You’ve heard it before: video is the future. It’s the new king of attention, whether it’s stopping your audience’s scrolling thumb on social media or increasing your dwell time on the web. The technology company Cisco predicts that video traffic will account for 82 percent of all web traffic by 2022.
Why? Because our attention span is decreasing, there is information overload and we are constantly filtering what we look at and how much time we are will to devote to any one piece of content. We want information quickly and we will move on if we don’t get it. Video is perfect for this evolving mindset.
You know the stat: the average human has a shorter attention span than a goldfish – about eight seconds. That decreasing ability to focus is clearly influencing how we approach digital marketing and it is also what makes video so effective.
But isn’t video production too big of an investment for smaller campaigns? Absolutely not.
In a world where some of the most-watched videos online are shot by a YouTuber with a phone, audience expectations have adjusted accordingly. Combined with a growing preference for more authentic-feeling advertising, you don’t need to shell out half your budget on production.
“Some brands now spend a lot of money trying to make videos look like they were shot on a phone,” says Tim Schmoyer, founder of Video Creators.
Check out SK-II’s Bare Skin Project with Cloe Grace Moretz. The campaign focuses around a series of vlogs the actress and model records on a trip to Japan for the project. The campaign works because Moretz comes across as authentic as she shares her thoughts and feelings about the campaign in a few short clips.
Humor is another effective way to earn a user’s attention, which is what works for Loctite’s Super Glue 3 video ads. A coin is glued to the floor in a public location, and someone uses their phone to discretely film passersby attempting to pick up the stuck coin. Not only is the advertisement hilarious, but it was also extremely cheap to create.
If you are already producing your own videos or are ready to give it a shot, try investing in inexpensive ways to add polish to video you shoot with your phone…maybe a stabilizer and a small lapel mic. Then, get shooting. Share your expertise, show your company culture or give a quick how-to on your product—anything that can help you connect with your audience in a meaningful way.
Remember that authenticity also means staying true to your platform. In order for your ad to be successful, it’s important to cater your videos specifically to the platform. Here are some helpful tips that are considered best practices for certain platforms:
- Don’t post a three-minute vertical video to Twitter.
- Don’t hold your phone sideways for an Instagram Story.
- Whenever possible, make sure your video has captions – most platforms mute audio by default.
- If your audio is important, make sure you use an attached microphone so it’s clear. Audio quality is arguably more important than video quality to watchability.
- You don’t need to linger on each shot too long. Don’t be afraid to show only the highlights in your video – quick cuts moves the action along quicker for people scrolling down their feed.
If you know what platform you’re shooting for and who your audience is, you’re already well on your way toward kicking off a solid video strategy.