Research by the Content Marketing Institute released earlier this year shows that B2B businesses favour video content above all other content marketing tactics. While we might be aware of how great video is, the tricky part comes with execution: how do you captivate your audience with video content?
Here are our four must-dos when creating compelling video content.
1. Start a conversation
Videos are an opportunity to convert your business’s elevator pitch into something dynamic, visual and, most importantly, endearing. Your brand has a story and should have charisma to match.
One of the most reviled internet browsers took a shot at overhauling their online reputation. Internet Explorer hit back with a video that has garnered over 47 million views to date. Unafraid to poke back at the internet infamy, they launched a site equally as tongue in cheek, appropriately named http://www.browseryoulovedtohate.com/.
The lesson: What is the talking point around your business and the services you provide? This is ample ammunition to sculpt a message with your video content that matches your target audience as well as engaging them. Besides Internet Explorer’s polished video, which acts as a launch pad for their new service, this is an eye opener into the mentality of their business.
Every great video follows the principles of a story arc: a compelling introduction that serves to create an affinity between character and viewer; crisis (or perhaps a less dramatic climax); and resolution. While this isn’t as obvious in an interview or short documentary – the typical video formats for businesses – it’s still there
Take for instance the comparisons between IKEA’s 365 campaign, where the company has taken the principle of visually explaining a concept to their customers (with the addition of a little spice from some actors), and Bunning’s DIY approach. Minus the budget and video polish, the principle storyboard is the same.
The lesson: In the planning stages of your video shoot, create a comprehensive and theme-driven storyboard. Does it answer your key objectives? What is the message? How will you convey this to your target audience? And most importantly, what talent will best represent your brand?
Following your storyboard will allow you to stay on track during the shoot. Filming active subjects, however, often means things won’t always go to plan. The greatest moments of insight often occur unplanned, arising with the natural back and forth on shoot day. Take advantage of this and don’t stunt organic moments – these can always be edited down after the shoot.
It only takes a moment to recall some of YouTube’s most famous, erratic and unexpected hits. The premise of things like Photoshop Live’s Retouch Prank was completely dependent on the reaction of people – and that’s why it’s so successful.
The lesson: Go with a plan in mind, but don’t be too rigid. The exercise of planning ahead will ensure your grasp of your brand’s message will be so thorough that almost anything arising from the shoot will form great video content
No one has time to sit through a 10-minute video, no matter how great the content is or cinematically stunning. Sift through your options and compact your video to match your revised narrative sequence. Creating a video that lasts for a maximum of four minutes is optimal.
4. A not-so-obvious call to action
All great content, including video content, requires a call to action. If you’ve nailed your brand message with your video, then this part is easy – keep it simple. Whether you choose to include a #hashtag like Photoshop or launch a microsite like Internet Explorer, remember to include link backs to these platforms. You have a compelled viewer, so make use of them!
By Abbey Ford – Editorial Assistant
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