Video marketing is an incredibly impactful way to reach an audience and grow your business. But video isn’t exactly scarce on the internet these days.
There are millions of videos published daily, so if yours isn’t engaging, you can kiss those potential customers—and your marketing budget—goodbye.
How do you run a video marketing campaign that rises above the constant flow of content? You don’t need to scratch your head too hard. There are some basic elements that every successful video campaign has. If you abide by the following tips, your video will have a much better chance of gaining traction among your audience.
Who knows? You might even go viral.
Find Your Audience
You have an excellent idea for an ad you KNOW will generate hype for your product.
How do you know?
Well, because it’s a really cool idea, that’s how.
This is how many creative marketers think when designing ads. They conceptualize a great idea and a hook, but those ideas don’t always resonate with audiences.
A prime example of this is the car manufacturer Nissan’s 1996 ad “Toys”. Regarded as the most popular car commercial of all time and one of the most awarded ads ever, “Toys” generated loads of hype—while Nissan’s sales fell by nearly 3%. The ad was certainly inspiring but didn’t inspire the right action.
Copious amounts of target research are required to understand the following:
- Who is your audience comprised of
- Which demographics your ad campaign will target
- What your audience will find engaging
- What will prompt them to take action
Before you spend your money, find your audience and ensure you know how to deliver the right kind of value.
Tell a Story
Whether it’s an ad, a product video, or an explainer, most good marketing videos tell a story. In a quality video, the main character of that story is the customer. It’s not always easy to tell a story in 15 seconds to 2 minutes but building a narrative around the consumer is the key to leaving a lasting impression.
A story is a hypothetical situation that allows viewers to imagine their life with your product or service. What has improved about their life? What problem has been solved? What crisis has been averted?
To create a compelling story, begin by addressing a real problem in your target’s life. The Nissan commercial above appeals to the middle-class man’s desire for status. The adventurous protagonist escapes danger steals the girl (from a yuppy Ken doll), and achieves freedom.
What does your product deliver? Power? Affection? Time? There are many potential answers, and each inspires the viewer in different ways.
Plan Every Detail
Now, let’s get our heads out of conceptual clouds and talk numbers. You have a budget to run the best ad campaign possible, and every day you pay a film crew, a massive chunk of it evaporates. That’s why your marketing team needs to plan everything before anyone presses the “record” button.
You need to do full market research, script each video, storyboard each shot/scene, create a shooting/editing schedule, plan where and when to publish each video, and decide how you’re going to measure the results.
Then, you’ll be ready to create your content.
Planning a solid video marketing campaign can take a while and produce zero results in the short term. But in the end, you’ll run a much more predictable campaign on a leaner budget.
Maximize Quality within Your Budget
Marketers tend to go a little wild in the brainstorming phase and may dream up some ideas that seem impossible to accomplish on your budget. Of course, the most extreme ideas should be abandoned. At the same time, you should never sacrifice originality or quality if it can be preserved with a little creativity.
For example, expensive shots, such as aerial footage or foreign landscapes, can be purchased as stock footage for cheap. No filming is required! All of your sound effects can also be purchased online, saving you loads in production costs. Nissan spent millions to use a Van Halen song in its “Toys” ad. You can save thousands by using free music from stock libraries. As long as the music produces the emotional effect you need, it doesn’t matter if it’s original or not.
Promote on the Right Channels
If you’ve done proper target research, you should know where to reach your audience. Now, you just need to decide when to post your videos and how you will engage with your viewers. You may not want to flood multiple social media platforms with your ad at the same time. By posting to just one, you can gauge the reaction and potentially make changes before a wide release.
Also, keep in mind how your target will perceive your product based on where it’s posted. Your younger customers may be active on TikTok, but older audiences may perceive your brand differently if they encounter TikTok videos that stray from your brand’s established identity.
Facts and Fantasy Make Great Video Marketing Campaigns
Why do so many video marketing campaigns fail to make an impression? Some focus too much on research and data. Others lose themselves in creativity and forget about the target market.
The truth is great marketing campaigns require a balance between fact-based research and fantastic creativity. Allow your marketers to go wild with creativity during the planning phase but anchor their expectations to reality before you spend hard cash on production. Those are the elements of a successful video marketing campaign.