What would be the value to your business of having viewers come to your website, Facebook, Twitter every week? Can story videos be used to build a relationship with customers and turn them into fans? It sounds improbable or even impossible but large companies do it. So why can’t small and medium size companies? We’ve all seen TV advertising campaigns that have stories or characters that recur across several adverts. If you’re as old as I am you will remember the Gold Blend adverts that ran for several years during the 1980’s that turned a new brand from an unknown prospect into a household name.
The first Gold Blend advert seemed innocuous enough but the second kept the story going. The characters were given lives, pasts and relationships as the series went on. As with all good stories things did not go smoothly. There were ups and downs and they adverts became a topic of conversation. Viewers became invested and when eventually love did conquer all Gold Blend was left imprinted on the memories of everyone who saw the ads. I can’t remember the last Gold Blend Advert I saw but I remember this series from thirty years ago. I still know the product and that it’s made by Nescafe. That’s how powerful this series of adverts was.
Then there were the classic “Papa & Nicole” adverts for the Renault Clio that started as cute little story ads and then changed when the producers brought in some comedy by adding Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer.
Again we saw a story where character grew and changed over the years. New characters were introduced to keep viewers entertained and interested. The addition of Vic & Bob revitilised the series and made the adverts a real talking point again.the prospect of dedicated returning regular viewers just may make it worth your while Click To Tweet
You may think that sort of thing is not possible or necessary in online video marketing but what if we could harness the same power of ongoing stories and characters in your marketing videos? What if you build a brand identity and lodge yourself in the minds of your viewers?
I won’t be easy. This is the kind of project that requires a lot of thought but perhaps it doesn’t require a lot of money. That’s because the vital element that will make this work or not work is the story. That means that the style of the video could be simply shot on smart phones and made to look like real life events. Alternatively you could hire a production company and set them to work. You will need to be ambitious and determined to make to make an series of story videos but the prospect of dedicated returning regular viewers just may make it worth your while.
You get a regular returning audience who get to know your product and your ethos and will always think of your business as the first example when they need your service or product. The second benefit comes when you have viewers who want to share your videos with their friends. If customers feel they have discovered some little gem that no one else knows about they will want to show off what they have found. They will want friends to join them in the excitement of waiting for the next episode.
If you are going to try this you will need to think of your adverts in terms of episodes. You will need stories with cliffhangers. You will need characters that matter. You will need a sense of humour and drama. But for that investment you will also gain prestige for your business as almost none of your competitors will be producing this kind of video marketing.
What Story Can I Tell?
The story doesn’t have to be a complicate soap opera style or an ongoing comedy but the basic rules of people who interest the viewer and cliffhanger endings do apply. as something a bit different I want to leave you with a series I recently made on a tiny budget for an American style diner in North Yorkshire. The nature of the business lent itself to having adverts made in the style of a famous food programme where a man traveled America taking on various food eating challenges. The concept was to create four episode of a fake television show where a team took on an enormous eating challenge with the final episode revealing if they had succeeded. To maintain entertainment levels and interest the episodes were kept short and each episode contained an ad break or a newsflash where we made fun of the styles of famous adverts.
I hope you enjoy the video s below and I hope this has given you some ideas about being ambitious and standing out from the clutter of promotional videos.