Market inn answers, ‘What makes a good video for social media?’

In our last column we looked at why video posts are so effective on social media. So now we know it’s worth incorporating video marketing into your social strategy, the question is: what makes a good video? Here are our top tips for creating a video that drives engagement:

Tell a story

According to science, we engage more with marketing that has a storytelling element. It all comes down to the fact that storytelling evokes emotional responses. Hands up if you’ve shared a tear at a Christmas television advert? Evoking emotions has great effect: the viewer is more likely to remember the details of the video content, they’re more likely to engage with the video and, if a story is told well and thereby increases oxytocin, it leads to a greater feeling of trust in brands.

So take the time to plan and create a video that tells a bit of a story. It doesn’t have to be complicated; just aim for some sort of beginning, middle and end. You could do a documentary or ‘behind the scenes’ style, a customer story, a personal one, an interview or create fictional characters.

Capture attention quickly

Our attention span is on the downhill. A study by Microsoft found that we now generally start to lose concentration after about 8 seconds. Facebook and Nielsen research found that up to 47% of the value in a video campaign was delivered in the first three seconds, while up to 74% of the value was delivered in the first 10 seconds. So make those first three seconds of your video as attention-grabbing as possible. Whether it’s a head-turning title or an eye-catching visual, hook people in and entice them to keep watching.

Keep it as short as it can be, and as long as it needs to be

With our diminishing attention span, it is advised to keep videos as short as they can be. This shouldn’t be a surprise. How often do you stop in your scrolling tracks on social media and watch a 10 minute video? The only content your video should include is that which is relevant to the audience and engaging. Keep this front of mind when planning and scrutinising your video: if something isn’t either relevant or engaging, scrap it.

The appropriate length of your video really depends at which point in the sales funnel the video is targetted at. For top of the sales funnel activity, when you’re trying to first capture the attention of ‘potential customers’ and generate awareness, keep your videos short. Aim for no more than 2 minutes; research shows there’s a significant drop off in engagement after 2 minutes. These top of the funnel videos could be explainer videos, educational videos, lifestyle videos or brand value videos. Longer form video content is more suitable for further down the sales funnel, when the ‘potential customer’ is seriously considering you as the answer to their problem or issue. These could be case study videos or demo videos.

Design for sound off

The majority of video views on social media channels are without sound. On Facebook, 85% of video views are without sound. Videos on Facebook actually automatically start on mute. Therefore you must create a video story that can be understood without sound. You can use text overlay and typography to communicate key words or messages in the story. If there is somebody speaking in your video, be sure to have that subtitled.

Incorporate your brand identity

A video is a great opportunity to drive home your brand identity, personality and message.
Use the colours, fonts, sounds and people associated with your brand. Consistency in these elements across your marketing will help people recognise and remember your brand.

It’s important to incorporate your brand identity early on in the video. People may not stay tuned in to the video for long, so failing to show your brand early doors could mean they never see your brand at all and never realise that the video was associated with your brand. And wouldn’t that make it all a waste of time and money?

Want to create a video marketing strategy that really bangs for your business? Please feel free to get in touch at [email protected].