We caught up with Abigail Stephenson, our Content & Production Lead, to discuss how to get video strategy right. Working previously as a Production Manager, Abi has travelled all over the world; running film productions and shooting supporting camera footage in places like Japan, Mexico and Sri Lanka. Abigail’s extensive portfolio includes working with UK clients, such as Hilton, Merlin and Heathrow airport. With a passion for digital storytelling, Abigail has a proven track record of creating high-performing content and certified specialisms from YouTube. With such varied experience in the world of production filming and creative digital content, Abigail ensures the #DTTT brand is delivering strong, engaging content, and works extensively to deliver on our clients’ production needs.
Getting Video Strategy Right
Video is the undisputed trend of the moment. Cisco has projected that more than 80% of all internet traffic will be video by 2021; is it any wonder the media landscape is being led by visuals?
90% of customers say that video helps them make buying decisions, and a further 64% of customers say that seeing a video makes them more likely to purchase. In a world where the digital marketing landscape is oversaturated by visual content, creating and executing the right video strategy has never been more important for anyone trying to sell to the consumer.
Content publishers in the world of digital video marketing are finding plenty of trends that are radically changing the media landscape. But don't get sucked in. There are plenty of things to remember when starting with the basics and they will only strengthen your overall outputs.
The golden rules of creation
Always create content that is relevant, meaningful and inspiring. Storytelling should be at the heart of the marketing plan and it should always answer the questions that your audience are searching for.
To keep it simple, I always enforce the following golden rules for content creation:
- What’s the goal of this video and what is its purpose?
- Who is the audience of this video?
- Where is this video going / where is it being distributed?
- What should our audience take from watching this? What’s our call-to-action?
If you can’t answer all of these questions, then making the content is a complete waste of time.
Best practice examples
Let’s take New Zealand, for example Tourism New Zealand designed a campaign about something the internet has been ranting about for a while now - the fact the country is often missing from world maps! The idea of the campaign was to raise awareness of New Zealand as a destination off the back of international media about the country missing from maps. So far the campaign has been a viral sensation and reached news outlets around the world. They not only managed to control the conversation about how New Zealand is being viewed, but they also managed to generate a social conversation under the social media tag #getNZonthemap.
Though not a destination, British transport search engine, Trainline, does provide the perfect example of a company hitting a target demographic and tailoring content that appeals to it. The company has been developing innovative UX for their new voice app, and they really wanted to showcase the potential of the app, while showing just how user-friendly it is. They teamed up with the currently relevant rapper and social media sensation Big Shaq, who’s very well known with Gen Z for some rather entertaining viral content. As a result, this play to engage a slightly younger audience has already amassed 1.4million views on the company’s YouTube channel since its release on 6th March. The brand has since been exposed to new audiences and has had substantial growth in user downloads.
Keeping distribution in mind
One final thing that many brands and destinations seem to overlook, is that you should always write your video strategy for the audience and the platform it’s going on. Every platform is different; from the user demographics, behaviours, right through to the content expectations. A video that performs well on YouTube may not perform as well on Facebook due to the user behaviour, so always think about how you want to tell your story and how your viewers will be viewing your content.
Always ask yourself, how do I experience content on the platforms I view it on?
Facebook is the ultimate time-wasting experience, think sound off, tiny screen and multitasking, so why would you put a full-length twenty-minute interview without subtitles on there and expect big things from it? In contrast, you have YouTube, where a full-length twenty-minute interview would actually perform really well with this responsive and engaged audience, but a square format 50-second video would perform horribly on this platform.
Follow the golden rules, figure out platform distribution before creating your content, and with the right format and curation, you're going to harness the positives from these audiences.
Take the UK based company Holiday Extras, last year I worked for them to develop a marketing campaign around a Travel Guide to Canada focusing on brand awareness, The important metric for this was that the content needed to be adapted across all platforms, in order to really cause impact and get the best results. I set out to get the following: Short form, visually led and informational content for Facebook, aesthetically pleasing, curated images for Instagram, and long form, informative content for YouTube. The results where a high ranking Vancouver travel guide with over 250,000 views, new followers on Instagram, and some of the best performing travel content on Facebook they’d ever produced.
Hero, Hub and Hygiene content
This is now the perfect point to talk about Hero, Hub and Hygiene content. If you haven’t come across this term before, it’s the basic framework for all video content, and when used properly it’s an incredibly effective way to video marketing strategy, plus a successful way to advertise campaigns. So what is it?
- Hero - This is the Hero advert main piece, it’s the moment to sell, inspire, shock, and create interest… so use it well!
- Hub - The Hub is your deeper level and more regular content - it underpins the campaign, and is all about telling the story in a more involved way.
- Hygiene - The Hygiene (or 'Help') content, is designed to pull in users based on searches and interests, it’s there to answer questions, give facts, and to educate.
All of this MUST be taken into consideration before creating actual content. For example, a video that’s going on your website shouldn’t then be distributed on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube, without adapting it to the platforms and the user demographic. Otherwise, you're missing a huge opportunity to outshine the competition and adapt your story to reach the right people.
This is just the first in the series about digital content, and I’m incredibly excited to share some great insights, best practice, and some general knowledge about this topic. So, stay tuned, as the next installment is a deeper look at designing successful content for YouTube.
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