Video is a powerful storytelling medium: Not only can it serve as a prime proving ground for your business’ promotional campaigns, influential ideas, and experimental content efforts, video’s emotionally resonant combination of sound, motion, and visuals can also help you drive deeper, more satisfying relationships between your brand and its audience.
Video’s value proposition
Videos are among the most versatile tactics content marketers can leverage. For starters, they can be cooked up, loaded up, cut up, and served up in a wide variety of ways. They can:
- Work well in both long and short formats – from 6-second Vine videos to full-length documentary films, and everywhere in between
- Be timely, standalone statement pieces or ongoing serialized conversations that unfold over time
- Be presented as the main course or served as a pre-roll advertising appetizer
- Thrive in virtually any content platform – e.g., your website, blog, or other owned channels; in emails; on third-party video sites like YouTube; or inside SlideSharepresentations and webinars
- Be well suited to being consumed on both the desktop and mobile environments
- Be repackaged, repurposed, and republished in conjunction with your other relevant content efforts
- Be archived for the ages or produced on the fly as live-streaming events on messaging platforms like Meerkat or Periscope
- Be imminently shareable on social networks, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat
Of course, video may not always be the ideal format for your content. For example, as CMI’s Vice President of Content Michele Linn points out, there are times when your audience might prefer to read a brief article rather than watch a video since it’s faster and does not require as much of their attention.
Tip: How can you tell if creating a video is the right decision? Ask yourself if anything about your story would be lost if you tried to tell it without the benefits of visuals and sound. If the answer is no, consider starting with a format that requires less of a commitment (both to produce and consume). If the text version is well received, you can decide down the line if you want to repurpose the content as a video.
How they work
As is the case with any tactic, the decision to create content as a video should trace back to your marketing goals. Fortunately, from a marketer’s standpoint, video offers a range of creative and strategic options that can be applied to virtually any content marketing goal or purpose.
Driving brand awareness and interest: Through video, you can offer a unique, entertaining, or immersive experience that helps viewers forge a positive, memorable association with your brand and what it stands for.
- Raise awareness of important social or community issues by creating a short film on the subject.
- Treat your audience to a behind-the-scenes glimpse of a popular industry event or other relevant activity that few people might get to experience in person.
- Leverage interactive features and technologies to your videos to enable viewers to participate in the story as it unfolds.
Example: Gatorade’s 360-degree Bryce Harper Virtual Reality Experience
Gatorade’s 360° Bryce Harper Virtual Reality Experience puts baseball fans in the middle of the action, offering them a realistic sense of what it must feel like to be a Major League Baseball player stepping up to the plate. Created using a combination of real-action video and computer-generated imagery, the video isn’t just immersive, it’s interactive – fans become Washington Nationals star Bryce Harper, clicking and dragging the screen to experience a clutch play from his perspective.
Promoting thought leadership or insights: Video can convey an appropriate emotional tone in a way that text alone can’t manage. This makes it an excellent platform for educating viewers on the issues important to your business and positioning your brand as a credible, trustworthy source of vital information.