3 Characteristics of a Good Marketing Video
In case you haven’t noticed already, video is taking over the internet. Here are some facts:
- YouTube is the most popular social media in US over Facebook — 73% of American adults use YouTube vs 68% for Facebook, and 94% of young adults (18–24) use YouTube.
- People spend 1 billion hours a day watching videos on YouTube.
- Video will drive 82% of all internet traffic by 2021.
So yeah, video is a big deal, and good startups have already been taking advantage of its effectiveness as a marketing tool. After all, videos generate way more views, shares, website visits and sales than text or image. (source 1, source 2, source 3… You get the point.)
But what makes a good marketing video? Before we answer that question, we need to make one thing clear — a good video is different from a good marketing video. All the fancy transitions and color grading won’t save poor messaging.
Below are our 3 tips on how to make a good marketing video.
1. Keep It Short.
Blame it on the millenials’ short attention span, but you can’t go against the tide. With so many other interesting videos to choose from, they really don’t have a reason to spare more than 3 minutes on a video that’s trying to sell something. Need proof? One word: Snapchat.
There is no such thing as an ideal length for videos, but our general guideline is:
- 90 ~ 120 seconds for product explainer / crowdfunding video
- 60 ~ 90 seconds for company / team intro video
- 5 ~ 30 seconds for social media videos
Keeping it short also helps you deliver a clearer and better message. By forcing yourself to boil everything down to an absolute minimum, you are left with only the essence of what customers need to understand.
The shorter videos on social media can take different forms to serve different functions as well. Snapchat and Stories on Instagram are a good way to market time-sensitive promotions that prompt viewers to take immediate action. Boomerang on Instagram or GIF images made on Giphy are very short and fun images that loop automatically to really drive one aspect of your product in a short time period.
2. Show, Don’t Tell.
Remember that one guy who narrates everything that happens in a movie? Don’t be that guy.
Video is a visual medium. People want to watch it. There is no real need to have a constant voiceover or long texts that yak about everything on screen. Humans have evolved to just get visuals.
A good script for voiceover, narration or on-screen text just focuses on the core message and helps viewers understand it better. Excessive scripting only hurts by getting in the way of visuals and confusing the audience.
Another reason to really focus on the visual storytelling and limit the amount of narration is that people won’t hear a thing. Literally. Facebook and Instagram autoplay your videos without audio on. Unless people really like the visuals and are interested to engage further, they won’t tap on that sound on button. And when they do? You better surprise them once again with kickass music and sound effects, not a boring narration of what they can already see.
If that doesn’t convince you, here’s the thing — if you have to talk a lot to get a point across, either you don’t know what you are talking about, or you simply have a bad product.
3. Focus on one thing.
Wanna send a clear message with your video? Clearly define your goal of the video and just focus on creating visuals that sell that story.
Don’t bombard viewers with facts after facts that they don’t care about!
Customers don’t really care how it works, as long as it works. They have a problem, and your job is to show them that your next world-changing gadget will solve it. They don’t care if you spent 3 years studying the blockchain technology and big data to recreate a bingo game.
I know it sounds harsh, but people really don’t care about your fancy technology or awesome awards. They just want to watch a cool video! If the video is good, customers will probably visit your website to learn more about what interests them. If tech is one of them, they can do the reading themselves. Just don’t try to explain everything on the video and bore people to death.
You can talk about the technology and the specifications on separate, text-based materials uploaded on your website. Customers, investors, partners and media interested in this topic will access this information themselves.
The world is becoming a visual playground for marketers. Video is and will be at the center of content creation and consumption in the foreseeable future. It’s up to us to learn what works on web and take advantage of its awesomeness.
Just so you know I practice what I preach — here’s our video