Press Release (ePRNews.com) - CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Oct 04, 2019 - Wistia calls on SMBs to take back control of their audience from social media, with a new product that helps them turn their websites into content destinations. Wistia, the leader in brand affinity marketing, today launches a new version of their Channels product, designed to help SMBs build lasting brand affinity by cultivating an engaged fanbase, without relying on significant digital advertising spend. Previously, only Wistia’s Advanced Customers had access to Channels, but it will be now available to everyone for free: https://wistia.com/learn/product-updates/meet-the-new-wistia-2019
Wistia Channels is the first product that allows every company to take back control of their content and customer data from social media platforms like Facebook and YouTube, enabling direct connections with subscribers, viewers and fans while providing a distraction-free viewing experience.
Chris Savage, Co-Founder and CEO said: “With over $670 Billion in advertising spent per year, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for companies to use advertising as a way to stand out and drive purchasing preference.
Every industry has tried to combat this with investments in content marketing, but reliance on search and social media for content distribution has meant that far too many businesses have built a destination on rented land. This has left them unable to communicate directly with their subscribers and needing to repeatedly spend large sums to reach the audiences they’ve worked hard to build.
Wistia Channels seeks to solve these two challenges, by empowering businesses to become their own Netflix and have freedom from YouTube.”
The Rise of Brand Affinity Marketing
Increasingly, SMBs looking to grow their brands are stuck with trying to out-compete big companies on advertising spend and creative, in a world where ad impressions are becoming less valuable and more and more conversations are happening on ad-free private messaging platforms like Slack and WhatsApp. Wistia believes this is no longer sustainable, and that change is afoot.
Wistia analysts have observed that some of the most innovative modern brands, such as MailChimp, RedBull, Peloton and Patagonia, are moving their budget away from advertising and towards original programming and content creation of their own. This allows them to cultivate an engaged fanbase of advocates, instead of having to pay for every impression in an increasingly inefficient digital advertising space. Mark DiCristina, Head of Brand and Mailchimp Studios, explained: “The people who engage with this content are paying us more quickly. And, when they pay us, they pay us more money.”
Wistia’s new product offering is designed to support the growing trend of Brand Affinity Marketing, whose principles Wistia defines as:
Target a niche audience or subculture, rather than only potential customers
Create long-form “binge-worthy” content which consumers actively want to engage with
Market like a media company, by investing in audience development, rather than content distribution.
Measure impact based on resonance (time spent), rather than reach (impressions).
Wistia helps businesses create their own ad-free ‘streaming-service-like’ video experiences and aids SMBs in driving customers to their websites, where they can directly own their relationship with their customers and data, rather than being forced to rely on a “pay-to-play” model of content distribution. This product is designed to support the shift in content marketing towards original programming with longer-form video – helping businesses of all sizes unlock significant and sustainable growth.
In 2017, Wistia invested over $2M on traditional brand advertising and saw little impact. In 2018, Wistia changed its brand strategy to a brand affinity marketing model and invested $500K in One, Ten, One Hundred, an innovative web series, which delivered an 11% increase in brand search volume which remains steady to this day. More importantly, it accounted for 8,500 hours of content being watched versus a total of 8,322 hours in total for the other 105 videos created in 2018, proving that this ‘alternative’ approach to brand marketing delivers sustainable ROI.
After discovering that many of its most prominent customers, including MailChimp, were following similar trends and seeing similar returns, Wistia decided to codify and support this new trend with both product and content.
The new Wistia Channels will be available online from October 2 at: wistia.com, There is a free version with limited features and the full suite of features is available at a starting price of $399 per month.
Benefits for brands include:
Better engagement with your content: While YouTube and Facebook can be great platforms to reach an audience, the number of distractions from ads and related videos means users rarely do more than see content in passing. Wistia keeps users engaged with an immersive and captivating experience that allows brands to control what’s “up next”.
Driving quality traffic from search and social media: Wistia’s new product now passes data on viewer behavior to Facebook’s custom audiences, allowing businesses to create extremely targeted ads and use clips and trailers to drive users back to their websites.
Owning subscriber data: With Facebook likes and YouTube subscribers, brands don’t know who their fans are, can’t communicate directly with them, and track their interactions with content over time. With Wistia, SMBs own all of their channel subscriber data and can automate, customize and schedule notifications for newly released videos to keep their fans coming back for more.
Syncing subscribers to CRM systems: Wistia users can sync their subscribers to their marketing automation platform, or CRM, and take full advantage of user-tracking and lead qualification tools.
Wistia is the leader in Brand Affinity Marketing for small and medium-sized businesses. Wistia provides innovative video marketing software which enables any company to create captivating viewing experiences on their sites and gives them the tools to find, engage and grow a community of brand advocates.
Founded in Cambridge, Massachusetts, more than half a million businesses across 50 countries depend on Wistia’s products to build their brands and their businesses, including HubSpot, MailChimp, Sephora, Starbucks, and Tiffany & Co. Learn more at wistia.com and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
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