4 STEPS TO INCORPORATING VIDEO INTO YOUR BRAND STRATEGY

MAY 21, 2019

I saw a promo video the other day for a brand that automatically changes the aspect ratio of your video content in a drag and drop sort of experience. The ad hooked me right from the beginning with it’s explanation of a problem I often face, “you are tasked with turning your brand’s messaging and data points into seven different kinds of videos with no team and virtually no time.” Yes! I hear you. Tell me the solution! I’ll pay anything!

Right after this frazzled young marketing professional realizes the weight of her dilemma, said company swoops in to tell her she’s not alone! They can help modify her videos to every platform’s required aspect ratios with a click of a button! And that's where they lost me. How did we solve the "make seven videos with no team" problem? Does this company have a button for magically producing all the videos that then get dropped into their aspect ratio configurator? Am I the only one still drowning in the demand for communicating my brand's message with video but running low on tangible solutions for where to begin? Because, I'll be honest, I can't even begin to talk about aspect ratios on multiple platforms when I don't even know how to make a video.

 

If you’re feeling the burn like the rest of us, here are a few ways you can get start adding value to your brand’s communication strategy without taking away from your existing marketing initiatives:

 

Use what you have. Implementing video into your marketing strategy can feel intimidating if you don’t have a built-in team dedicated specifically for this medium. One of the best ways to get yourself over the initial jitters is to use your mobile phone and start shooting for internal use. For instance, you can turn emails into videos that are shot with a phone or the built-in camera on your laptop. You can streamline your onboarding process by delivering all those tantalizing HR documents in a more personal and engaging way. In fact, sending a video packet before a new employee’s first day may be the best way to set them up for success as they walk into the office for the first time. The point of these videos isn’t to show artistic prowess. It’s to showcase how much you care about people’s time and level of engagement by giving them information in a way that is easier for them to consume and digest. A question to ask yourself, “Are there any areas in our internal communications that go ignored or could stand to be spruced up?”

 

Get social. If your brand has a social media presence and you aren’t using the live or video capabilities, this is your chance. Use Instagram stories to capture behind the scenes of your team and office. Customers appreciate the opportunity to connect to the people behind the products and services they have invested in. If you have dogs in your office, they’re always fan favorites to capture. If you have a unique office space, show it off and capture the personality of your culture through the space. If you have a bland office space but incredible people, capture them at a local coffee shop or at lunch with one another to put the emphasis on people. However you can pull the curtain back and bring people into a raw, live experience with your team, do it! As a note of caution, use discretion and have a plan. This is still a brand touchpoint. Make sure you aren’t damaging your brand when you start filming how the sausage is made. A question to ask yourself, “What pieces of the day-to-day operations of our brand would be interesting to experience in short snippets?”

 

Take the leap.It’s one thing to get good at video, it’s another to master it the same way you’ve mastered other forms of communication. How long did it take you to ‘get good’ at copywriting? How long did it take you to really hone in on the aesthetics of your brand? Take those numbers and multiply them 50 and then aim them at a moving target. Not to be Debbie Downer, but you’re going to have to sink some resources into the video arm of your marketing strategy if you’re kicking things up a notch. Producing high volumes of high quality videos requires more specialized team members, more gear and predetermined budgets for making sure people actually see these masterpieces. You’ll want to allocate money toward promoting these videos and making sure there is an experience built around them that leads people through the different touchpoints in the communication ecosystem. Like all marketing pieces, they can accomplish much more when they’re working together. Leaving any one medium to its own devices only tells a part of the story. The same is true with video. Make sure you’re prepared to build a new infrastructure that ties your professional video team into conversations with your copywriters, graphic designers, web developers and social media team. Together, they can create an experience that customers won’t be able to ignore. A question to ask yourself, “Do I want full control of my video content and flexibility in the amount of video creation? Do I want the opportunity to leverage my existing team's expertise to give video the best chance at driving home revenue for my brand?”

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Experiment with new tools. One of the greatest benefits to marketing in 2019 is that we have access to gear that enables us to shoot footage from our phones andon cameras that offer more clarity and depth without breaking the bank. We also have a generation of storytellers who are intimately familiar with how video can be leveraged to communicate and connect with an audience. If you feel you’ve got a handle on how you want to communicate your brand’s message through video, it’s time to invest in some gear and a videographer. You can start by renting gear and hiring a contractor or part time videographer until you get a clear understanding of how your brand’s message is translating over video. This videographer should be able to help produce the content, get b-roll and interview footage, run audio, finish coloring the footage and edit the video to completion. Again, start small and use contractors to get a sense of what you need and iterate with each project. Then bring in a part time videographer to begin building consistency in how you communicate to your audience through video. This consistency will allow you to figure out what kinds of videos you want to add to your communication strategy. The first few videos that will help you the most at this level of production will be a video explaining your product and a video explaining the problem your product solves. Those are great foundational pieces that have a long shelf life.A question to ask yourself, “Do I know the gaps in external communication that can be filled if I invested more resources into video? If so, am I prepared to get good at video or is it enough for my team to keep things light and social?”

 

The facts don’t lie: video isn’t going anywhere. What is a lie is that your brand has to go full throttle. Before you ask your marketing team to turn data and messaging elements into a video without any direction on how to actually tackle that, consider what you’re requiring of them. Making a video without any prior filmmaking experience is a sure-fire way to fail. But giving your team the opportunity to experiment with video in low stakes environments like internal communications, social media and partnering with contractors are great ways to dip your toe in the world of video marketing. Give your team a chance to find a place in your existing marketing strategy for video to enhance the brand message. How quickly you move through these four steps will be solely dependent on resources, bandwidth and the strength of your brand’s current communication strategy. Go at your own pace, but whatever you do … get started!

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