8 Ways to Make Video Jump Off the Screen

Though about a minute longer than the current average length of about two minutes, this 2011 video from Olds Seed does a good job of drawing out the personality of the garden center and its employees providing a testimonial for the company's product.

Though about a minute longer than the current average length of about two minutes, this 2011 video from Olds Seed does a good job of drawing out the personality of the garden center and its employees providing a testimonial for the company’s product.

Online video used to be viewed as a plaything of younger people with too much disposable time. No more. Not only is video now a major enterprise for print media as well as TV media, it’s now the fastest-growing form of online advertising and marketing. Video can be the optimal medium for explaining a product or service in a fast and hard-hitting way. And research has found that older online video viewers – frequently the key target demographic in agriculture and horticulture – are more responsive to video ads than their younger counterparts.

Thinking about taking the leap into video? It could be easier and more affordable than you think. Here are eight tips for making your video jump off the screen.

  1. Keep it short. Online video pretty much tops out at two minutes in length before it begins to lose the viewer’s interest. In fact, there’s now a growing move to branded one-minute videos.
  2. Keep it human and personal. Have a compelling onscreen presenter or at minimum a voiceover that quickly and forcefully establishes the “benefits to you.”
  3. Tell a story. Storytelling dates to earliest humanity, and even today we still crave a narrative arc. Wrap your video concept around storytelling narratives like, “How Customer A Improved Her Business Using Product X,” or “How Problem A Became Solution Z.”
  4. Keep it informative or entertaining — and preferably both. Forget (if you can) organizational mandates to include this-and-that detail — viewers don’t care. Set out instead to grab their eyes, their minds and their hearts. Links to your website can provide additional details.
  5. Try humor. Comedy is a tough thing to pull off, but it can be powerful. The most cited example is “Will It Blend?”, a series of campy (but professional produced) videos that have sent consumer sales of Blendtec’s industrial-strength blenders through the roof.
  6. Don’t kid yourself about YouTube-level quality. Even YouTube is moving away from YouTube-level quality and “going pro.” As more people in our TV- and movie-centric society go online, they’re coming to expect higher production values and professional content in online video as well. But this doesn’t mean you have to do a Hollywood production. A talented videographer from a production house or a custom service provider like Meister Interactive can bring the equipment, aesthetics and editing know-how to make your video better than you might imagine.
  7. Use a good hosting/streaming platform. Where to post? YouTube is perfectly fine and highly accessible, though you won’t reap much information on viewership beyond viewer comments and total views. Better to post the video on your website and use analytics to track viewer behavior — or contract with a media company like Meister Media to provide these services for you.
  8. Market, market, market. Don’t let your video just “sit” there. Drive viewers to it through links on your website and outbound emails, and in print promotions using shortened URLs you can pick up for free using online sites like bit.ly.

Need help with video production? Meister Interactive and its video/audio production facility, Studio M, offer full custom video services from concepting and scripting to production and editing to final cut.

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