3 reasons video is the greatest marketing tool out there for small and mid sized brands.

Youtube is officially the 2nd biggest search engine next to it’s parent company Google. It processes over 3 billion searches every month. Over 100 hours of video are uploaded to the site every minute.

Sure that means that getting noticed has become harder and harder. But it also means that as a brand, big or small, you simply can’t afford not to be playing the game. It would be like saying “I don’t really do Instagram” 5 years ago.

Video is the next frontier for content creators and it’s already in full swing. Every platform on the internet is betting on video in a massive way. It’s said that in 2017, over 74% of all web traffic will come from video.

Big brands have known this for a long time, and have always had the resources to create great video content. Big budget commercials that have always set them apart from the masses of companies out there who simply couldn’t afford that type of marketing.

That’s changing.

This Adidas commercial was made by a student on spec — meaning he didn’t have big Adidas dollars behind him. And it’s one of the best commercials of last year for sure. 11 million views and counting.

1. It’s never been cheaper.

We’ve all heard the success stories about feature films being made with iPhones, and Mercedes commercials being shot and edited on iPads. It happens. All the time. Some are more successful than others, but the point is that it doesn’t matter what you use to make the video. It’s what is on screen that counts. What you point the camera at is what really matters.

Which is really good news for smaller brands!

2. Nobody has a monopoly on storytelling.

We as humans, are the sum of our experiences. The same can be said for brands. While some products could be similar, or even straight up knock off of each other, the people that started the company are always different. Therefore, the DNA of that company will differ.

Therein lies the key to great video. Strip away the fancy cameras, the big crews and the big lights, and all you’re left with is story. Some good, some bad. Some great!

It takes nothing to sit down with your team and get to the essence of a story. Whether you’re a small town bakery, an independent shoe designer or a landscaper, I guarantee there is a good story to tell. It could be funny, sad, aspirational — anything. But it has to be yours. Because that means that no one else can tell it.

Get to the very core of what makes your brand special and then find a way to tell that story.

3. Bite sized content.

Text is pretty easy to digest. Photos are easier. But nothing will ever be as easily digestible as video. 30 seconds of video that people can watch on their phones while riding the subway can deliver a complex message beautifully. Want to stir some emotion. Nothing will do it like some gorgeous video, some uplifting music and a heavy hitting voice over.

Bonus: An example from Nike

One of my favorite commercials of all time is this one:

You could have made this commercial for free. Here’s how:

  • Get in your car and drive to country road with a buddy.
  • Open trunk and hang out the back with your iPhone recording 1080 video. Be careful.
  • Pick up buddy and drive home.
  • Open iPhone voice record app and record voice over. (preferably in a room with very little echo)
  • Open iMovie and sync footage and audio.
  • Fade up logo over the end of the footage.
  • Upload to Youtube/Vimeo

Bingo bango. The hardest part of this commercial is the concept. The idea is so simple that it’s really difficult to pull off. Nike showed real restraint here and it paid off in a big way.

One last thing….

I am by no means suggesting that making videos is easy. Especially making good ones. We make our living making videos so we know it can be really tough to make something stand out. What I am saying is that it will never be the camera you shoot on, or the expensive lights you use that make your video special. It will always be the story. Every. Time.

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