Video is going through a revolution, from the formats it uses and the platforms it relies upon to the devices it is watched on. We list how video is changing and offer top tips for creating video content that is relevant, shareable and, above all, a joy to watch.
Five ways video is evolving
From Stephen Waddington, partner at PR firm Ketchum:
- Social media platforms are promoting video in newsfeeds over text and visual content. “Facebook and Instagram push video content up the newsfeed. Facebook, Twitter via Periscope, and YouTube have all invested heavily in tools for video producers. It’s an opportunity for brands to share own content via their owned channels and networks.”
- There is innovation in virtual reality with significant platform development. “This technology has huge potential for brands in learning and development; demonstrations, including immersion in situations that would otherwise be dangerous in real life; and experience of hard-to-reach locations.”
- Live video shows huge potential as means of extending the reach of an event and as a form of reporting on live events. “I was brought up short recently when the Associated Press reported the effort to retake Mosel from ISIL on Facebook Live. It’s an incredibly powerful form of first=person storytelling that uses the reach of social connections as a means of distribution.”
From Luc Edwards, executive producer at communications agency TVC Group:
- TV viewing continues to decline whilst viewing on second-screen devices grows at a staggering rate. “As the volume of users and content continues to grow in 2017, online content is increasingly being viewed on TV screens. It will be interesting to see if production values in PR and marketing content will rise in 2017 as films made for online and social platforms are viewed on large 4K TVs.”
From Abi Cramp, online manager at broadcast agency 4mediarelations:
- Traditional news-style videos are dying. “The media craves video, which is great news for PROs. However, your traditional, news bulletin-styled content is no longer. Sites like Buzzfeed, UniLad and Lad Bible changed the industry drastically. Text-driven, visually strong, snappy content is overrunning the web, from your social media feeds to your daily newspapers. Shareable content drives engagement and what’s more shareable than something that causes a reaction out of its viewers?”
Eight tips for creating popular video content
From Sean Simmonds, motion designer at marketing agency TK:
- Be focused on results. ‘’Always bear in mind your target audience and create a video that will grab and retain their attention. You wouldn’t involve cars and explosions in a 'how to video' that’s going to show plaits for girls. Be relative and use data to drive opportunities and look to create content that you know will drive results’’
- Keep it short. “Make sure the content is interesting and relevant. Don’t just make a video for the sake of it and keep it as short as you possibly can. In today’s world, attention spans are very short and no more so than online, its best to leave them wanting more rather than have them fall asleep.”
- Get the best people involved with the job. “If you want a professional looking video, get a video production company involved that can give you the best possible audio and footage to work with. It’s equally important to make the project fun to work on. No one likes working on boring stuff. If you have enthusiasm for a project then it’ll turn out 10 times better and you’re also more likely to gain a whole help of content for ‘behind the scenes’ style exclusives.’’
From Louise Vaughan, managing director at PR agency Acceleris
- Use virtual reality. “A recent report from IDC claims that combined revenue for the augmented reality, AR, and VR markets hit $5.2bn last year with this expected to rise to $162bn by 2020. It’s important for PROs to identify what’s new and useful as communicators and to harness this for the benefit of our own customers.”
From Bethany King, content producer at PR firm Ruder Finn:
- Be authentic. “Authentic is a key word for us when it comes to video in 2017. Ideally, we’d love to rip up those pre-scripted answers, throw away the polished soundbites and do away with the same-old spokesperson. Video will be about capturing real footage, from real people, telling the right story in their own way. As a by-product, user-generated content is now a mainstay when it comes to producing video – so ensuring that your approach to video supports this is a must.”
From Luc Edwards, executive producer at integrated agency TVC Group:
- Content must resonate. “In the midst of all this innovation and change the core values of content creation remain the same – story is king and always has been. Content must resonate to find and engage its audience and the best way for the films we make to do that is to share something meaningful with the viewer. The age-old questions of 'what do we want to say and why should the viewer care?' are still key to creating good content. If you can answer those two questions successfully then all your content creating dreams will come true in 2017 (Depending on social network algorithms).”
From Charlotte Johnston, senior marketing executive at marketing agency LEWIS:
- Be rigorous. “Decide on the purpose of your video, and what you ultimately want to achieve. Is it lead gen? Is it awareness? Is it brand perception? Create a storyboard and a realistic timeline from concept to production. This way, there is less risk of the video diverting from its original purpose, and you can assess the shelf life of your video content. Stick to the plan, and try not to let too many cooks spoil the broth! Get the logistics and setup right. If you’re investing time and effort in video, make sure you’re producing a high-quality video that will be engaging and worth sharing.”
From Rory Green, videographer at agency Shout! Communications:
- Make it emotional! “Great social media video stirs up an emotion in the audience. Whether it is happiness, sadness or amusement, try to make your audience feel something when they watch your video. If they do they are more likely to share it.”
It is not easy keeping up with the constant changes in video media, formats and technologies, but creating good marketing is never easy. Luckily, some video rules will always remain the same: Tell a good story, invest in the best talent you can afford, and never waste the viewer’s time.
If you enjoyed this article, you can subscribe for free to our twice weekly event and subscriber alerts.
Currently, every new subscriber will receive three of our favourite reports about the public relations sector.