“A picture is worth a thousand words,” or so the saying goes. So, exactly how many words can we attribute to a video 1 minute in length? I’m sure there’s someone willing to do the math out there, but I think we can safely guess that it’s somewhere in the millions. And when you consider growing populations and dwindling attention spans, that’s a medium with a pretty powerful impact.
Since the beginning of mankind, imagery has been used to tell stories. From the cave drawings of early man to the viral videos of today, we’ve relied on images as a means of communication. Unhindered by the limitation of language comprehension, pictures, and especially video can reach larger numbers of people and leave behind more vivid impressions. While we’ve come a long way since cave drawings, it’s important to realize that the fundamental way our brains receive, and process information has remained the same.
Human beings are storytellers and rely heavily on emotional response to inform what we do, how we feel, and who we trust. For better or worse screens, and especially phone screens now represent a large percentage of our storytelling platforms. Content is omnipresent, making our lives busier and more convoluted than ever. Consequently, messaging and stories can get lost, misconstrued or ignored altogether. Strategic video marketing can keep your story from drowning in an endless sea of information.
So, what are some effective ways video allows you to stand out and build consumer trust?
I spoke with one of our video production experts, Lauren Schild, and we zoomed in on some tricks of the trade.
During our discussion Lauren suggested that, “15 to 30-second snackable videos are great ways to spark initial interest and begin a lasting relationship that inspires the viewer to dig deeper. You can’t rely strictly on short-form content, but it’s a great way to start a conversation and get people “liking”, commenting on, and sharing your story so that it becomes in part, their own.”
Shorter, easy to digest videos also tend to perform better when used as advertising for social media. But marketers must consider this: 85% of videos consumed on Facebook are viewed without sound. Therefore, open or closed captions, graphic effects, and other animation must support the storylines even if the device is on mute.
Marketers can also take advantage of unique video aspect ratios, such as square or vertical formats, which are more native to the platforms and take up more real estate than more traditional wider screen formats.
Here’s an example of how our video department has done that for Choice Hotels’, Clarion brand.
She also mentioned producing “user-generated” content as a way to give your audience the ability to “see themselves” in your product or service. She said, “People are more likely to trust a friend than a brand, and can often spot an ad a mile away, at which point they stop listening. It’s important to bear in mind that this video style should only feel homemade, but still have a professional production quality.” Shoddy camera work or amateur editing can make your brand seem unprofessional and untrustworthy. When executed correctly this method can help you break the ice and expand your reach.
Video can also create a buzz and feeling of excitement over what might otherwise be a difficult or technical topic. She expressed that, “Not every brand or service exudes glitz and glamour, but video can help make it relatable and easy to understand for any viewer. So, whether you’re a tech company or a government agency, you can use the heightened intensity that video provides to grab attention and convey the importance of your message.”
With its unmatched ability to show AND tell, video offers proof and believability to the claims it purports. Video engages the senses and allows the storyteller to control the perspective and manipulate the emotional response. In today’s content saturated and fast paced world, video has become more than a nice addition to a marketing strategy - It’s a necessity for success.