As mobile web usage increases and the way we think about brands evolves, creating online video is becoming a more critical part of marketing a business than ever before. While this new marketing medium brings plenty of exciting possibilities, it also leaves some business owners wondering where to start.
While it’s clear that video should become a major part of your overall marketing strategy, what’s the best way to integrate it beyond the obvious explainer videos and video intros? Here’s one idea: Use the visual, engaging, interactive qualities of the video medium to bring your brand story (the who, what, where, when, and – most importantly – why of your company) to life.
Why tell a brand story at all? To tell this brand story has three parts. Consumers want ads to have more narrative qualities. Secondly, stories are much more memorable than facts presented without context or emotion. And finally, with a good story, you can bypass the defenses people tend to put up when they feel they’re being “marketed to” – the skepticism, the doubt, and the distrust that keep potential customers from hearing what you have to say.
Now that you’re convinced, here’s how to create compelling brand stories that will serve as video introductions to your company.
Think back to when you were a younger, learning about literature in school, and you’ll recall that every story follows the same basic structure. You can simplify this structure to tell your brand story in a video. Start by introducing a problem or conflict, show how the problem was solved or the obstacle was overcome, and explain what happened next.
Brand stories need to be more than just a dispassionate recounting of the facts. Whatever story you choose to tell — whether it’s how your company grew from its humble beginnings to where it is today, to how your products changed a customer’s life for the better, to how you bounced back from a mistake or setback – you should focus on showing the emotions involved and making the viewer feel them too. In the end, customers should relate to your values, empathize with your struggles, and ultimately see your company as more human.
As video becomes an increasingly crucial marketing medium, it’s also evolving. Interactive features that solicit viewers’ feedback while they’re still watching the video, allow them to make decisions that influence the action in the video, and even personalize their experience by dropping their name or company into the video itself, are expected to become more popular throughout 2016. Consider using features like these, along with customer demographic and sales funnel info, to make brand story videos that are more likely to connect with each individual viewer.
Brand story videos are a complement to – not a replacement for – traditional marketing materials. Unlike ads, their effectiveness is hard to measure directly through metrics like purchases or signups to an email newsletter, and their benefits are only fully realized over the long term.
Forget about sales targets and ROI just this once and focus on connecting with customers through a compelling story. Think of them like video introductions that get potential customers acquainted with your company on a more personal level and set you up for a long term relationship. Once they know who you are and what you stand for, you level up in their eyes – from faceless corporation to human beings on a mission. They’re sure to want to stick around to find out what happens next.