What is Good Video Content? What Works, and What Doesn’t

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So you’ve decided to invest in video marketing. The wildfire growth in popularity of video content is impressive, and so is the amount of competition for your potential customers’ attention.

Given this, knowing what works and what doesn’t in video marketing is essential for making sure you get a positive return on your investment. Keep the following principles in mind when working with a production company to design your video.

Take full advantage of the medium.

Storytelling is arguably the most powerful and engaging way to communicate, and video is unique in that it allows you to weave a narrative arc around your brand or product. While a marketing video is essentially a sales pitch, it shouldn’t feel like one. The opportunity to humanize your brand with relatable characters, humour (if appropriate), and an interesting story is one of the main advantages of video over other forms of marketing. In addition, if your video incorporates too many blocks of text or static images, it may as well be a PowerPoint presentation.

Know who you’re trying to reach, and make sure you’re speaking their language.

“The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself.” – Peter F. Drucker.

If someone asks you who the target audience for your video is, and the most specific answer you can come up with is “pretty much everybody,” you haven’t thought this question through. While any advertisement aims to attract as wide an audience as possible, having an overly general idea of your target market is unlikely to yield greater engagement. The style of video appropriate for your purposes will depend largely on your audience’s age group, gender, geographic location, economic status, and so on. Choosing the right distribution channels will also depend on your having as detailed as possible a picture of your target audience.

You have just a few seconds to engage – use them wisely

To keep your target audience’s attention locked on your content, you need to hook them in the first few seconds. In all likelihood, your video will show up on someone’s social media feed, and they won’t wait very long before deciding whether or not to continue scrolling. Avoid lengthy introductions — it’s a good strategy to make your point clear from the get-go and elaborate from there.

Brevity is the soul of wit… and effective video content

The rule of thumb is that a marketing video should be under four minutes in length. While longer form video is appropriate in some circumstances, consumers are more likely to watch and share shorter videos. Luckily, video is a great vehicle for communicating a large amount of information in a short period of time, since you can play on multiple senses to deliver explicit and implicit (e.g. through music and imagery) information efficiently. Aim to deliver your point as concisely as possible without sacrificing essential information.