In a popular episode of “Seinfeld”, Jerry once told a rental car agent: “You know how to take the reservation, you just don’t know how to hold the reservation, and that’s really the most important part of the reservation, the holding.”
As marketers, we can relate to Jerry. We know how to make the two-minute video, but we don’t always know how to get people to watch the video…and that’s really the most important part.
We’ve been using a solution called the social teaser. This is a 15 – 30 second “trailer” of sorts, targeted to your audience on social media, that piques their interest to click and watch your full video.
We often make these social teasers in a series of three by re-purposing the best sections of the longer video. And it’s not that hard to justify reserving some budget dollars for these cut-downs, particularly if you plan for them in advance. And having three additional short videos can mean more engagement and better SEO. Here’s an example of a recent social teaser, and the full video that we teased.
The Seinfeld in you might be thinking, “That all sounds great, but does it work?” One of our healthcare clients told us that promoting teasers for a recent social media campaign greatly increased the click rate and engagement of their longer video. They also tested each teaser to determine which one drove the most clicks and engagement. Social teasers have become a standard part of video strategy on social for many of our clients.
Tips to consider: Keep it visual, because much of your social audience will be viewing with the sound off. Large animated text headlines and provocative subtitled soundbites are particularly engaging. Have your editor or animator occasionally reduce their workspace to the size of a phone, so you can visualize what your audience will most likely see as you create the teasers.
So don’t just target your audience with video – capture and hold your audience, with a social teaser mini-campaign. Because Jerry’s right…the holding is the most important part.
Companies today, large and small, face a daunting communication challenge. First, you’re looking to establish a clear identity in a very crowded and noisy marketplace. Second, you’re looking to attract relevant prospects, convert them to buyers, and encourage their loyalty and advocacy. Third, you’re looking to attract and motivate the talent you need to grow. And to complicate matters, the old channels of communication have been supplanted by a plethora of new media that seem to multiply every day. What’s an organization to do?
There’s no silver bullet, no one answer. But one new medium has clearly emerged as dominant in this new world, and smart use of it is key to success in any and all of these business goals: video. We’ll spare you the endless stats showing the explosive growth of video consumption (cf. Youtube, Brightcove, Hubspot, etc., etc.). What we want to call out is that video can be used effectively for all of these critical business goals, and further, that a little video strategy can get you a lot more bang for your video buck.
The beauty of video is that it is ideally suited to the new world of digital communication. On your website, it can be the dramatic cornerstone of your identity, telling the story of who and why you are. In your sales efforts, it can lend support at every stage of your customer’s journey, across all mediums. Origin stories, customer testimonials, product/service explanations and more can be used on your website, on social media, at events, in targeted advertising campaigns and directly by your salespeople. And when it comes to projecting your company’s culture and bringing a diverse workforce together, video again has a unique power to tell compelling stories that inspire response.
We see our clients using video in all these ways. We also see that when clients formulate a clear video strategy – which video types, which channels and when – they get a much higher return on their video spend. In general, a shift away from mass media to targeted digital is the start. Specifically, leveraging a video production to produce multiple assets expands value across media. With one shoot we can produce an anchor video for a campaign microsite plus multiple teaser videos for social media. Or a video template with different versions for different target audiences. Or a suite of related videos that drive home a common message. It’s all about formulating a deeper, longer-range video plan that’s aligned with your marketing plan.
We don’t have to convince you to use video – that’s a given. But tapping into some video making and marketing expertise can help you use video more effectively.
We typically focus our corporate communication efforts on external audiences – customers, prospects, analysts, the media. But what about that all-important audience – our own employees? What, and how, do we communicate with them? An email perhaps? A webcast town meeting? Heaven help us, a printed memorandum? Why not use the same impactful media, and regularity of contact, that we apply to our external audience?
Some companies do. At MK3, we see companies starting to leverage the power of quality video in regular communications with their own workforce. Hearing directly from company leadership, in this personal and dynamic way, can be a very effective means to convey critical information. We’ve seen internally facing videos used to:
- Share quarterly or semi-annual performance results
- Introduce a new member of the senior leadership team
- Introduce a new public product or service
- Introduce a new employee benefit, program or resource (e.g. that new intranet)
- Share company values
- Share a major company success
- Introduce a new organizational structure
And these videos not only convey information; they provide a host of ancillary benefits to the organization:
- Create a personal connection between leadership and employees
- Demonstrate leadership’s care and respect for employees
- Foster a sense of company esprit and pride
- Inspire the team
- Explain and contextualize important, complex information
- Strengthen the sense of company loyalty and belonging
These videos can be long or short, but it’s important that they be high quality. And it’s important that they happen with some regularity. Why not leverage the most popular medium of our time not only for buyers and influencers, but also for our most valuable asset – our own employees! Forward-thinking companies are recognizing that there’s a powerful opportunity in internal videos.
By Mo Effron, VP of Strategy & Interactive
Do you need some fresh ideas for your next video? Are you trying to avoid making another “talking head” video or typical typography animation?
Well here you go…
What, do you think I’m going to just give my new ideas away? Heck, no. I’m going to give you other people’s ideas!
The concept is this: look around you, find creative examples on TV, the web or anywhere else, imagine how these ideas could be tweaked and used for your project, then combine the ideas and present them as samples, so your client understands your new approach.
People have been using others for inspiration since the beginning of time. Here are 4 easy steps to borrowing ideas and creating new ones – then having them at the ready to pitch your colleagues and clients at a moment’s notice.
Step 1: Find Ideas
I used to walk around taking pictures of sunsets, people, and interesting vistas. Now, I also photograph advertisements, and I’m always on the lookout for something new. I recently snapped a photo of a Dunkin’ Donuts poster promoting their new Almond Joy drink. It’s a top-down photo of their drink (looks like hot chocolate) with a smiley face created from the bubbles in the foam. What a simple but engaging idea. I snap pictures of billboards, posters in train stations, or book covers – to hold on to ideas that could be built upon for a future project.
Step 2: Remember What You Found
I used to see commercials all the time and think “what a funny idea, I should do something like that”. Problem is I’d forget the name of the commercial or who made it. Now, I make a point to jot down the tag line and company so I can look it up later on YouTube or iSpot.tv. It’s amazing how useful that can be when you suddenly need an idea. Instead of saying, “Ever see that commercial with the hilarious lady in the glasses?”, you can show the Hunter Douglas commercial with Iris Apfel as an example of quirky humor and great set design.
Step 3: Organize the Ideas
Create a folder on your desktop, Dropbox, wherever you want, and put your favorite creative ideas there. It’s a reference guide for the new inspirations that could one day be useful for a client project.
Step 4: Pull it all Together
You never want to rip someone off. You want to combine ideas and add your own twist. And by having the ideas library at your disposal, you’ll have ready-made concepts to present to your team or your client as examples of what you can do. “Let’s make something that looks like this… with the humor of this… but with a creative call to action like this…” Ideally you combine ideas to create something new that meets the goals of the project and makes it unique.
I leave you with a quote that I found in a great book called “Steal Like an Artist”:
“The only art I’ll ever study is stuff that I can steal from.”
Most people would agree that Bowie was one of the most unique musicians of our time. If he can steal ideas for his creative vision, we all can!
By John Lawrence, Creative Director
Heritage Plumbing had a modest beginning with two brothers and a pickup truck. Now, twenty years later, they are a regionally recognized brand employing 90 individuals and driving 55 trucks.
What is the key to their success? Their dogged focus on being “the very best service provider with the happiest customers.”
MK3 Creative was welcomed into the family business about a year ago, to assist Heritage in naming their key differentiators. What services are they providing that their customers considered the best? How is it they have been keeping their customers happy? Three key words rose to the top: cleanliness, expertise, and convenience.
From these, it was difficult to choose only one to take to the “airwaves.” After much thought, they decided that all three were essential to who they were as Heritage. The team jumped all in, deciding to create three thirty-second commercial spots.
Here’s how MK3 and Heritage highlighted “cleanliness,” “expertise,” and “convenience”!
By Joel Kaplan, Principal
Santander Bank just released a series of videos created and produced by MK3. The goal is to attract good candidates for new positions in the bank’s consumer and business banking divisions.
From branch managers to financial consultants, Santander and MK3 worked together on the description of multiple jobs within the bank.
From concept to execution, MK3 is proud of this recruiting effort to help attract the region’s top talent to Santander Bank.
By Ted Wayman, VP Sales
Do you see in 3D? Yes, you do! When you watch most videos online and on TV are you seeing in 3D? No, you are not! That’s the age-old dilemma for directors and cinematographers: how do you create 3D depth within a 2D space – such as a movie screen, a TV screen, a computer, or a mobile device?
One answer is great camera movement. When the camera moves fluidly during a video, viewers begin to feel the depth of the world they are watching. At MK3 Creative, we have a suite of in-house capabilities that help live action projects become more 3D-like, more immersive, and more cinematic.
Our 3-axis handheld gimbal stabilizer is quick to set up, versatile to use, and helps bring a story to life. Our Aerial 4k drone gives your project a whole new vantage point and elevates its production value. Check out a quick example of how we use these valuable tools:
Despite our love for moving cameras, we believe story is king. As a marketing agency, we ask the right questions to help you find the perfect story to tell your audience. But, the nice advantage of MK3 Creative is that we also house broadcast quality production capabilities under the same roof. And, we are constantly looking for opportunities to make great stories more cinematic!
By John Lawrence, Creative Director