Video has absolutely taken off. It’s the content most likely to be shared, and it’s making waves as an increasingly valuable digital marketing channel.
Video content consistently performs best on social media, and it’s showing a clear upward trend. Half a billion people watch video content on Facebook each day. 87% of online marketers are already producing video content, with more than half of video content being viewed on mobile devices. Those mobile devices are also used for sharing video content with others. By some measures, video content generates 1200% more shares than text and images combined.
These numbers are impressive, but they’re only going to climb.
Producing compelling video content, then, seriously encourages shares, helps increase visibility for industry influencers, and has a strong ROI. Indeed, 64% of consumers watch a branded video as part of their customer journey before making a purchase.
The numbers are clear: video is the digital marketing channel that your business can’t afford to ignore.
So, how do you produce the kind of video content that’s going to tell your brand’s story in a compelling, authentic way? We’re here to tell you.
Start with a Reason
Producing a video merely for the sake of producing a video isn’t good enough. As with all good content, it’s important that you have a clear purpose for producing it. Maybe it’s informative, maybe it’s social, maybe it’s pointed or prescient, or maybe it exists for the sake of art. Your reason is really going to depend on your audience. Why will they enjoy watching it? What will they get out of it?
We often like to explore the character and motivations of our audience by drafting a number of Personas. These characters typify your audience, as a kind of representative example. Imagine Keith, over here. His interest in personal fitness has led him to your video on interval training techniques. That video, then, needs to be informative, engaging, and efficient. Its purpose is to impart knowledge, and help a prospective client become more familiar with your brand. That brings us to our next point.
Don’t be Afraid to Go off Script
Since these videos are a kind of personal point of contact, a way for a potential customer to engage with a brand, the engagement needs to feel organic. Laying out some talking points is one thing, but rigidly adhering to a script can come off as inauthentic and mechanical. It’s not giving a great impression of a natural interaction.
Give yourself more freedom! If a thought, or a turn of phrase occurs to you, run with it. If it doesn’t work, you can always edit later. You can move past a moment of awkwardness in a livestream. But it’s always better to come off as your authentic self. Your videos are an extension of your brand as a whole, which is itself an extension of you.
Be Consistent with Video Content
So since your videos are an extension of yourself, you’ll want to be sure that they all stay in character, so to speak. That might mean a particular quality of lighting, or a type of camera angle. Will these be shot from a GoPro, or a cell phone, or a full scale film camera? Are you going to talk to the camera, or will the narration be superimposed over images and clips? Have you established a particular style of dress, if you’re going to be seen?
Any cinephile will tell you that the camera work is as much a part of the sensation of a video as the content itself. It’s an art unto itself. Your brand may wish to stress professionalism, action, alacrity, or any other subset of qualities. A GoPro would be an unlikely fit for an apothecary, for instance. Just be sure that the tone and feel of your video content is in line with the general aesthetic of your brand, and that your viewership will connect with it as they would with any of your other content.
Keep it Short and Sweet
Videos should be as long as they need to be, but not one minute longer. Broadly speaking, the sweet spot is between about seven and fifteen minutes. Some video essays can certainly be longer, but viewership will begin to taper off heavily after even the first few minutes. There just aren’t enough hours in the day for someone to keep up with the steady stream of content that we’re all exposed to, so it’s natural to skip around or to curtail a video that seems to have made its point.
Similarly, don’t spend time on a long introduction. Few things are as frustrating than skipping forward, sometimes even minutes at a time, waiting for the video to get started. Keep your content to the point.
It may not seem intuitive, but, given the vast ocean of content, it’s something of a privilege for your video, in particular, to get watched. Don’t waste your viewer’s time — just remember to be a courteous guest on their screens.
Tell a Good Story
It’s of the utmost importance that your video content, like all good content, tell a story. That doesn’t necessarily mean it requires a plot, per se. Keith’s video, from earlier, was explaining workout techniques. But the narrative element is a human one. The narrative arc is about betterment, and inspiration. It gives its viewers the tools to improve their bodies or their training, and it inspires them to put them to use. It’s uplifting.
Whatever story your brand tells, your video content should further it in some way. There’s a narrative anywhere, if you take the time to find it.
So get out there, and start telling your story!
Colibri Digital Marketing
We’re San Francisco’s only full-service B Corp-certified digital marketing agency. We’ve been making a name for ourselves as storytellers, and digital marketing rising stars, and we’re ready to take your brand to the next level. Give us a call today and book your free digital marketing strategy session! And while you’re at it, don’t miss the next chapter of our own story on Facebook and Twitter!
Originally published at colibridigitalmarketing.com on August 3, 2018.