In this fast-paced and high-tech day and age, consumers are becoming more and more time poor and business owners, brand marketers and anyone with a message for that matter are finding it more challenging to get their value proposition across to an audience who have heard and seen it all before and where consumers are getting better at ignoring all the marketing noise.
From my experience in marketing and developing online videos, I believe the most successful ways of drawing an audience and harnessing the power of the “oh so sought after” social media buzz is to create a video clip that sells itself but at the same time sells your brand/product/service.
For example: if you are selling pogo sticks having a clip with the company director using one while his staff counts his bounces would be fun to watch, make you want to try the product, as well as humanize and validate the brand.
However, many people are under the misconception that they can just jump on the video bandwagon, create a “viral” clip and sit back and watch the money come rolling in off the back of their brilliant clip. The fact is that these video’s that have gone viral are typically a happy accident, and trying to replicate the same thing again is like trying to win the lottery... twice.
In fact, I would say that going into the video content creation game with the agenda of creating a viral clip is usually unsuccessful and in some cases, if not handled correctly can actually backfire and do more damage to the brand than good.
My recommendation to SMBs is that they need to have video as part of their game plan but that they need to approach it in a systematic and strategic way and with a clear and realistic goal in mind. Obviously, generating sales is the ultimate goal but there are a couple ways of getting your video to strike a chord with your target audience whilst still making a strong sales point.
Here are four strategies to think of when developing an online video:
1. Don’t patronize your audience
As I mentioned earlier, most consumers nowadays have been so bombarded by so much advertising that they have become very ad savvy and can see a sales pitch coming a mile away. If you understand this you can cut to the chase a lot quicker and also let the consumer fill in some of the more obvious blanks without jeopardising your message.
2. Make it fast and punchy
Most people don’t have time to sit down and take a two-minute pitch. In fact, YouTube ads are anywhere from 15-40 seconds long and most people like me skip them after the first five seconds. Facebook and Instagram have both opted for a 15-second time frame for their ads as well. Also, look at the success some brands are having with the Vine format with a time cap of just six seconds. In short, short is the way to go if you want people to watch your ad all the way through so condensing and concentrating your message is a good idea.
3. Content is king
Having the best actor in the world is not going to save a movie with a bad script or story line so by the same logic don’t skimp on the creative. Spend so that you can spring for fancy animations and special effects or your production will come across stale, boring and sterile. I propose that you could make a great clip with just stick figures or sock puppets so long as your content was fun, relevant and engaging.
4. Make’m laugh
Again on the content side, cheeky and wit-filled humour will make your clip viewable and people will be more likely to share and “like” your clip if it makes them giggle. "Laugh, and the world laughs with you; Weep, and you weep alone".
The goal when building a successful online marketing video is making sure that your message is interesting and meaningful. It needs to be informative, amusing, entertaining and/or inspiring. Your clips need to connect with your audience in some way, whether it is emotionally or intellectually. And above all, it needs to represent your brand well.
Good luck; and here is a post I just read with some great stats that will make you want to jump on the video bandwagon.
Feel free to comment below and ask any questions.