Guest Feature: Five Easy Ways to Transform Your Branded Videos

This guest feature was written by Lorenzo Benitez. He is a producer of content featured by Fortune 500 brands, broadcasted on national television and viewed by millions online. He believes in the power of images to change the world.

There is the signal, and the noise.

The goal is to cut through the noise to offer your video, the signal.

How do you do it?

It’s about being precise and concise with your messaging.

Knowing what you want to say.

And how to say it as efficiently as possible.

Because the reality of today

…Is that yesterday‘s content…

…Just won’t cut it for tomorrow‘s audiences.

As someone with years of experience producing viral video for Fortune 500 media brands to documentaries for national public broadcast, I can assure you that significant transformation is afoot in the ways that brands communicate throughout all forms of media.

However, video will continue to remain a prominent and primary medium for brands. 

This bodes well for those who can remember the important fundamentals of storytelling, adapted for a digital audience.

For brands wondering what some of these fundamentals are, looking to keep their consumer-facing video fresh, relevant and engaging in the post-pandemic future, I have distilled five of the most important below.

Lesson 1: The Promise of the Premise

What is it that your video has to offer?

Are you merely throttling your audience’s attention for money, or do you at least provide compensation (give) in exchange for your monetization (take)?

This is the truth that most brands overlook when communicating through video.

It’s important that our videos either convey new facts, or conjure familiar or rewarding emotions.

This stems from a fundamental, though not mutually-exclusive, distinction between directors of intellect and directors of emotion.

Either way, since the best directors, called auteurs, are either one, we should aspire toward at least on of the two ideals.

Start strong. Photo Credit: Jonathan Parker.

Lesson 2: Start Strong

In this day and age, it’s important that we start our video content with the most compelling images possible.

This is because audiences are incredibly starved for attention, and this becomes increasingly the case the younger you go along the generations.

In order to maximize the audience you speak to, capturing as large a cross-section of the populace as possible, start with your strongest image.

Lesson 3: End Strong

As they say, last impressions are lasting impressions.

This is the same with video, as the frame on which one ends can be the background image to other videos audiences can click through on.Also, if audiences actually stay until the end of the video, it will be the image that “summarizes” the video before they possibly share it on after having finished it.

Stay strong. Photo Credit: Declan Scott.

Lesson 4: Stay Strong

The internet is the Wild West of content, that’s for sure.

It’s important not to lose sight of the fact that oftentimes, even perfectly awesome content like your own can get lost in the vast ocean of data that is created, transmitted and stored each and every day.

That’s where reliable, affordable companies like DataDay Design come in.

Its co-founder and CEO, TJ Ball, produced a promotional video I directed announcing that Bill Nye would be Cornell’s celebrated graduation speaker.

His digital distribution know-how can help you cut through the noise to earn your videos the recognition they deserve.

Either way, it’s important to not forget that sometimes, not everything will be a home run.

Not every video will earn you thousands of views.

Instead keep a stiff upper lip, because if video was easy, it wouldn’t also be so rewarding when your content hits home.

Lesson 5: Remember Your Audience

There are many variables you have to consider when producing video content for consumers.

Demographics are key.

For example, despite social advancements in body positivity and the like, it’s important to remember that a significant minority of the population still doesn’t like to see nudity. 

If you were making a video about body positivity, it would be unwise to include images that could be interpreted as sexualized. However, perhaps a video about sex positivity would warrant such images. That both videos have different, despite overlapping, demographics, reveals the extent to which precisely identifying the target audience ought to inform the content of your video.

And that’s just one of the many variables you’ve got to consider when producing video content for consumers.

Because demographics are key.

Conclusion

Remember, if you keep it simple: have some clear reward to offer audiences, start with a compelling image, end with another compelling image, don’t be afraid to be bold or push the limits, you’ll go far with your video content.

With video, it’s about speaking to what people want.

As in life, it’s about giving as much as taking.

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