We have seen many advances in digital technology over the past few years, especially in marketing. Users migrating from desktop to mobile devices, the huge increase in the use of social media marketing, and popularity of user generated content to name just a few.
One of the biggest changes is the use of video content online. Glance back at old posts on your Facebook and note that not too long ago the vast majority of posts would have been written text alone. Fast forward to today and almost every single post in your news feed is accompanied by either photos or video. And yet it is no accident that this has happened. We all seemingly have such little time these days; the average attention span has fallen steeply year on year. This is exasperated by the increasing use of smart phones.
So how do you get your brand message to its intended recipient? Well, in many ways we have more tools now than we ever did. But is this necessarily a good thing? Brands are all competing for attention - to the point where some may argue that it is harder than ever to cut through the noise and reach your intended audience.
Since the very beginning Greenwood Campbell have recognised the power of video content to get our message to our audience. It is true that simply making a video and putting it on Facebook is no longer enough. I joined Greenwood Campbell in January 2017 and since then I have been applying my eight years of production experience across multiple sectors to re-vamp our video offering. Not only do we use video as an internal tool, but now offer it to our clients as an extremely powerful marketing tool.
There is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to video production. It is about choosing the right method to convey our client's message. Much of the choice depends on the target audience and where they choose to absorb their content. Greenwood Campbell’s long standing mantra of ‘Know Thy User’ couldn't be more applicable when applied to video production. Before we pick up our camera or fire up our quadcopter, we drill deep into understanding our client’s business and their users to understand exactly what it is that we can do to engage them.
So what are our top tips for using video content? Well, our ‘go-to’ list is this…
1) Know Thy User - do your research. Find out who your target audience are, where they buy their products, what social media platforms they use and what their triggers are.
2) What is your message? - Decide what it is you want to convey in your video. Try to keep this short and concise. Do not make the mistake of trying to get all your points across in one video; it is far better to split these out. It may seem like you are saving on production time and cost but trust me: do not muddy the water.
Tone is also very important. You might only have a few seconds to grab people's attention. You have even less chance to keep it!
3) Choose the right production for your message - Your video needs to engage the User; and there are various ways to do this. Drop me a line to discuss various options if you'd like some advice.
4) Don’t go in too hard - Sometimes a subtle approach can have just as much of an impact as a hard and fast sales pitch. Consider making a video that contains less calls to action and more end User shots for example. If your audience see people using your product and/or service but are not put off by constant messages asking them to “order online today” or “call our sales team” they are far more likely to convert.
5) Keep it short - Perhaps the most important tip on this list! And it will all depend on the message and the platform. But as a general rule of thumb shorter videos work best; ideally 0:30 to 1:30.
6) Choose your platform - It is all too tempting to take your newly produced video and proudly scatter it across all your social media platforms in one go. Have a strategy and look at the best times to post on each platform. If your engagement is low on Facebook then why use it? What resolution should your final output be? If it is for Instagram for example their compression is terrible so uploading an optimised video in the correct size will result in clearer output.
7) Don’t hide - A common mistake we see all the time is companies who have great video content, but they bury it in back pages of their website. Take advantage of YouTube! YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google. In fact, it is owned by Google. So having your own optimised Youtube channel can boost your site traffic significantly.
8) Be quick! - Your project may be time sensitive. Take an event video for example… releasing the finished film from the event within a few days will dramatically increase interaction. Keeping your event fresh in your attendees minds will mean they are far more likely to share your content and this will in turn increase your views.
9) Production Value - Consider production value in all your content. This is the term we give for how professional your video looks. Ask yourself the following: if there is a person speaking in my video, can I hear them clearly? It is worth testing this on different devices to make sure this is the case for everyone?
Avoid shaky or poorly lit footage - Your video represents your brand or company. A bad video will have a negative influence on your brand regardless of the message or content.
Lower priced consumer video equipment is widely available and can give a highly polished look if used correctly, but there is no substitute for professional equipment such as lighting, stabilisers, and most importantly - crystal clear audio equipment.
10) Representative - Choose the right person to represent your brand and convey your message. Let's face it, it's not easy speaking on camera. Our team are experienced in making our subject feel relaxed so that they can clearly deliver their words. Unless you work with a team of ex TV presenters, it's worth spending time carefully vetting potential presenters. If necessary, hiring externally could be a good choice.
If you have any questions or ideas I’d love to hear from you: email@example.com