Thursday, March 31, 2016

Video Marketing How-To: Optimizing your Video for Mobile

Hello and welcome to this week’s episode of Video Marketing How-To. Today we want to share a few tips for optimizing your video content so your audience has a great experience on mobile devices.

Tip number one is to make sure your players are responsive so people viewing on mobile screens that aren’t the standard desktop size won’t see a huge version of your video that doesn’t fit on their screen.

Which is a great segue to tip number two. Most mobile screens are quite a bit smaller than your standard desktop, so your splash screen doesn’t have the same amount of space to prove that your video is compelling. If you’re creating video for a mobile audience, exaggerate the compelling aspects of your video in the splash screen, and give people a big indication of what your video is about so they know to watch it.

Tip number three is mostly for social video, but it applies everywhere — if you’re adding captions to your video content, don’t assume that people will be reading them on a 40-inch television in their living room. Captions that are too small are useless to mobile viewers that may not be able to turn the sound up on your video, so create captions that are viewable on any device.

That wraps up today’s episode of Video Marketing How-To! Thanks for watching, and stay tuned for another episode in another few weeks!

The post Video Marketing How-To: Optimizing your Video for Mobile appeared first on Vidyard.

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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Can you DIY? How and When to Update Old Video Content

You know that wooden chair you snagged off the side of the road? Or the old nightstand you got off of Kijiji for $10? They still function well! But someone decided they weren’t up-to-date with current trends. Good thing you have an eye for DIY projects and a way with that white milk paint.

With all the content you produce, it’s inevitable that some of your content may end up out-of-date as well. But that doesn’t mean that you have to throw it out and start from scratch. Sometimes all it needs is a quick refresh.

Refreshing your video content can help you save oodles of time and money. It can also be a simple way to re-align content with new messaging or a way to re-engage your audience. Let’s explore what types of videos you should and shouldn’t refresh, what update opportunities exist, and how to know your content needs a facelift.

What type of video content should you refresh?

Not every single type of video in every context lends itself well to an upcycle. But here’s a list of some of the best opportunities you might have on your own site:

  • Blog videos: Has a method or concept changed since you last published on that topic? You don’t necessarily have to update the entire video, but you could add updates throughout the clip with text annotations or a even a quick filmed update at the beginning or end.
  • Culture videos: Has your team changed? If you’re interviewing a specific person in a culture video that no longer works at the company, consider replacing just their snippet with a new interviewee.
  • Webinars: If your webinars are posted chronologically, like most, no one’s watching your 60-minute webinar from 2013. Try updating it (or even re-purposing it) by cutting it into smaller pieces and adding it to a new blog post.
  • Product videos: Do you use screenshots or clips of your product in your demo videos? If so, these will have to be checked frequently and updated accordingly because products are always changing!
  • Research: New research comes out all the time, but that doesn’t mean you have to scrap last quarter’s video just because some updated research has come to light. You can always update one stat or add a stat in. This even works if the video was a motion graphic.

  • Testimonials: Sometimes your biggest advocate leaves the company they were working for and their testimonial is no longer as impactful, since … well, they don’t work for that company any more. As long as your customer team has been doing a great job of re-building relationships at that company, consider updating the speaker in your testimonial video. You can even do this while keeping most of the messaging the same.


Video statistics updates

What type of video content should you avoid refreshing?

Other types of videos don’t lend themselves well to a refresh but are better either (a) left untouched or (b) completely redone.

  • Evergreen How-to Content: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Even if you are a DIY wiz. Evergreen content is called that for a reason; if it’s still teaching a valuable lesson, leave it the way it is.
  • Home Page Video: This is the video that sits front and centre. Unless you’ve just recently found a mistake or you updated your tagline just a month after you published the video, you should simply create a new one. Change on a home page can be a great way to re-engage visitors!
  • Rebranded Video Content:  If you’re going through an entire rebrand, an update to video content probably just isn’t going to cut it. Chances are you’ll need to start from scratch, and it will probably be a more efficient use of everyone’s time to do it this way than try to re-jig old content to fit a new mold.

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What updates might you do?

There’s an endless list of things you can update within each video. Here’s a brief list to get you started when you’re freshening things up:

Statistics or research

  • Screencasts or product shots
  • Value prop or messaging
  • Video CTA updatesLogos
  • Employees (your own)
  • Employees (your customers)
  • CTAs or form fields
  • Filming

On that last one, consider that you may re-film an entire video but utilize the same concept from the previous video. Sure, you’re spending time re-filming, but you’re saving a lot of pre-production time if you re-purpose the initial concept. This counts as an upcycle, too!

How do you know when your content needs a refresh?

You know when you’re wearing bell-bottoms and everyone else is in skinny jeans? Or you’re still mastering cross-stitch and everyone else has moved on to chalk paint? Then you know it’s time for an update.

For marketing collateral, it’s a little trickier, I’ll admit. But with the right practices in place, hopefully you’ll realize your content is heading in the direction of outdated before it’s way out of line.

Keeping Product Site Videos Updated

If you have any big changes in the company like a large number of new hires or layoffs, product launches, product updates, or a refined brand, you’ll likely need some refreshed content.

For less obvious changes, consider doing a quarterly site audit. Keep a spreadsheet up-to-date will all the pages on your website and the videos on each page, when they were made, and when they were last updated. Make note of those that need a refresh and ensure your in-house video team or your agency is planning and has the bandwidth for regular video update projects. It’s a common occurrence, so there should be time allotted for it.

Keeping Content Marketing Videos Updated

Keeping content marketing and blog videos up-to-date is a whole other beast. I don’t know about you, but we have hundreds and hundreds of blog posts. Some companies have thousands.

So how do you keep track of all your video blog posts?

A quick hack is to use a tag or filter for all video blogs, specifically. At Vidyard, we use series naming conventions like “Video Marketing How-To” … partly for this purpose, and partly for audience understanding! This way, you’re at least looking at a fewer number of posts. However, since you’re a marketer who probably has to keep your written content up-to-snuff as well, try following this, more comprehensive, approach:

  • When you write a post, rank it on a scale of ‘evergreen-ness’ from 1-3. 3 means it will basically never become out-of-date and 1 means it’s very topical. 1’s could be product information, new technology in the industry, or recent research. 1’s will need more frequent updating.
  • Go through the 1’s once a quarter to see if the topic requires an update. For example, if the best way to fit boots for dogs has recently changed, then Mutt-Luks should update their blog post from last quarter on fitting your dog for winter boots.
  • Go through the 2’s twice per year and the 3’s once per year just to double check.

It can be a lot of tedious work, but it pays off. Even just adding a quick two- to three-line update on a blog post can bring it back as up-to-date, relevant content that Google will reward. And Google is King, after all.

Or, you can completely update and revamp a post.

Either way, it’s great to include a blurb somewhere within the post if you’ve completed an update. The editor’s note below is what Hubspot typically uses, as an example.

editors-note Hubspot

Now here’s a question, you DIY genius. Are there opportunities on your site to update video content without having to completely re-do it? Where will you start?

The post Can you DIY? How and When to Update Old Video Content appeared first on Vidyard.

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Thursday, March 24, 2016

Vidyard Hires Tech Veteran, Former Hootsuite Exec Steve Johnson as President, COO

Johnson will help Vidyard scale its video marketing platform as he did for Hootsuite’s social media platform.

KITCHENER, Ontario – March 24, 2016 – Vidyard, the video intelligence platform for business, today announced the addition of Steve Johnson to serve as company president and chief operations officer.

Johnson most recently held the role of chief revenue officer for Vancouver-based Hootsuite, where he helped the company capitalize on the huge rise of social media for business. During Johnson’s tenure at Hootsuite, the company grew from a sub-$100 million valuation to over $1 billion and from 27 employees to more than 800. He plans to help Vidyard make similar strides.

“I can hardly believe how much innovation is happening in marketing technology these days,” Johnson said. “Social media was the biggest marketing trend over the last five years, and now video is taking up that mantle. I’m excited to be on board to help Vidyard continue to dominate the video marketing world.”

Five years ago, only the most forward-looking companies had implemented social media programs. Many simply dedicated an intern to manage the various channels and push out content. That evolved into companies dedicating entire teams to social media, and every external-facing employee was expected to maintain a social media presence. Social media has become a critical piece of nearly every business.

Video is in a similar state today with the most innovative businesses capitalizing on it. According to a 2015 survey by Demand Metric, 74 percent of marketing leaders say video converts better than other forms of content, and Cisco predicts that 80 percent of all Internet traffic will be devoted to video by 2019. But even with the effectiveness of video emerging, just 14 percent of companies leverage the full capability of advanced video engagement analytics to prioritize and convert prospects into customers, Demand Metric found. Video and social media also complement each other well. Social posts with video attract three times more inbound links than those without, according to Marketing Sherpa.

Meanwhile, Vidyard has tripled its year-over-year revenue for the last two years while growing its customer base to include global leaders including Honeywell, Lenovo, LinkedIn, Cision, TD Ameritrade, Citibank, Sharp and 24 of the top 100 global software companies.

Johnson will be responsible for continuing to scale Vidyard’s global sales and customer success programs while helping the company expand into new markets.

“Hiring an experienced professional like Steve is a signal of things to come,” said Vidyard CEO and co-founder Michael Litt. “We’re maturing our go-to-market model, and with his expertise, we will be able to provide exemplary service to our customers while continuing to grow exponentially for years to come. We’re the dominant player in this massive untouched category. Our plans are to continue leading the industry, aided by his experience and influence.”

In addition to his job at Vidyard, Johnson also serves on the advisory boards of Mobify, MarketLinc and Bench Accounting. Prior to his four-and-a-half years at Hootsuite, he was vice president for channel partners at Constant Contact, vice president for partners at Blackbaud and vice president of sales at Voice Automation, in addition to several other sales and director roles at other companies going back to 1991.

About Vidyard

Vidyard (Twitter: @Vidyard) is the industry’s leading video marketing platform that helps marketers drive results and ROI with online video content. With Vidyard, customers can add video to their websites in minutes, get real-time analytics, syndicate video to social networks and YouTube, create calls to action, optimize search engine hits, capture leads, and brand their player skins all from one place. Vidyard integrates with key marketing automation and CRM tools to deliver user-level video engagement data, turning views into sales.

Media Contact:

Brad Hem
Phone: (281) 543-0669

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Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Tina Fey on a Roid Rage in American Express’ New Video

Just last month, American Express launched the following ad to promote their Blue Cash Everyday Card. Full of Tina Fey’s witty humor as she discovers ‘creepy gloves for her feet’ and makes up her own yoga poses, she inspires us all to get to the gym … or maybe just watch the video a few times. Take a look:

The entire clip is full of witty, parody humor, classic of Tina Fey. Her request at the end for the protein powder not to be bagged: “You don’t wrap that, I’ll eat it here.” just seals the deal!

What’s even better is that this is only the first video in a 7-part series.

American Express decided to sign Tina Fey as an endorser back in 2014 to help customers relate to the American Express brand (which is ironic given that she’s spending more than any average woman would on fitness equipment in one go!)

“Tina Fey is universal in many ways with her humor, she is easy to relate to with her ‘every woman-ness’” said Andrew Katz, VP-Advertising at American Express.

Regardless of the motives for Tina Fey’s endorsement contract, let’s take a look at what B2B marketers can learn from this witty series.

Storytelling before Selling

When did you know exactly what this video was selling? Not until the very end of the video, right? The clip wasn’t all about Tina paying with her Amex card here, there, and everywhere. Instead, the video focused on a story — still related to using her Amex card — and reeled you in with humor right off the bat.

B2B marketers can do this, too. In fact, they should do this. People love stories. They’ll watch your stories more willingly than they’ll watch your product pitch. But one word of caution, you better make sure your video is ridiculously interesting if you’re not going to throw your brand or product/service in until the end … or else no one will still be there to see it. And no, this doesn’t mean that you can get away with a crummy video just by adding in your branding halfway through!

Make it a Double … or a Series!

While the workout gear video is certainly the star of this series, the other videos help to build out Tina’s character and also offer a next step in the journey for the viewer. Another video within the same series is a perfect way to move a YouTube viewer along your content journey; it’s not too much of an ask, but it doesn’t leave them hanging, either.

To learn more about creating your own video series, check out our post Video Marketing How-To: Creating an Episodic Video Series.

Ask for What you Want, and Be Consistent

At the end of every single video in the series, American Express offers you two different options: subscribe to the channel, or watch more of Tina Fey’s outrageous spending habits and punchy humor.

If you’re letting your videos fade to black, you’re definitely missing out on a massive opportunity to help guide your viewers to another stage with you. This is true for any distribution location: YouTube, your website, social, etc.

Live and Breathe the Campaign

When you land on American Express’ YouTube home page, it’s all about the Tina Fey series.

American Express Tina Fey

As with any good marketing campaign, they’ve extended the reach beyond the videos themselves to hammer the message home. They even created a Tina Fey series-themed header image for their main page.

American Express Blue Cash CardThere was one opportunity left untouched, which was their website. There didn’t seem to be any mention of the series on American Express’ Blue Cash page. But hey, maybe that’s for good reason – to keep visitors purely focused on the card and features at hand.

Now here’s the real question: do you need a massive celebrity star to make this concept work? We don’t think so. Especially since it’s a series, you have time to develop a character that people really love. Sure, Tina Fey helped this first video get off the ground, but AT&T had a great series with some unknown characters named Frank and Charlie (no longer available on YouTube). But that series was wildly successful and anyone who watched a couple videos within the series became intimately familiar with these characters and their lines of humor.

The post Tina Fey on a Roid Rage in American Express’ New Video appeared first on Vidyard.

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Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Video ads: Facebook or YouTube?

Video is quickly becoming a default tool for marketers around the world. However, producing videos is only one part of the equation. A compelling video has a higher chance of driving business results, but compelling videos are ignored every day, getting little to no traffic.

Marketers are presented with a tricky challenge: a lot of internet browsers just don’t see ads anymore. But videos grab attention and are often seen as easier to consume than a 15 page document. The most common types of video ads are previews before another piece of video content, ads in search engines, or paid media on social.

For the last decade, the social option has lived almost exclusively in the land of YouTube, but since last year, Facebook has officially become a player in the video field. November 2015 marked the first month where more videos were uploaded to Facebook than posts containing links to YouTube. At the end of the day, neither truly has a definite advantage, but they do offer very different opportunities that I’ll delve into below.

The New Adwords is Video

One of the reasons why most companies today advertise through Adwords is that it’s a pretty cheap method and has good return. A staggering amount of the population uses Google for search, and showing up against strategic keywords can be an extremely efficient strategy for acquiring new customers. The downside is that as more and more companies wise up to the good deal that AdWords provides, certain keywords now cost hundreds of dollars to advertise on.

Video ads, however, are still pretty advantageous cost-wise. If you decide to go this route, you’ll be working through Google’s video advertising, called Trueview. Think of it as a direct video equivalent of AdWords, except you can use it to target certain channels or topics instead of targeting specific keywords. You can even do video remarketing, meaning you can target users based on their previous interactions with a specific video.

With TrueView, not only do you benefit from a very advantageous 6 cent per click average, you leverage Google’s very large reach. You have three options to advertise:

  1. in stream, showing your video right before the one users initially searched for (commonly known as a pre roll),
  2. in search, or
  3. in display (as a recommended video on the right-hand side of the video the user is watching)


One of the things that makes TrueView such a great opportunity is that you are only charged if the user actually watches the video past a certain time stamp. That way, you are can ensure that people actually saw your advertisement.

Also, since videos from YouTube are embedded all over the web, there is a chance that your ad will show up on a niche site that is highly relevant to your market. Have you ever visited a site, left, and then saw their ads all over the web? Well you can accomplish the same thing with your own videos on YouTube. And remember, if users watched videos embedded on sites they trust and see your ad, they’re likely to associate the two in their mind.

There is a New Kid in Town

Facebook has been on the rise in video for the past year. With over 17 million video shares for the ice bucket challenge, the social network has definitely shown that it can be a massive player in the world of video. In order to keep that momentum going, they’ve put in place a series of tools, like video scheduling, captioning, and analytics, that have led them to an impressive average 100 million hours of video watched every day. Their ad strategy for video is a little different than YouTube’s. The videos are shown in the feed of users, and they autoplay as people scroll down.

Where Facebook’s video ads truly shine is in their targeting. As you can imagine, the social network has a lot of information about their users. This allows marketers to implement some very granular settings, and means you can also tailor those who see your video to a precise target market. Keep in mind that this is all a bidding process, so narrowing your reach means your cost per click will go up. It all depends on what your goal is. If this is a campaign to increase brand awareness, you might want to keep the audience as general as possible, and get as many views as possible. However most B2B campaigns will be more successful with a more targeted approach, and Facebook certainly supports that.

Don’t fall in the view trap    

If you haven’t done that much paid advertising for video, you might have a hard time justifying it at first. With any new marketing spend, results are expected, and the common go-to metric to track results with video is views. However, video views are often an oversimplification of what the medium can really do. It’s important to set up goals that mean something to your organization. Whether your video’s goal is to drive more traffic, or to gather fresh leads, make sure everyone on your team understands what the target is.

For general awareness campaigns, both YouTube and Facebook can be fantastic options since they have an extremely large user base to target. If you’re looking for a very specific demographic, Facebook has the most precise and easy to manage targeting tools.

For conversion, both can work, but YouTube is slightly more straightforward. The end of an ad can end with a call-to-action and a link to your website, which is about as much as you can ask for. Since Facebook video ads appear just like promoted posts, users can easily click on your company name and reach your page. If you’re confident in your social media presence, this might be a better option, but if you’re pretty silent on there, it means users have to look around your page to find your website URL, and you’ll likely to see a heavy bounce rate.

For both options, remember that the first impression is key. That means:

  • Pay attention to the thumbnail you use, it’s the first thing users will see. In the case of YouTube in search and in stream ads, this is what entices people to click.
  • Shorter is better. These videos are always showing up before something the viewer wants to see, so don’t be tedious with the length.
  • The first few seconds are everything. People can skip after 5 seconds on YouTube, and Facebook autoplays as viewers are scrolling. That means the first few seconds need to be the most engaging part of your video if you want users to keep watching.

Like the marketing assets you’ve been using up to now, videos and their promotion are about planning. Video ads are not scary at all. In fact, if you’re already doing display ads on Facebook and YouTube, you’ll find most of the terms familiar, and the platforms to be almost the same. Video ads on these two social networks bring a new mentality to the medium. More importantly, they give you a fantastic opportunity to bring in the leads that truly matter to you.

video strategy workbook

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Vidyard Brings Viewer Engagement Analytics and Personalized Video to Adobe Marketing Cloud Users

New solution brings Vidyards industry-leading video analytics, viewer engagement data and video personalization to Adobe Marketing Cloud

KITCHENER, Ontario March 22, 2016  Vidyard, the leading video marketing and video analytics platform for business, today announced a new suite of integrations with Adobe Marketing Cloud to help the companies’ shared customers expand their use of video content and audience engagement analytics to attract, engage, qualify and convert more customers.

Through the new integration, Vidyard users can now easily embed videos across their digital properties using drag-and-drop components within Adobe Experience Manager while tracking detailed video performance data and audience engagement insights within Adobe Analytics. Customers can also leverage Vidyard’s new Personalized Video solution for delivering personalized video experiences for each individual viewer by seamlessly weaving their name, company name, company logo or other unique content directly into the video itself.

“Our customers are using video content to engage and convert their audiences at every stage of the buying journey, and many of them now have thousands of videos across disparate digital properties,” said Devon Galloway, CTO at Vidyard. “Our new integrations with Adobe Marketing Cloud will help those businesses scale the use of video across their digital programs and to leverage unique audience engagement insights to optimize their performance and make smarter decisions.”

Although it is important to provide a variety of content throughout the sales cycle, video is emerging as the most powerful medium to drive increased engagement and conversion rates. In a 2015 survey by research firm Demand Metric, more than 70 percent of marketers reported that video converts better than other content types, but less than 10 percent are using video analytics to help qualify leads and improve the results of demand generation programs.

“Vidyard has proven to be a powerful solution for managing our growing video library, tracking the engagement of each individual viewer, and creating unique personalized video experiences that help grab people’s attention,” said Michael Ballard, senior manager of digital marketing at Lenovo. “The new integration with Adobe Marketing Cloud will help us scale our video marketing programs in an efficient and controlled manner while accessing the insights and intelligence we need to make better decisions on the content we’re producing.”

The skyrocketing growth of online video has created big opportunities for marketers, but the most effective way to get value out of a video marketing program is to integrate video analytics and audience viewing data with other marketing tools where it can be viewed in context and made actionable. For example, simply knowing that a particular prospect watched a video to the end is somewhat interesting, but the information becomes more useful when put in the marketing cloud and viewed in the context of all the other interactions that individual has had with the vendor. That is a critical step to helping marketers prioritize leads and move them through the buying journey.

To learn more about Vidyard’s integration with Adobe Marketing Cloud, visit us at Kiosk #29 in the Innovation Showcase at Adobe Summit or check out this link:

About Adobe Marketing Cloud

Adobe Marketing Cloud empowers companies to use big data to effectively reach and engage customers and prospects with highly personalized marketing content across devices and digital touch points. Eight tightly integrated Solutions offer marketers a complete set of marketing technologies that focus on analytics, web and app experience management, testing and targeting, advertising, audience management, video, social engagement and campaign orchestration. The tie-in with Adobe Creative Cloud makes it easy to quickly activate creative assets across all marketing channels. Thousands of brands worldwide including two thirds of Fortune 50 companies rely on Adobe Marketing Cloud.

About Vidyard

Vidyard (Twitter: @Vidyard) is the industry’s leading video marketing platform that helps marketers drive results and ROI with online video content. With Vidyard, customers can add video to their websites in minutes, get real-time analytics, syndicate video to social networks and YouTube, create calls to action, optimize search engine hits, capture leads, and brand their player skins all from one place. Vidyard integrates with key marketing automation and CRM tools to deliver user-level video engagement data, turning views into sales.

Media Contact:

Brad Hem
Phone: (281) 543-0669

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Thursday, March 17, 2016

The State of Interactive Content

If you read the Vidyard blog you’ve probably heard of interactive content. You probably have also been told that if you’re not already doing it, you’re too late, that all the good ideas have already been taken. While that last part is totally not true, it’s something that is said because this type of media has a high chance of feeling gimmicky. And the truth is, it often feels like a lot of companies out there are doing it just because someone told them to and to do it fast before your competitor does.

To understand where interactive content came from, you have to understand where content marketing came from. A few years ago, there came a point where internet ads were so ubiquitous that they all became white noise to users, even if they were actually interested in the product being advertised. This is when marketers shifted strategies and decided to become experts in the subjects pertinent to their clients, and provide them content that would make them trusted. This approach was a lot more palatable than traditional ads, and it worked really well for a while.

However, we are currently approaching content critical mass dangerously fast. The same way that ads became white noise, content is starting to be ignored because there is so much of it. Companies need to find new ways to separate themselves from the pack. The big problem with traditional content like blog posts and white papers is that the user can still just ignore them. The idea with interactive content is to produce something so compelling that it’s impossible not to engage with it.

58% of responders in a recent Demand Metric survey said their content didn’t create enough opportunities for interaction and engagement. This is why more and more companies are turning towards types of content that have interaction at their core. By segmenting content and structuring information like a story, customers are way more likely to read through to the end, like in this case.

From Content, to Interactive Content.

Humans are not meant to simply sit and absorb. We all have an impulse to be active when we learn. The birth of this type of content is linked almost exclusively to the rise of content marketing. At this point, we all know the benefits of content marketing. It gives more leads, provides them more consistently, and it makes the sales cycle much easier.

As good as content marketing is, it does have its flaws. A lot of people don’t want to read walls of text (except the one you’re currently reading, because it’s super interesting), no matter how well laid out and pretty they are. Many products still struggle to be well-understood through traditional methods. And even if it brings in more qualified leads, it’s still hard for a salesperson to understand exactly what the buyer has read, and what he understood.

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Interactive content serves two purposes in fixing those flaws. It makes content more interesting to consume, and it’s a way to gather early customer data in a non-scummy way. That information can then be used in the sales cycle to better understand the needs of potential clients. In short, everybody wins.

The Low Down

At times it seems like every type of content can be spun into an interactive version. We’re still honestly waiting on an interactive quarterly earnings report (please no). Our friends at SnapApp have identified a staggering ten types, including interactive video, calculators and quizzes. Looking at the list can be a little dizzying but really, they break down into two categories, visual and personalized.

The visual category encompasses things like infographics and images galleries. The move towards illustrated assets is a no brainer when most people describe themselves as visual learners. Interactive infographics make information more compelling, but also allow you to see what the customer clicked on, how far he went into the story, and potentially where he dropped off. Great examples like this one include dynamic animations that keep you scrolling, you want to know what happens next, just like a movie. The whole logic is one step ahead of images, this isn’t just about being noticed, it’s about maintaining the attention of your reader.

The personalized category is where things get really interesting. These are designed to make customers truly live the benefits of a solution. It’s a huge challenge to all SaaS companies. Even if their products are truly revolutionary, they sound extremely abstract at first. Things like ROI calculators can clarify the value of a product, and makes things really personal since customers are using their numbers.

                              interactive content interactive content

This category is also great to stimulate engagement from your customers. Sending a video to a prospect is one step, and sending one where he is personally called out in the video might seem trivial, but it leads to 47% higher click-through rate.

Letting your content do your hard work.

The danger with interactive content is the same as with any new media: doing it just because it’s cool. Many marketers fall into this trap. You might make an interactive white paper, but then just use it the same way you did the old ones. However, this type of content has one big difference, it gives you a slew of new inputs from your clients that you previously didn’t have.

With a traditional piece of content, it’s for the client to consume, and hopefully he or she gives you a call or shoots you an email after careful consideration. Whether that prospect does or not, you’ll never know what part of your document made them reach for the phone, or what the drop-off point was.

The main draw to interactive content is not the novelty, it’s the information it gives you. Sure, the initial buzz was about the fact that it allowed you to make boring stuff somewhat fun. But the true lasting benefit will be the analytics to help you improve your content and the robust prospect profiles it helps you build so well.

If you notice that no one reads past page 10, or everyone stops watching your videos after a minute, it’s time to make things shorter. Or maybe it’s time to add a quiz at page 10 of your white paper to keep people engaged, and maybe you can keep your videos long, but you need to add calls to action after the first minute.  

Sure your content should be good, it should be interesting, it has to be useful to the reader. But your end goal is always that extra lead, and learning more about the leads you already have. The old way was very much about putting up a bunch of content up on your site and hoping for the best. This might be a little more involved, but the rewards are exponential.

Something old, something new.

Since the dust has sort of settled now, and we all have fancy clickable white papers and interactive videos, it might be time to look back. It’s easy to dismiss the content you made two or three years ago. You probably don’t realize it, but a lot of the things you write are fairly timeless. What often happens is that the wrapper ages badly.

So take that old white paper, and divide it into three pieces. Take the challenge now with your biggest and most successful piece of content. Chances are you can turn a section into a quiz, you can poll users on what they thought about it, and create a calculator about it to drive your point home.

Not only is that awesome because you now have refreshed content and fresh ways to learn about your database, but it’s also very little work. Let’s face it, the challenge to creating content really is about research and coming up with ideas. So why don’t we repurpose our old ideas when we had really good ones? You’ll most likely discover that you have a new outlook on the matter, and making things interactive will make the content feel fresh to your customers.

It’s time to look back.

So it looks like interactive content has only been around for a couple years, and we’ve already all gotten worked up over it. If anything, it’s time for all of us to pause and take a breather. It’s not too late to start getting into that game, if anything, now is the time. Just remember that making the content is just one step. Doing it just for the hell of it because it looks cool will achieve nothing.

If you’ve been doing interactive content for a while, look at ways to repurpose old content and make them fresh again. If you have a solid library in place, figure out new ways you can use interactivity to pull data and feed it to your marketing automation platform for more tailored nurture streams or even to your CRM platform to better arm your sales team. Maybe it’s time to try new mediums to make old content feel fresh.

Interactive content is in a great place right now. It’s past the state of a fad, and people can start really thinking about how it fits into their strategies. More than simply fitting in, it’s starting to make things markedly better. As DJ Quik once said, if it don’t make dollar, it don’t make sense. And interactive content certainly does: Marketers have found it 60% better than traditional methods at generating leads, and 40% better at nurturing existing leads. If this isn’t on your radar, it doesn’t mean you’re doing everything wrong, and it certainly isn’t too late to start. Think of this as an exciting new time, a time where your creativity has the power to influence people and their decisions.

interactive video

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Wednesday, March 16, 2016

How to Use Live Streaming Video to Build Your Brand

One of the concepts behind building a strong brand is that, when brands and consumers come together, something “cool” happens: they create a powerful experience where both of their needs are met. Strong brands give their customers what they need to feel special, to feel cool, better, smarter, faster, etc. And in return, customers develop love and loyalty (and advocacy!) for the brand, and share and spread that good feeling.


Source: 60 Minute Brand Strategist

So. You want your audience to think of you as “cool”. That means that you have to give them something in return that makes them feel “cool”. How do you do that?

Of course, a lot goes into creating a powerful brand. But one of the great ways to get there is to use video. It’s considered more engaging than any other content medium. It offers a much more “real” experience, which is great because your brand is essentially the experience of who you are as a company.

Can you up the “cool” factor even more, and intensify the experience of video to heighten the impact of your own brand? Yes. Live streaming is a perfect way to create a great experience, and pull your audience right into your story and your brand.

How do you do that, you ask? Here are just a few of the many ways that you can use live streaming to help your audience connect with your brand.

Company announcements and messages

This might be one of the first ways you would think to use video live streaming in your company. That may be because it’s an ultra effective way to use the technology. If you have an announcement that you want to share externally, like product launches or organization changes or acquisitions, or even charity work and donations (and so much more!), it doesn’t have to be shared solely through press releases or updates on your website or social media.

You can actually let your audience hear (and see!) the message for themselves, straight from the people it’s coming from. Live streaming this kind of content helps your audience feel like you care about them enough to speak to them directly, and pulls them into the excitement of the moment, so they’re living through this momentous occasion with you.

Real life culture videos

When you think of culture videos, you might think of your annual holiday video that you release to your customers and post on your blog (this is one of ours, from Halloween 2015). Those kinds of video definitely help create a sense of who you are as a company, and build that fun-loving and vibrant face (or brand) that people relate to. But culture videos don’t always have to be so one-sided, where you storyboard a concept, film it, edit it, release it and go about your daily work as your audience ingests your newest video from your website.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying to ditch these videos—they’re perfect brand-building fodder! But you can try bringing in some live streamed content into the mix. Like what, you ask? Well, like anything! (I know, so helpful, right?) Give your audience a taste of what life is like in your organization, and in your office.

At Vidyard, we run frequent foosball challenges. Imagine bringing our audience right into the action, like they’re watching from the sidelines. Wouldn’t that be a great way to build excitement? We will also be moving our office to a new space sometime in the next few months. Sharing a live walk-through of the space as it’s being built, or giving a live unveiling of the new, polished space, are also alternatives to creating some brand excitement—our customers can feel excited about what we’re accomplishing, and what’s in store in the future…after all, our future is a part of their own! So what’s life like at your organization? Share your story as it happens!

Event sessions and webinars

One of the most important things to understand about brand strategy and creation is that a brand is not just a ‘top-of-funnel’ technique. It isn’t just the warm fuzzy feeling you try to create temporarily in an advertisement or campaign. It is the expression of who and what you are. It is the lasting experience—at every single touchpoint between audience and organization—of what you stand for.

No brand is just warm fuzzies. Every company stands for more than that. In our case, we give our audiences the insights they need to be better, stronger marketers and salespeople.

One of the best ways to show your audience what you stand for? Running (or speaking at) events. Events are one of your opportunities to be a thought leader, and to give vital, valuable knowledge to your audience to help them reach their own goals. So why not share some sessions through live streaming? (No one said you couldn’t gate it, after all.) Your audience will feel included, and likely grateful to learn from you even if they couldn’t swing the cost of the ticket. They’ll get the warm fuzzies, and also see you as the thought leader that you are, only increasing the value of your brand and their desire to become an advocate.

Psst…this same idea works for webinars too. Gate them if you like so you can collect leads, and let your audience ask you questions that you can respond to in the moment, helping them feel even more connected with you.

Event parties

Why stop the fun when the event sessions stop? Live streamed video doesn’t have to be some big production, with cameras and tripods and lighting and fancy equipment. Take it mobile and have some fun that doesn’t feel overly curated by live streaming a party that your company is supporting at an event.

Parties and celebrations unite people, which is exactly what a brand does—it unites your company and your customers. So use parties to your advantage. Just think, there’s a reason we watch the ball drop in Times Square on New Year’s Eve. Your audience wants to be a part of the experience, so show them how awesome the experience is, and they’re likely to join you this time around or next time!  

Customer talk shows

Did you read that and think, “Huh?” Let me explain what I mean. Your company likely (I hope!) has a role or team dedicated to helping onboard new customers and keep current customers happy. So you have people in your organization who are solely dedicated to creating and maintaining a positive experience for your customers (you could even call them brand ambassadors!).

What if these team members offered live streamed video to share news and updates with your customer base? Wouldn’t that be exciting? While things like customer newsletters are a great snapshot of what’s happening with your product and company, a customer “talk show” could be a perfect way to strengthen that personal connection with your brand. One of our own Customer Success Managers at Vidyard did this with his own customer contacts, inviting them to a streamed video event where he brought on other Vidyardians to talk about products and strategies, answer questions, and more. Talk about creating a positive experience! And what does a positive experience lead to? Happy customers, more customers, and more and bigger sales. Sound awesome? That’s what I thought.

Training and How-To’s

If you want to figure out a problem with your device or learn how you should use a product or service, do you watch a how-to video? Maybe on YouTube or a company website? What if you could engage with the company in a real way? Feel like they’re listening to you, understand your problems or concerns? What if you could see a real face, hear a real voice, of someone in the company who really gets what you need and how you can get the most out of the product? That’s what live streamed training could offer.

Instead of solely offering your audience or customers knowledge base documentation or a YouTube page, why not offer them a personal experience, something they can connect to? You can share with your audience that you’re offering a live stream at a certain time, and even give them the chance to ask their own questions. You can check what your audience has the most questions about, and focus on that material.

You could even live stream someone learning your product. How cool would it be to watch someone in real time learn a new tool or software? A video like that might help your audience see how easily or quickly they can learn. In a real moment, you can express directly to your audience the benefit of your product while offering them a friendly and relatable face of your organization.

Live streamed video helps your brand come to life

Now that you have a few ideas to consider for your next live streaming video, what will you try? If you want to know even more about live streaming and Vidyard’s take on it, check out this blog post by our very own Director of Product Marketing.

Remember, through video (and live streaming), you have the power to show people more than just the final product of what your company does. You can show them who you are, inspire them, and relate to them. You can help them become better, and reach their own goals. How “cool” would that be?

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Tuesday, March 15, 2016

The Real Psychology Behind Hyper-Personalized Marketing

Promoting a product and getting people to buy things from you will always be an awkward situation. No one wants their potential customers to feel like a number. Possibly even worse, for them to feel like you don’t understand their specific problems. Uniformity is the plague of sameness, it’s an old adage that remains true year after year. It seems like businesses understand it for a few years, and then inexplicably forget about its importance.

The internet seemed like a promising venture for a while. You could target your ads to a geographical location, change the copy to appeal to a city, you could track their purchases or visits to a site and tailor search results. Some people thought it was creepy, but a lot of people saw it as useful. If we’re gonna see ads, at the end of the day, we’d prefer them to be relevant, right? So why is video any different? Why do we still create them like they will fit everyone and anyone?

It’s an awesome experience to receive a video with your name and title in it. It feels like the company went a extra step, an extra mile. It’s that “Awww, you shouldn’t have” feeling. When everyone is doing the same thing, when your email inbox is flooded with emails with catchy subject lines, it’s the small things that make a difference. It’s a very simple concept, but it works because it hits us at a subconscious level.

Not sure where to start with personalized video?

Get the Guide

We want to belong

Think of the Coca-Cola cans with first names on them. Didn’t we all stand in front of a corner store fridge and go “Hey, that’s my name!”, and didn’t we all buy it, for the hell of it? Of course we did. That’s how humans react, it’s what they’re looking for at their very core. To be understood, to be called, to feel like they belong. Whether or not they truly belong doesn’t ultimately matter. If you can trigger that feeling, you’ve caught people’s attention.


Making people feel part of something in B2B is always harder, we get that. There’s always a barrier to cross. Sure you can explain to potential clients how you’ll make their job easier, and ultimately their lives easier. But then they always have someone else to convince. Maybe even several someones. If you can make them sound passionate about it rather than simply excited, you’ve already won part of the battle.

Just another company

We hate to tell you this, but you work for just another company, selling just another product. People have seen so much, and have purchased so much, their minds are exhausted. There’s this law in economics called the law of diminishing returns. If you’re walking in a desert, thirsty as hell, you’re very likely to buy a bottle of water, and pay a really high price for it. If you’re really parched you might buy a second one, but with every bottle you buy, the odds of buying the next one go down.

Whether you realize it or not, you’re currently trying to sell your customers their 79th bottle of water. If you still manage to close that deal, like wow, kudos to you. Your customers feel all full and bloated at this point. They don’t want to drink more. However, if you personally call them out, and explain to them how your water is actually flavored and different, they might realize that they are still thirsty, they just wanted water with lemon in it all along. That’s what you’re really trying to do, because the world and their dog already knows you’re selling something. You need to sell it better, and to bring back individuality to the game.

Just wanna feel loved

We really don’t mean to beat a dead horse here, but your potential customers heard you already. They’ve been through the process. Getting marketed to is like ordering food at a restaurant at this point: a very casual and common thing. Well, did you know that you’re a lot more likely to tip a waitress if she makes physical contact? That you tip more if she writes “Thank You! : )” on your bill? Don’t believe it? Would you believe it more if it came from a professor of consumer behavior at Cornell?

The science is simple, and really it’s common sense once you delve into it. Once an experience is common to us, we stop caring. If we’ve dealt with thousands of waitresses and waiters, we’re only inclined to tip more than 15% if the service was really good. However, service is not rocket science, there is only so much that can be different about it. Most of what defines good service is about caring. You want to feel like you’re a valued customer.

Okay, soo… ?

You’re smart, you already kinda know where we’re going with all this. A personalized video is a Coke can with your name on it, it can make a 79th bottle of water appealing, it’s a way to doodle on a check to get a better tip (or just close a deal). Actually, you don’t even really need to agree with the psychology of it, the stats already prove that it works. This is just another tool in your arsenal to make your potential clients loyal to you right away. There really is no better way to say “I appreciate you” than through a personal video. And at the end of the day, we don’t want to be sold to, we just want to be loved.

personalized video pipeline

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Friday, March 11, 2016

No marketing tactic works well Forrester says, it’s all about strong content

Content marketing has cut itself a lion’s share in the marketing world. It’s pretty simple when you think about it, technically every part of your marketing mix should revolve around promoting content. It only makes sense then to see companies slowly ramping up their content spend. Forrester has been following marketers to ask them how those efforts were going, and the answer is… not so well.

“Only two of the 17 choices were rated as highly effective by even 47% of respondents. Most tactics received a thumbs up from 30% or fewer of those surveyed.”

In many ways, the job of a marketer these days is more about gathering a strong content library, and promoting it in an efficient way to build confidence in their product. This statistic seems to tell us that either something is very wrong in the world of marketing, or we’re still missing an essential distribution channel. Or maybe it’s something else:

“87% of B2B marketers say they struggle to develop compelling content, no amount of messing around with the mix will create a significant bump in results.”

A staggering majority of marketers seem to have figured out that strong content is important, but have no idea where to start to produce it. Don’t worry, it’s not all doom and gloom. This is just a normal signal when a trend gets out of infancy. When the bulk of marketers get into a new style, they are bound to struggle a little bit at first. Read on for solutions to the content funk such as:

– Putting content investment ahead of media and program choices.

– Adopting a centralized content asset and measurement system.

– Redefining your relationship with your agency to help out with content.

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Thursday, March 10, 2016

Paper Covers Rock? How to Choose Between Animated Video or Live Action Video for Your Next Campaign

So, you’re creating another campaign for another product or service or report or guide or…okay so the point is, if you’re like most marketers, you’re making a lot of campaigns to engage with your audience and get your content out there.

And you’re likely doing it all under tight timelines, right? Because you’ve got to get to creating the next asset and the next, so awesome campaigns have to be delivered fast. Oh and don’t forget the budget – you’ve probably dreamed that you would get to work with Hollywood proportions, but sadly, that isn’t the case for people whose last name isn’t Spielberg. And what about the resources you need to make a video? And what style should it be in?

So many things to consider! One of the first questions people might ask when tackling a video for a campaign is, what style of video do we want to do? The choice often comes down to an animated video, perhaps a motion graphic, or a live action video. There isn’t a one-video-fits-all scenario, so here are a few things you need to consider when trying to decide which video is right for your next campaign.


Does it feel like time plays one of the biggest factors in your creative campaign and video decisions? You may not be alone. You’re probably not working on just one campaign, so you need to get one out the door so you can start managing the next one, or you have to get a campaign launched in time for event season or before some nurtured leads go cold.

So someone on your team might say in a brainstorm meeting, “Hey, we don’t have time for a big fancy production, let’s just animate some of the most important text and content on screen.” Or, maybe you are thinking, “Is that really faster? Or could we just shoot something quickly?”

It turns out, typically motion graphic videos, even the simplest of ones, can take a fair fit of time. Remember when you were a kid and you’d draw a stick figure in a slightly different pose on each separate page of a book, and then flip through the pages really fast to see the animation? It probably felt like it took so much time and effort just to get that stick figure to wave her hand or take a few steps.

So, while live action videos take preparation, scripting, and storyboarding, in the end, you may get an end product that’s ready to launch sooner.


If you’re lucky enough to have a video team, you might think, “Perfect, let’s get this ball rolling” on whatever video you’ve chosen. Not so fast!

Doing a full motion graphic video means that you would likely have to rely on a graphic designer to create a lot, if not everything, that appears in the video. Then, a video editor would need to put the elements together into a video using Adobe After Effects or similar software. In contrast, live action may only require a few hours to shoot, and one person to edit the footage. But, live action requires actors, whether they are hired talent or coworkers. So keep in mind when you’re in the decision-making stage what resources you will be using, and what their availability is in your timeframe.


Guess what? Live action can be more expensive than motion graphic. And motion graphic can be more expensive than live action.

So helpful, right? Here’s what I mean. If you are thinking of using a video production agency to create your video, a motion graphic or animated video can cost more than a live action. Animation videos, as explained earlier, typically take more time to create, and can require fancy software and techniques to get the job done. Even if you only have text coming in and out of the screen and no animated characters waving at you and dancing across the screen, everything on the screen has to be created. Live action, on the other hand, though it requires prep and planning and script writing, can be a few-hour shoot, and overall, may cost you less.

Buuuut…if you’re creating videos in-house, the story might change. If you have a video team who can quickly create motion graphic videos, the cost boils down to your video team’s salary. But, if you want live-action, you may still need to pay actors, or buy or rent equipment, and even the cost of props can add up. So consider everything you may need on set of a live action, or how complicated you’d like your animated video to be before selecting the style you want to go with.


The content of a video itself can help you determine which style would best tell your story and communicate your message.

An animated or motion graphic video can be perfect for explaining abstract ideas that, while not impossible, may be harder to depict using live action. As Mat King, our Video Specialist, says, “Motion graphic video enables you to visualize and create the ‘impossible.’” They can also be a refreshing way to intake a lot of information quickly, instead of watching a talking head spew facts and figures at you. Want to see an example? Here’s a motion graphic we created as part of a campaign for a report launch.

More entertaining and interesting to watch than if you were just hearing it from a spokesperson, right?

Don’t think that means live action videos are dry, though. Live-action videos can be perfect for creating a human interaction and relationship with your brand and employees. You can also create a metaphorical story or creative concept to share your message, like we did when we launched the Video Strategy Workbook.

Audience preference

If you’re still unsure what style of video to use, keep in mind this advice: your audience can tell you! You can use video analytics to determine if you get better engagement with live action or animated videos. Every audience has their own needs and preferences, and your own data is the perfect window into what will work best for you.

Now, I don’t want to hold you up any longer from getting your video made and getting that campaign out the door. Let us know which style ended up working well for you for any of your campaigns!

The post Paper Covers Rock? How to Choose Between Animated Video or Live Action Video for Your Next Campaign appeared first on Vidyard.

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Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Video Marketing How-To: Filming Outside the Studio

Hello, and welcome to another episode of Video Marketing How-To! You may notice a bit of a change of scenery in today’s episode and that’s exactly what we want to talk to you about. When shooting video, especially interviews, you don’t always have the luxury of using a soundproof studio, so today we want to share 3 tips for filming outside of your studio.

Tip one is picking your filming location. Since most of our out-of-the-office content is conferences, we’ll use those as an example. Try to pick an area that doesn’t have too much back-lighting, but is a bit on the quieter side. Avoid filming directly in front of windows, or in the middle of the trade-show floor unless you have some good audio equipment.

Which brings us to tip number two – if you’re going to be doing a lot of filming outside of the office, it may be wise to invest in a good lapel microphone. Here’s what this video would sound like using our camera’s internal microphone. And here’s back to me having a lapel microphone. You can pick one up for a few hundred dollars, and we guarantee they will make a huge impact on your video.

Finally, when lining up your shot, try to minimize the background distractions on your video, so that your subject stays the focal point. At conferences or events you may not always be able to do this, but having too much going on in the background can distract viewers away from what you want them to see.

We hope you enjoyed today’s episode of Video Marketing How-To, and as always, stay tuned for another episode in another few weeks!

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Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Video Marketing: What the Savviest Marketers Can Expect this Year [Slideshare]

As we prepare for the third and final lap of Q1, many marketers are triple-checking that they’ve properly planned to stay on the cusp of marketing trends. Trends that are not fads, but game-changers. Trends like interactive content and hyper-personalized experiences.

… or using video for bottom-of-funnel content or to get up close and personal. So what’s really in store for savvy marketers using video in the next 75% of 2016? Let’s take a look at the top 5 trends and what marketers in the industry have to say about them:

Share the Future!

  1. Video will shift from top-of-funnel to bottom in 2016 with a focus on product demos and customer testimonials. (Click to tweet!)
  2. Video will transform from a passive to interactive medium with embedded forms and questionnaires. (Click to tweet!)
  3. Video will move from a generic, one-size-fits-all approach to personalized content synced with marketing automation. (Click to tweet!)
  4. Video will expand from a marketing-focused medium to a sales tool to personalize the sales process. (Click to tweet!)
  5. Video will switch from mainly outsourced to in-house and a more integrated part of 2016 content strategies. (Click to tweet!)

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Thursday, March 3, 2016

Music and Video: 7 Things You’re Forgetting in Your Creative Brief

If you’re working in a creative field, it’s very likely that you already know what a creative brief is. Maybe you’re reading them…or maybe you’re writing them! In any case, the importance of a well-written and inspiring brief is paramount to communicating yours or the client’s wishes, goals, and path for a project.

The art of writing an excellent creative brief is a skill that takes some time to learn. I highly recommend the documentary ‘Briefly’ as an intro to what makes a great creative brief.

As a music supplier, we see creative briefs nearly everyday. We’ve seen the gamut of them, some very specific and others quite vague. Some good, others, not so good.

I would like to share with you what we consider is a well-written creative brief as it relates to music for your video project, because the process for finding captivating music is changing!

Consider the following when writing a creative music brief:

1. Know the role of music

Be prepared to explain the role of the music as it pertains to your project. Foreground or background? For example, if your video is educational, subtle background music can help set the mood but also ensure the viewer’s utmost attention is towards the technical information being presented.

Describe the character and mood of the music you want to hear. Common terms used are:

  • Dark
  • Light
  • Fun
  • Upbeat
  • Happy
  • Positive
  • Badass
  • Gritty
  • Playful
  • Uplifting
  • Empowering

2. What is the project about?

This is hugely important! We would even say it’s the most important part. Give as much information as possible as to what the message of the video is conveying. What will the audience be taking away?

If possible, send a rough cut of your video. Nothing beats seeing and hearing music selections within the actual video. We understand that sometimes this isn’t possible, as the video is being cut during the music searching process. In this case, a detailed synopsis of the video will aid in kicking off the music search!

3. Details about the project

This is the easiest part of a brief, albeit not very creative. Include all the information the music supervisor will need to know to understand the scope of the project. This will include things like:

  • Client: Who is this for?
  • Media: What medium will this be seen on?
  • Term: How long will it be aired for?
  • Territory: Where in the world will the video be airing?
  • Airdate: When will it air?

4. Audience

Who is your target audience? It will be useful to the music supervisor to understand the demographic when doing their search. This can be a crucial turning point in a brief! The music selections for a youthful audience will most likely be alienating to a mature audience.

5. References

“Talking about music is like dancing about architecture”

—Steve Martin

Say what you mean with musical examples. This is an extremely useful practice! It’s important to describe what you’re looking for in words, but music is subjective. Text can be misconstrued. Adding 2-3 references will make sure we’re all on the same musical page. YouTube URLS, mp3s, etc. are all welcome.

6. Budget

How much do you have to spend on music? The price for library music varies widely depending on sections 1 and 3. For instance, foreground music and music with vocals/lyrics are sold at a premium.

Take a little bit of time to get familiar with different libraries and their rates for the type of music license you require. Base your budget around the average rate.

7. Schedule

Last but certainly not least: the all important deadline! How long will the music supervisor have to look for music for your video?

I hope you’ve found useful bits of advice to make your next creative brief an excellent one! With a well-written brief, everyone wins!

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Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Video is The New King of Influencer Marketing

Most of us now know that one of the most effective ways to build an audience and create credibility is to collaborate with relevant industry influencers. These influencers are considered thought leaders and experts in their fields that can drive engagement and results with credibility.

But how did they become digital influencers? And what are the ways that your brand could become an influencer too?

If you have a genuine following and a consistent stream of helpful content and insights, one of the key ways you can accelerate your influencer status is by investing in video. The rapid growth of YouTube, Facebook, and social video platforms (Meerkat, Periscope, Snapchat, Instagram and so on) has fueled the popularity of using video to market a brand or oneself as an expert in a specific industry. Video offers endless new ways to connect with audiences on social media and engage them in a quick, captivating way.

So what else draws audiences to an influencer? More often than not, it is also his or her ability to provide high­ quality, actionable content — and video can help your brand do just that. Video content not only gets others to pay attention but also results in action. Here are a few ways you can go from just another brand in the crowd to a leader and influential voice in your field all with the power of video.

1. Interview Other Influencers

In a recent article by Forbes, it was noted that influencer marketing can function exactly as word of mouth (WOM) marketing with adjoining social media amplification. In fact, WOM­-inspired marketing can produce 37% greater customer retention and twice the amount of sales when compared to paid advertising.

One way to grow your influence is by partnering with other influencers who already have an established audience in your industry, or an industry closely related to yours. Think about the type of information your audience could benefit from, then pinpoint other experts in your field who are excellent at relaying this information. Invite one to do a video interview with you; whether it’s a live­stream or a YouTube video, there are many channels to choose from to distribute your influencer interview. Not only will your interview be potentially more viral, but you can also transcribe your interview and create additional content, such as a blog post and social media quotes, to spread the word.

If you can land an interview with an established leader in your industry, you will automatically gain WOM interest from his or her audience who faithfully follow and listen to what he or she has to say about topics closely related to your brand.

2. Focus on Your Niche

Being an influencer doesn’t have to mean being an expert in everything related to your industry — this would be incredibly time­-consuming and require an extraordinary amount of knowledge. Instead, decide on one topic in which you have the most experience and can offer the most expertise, and focus on building your influencer status in that niche. Not only will it help your brand stand out in the noise, but it will also help you increase genuine engagement with your content and build valuable connections.

Schlesinger Associates conducted marketing research in May 2015 that discovered a whopping 84% of marketing and communications professionals had plans to launch at least one influencer marketing campaign in the next twelve months. Furthermore, 81% of marketers who had previously executed an influencer marketing campaign agreed that engaging with influencers is effective. If you can produce highly-­targeted video content on an ongoing basis, there’s a good chance other brands in your niche will notice and will want to work with you.

3. Stay On Top of Hot Topics

To be an influential voice, you need to lead the conversation. Whenever there is viral or breaking news in your industry, you can use these moments to strike up a conversation with your audience and offer your unique voice and commentary on the topic.

Influencer Marketing

Use Google Trends, sign up for Google alerts, or try other tools that will help you stay on top of industry trends, and create branded video content related to trending topics as they happen. Social networks have become a leading source for discovering breaking news, and when you consider how much time we spend engaging with social media, it should be easy to see the importance of staying on top of hot topics. Each day, the average American spends the following amount of time on each social media platform:

  • Facebook: 40 minutes
  • Tumblr: 34 minutes
  • Instagram: 21 minutes
  • Pinterest: 20.8 minutes
  • Twitter: 17 minutes
  • Snapchat: 17 minutes

Despite the numerous other social networks that have emerged, we still spend an incredible amount of time on Facebook. The social network is rivaling YouTube for video views, so make sure your brand is up­-to-­date on what’s trending and appealing to your Facebook audience.

4. Upload Frequently

When you know which video channels resonate most with your audience, you’ll need to upload fresh content frequently. The average American now spends 5.6 hours each day on the Internet, so the more time you can dedicate to frequent video content, the more likely they are to gain substantial levels of engagement.

A recent white paper from Grapevine, a YouTube influencer marketing marketplace, explored how much work it takes to reach influencer status on YouTube. The results showed that if one produces consistent content, after five years the creator has a one-­in-­five chance of becoming a trendsetter or celebrity. So maybe you have no interest in reaching celebrity status, but this statistic shows us just how important consistency is when trying to become an influencer.

While there are many actionable steps your brand can take to become an industry influencer, it’s not easy and will require you to put in the hours. Thankfully, video can give you a competitive edge and make your rise to influencer fame a much faster process.

The post Video is The New King of Influencer Marketing appeared first on Vidyard.

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