October 7, 2013 \ Geoff Birmingham
Don’t lose your audience

297820961_8e46b2ddd7_zOct 4, 2013
After something of a hiatus due to a busy summer schedule, I’m back.

Something that’s been on my mind of late is a question that always seems to be relevant: what belongs in a video and what doesn’t?  In our mind, shorter is almost always going to be better; when in doubt, cut rather than add.

Even if most people understand this intuitively, the tendency is for clients to ask us to insert something rather than remove it. And we understand this – most people want to get the most bang for their buck, and so they want to include as much as they can to maximize their investment.

But, ultimately, they may actually be doing themselves more harm than good. Why? Because if a video ends up being just a brochure in video form, most people are going to tune out, and then your investment has become something that nobody’s watching.

A video ought to communicate something that other media can’t. There’s nothing wrong with having an interviewee include a few facts or data points, but if you end up reciting information that could just as easily be included (and perhaps more easily consumed by your audience) as text on your website, then you’re probably traveling down the wrong path.

Video should be more about showing stuff that pictures alone can’t do. Or communicating the personality of your team. Or sharing compelling stories of happy clients.

If you do need to communicate more mundane information about your organization in a video brochure, you might be better off breaking your longer video down into shorter, individual pieces – client stories, compelling case studies, your organization in action, and the video brochure – and let your audience decide what it wants to watch.

Photo: Kevin Jaako