Four Essential Tips for Using Video in Email

Last week, we took a quick look at interactive emails and explored 4 ways to make your content pop!

In this article, we’re going to take a deeper dive into exactly how you can effectively incorporate videos into your emails.

Now, most folks know that this technique exists… but only 46% of marketers have actually tried their hand at using videos in emails. 

The way we see it, this gives you an EXCELLENT opportunity to differentiate your brand, and have it stand out from the competition.

Now, regardless of whether you’re promoting a B2B or B2C brand, using videos in your emails has proven to be highly effective.

For those of you in B2C industries: 

90% of customers say video helps them make buying decisions, and 64% of customers say that seeing a video makes them more likely to buy.

For those in the B2B world, B2B video marketers get 66% more qualified leads per year.

And across the board, including video in email marketing campaigns can increase open rates by 19% and click-through rates by a whopping 200-300%.

We like those odds! 😉

If you’re ready to give video a shot, check out our must-know tips for marketers who are using videos in their email campaigns for the first time. 

1. Use Screenshots and GIFs Instead of Embedding Videos

Now, if you want to incorporate a video in your email campaign, you’d think that the simplest way to go about doing it is to embed the video in the email itself.

That said, you SHOULDN’T do this.

Why? Because most inbox providers don’t support embedded videos.

Thankfully, there’s an easy workaround. Basically, you’d: 

  • Upload an animated GIF or a static thumbnail image of your video 
  • Make that GIF or image clickable, and link it to your actual video

This way, your contacts can click on the GIF/image, and get redirected to your video. 

Now, some marketers might assume that GIFs will do better than static images here, because they’re animated and flashier.

That said, a static image superimposed with a “Play” button can be pretty effective as well, so we recommend A/B testing both approaches, and seeing what works for you best. 

2. Send Contacts to a Landing Page (& not a YouTube Link)

Alrighty, here’s our next video tip… Instead of redirecting your readers to a YouTube link, send them to a landing page instead.

You’ve done all the hard work, including crafting the perfect subject line and fine-tuning your segmentation… of COURSE you should drive traffic back to your site, instead of letting YouTube reap the fruits of your labor! 😉 

Now, say your email list consists of 20,000 contacts, your average open rate is 20%, and your click through rate is 5%.

If you send a SINGLE email with a video in it, this generates 200 extra pageviews on your website. 

That’s not all! Statistics have also shown that landing pages featuring videos are 53 times more likely to snag a spot on the first page of Google. 

And as you know, increased visibility on Google = a ton of organic traffic!

Now, traffic aside, sending your contacts to a landing page instead of a YouTube link also helps you boost your conversions.

Yes, you can use Calls To Action (CTAs) in a YouTube video description, but these aren’t super effective.

Why do we say so? Well, there are a million other elements on the page competing for your contact’s attention (including all the recommended videos displayed on the left).

Also, your audience typically can’t even SEE your CTA, unless they click on the “Show More” button on your video description.

On the flip side, when you’re utilizing a landing page, you can display your Call To Action (CTA) prominently and/or multiple times.

You can also do away with your navigation menu, to reduce the chances of your audience getting distracted and clicking through to another page.

3. Make the Transition From Video to Landing Page Seamless

Now, when you redirect your contacts from their inbox to your landing page, you’ll probably get a few drop-offs.

Your goal here is to reduce friction, and minimize the number of drop-offs.

Here are a few tips that will help you do this:

First, position your video above the fold (so your readers notices it immediately, without having to scroll down).

Also, set your video to autoplay once your contact arrives on your page.

The devil is in the details! 

4. Keep it Short and Sweet

Any marketer worth their salt will know that forcing their contacts to sit through a 10-minute long video is a recipe for disaster.

As a general rule of thumb, the longer your video length, the lower your engagement rates.

If you’re wondering what’s the ideal length, well, statistics show that 59% of viewers will watch a video through to the end if it’s less than one minute.

So: start off with a video that’s just under a minute, but as you go along, measure engagement to see where people drop off.

If you find that the 45 second mark is where you lose a TON of viewers, then switch it up accordingly, and utilize shorter videos in your email campaigns instead. 

PS: Try referencing the length of your video in your email copy. For instance, you could A/B test a couple of variations:

  • Watch our 30-second long video
  • Watch our video (it’s less than a minute long!)
  • Watch our video

…and then check out the click rate data Sendlane provides you with, and see what works best!  

A Final Word on Using Video in Email Marketing

We get that creating videos to use with your email campaigns feels intimidating…

But here’s the thing: you don’t need to start with a complex, large-scale production, right off the bat. (Or at all!) 

In fact, if you’re a B2B company, and you’ve already got a pre-recorded webinar, you can simply re-purpose this to use in your email campaign.

Now, all you need to do is set up a landing page, plug your video in, and insert your GIF/static image and link into your email.

It doesn’t get much easier than that! 😉 

Alright, that’s all we’ve got for you on the topic of using video in email marketing. 

Remember: videos are the way of the future, and the sooner you get comfortable with using videos in your emails, the better!

Here’s to skyrocketing your open rates and click through rates, and making those campaigns a roaring success!

Kristen Dahlberg

Content ManagerSendlane
As a member of the Sendlane content marketing team, Kristen focuses on everything from organization to content curation and process improvement. She enjoys variety and the challenge of learning the best way to accomplish each new goal.

Outside of work, Kristen spends as much time as possible at the beach, soaking up the San Diego sunshine!