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5 Steps to Corporate Video Greatness

5 Steps to Creating Corporate Videos That Employees Will Actually Watch

One of the things that we pay close attention to in our own corporate videos infrastructure, is the video view statistics. Why do we do that? It’s important for us to know who is watching certain videos, and how the videos are performing.

We want to know if people are tuning out earlier than they should be, and from there, we need to know what we can do to ensure that our messages are getting to the right places in the right way.

I’ve assembled some tips that I’ve learned from a few different sources to help you make your corporate videos engaging enough for you to be able to get your message across. Take a look at these five tips from some people who know how to make videos more interesting and engaging.

1. Make your video move

Adam Westbrook writes about digital storytelling and publishing on his blog, and has a great tip  for all video creators: Keep your video visual!

Okay, it sounds obvious, but let’s get dive a little deeper.

So many of the corporate videos that we see feature a person sitting in front of a camera talking. That’s it. Here’s what Adam has to say about that:

“At its most simple: if you’re filming an interview with an IT specialist for your website, don’t just film a straight interview. Make it visual: film them at work, going for a walk, cycling to work, eating lunch, playing squash whatever – it’s the eye-candy video is made for. Done well, visually led films can turn an interview with a blogger (snore…) into something quite wonderful.”

It’s a little more work, but at the end of the day, you’re giving employees something that engages them at a much higher level.

2. A little less conversation, a little more scripting

Scripts can be life savers. They can also make for devastatingly boring videos if read poorly.

Jourdan Aldrege recommends a more conversational tone for certain videos. Here’s what he has to say:

One of the best ways to entice the best out of your subjects is to get them talking to you in a conversational way, straying away from rigid, scripted reciting of information. Get them comfortable in a spot in the room and focused away from the camera. If they’re any good at their jobs, they’ll usually be excited to talk about it — just, you know, to another person, not a camera lens.

Watching someone talk at a camera who has not been trained to do that is a great way to fall asleep. However, take that person and get them talking about something they love doing (and hopefully they love their job), and they’ll be animated and thoughtful. Another great corporate video storytelling tool to keep people interested.

3. Use a clever device to get attention immediately

Let’s grab a suggestion from tactics that video marketers use to hold people’s attention: The Profile.

What does this mean? You can get your audience’s attention right away by asking the right question. Of course, you’ll have to know your audience to know what that question is, but if you do, you can set them up to get interested, and stay interested.

Check out this tip from Tim Danyo:

Studies show that the longer the video the more likely the viewer will click away. That’s seems pretty obvious, but a good attention grabbing question feeds into our human desire to find out. We are curious beings. The more power you put into that opening question will influence how long they’ll stick around.

That said, now it’s up to you to make sure that you deliver what you promise. And make sure to not leave your audience hanging for too long before answering the question!

4. Make your cuts count

This one is subtle, and requires your video editor to really be paying attention. It comes courtesy of the Ted blog, and is quite interesting. It’s really for those of you who are cutting video that has been shot with multiple camera angles: generally a live event of some kind — maybe a CEO all hands address.

When we’re engaged with video, we are not noticing why that is; we’re just watching the video! There are many clever devices that subtly keep us engaged, and one of those things is how you cut from scene to scene.

There are actually two parts to this one from the Ted blog:

“Cut on action. One way to make the edit between two shots seem invisible is by cutting on a gesture. The viewer watches the beginning of a motion that begins in one shot and follows it as it crosses the edit and finishes in the next shot. The completion of the gesture masks the edit. Here is an example of a cut made on the subtle gesture made as the speaker completes his thought and begins a new one.

Cut on words. The sound of a word, especially if it contains a hard consonant, can make an edit feel less obvious. When the word is one that is relevant to the main point of the speaker’s talk, the edit can also highlight that word and make it more memorable. Let’s listen to an example of an edit cut on a word.”

As subtle as these tips are, they really will help your video seem more interesting. Try it out.

5. Use captions in your video

Because I’m such a big fan of this tip, I’m going to reference myself. I wrote this post last year, and it’s been really helpful in keeping audiences engaged.

Captions are a huge way of keeping your audience focused, and they help hook your viewers in immediately. And if you’re thinking of using the tip I shared above, then combining a question with captions will get and keep attention right away.

The thing you’ll be most interested in is how captions hold the attention of viewers by reinforcing the message. Here’s a quote from a research paper that explores the use of captions in video:

MORE THAN 100 EMPIRICAL STUDIES DOCUMENT THAT CAPTIONING A VIDEO IMPROVES COMPREHENSION OF, ATTENTION TO, AND MEMORY FOR THE VIDEO.

We find out, as well, that people who watched video with captions are more likely to remember facts about the video. In addition, they were more adept at drawing inferences, giving them a much greater understanding of the message presented.

Try adding captions to your videos and watch your view times increase.

Stop worrying about attention spans and just be interesting

I see a lot of information out there about attention spans. The one stat we should all really be watching is the one that tells us how long we have to get people’s attention (usually about 20 seconds). After that, it’s up to us to have content that is engaging enough to hold people’s attention.

If your stats say that you’re losing your audience, just try some of the above tactics to see if you can’t get those corporate video views longer. The more you put into video, the more your audience will get out of it!

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