Maybe you know someone who has lost whole afternoons to YouTube. What is it about those videos that’s so hard to resist?
Matthew Pierce has some ideas. He’s a learning and video ambassador for TechSmith Corp., a company that makes visual-communication software. In his Content Marketing World talk, How to Make Your Videos as Engaging as Possible, Matthew covers ways to make irresistible videos. I touch on 10 of them here.
1. Tell a story (including conflict)
Give your videos a story structure. Matthew identifies story elements as setup, confrontation, and resolution. You may think of them as setting, conflict, and denouement. Rising action, climax, and falling action. Beginning, middle, and end.
However you think of your story structure, include conflict: tension, something at stake, something to overcome. Here’s an example Matthew gives.
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2. Evoke emotion (appropriately)
While tugging at heartstrings can backfire, many of the most effective videos from brands include an emotional appeal. Think of the Super Bowl ads, Matthew reminded us. Are you picturing horses? Puppies? Babies?
This Budweiser commercial goes straight for the heart. The company clearly expected the audience to relate to the main character, a stranger in a sometimes unfriendly land, someone passionate about his vision for the future. Oh, and he loves beer. Meet Adolphus Busch.
Matthew offers a similar point made by Jodi Harris in this CMI article: “Video can convey an appropriate emotional tone in a way that text alone can’t manage.”
Matthew’s advice: Figure out which emotions make sense for your brand and for the purpose of your video, and plan accordingly. He mentioned his company, TechSmith, as an example: