing services, you have a culture and a set of procedures that help things run smoothly. When you hire someone new or shift a worker to a different department, they need to get up to speed on these processes. The problem is, every company is busy. You may not have the time or the personnel to spare on this necessary task.

How do you solve this problem? By using training videos. These educational films can help you save productivity and resources, while also providing the necessary training to new team members. Read on to learn tips on creating educational videos for your company.

Keep Your Work Videos Short

Is there anything worse than a movie that should have been 90 minutes running 100 minutes? No. You lose interest in the plot and let your mind wander when a video runs too long. This happens with work training videos as well. Try to focus on one or two main points, and cover them thoroughly. You can always make more videos to cover other questions.

Focus on the Big Picture

Educational videos should provide an overview of how to perform a task rather than the nitty gritty details. The latter is something your workers will pick up as they ease into their job. Your aim with the video should be to answer some of the most basic questions employees will have about their new tasks. Information should include:

  • Locations for people they may need to speak to
  • Placement of supplies to do their job
  • A demonstration of the job they will do
  • Faces of those they will work with, including their supervisor

Review the Content Every Six Months

Most businesses are in a perpetual state of flow. Methodologies change frequently as people figure out more efficient ways to work. Make sure your videos reflect your current procedures and policies by reviewing them every six months. If something has been updated, reshoot that part of the video rather than just talking to the employee about it after they watch. People retain visual information, and they may get mixed up about something they saw vs. what they were told.

Use Video to Introduce New Technology

It’s not just new employees who can benefit from educational work videos. You can also make them for existing staff when you change computer systems, upgrade your app or make other tech-related changes. Technology accounts for many of the questions in a workplace, and so giving your employees a step-by-step guide for what to expect during these changeovers can eliminate a lot of confusion and angst.

Approach the Videos in a Professional Manner

When you make videos for your company, you should keep them as polished as possible. These could be used well into the future, and you want to present the best possible image of your business. If you keep all these tips in mind, you can produce videos that offer a great service to your employees. Need more guidance on making your videos? Contact PixelFish to discuss your needs.

4 Ways to Take Your Holiday Promotion to the Next Level

The holiday season is just around the corner, and it’s never too early to start planning your marketing campaign. If you intend to run holiday promotions, hoping to reach the large group of people who do their shopping on Black Friday, then you’d be wise to incorporate video.

Why use video? Because it’s effective. Studies have shown conversion rates rise when you put video on a landing page, and click-through rates on emails soar with video. In fact, 64 percent of would-be buyers are more likely to purchase an item after seeing a web video about it.

Now that you know how important this form of marketing is to your company’s success, here are four ways to use it in your holiday promotions:

1. Make a Gift Guide

People gobble up gift guides during the holiday season because everyone has at least one person in their lives who is difficult to buy for. Making a video gift guide marries technology to something people will seek out anyway.

If you sell products, you can obviously feature them in your video. But if you provide services, you can get creative and ask your employees to appear in the video, recommending things they want to buy themselves. Tag the companies mentioned in the video when you post it on social media. With any luck, they will link to it and expose your promotion to an entirely new audience.

2. Play on a Holiday Trope

The ugly Christmas sweater. The rock-hard fruitcake. The Christmas lights that won’t stop blinking. There’s plenty to laugh about during the holidays, and when you film a video making light of these universal annoyances, you have a good chance of going viral. Just make sure you tie the video to your company in a meaningful way. Otherwise, those many views don’t help you.

3. Put Your Thankfulness on Display

During the holiday season, promotions can get overly commercial. Show that your company has some heart by enlisting employees to explain what they are thankful for in a video. Let them share their thoughts without outside input, and refrain from talking up the company. This should be a true reflection of what’s wonderful in the world — something people want to hear during this frazzled time of year.

4. Put the Focus on Pets

People adore their pets. Make a video that showcases your office family’s furry friends, and you are sure to get a wonderful reaction. A few ideas:

  • Pets in action while holiday music plays.
  • Pets “acting out” a scene in a holiday classic such as “It’s a Wonderful Life” — it doesn’t have to be Oscar-quality. Just make it clear what scene the pets are in.
  • Pets “preparing” a holiday feast.

Whatever you come up with, make it lighthearted and fun. Promotional holiday videos should serve as an engaging distraction at a busy period. And remember, if you need assistance with your video, you can contact PixelFish.

The Pros and Cons of Vertical Video

If you know anything about digital video, then you probably have an opinion on vertical video. For the uninitiated, vertical video is footage you shoot in portrait mode. It’s essentially the reverse of horizontal video, offering a final product that’s taller than it is wide. You generally see black rectangles on either side of the video filling up the blocked-out space.

There are some who love this style of video, but others can’t stand it. What side of the debate do you come down on? Let’s examine the pros and cons of vertical video.

Pro: Mimics the Way People Hold Their Phones

These days, a great deal of video gets consumed on smartphones. Video needs to be tailored to smartphones to be effective, and most people hold their phones vertically rather than horizontally;  fueling a rise in vertical video devotees.

Con: Vertical Video Syndrome

You may have seen the popular meme about “vertical video syndrome,” which claims those affected can shoot only in portrait style. People blame everyone from Apple to YouTube for the “syndrome,” which is supposedly less viewer-friendly, according to the people behind the meme. Whatever your take on the debate, some of the memes about “VVS” call attention to the problem in a clever way.

Con: It’s an Unrealistic Viewpoint

Artistic privilege can be invoked in all manner of circumstances. Still, many criticize vertical video because it’s not the way the human eye sees. We see on a horizontal plane. These critics argue it’s unnatural and confusing to shoot vertically because it throws off the eye.

Pro: Social Media Advantages

People overwhelmingly use smartphones to catch up on their social media feeds, and as we’ve already established, those devices are held vertically. So it follows that video appearing on social media will be vertical. Since the amount of social video has exploded — Snapchat alone serves up 10 billion videos a day — most social sites have even removed the black borders on videos.

Con: Offers Less Diversity of Capability

Vertical video puts certain limitations on shooters. They have to adapt their video techniques and change the way they compose their shots. This becomes frustrating when you have a set amount of time to shoot a set amount of content. It can also be difficult for those with less experience with the medium to make the transition.

Con: Not All Video Players Work With Vertical Video

While people debate the artistic merits of horizontal vs. vertical video, one problem is quite straightforward. Some video players don’t work with vertical video, limiting where you can post or requiring some serious back-end maneuvering to come up with a way to display the video.

Horizontal video has many advantages as the standard in the video industry. It doesn’t require any special machinations to play, and it’s usually the default approach for most shooters. Certainly, those who prefer an easy experience will prefer horizontal video to vertical, despite its recent trendiness. For more information about horizontal video and how to use it in marketing, get in touch with a member of the PixelFish team.

Five Reasons Why Your Company Needs a Video Marketing Strategy

When you miss the opening to the Oscars ceremony everyone’s buzzing about, what do you do? Head to your computer. When you want to watch a football game during a layover at the airport, what do you do? Pull out your phone. When the latest season of a popular TV show drops, what do you do? Fire up your tablet and binge.

Video has become arguably the hottest thing on the internet over the past decade. More than half of Americans watch digital video every day and nearly four in five watch it each week. It’s rising as rapidly as television did in the 1950s and making just as big an impact on advertising. If your company misses out, you miss big.

Still aren’t sure you need a corporate video marketing strategy? Here are five reason it pays to put one in place.

1. Get Better Results

If you don’t have a digital video strategy — or, equally bad, you are not deploying digital ads at all — you likely aren’t generating as much in sales as you could be. A clear, focused video strategy will result in more engagement with your brand, which will drive conversions. The more people who see your videos, the more potential customers you get.

2. Reach People Across Platforms

The internet isn’t just one vast entity. There are many smaller communities of the web. Luckily, video reaches across all of them. You can deploy it on social media sites, mobile devices, email blasts and more. When you adopt a video marketing strategy, you can plan which of those you’d like to target and how.

3. Produce Better Content

No one expects online video to be of Shakespearean quality, but once-low expectations are rising. Some companies produce standout content that has set the bar much higher for digital video. Keeping up with those high achievers will help your company’s videos stand out and draw attention, rather than having people click on the “skip ad” button.

4. Humanize Your Business

In the era of social media, humanization is everything. Corporations want customers to know there are people behind the big façade. Video offers a way to show that. When you feature your employees in your videos, it lets potential customers know more about who you are and what you value. Video has a unique way to showcase that.

5. Without a Strategy, You’re Shooting in the Dark

Just jumping into digital video advertising isn’t enough. You need a marketing strategy to give you specific goals to aim at. For instance, you need to know:

  • What sites to target
  • How many views you hope to get
  • How much you should budget
  • How many digital ads you should produce

If you don’t know the answer to these questions on your own, it may be time to enlist the assistance of an experienced digital marketing company that can assist you in forming your strategy. Take a look at some of our recent commercials, then contact PixelFish today to discuss your digital video marketing strategy and how you can implement it.