Video is king

Content is king” we’ve heard this buzz phrase so often it has turned into a cliché.
Wait, but you just said VIDEO was king!  …bare with me for a moment.

Content is a key component of any sound and well rounded digital marketing strategy. Through my career I have seen many companies embark on the content locomotive with good intentions and with very ambitious content calendars. Many aim to write 2 blog posts a week around specific keywords, including your usual stock photo and then sharing on social. But why do they do it?

“It’s good for SEO” some say. Others do it because “Senior management requested it” and yet others do it because “the competition is doing it”.

These might be good reasons but they are not necessarily the right reasons.

Content that is created for the above reasons ends up becoming a time sucking, keyword stuffed blob with no value for the reader.

In my opinion, content that percolates from strong brand values and a unique brand identity is more successful. The company creating the content must have a burning desire to tell the story about the unique way it serves the market (here I’m assuming there is strong market relevancy for the product or service).

When content originates from the heart and soul of the business, it’s sincere, it’s deep and it’s unique. When content is created this way, the business becomes the leader rather than the follower.

So, how does video fit in the picture?

When quality, depth and uniqueness become the guiding light for content creation, the format needs to follow suit and make justice to it.

From all the content formats available (blog posts, white papers, case studies, podcasts, etc.), the one that is the most effective in communicating on a rational, emotional and subconscious level; the one that is the easiest to consume and that is the most immersive is video.

To summarize, when you have a worthwhile message you need an engaging format: VIDEO

At the end of the day, your personal taste will dictate the quality of the final product. Taste is something that can be learnt by exposing yourself to quality movies and video in the cinema or on the web.

Do it with quality and taste or don’t do it at all

There is the misconception that quality video needs to be expensive to be good but this is not necessarily true.

When there is a clear vision emanating from the marketing department or business owner about what to achieve with video, and when there is a fair amount of visual research and a strong brand concept, video can become surprisingly affordable.

How? Well, when you have a few references about what you would like to achieve in terms of story and quality, just as you would do with any other project where budget is an issue, research local film school students or freelancers, look at their portfolios and try to identify their style until you find a match. Present the references to your pick, do a mini pilot project and if it looks promising, give it a shot.

So, what does great video look like?

In my personal view, here are some video production aspects that are indispensable for quality video:

Good sound

Rich and deep voice recording is a must with little to none background noise.
Lavalier or gunshot microphones with wind shield are great for this.

Smooth camera movements

Use of a gimbal, stabilizer or slider for floating like shots and traveling.

Unique soundtrack

Stay away from the ukulele and find a unique soundtrack the reinforces your brand

Good lighting

Just as with photography, tasteful and well controlled lighting makes all the difference.

Shallow depth of field and close-ups

Make sure to include a few shots where only the main subject is in focus.

In the example below, pay attention to these aspects and realize how many ideas and feelings are transmitted without a single word.

That’s the power of video.

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