Should your brand be creating short-form video content?

2022-06-30T13:19:37-05:00December 20, 2020|Opinion|

A couple of years ago, it seemed every news outlet was “pivoting to video.” Recently, the meteoric rise of TikTok and other social platforms has underscored the popularity, prominence and potential of short-form videos online.

These days, video content is everywhere, and almost every brand appears to be producing it. Are you? Or, rather, should you be?

Video content has the power to be highly effective, persuasive and engaging, but only if it’s done right. If it’s not, it can be a significant waste of time and money, as well as opportunity, as you’re missing out on the value of viewers’ attention. Like all content, there needs to be strategy, dedication and a commitment to quality for videos to work – whether your brand is trying to create awareness, build affinity, generate leads and make sales, or just to educate and entertain an audience, which is the essence of content marketing.

Not everyone needs to produce short-form videos, but they can be extremely successful if you do compelling work cost-effectively. So, how do you that?

The video content landscape

Video content is experiencing a surge in popularity and creation has been on the rise for the past several years. In fact, according to Cisco, by 2021, video will account for 80% of all internet traffic. 

Today, short-form videos are what audiences are tuning into and engaging with. We live in a fast-paced world, and hundreds of things distract us when we browse online. Nobody has the time or patience to sit through long videos anymore – as Zoomers and other young people are increasingly consuming their content on TikTok and similar platforms where there is a time limit on videos. When publishing video content, less is clearly more.

Eighty-six percent of marketers say they plan to incorporate more videos into their content strategy in the near future. So if you aren’t already preparing to add video to your marketing content, you are falling behind the curve.

From Facebook and Instagram to TikTok and Snapchat, from YouTube to whatever’s next and everything in between, there is no shortage of places for your business to post captivating short-form videos and find a captive audience.

What is short-form video content?

Here are a couple of – briefly – attention-grabbing stats: Millennials reportedly have an attention span of roughly 12 seconds, while Gen Z consumers have an attention span of just eight seconds. So, brands have little time to keep their focus. The answer? Short, snackable content.

Short-form video is quick, impactful content that helps your audience notice your brand or service and connect with them without taking up too much of their time. Many consumers now say that 30-second ads are too long and see short-form videos as a breath of fresh air.

Short-form videos as a tool for lead generation

Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook and YouTube all embrace six- and 10-second ads. According to Adweek Snapchat advertising campaigns lead to a 10% lift in conversion rate and a 15% lift in ROI.

Brands that utilize this advertising method are seeing significant growth. For example, Ben & Jerry’s used short-form video ads to create awareness about a new product; the content increased ad recall by 14 points and brand awareness by six points, creating a two-point spike in purchase intent for the new product.

Even traditional journalism outlets are adapting to the times, providing more video coverage and news stories that are broken down into quick 10-15 second clips.

Benefits of a short-form video content strategy 

There are many advantages to brands creating short-form video content, including:

Better SEO: 72% of marketers say that videos have helped them improve their SERP and Google ranking.

Increased reach: Popular short-form video apps like TikTok give marketers the chance to engage with audiences that they can’t reach via traditional media outlets and social networks, especially younger consumers. 

Higher engagement: People have proven to be much more likely to engage with short-form video, so your messages can reach and resonate with larger segments of your target audience.

Attention: With audience attention spans getting shorter, short-form videos allow you to capture their attention quickly and to effectively show off your product, brand or service.

More shareable: Because it’s brief and easy to digest, short-form content is more able to be shared, which gives your brand exposure to a much larger audience.

Challenges of short-form video content strategy

If video content is so great, why isn’t everyone doing it? Well, seemingly everyone is, but it can be difficult for busy, budget-conscious brands. Some of the challenges in creating short-form videos are:

Time constraints: Perhaps the biggest obstacle to publishing short-form video content is the time constraint – whether an actual limit on the platform or the sense that videos need to be snappy. It’s easy to want to be short, sweet and succinct, but harder to actually do. This gives you less time to get your message across clearly. In addition, good videos take time and effort to produce, and internal pressure and deadlines may make them difficult.

Lack of expertise: Creating eye-catching, well-edited video content requires not only time and effort, but also a significant amount of skill. If you don’t have the talent on staff to produce great videos, you’ll need to look outside your organization to find and select the right videographers. However, some brands altogether avoid video content because they assume they don’t have the ability to do it.

Not always successful: This type of content may not work with every marketing campaign. Just like some people will always be put off by television commercials, some are not going to respond to short-form videos. Additionally, some target demographics – like older people with more money or potential business clients that don’t frequent social media – may not be reached this way.

Cost: Even though the videos are short, the audience still expects perfection. This means you will probably have to invest in high-end cameras, editing software, lighting and sound equipment, as well as specialized personnel – whether in-house or outsourced – to oversee the production process and execute content deliverables. For some brands, all of that can feel cost-prohibitive or not worth the expense.

Creating short-form video content

Excellent content is the goal and essence of any successful digital marketing and brand publishing strategy. The quality of a brand’s content is directly linked to its SEO ranking, and publishing informative, useful and entertaining content helps a brand boost creditability, earn a loyal following and win the trust of audiences.

However, producing short-form videos can be complicated and challenging, not just due to all the above, but because it requires a thorough understanding of the target audience. You need to consider how best to reach your audience, what value this type of content will bring them and what you are trying to accomplish with it.

Can you increase brand awareness? Promote thought leadership? Generate leads or make sales? Ideally, yes. Videos can convey a powerful and evocative emotional tone in a way that traditional marketing and text alone cannot. This makes video an exceptional tool to show an audience your brand activism and stance on important social issues, as well as to position you as a trustworthy source of vital information.

If short-form videos are out of your brand’s comfort zone, it’s best to reach out to the professionals to outsource the attention-grabbing and audience-galvanizing content you want and need.

PowerPublish is revolutionizing the way brands produce and publish premium content. We create the content for you, whether it’s articles and blogs, infographics and graphic design, social media posts, white papers, email copy, landing pages, short-form videos or something else. We are brand publishing experts and can amp up your content strategy with beautiful, influential videos that deliver results and drive revenue. Contact us today to find out how to do more than just marketing. Be a PowerPublisher.

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