Video Marketing 101: Choosing A Storytelling Strategy

 

Video content has been a key and defining element in today’s highly digital world. With the growing popularity of social media platforms and the proliferation of video content on all these channels, online users are easily exposed to a variety of videos whenever they browse the internet.

But despite the popularity of video content, not every video receives the same level of interest and attention from web users. Some go viral with millions of views, while others barely get any engagement despite following and using the same trends. 

Under this circumstance, one contributing factor typically revolves around video storytelling style and delivery. A number of content creators have mastered the art of storytelling, while most are struggling to find their voice. 

Considering this, it is safe to say that storytelling plays a critical role in the success of video marketing campaigns. With that in mind, let’s dive deeper into the video content creation process and explore the complex art of video storytelling. 

 

The Role of Storytelling in Video Marketing

Video marketing has long been a staple in the digital marketing industry. But with 86% of brands utilizing video content in their marketing campaigns, the battle for people’s attention continues to become tighter and tighter.

Because of this, digital marketers and content creators need to be more creative. They need to find ways to grab people’s attention and pull them away from competing brands. This is where the concept of storytelling comes into play.

Storytelling is a marketing tactic that involves creating highly engaging content that can push viewers to feel emotionally invested and connected. It is a powerful strategy that can influence consumer behavior, which is critical in the ecommerce and digital industries. 

Video storytelling leverages narratives to elicit strong emotions that can drive a target audience toward a preferred action or behavior, whether it is to follow a brand, purchase a product, or even share the content to increase exposure and boost awareness. 

Thus, video storytelling, in the context of ecommerce and marketing, is more than just delivering a message. Aside from engaging viewers, it is also designed to act like a sales pitch, promoting a particular product, brand, or service to a targeted audience.  A well-written and well-produced video should be able to do exactly this.

 

Key Elements Of Effective Storytelling

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Now that you have a better understanding of what storytelling is and its role in video marketing, let’s look at the key elements that make a video story particularly good and effective. 

 

Actors and Characters

When you’re creating a story, it is essential to have something or someone who will serve as the main subject of the show. It is not necessary for the main start to be a person. In the context of video marketing, the subject could be a product or service that you simply want to be the focus of the narrative.

The purpose of this is to have something or someone that viewers can focus their attention on and connect with. Doing this helps ensure that whatever strategies you use to elicit an emotional reaction from your audience will have a subject to be associated with.

 

Plotline and Pacing

Speaking of strategies to draw out an emotional reaction, another key component of good storytelling revolves around the narrative’s plotline and pacing. 

Video content creators nowadays have established a number of foolproof techniques to help ensure a quality story. These are the same strategies used in writing stories that will effectively engage audiences.

One of the most popular storytelling techniques used in content creation is known as the “Hero” framework. In this format, the main character of the story is placed in the light as a hero who can provide wondrous solutions to, ultimately, save the day. In online marketing, this can be a product or service acting as a hero to solve customer pain points.

Another popular and highly effective storytelling format is presenting your viewers with a conflict and, in the end, the resolution. The narrative starts with a type of conflict that the subject of the story tries to resolve. This format follows the main character’s journey to resolution, making viewers heavily invested in seeing the result.

In the end, content creators have the creative liberty to choose the resolution they see fit. Whether it is a hard-earned victory, a gut-wrenching loss, or even an open ending where viewers can conclude the narrative as they understand it. 

The storytelling style following the same format as David and Goliath is another technique to get viewers engaged and invested in the narrative. This technique is fairly simple. It features a perceived underdog as the main start and dwells on the challenge of achieving a seemingly impossible goal. 

This storytelling strategy is great for engaging audiences as people generally love supporting underdogs and want to see them succeed. A key element of this tactic is that it humanizes the main character as someone with flaws and imperfections, which is in direct contrast to the earlier mentioned “Hero” narrative.

But aside from the plotline, it is also important for digital marketers and video content creators to learn how to effectively pace their stories. Considering that short-form and long-form videos are both popular online, it is critical to understand what type of pacing to use depending on the video’s length and the flow of the story.

One thing to remember is that rushing your story for the sake of keeping your video length short can affect how viewers understand, relate, and connect with your story. It is ideal to give your audience enough time to develop a connection with your main character. However, it is also important to avoid dragging the story for so long because viewers can also lose interest if there isn’t enough progression and development in your content. 

 

Cinematography and Sound Design 

The visual element of videos is one of the factors that makes them particularly engaging. Compared to other forms of media online, videos, with their eye-catching composition, movement, and animation, draw people’s attention quickly and effectively.

Considering this, a key element of good storytelling revolves around the manner in which visual elements are captured and utilized. In this case, cinematography techniques can play a vital role in how a story is delivered. 

But aside from that, it can also be used to tell a story without having to say anything. Even something as simple as highlighting a specific element above others, giving it more screen space, can direct and draw people’s attention without having to point it out literally. With this in mind, understanding the concept of visual hierarchy can be key to capturing more engaging and interesting videos. 

However, videos are not just visual. Another key element of online videos involves auditory elements, such as background music, sound effects, and other musical features. Thus, the sound design provides an additional layer and opportunity to create a more interesting, engaging, and immersive viewing experience. 

 

Creative and Engaging Editing

Video content creation does not end the moment you stop filming. In fact, the post-production phase of the content creation process is equally important to creating high-quality videos. Considering this, another key element of good video content and storytelling revolves around the manner in which your video is edited.

Video editing can influence how a story is delivered. Factors such as the timing, sequencing, transitions, and even the color grading can affect how viewers perceive and receive the message of the video. 

Therefore, it is critical to pay attention to the way your content is edited, from the way a particular shot is presented to the manner in which scenes transition to the next. The primary goal of video editing is to keep the audience visually engaged and invested. These all together can enhance the viewing experience and even contribute to creating tension, suspense, excitement, and the like. 

 

Tips To Achieve Powerful Video Storytelling

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It is essential for digital marketers and video content creators alike to learn about the most important elements of a good video narrative. However, this is often not enough to successfully create video content that will immediately grab people’s attention.

Considering the growing competition in the video marketing industry, here are some helpful tips that can elevate your video storytelling game and take it to the next level.

 

Present a hook at the beginning

The attention economy online is a very scarce yet in-demand commodity. Viewer’s attention span is dwindling, but numerous video content creators are vying for people to choose them over others.

To help deal with this, it is critical to hook audiences to your content as soon as possible. Hooks in video marketing can take a variety of forms. It can start with a thought-inducing or intriguing title or description, an eye-catching thumbnail, or a suspenseful introduction music. It can also be a short teaser of the plot of the story in the first few seconds of the video. 

Regardless, the purpose of a hook is not only to grab people’s attention but also to spark their interest enough for them to finish the whole content. 

 

Create relatable and likable characters

Character development is a key component of effective storytelling. But to further engage your viewers, it is important to pay attention to how you build a character. For your character to be a star, it is necessary to give them some depth, personality, and character traits that people can relate to.

But aside from that, consider introducing characters that people will simply like. You can add supporting actors who are there for comic relief or act as a moral compass to your main star. These characters give your story dynamics that can make it more engaging and entertaining. 

 

Hire a writer

Storytelling is a complex process. It requires not just creativity but also a deeper understanding of how people understand contexts, dialogues, and the like. So, while you may have the creative eye to create visually appealing and engaging videos, it is possible that you don’t have the same eye when it comes to creating and building interesting stories.

Consideirng this, a more practical approach is to hire someone that will do the writing process for you. There is a vast number of freelance writers and other virtual assistants that offer writing services online. Take advantage of the digital workforce and hire a team of writers and creatives that can help you in creating the highest-quality video content possible. 

 

Bottomline

In today’s digital landscape, video content continues to be one of the most engaging forms of media online. However, its rising popularity has led to an even tighter competition between brands and other content creators.

Storytelling is a powerful marketing technique used to grab people’s attention by utilizing emotions to build human connections. More than that, video storytelling is also designed to influence perception and behavior, encouraging viewers to commit a desired action. 

However, creating an effective and compelling story for videos is not an easy task. It requires a creative mind to come up with a plotline and delivery that will successfully pique the interest of people. Aside from that, compelling video storytelling should also be able to put a prime on what they want to achieve – whether it’s to promote a product, increase exposure, engage a target audience, and the like. 

 

Want to know more about the different elements of effective video content? Sidekicks is an on-demand virtual company, and we’re eager to help visionaries and entrepreneurs like you. Get a free ebook and learn more about how we can help you by signing up for our newsletter. We also offer a free 30-minute consultation if you prefer something more personal.