Video marketing – if it moves – shoot it

In my early days in advertising, before video marketing, we used to have a saying, “Nothing  sells like TV.”

It was true… and there was sound reasoning behind it. Firstly, the medium had tremendous reach, and of course, TV is a major medium. However, the overriding benefit is that TV has the ability to demonstrate. This is a benefit other media just can’t handle. You can’t demonstrate the operation and features of a product or service anywhere near so effectively using press, posters or radio.

The ability to mix video, sound and graphics is a powerful combination for conveying a complex proposition.

Video also has real value from a memorability point of view. Psychologists talk about encoding in ‘multiple modalities.’ A message that is processed visually by images, by words, and emotionally, by all the semiotic cues of music, lighting, voiceover etc., is far more likely to be recalled than one which relies upon a single mode.

A well-directed TV ad can communicate a whole, engaging story in a few seconds of air time. Take a look at some of the great little three second clips from programme sponsors that appear before and at the end of commercial breaks. This perhaps just one reason that many top movie directors first cut their teeth on television advertising. 

However this amazing medium has long been outside the reach of small businesses or start-ups. Air-time was always hugely expensive. TV is a mass medium, so there was a great deal of wastage – money spent on talking to the wrong audiences. In addition, production costs for creating or filming content were also sky high.

TV ads for all

Today, all that has changed. An explosion of TV channels has brought the cost of advertising right down – and advertisers quickly found that the most valuable new channel is the internet of course.

Low cost video – some clips even shot on smart-phones, has brought production within everyone’s reach. More importantly, small businesses have the means of broadcast and distribution online.

You can run your own video commercials on your website, distribute content on social media, run company vlogs, even have your own TV channel on YouTube or Vimeo, for example. Even a startup can easily broadcast information, education or instruction videos and webinars.

Social media is where video really scores.

Recent research found over 60% of agencies consider the effectiveness of video advertising is increasing significantly. Top content uses include:

  • Customer testimonials
  • Tutorials
  • Demonstrations
  • Interviews
  • Case studies
  • Blogs

So, it’s time to start thinking ‘video’ as part of a strategy.

It needs to be relevant and part of a strategic approach.

Content matters – but using video for any of the six tactics above is certain to be powerful.

Before you start writing a post, putting together an instruction guide, or writing a case-study for your website – think video. Can this be conveyed more effectively as a movie?

Although specialists, agencies and production companies can help deliver quality content, they are not essential. It’s the story and the message that counts. If your business has something to say, get it on video. Great content will always resonate with your audience and no better to way to get it over than with a movie. So… lights, camera, action?

Ian West
dangerous ideas

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