In today’s digital world, video is by far one of the most important social media trends.

Consumers have the world at their fingertips and expect answers to their burning questions in seconds, and visual storytelling is an effective way to fulfill this need.

Brands know that this medium is easy to digest, entertaining and engaging, and they are using it to get noticed.

 

Video is King

Visual storytelling is extremely versatile. It can be used to demonstrate a new product, educate, interview an expert, feature a customer review, highlight your brand’s personality and connect with your audience.

The possibilities are endless, and when properly optimized for different channels, social media videos can deliver substantial engagement and ROI.

 

A few considerations

Are you ready to create winning visual stories for your social media strategy? Here are a few things that you should take into consideration before getting started:

  1. Purpose: What’s the purpose of the video: entertain, educate, motivate?
  2. Social media channels: Where does your audience hang out? Which social media channels will it be posted on? This will help you define the format, as many social media platforms have specific requirements.
  3. Polished vs unpolished: The beauty of social media is that there is a time and a place for both types of visual stories: the polished, carefully planned video and the spontaneous, candid video.

 

Ready…

“Where do I start? What are the videos going to be about?” you may be asking yourself. Do not panic! Chances are you already have the content. Now you just need to transform it into visual stories. Here are some ideas:

  1. Blog posts: Take a look at your blog analytics and repurpose the most successful posts.
  2. Most shared content: You can also consider your most shared blog and social media posts.
  3. Check your FAQs page: Recurring customer questions can be a great starting point.
  4. Behind the scenes: BTS is a great way to show your company culture, and to build trust and connection with your community by showing them what goes on behind closed doors.
  5. Explore and discover: Take a look at what similar brands are doing and get inspired by them.

 

Set…

Once you have selected your content, you can start planning. There are two ways to go about it:

1. Script and storyboard: You can write a script or create a storyboard. This will help you to think through the flow and important aspects of the video and visualize how a shot would look. These two pieces will be your roadmap.

2. Bullet points: Scripted video takes a lot of practice. If this is not your forte, you can prepare an outline with bullet points that cover the purpose and topics of the video. The end result should be a more casual and relaxed piece.

Regardless of your choice, keep in mind these pro tips to create a winning social media video:

  1. Use your time wisely: Grab attention in the first 8 seconds, or your audience may choose to go somewhere else. Research shows that we have shorter attention spans than goldfish, who are able to focus on a task or object for only 9 seconds. That means – as marketers – we’re all trying to sell to goldfish.
  2. Keep it simple: Your videos should be the bait to capture attention, share a message, and get your viewers to follow-up on it. Do this by asking yourself, “What is the most important message I need to deliver in this video?”
  3. Sound: Video should work well without sound (most videos on social media are muted until the user chooses to turn on sound).
  4. Add captions: Offer an accessible experience for people with disabilities, those who do not speak English as a first language, or people who are watching silently.
  5. Make it shareable: Encourage people to share your video by including social share buttons.
  6. Include a call to action: Tell your audience what you want from them: to go to your website, share your video, sign up for your email list, etc.

 

Go!

Off to the recording studio now. Well, not really. Thanks to smartphones, you can create engaging, high-quality videos with just a few simple tools and tricks.

  1. Good lighting is key.
  2. Use a tripod or other mounts to stabilize your phone.
  3. Use an external microphone.
  4. Keep in mind the ‘rule of thirds’ for composition.
  5. Find or create your video background.

 

Wrapping it all

Once you are done recording, it’s time to edit. There are multiple apps and tools that can help you edit videos. See our favorite here.

 

Still hesitant about social media video?

There is no doubt that video is one of the most powerful marketing tools. It allows the consumer to feel connected to and confident in your brand.

At McLernon & Co. we continue to expand our visual storytelling capabilities because we know that video increases awareness, builds thought leadership, creates new customers and produces revenue.

We have created visual stories that provide ROI to our clients as they use them for paid ads, social media content or on their website.

Have questions on how to move forward with visual storytelling, social media or the strategy behind your marketing? Schedule time with us. We are based in Denver and would love to grab a coffee and get to know you.

 

Adriana Anderson
Strategic Communications professional specializing in social media | Passionate about helping businesses increase their online presence and proud to be guest blogging with McLernon & Co.