Pre-Production Tips for Authentic Video Content

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Okay. We’ll admit it too: the fun part about making video is exactly that. Making video.

The planning, on the other hand?

I mean, everyone knows how important planning is, but is it as exciting as actually shooting the thing? No way.

But in your quest for super authentic video content, are you really going to let your planning fall by the wayside? Hopefully not, and especially so if you’ve already seen us about crafting your very own video content marketing strategy!

Making sure that all those pesky little details are shipshape is, in fact, one of the surefire ways of ensuring your content is:

  • Engaging and challenging

  • Aligned with your brand and content strategy

  • Tells the story of your brand with grace and ease

  • Hits the mark in terms of its connection to audience, context and purpose

Our suggestion?

Authentic video content is 80% in the planning and 20% in the execution.

The great thing is that we can help you with the whole of the journey, from the conception of your idea to its execution. Easy peasy! And in the meantime, here are some things to think about.

Pickle proudly presents our top pre-production tips for authentic video content, fast!

1. Define your audience

Who’s your target audience for this content?

Before you can really nail your content or campaign plan, you really must know to whom you’re speaking, okay?

Here’s a simple test of why it’s so important. Imagine you’re trying to convince different people to donate to your cause. Would you offer the same reasoning to Bill Gates as you would to your grandma?

We’re hoping your answer is ‘no’. Of course, the key to making any message effective is to first identify to whom it’s being delivered.

There’s a great way of getting down and dirty with establishing your audience and that is to create a ‘buyer persona’. The Digital Agency Network explains it really well. Essentially, what you’re after, is a profile of your ‘ideal customer’ whose identity comprises certain ‘attributes or activities’ such as:

  • Demographic

  • Home location

  • Employment status

  • Interests

  • Shopping habits

...and the list goes on.

A buyer persona is like currency. Having it prepared means you can exchange it dutifully with the people who are getting the filming done for you.

Though it might feel a little strange and weirdly contrived at first, it’s actually a very handy, easily articulated and mutually understood method of conceptualising how content can be planned, shaped and executed according to your needs.

2. Clarify your message

What do you want your target audience to know or learn?

Ask yourself this: what’s the point of this content? Why have you decided it’s important?

When you sit down to really nut this out, it’s likely that you’ll have one big thing in mind: the thing you want your audience to know/learn/realise/wonder about.

This is your message.

But what if you’re not sure or the message is unclear? Try asking yourself these three questions:

  1. What is the problem this content is trying to fix?

  2. What do you want the audience to feel is the solution to the problem?

  3. Why does this matter?

Hey presto. Your answers to questions 1 and 2 are your messaging, and your answer to no. 3 is your justification (just in case you have to make your presentation in the next 5mins or so, okay?).

And if you’re feeling inspired, check out Carmine Gallo for Forbes’ instructional on ‘How to Pitch Anything in 15 Seconds’. True!

3. Understand your CTAs

What do you want your target audience to do with the information?

Okay, no surprises here: to encourage customer action, you’ve gotta be very clear on the goal of what you’re producing.

You: How’s this: our goal is to increase sales.

Us: Okay, no problems there. But let’s try to get more specific. Sales of what?

You: Okay! Our goal is to increase sales of automotive components

Us: Great! We’re getting there. But how do you want this to happen? What’s the ideal

consumer pathway to that goal, via your content?

You: Here we go. We think we’ve got it: Our goal is to increase sales of automotive

components by getting customers to click through to the sales page.

Nailed it! Now we can get going.

CTAs aren’t everyone’s cup of tea though, and we totally understand that. In fact, Crazy Egg showed us earlier this year that less than 25% of businesses are actually satisfied with their conversion rates. Whoah!

What does that say about CTAs, then?

Well, for one, that they’re really, truly important.

Our top tips for great CTAs?

  • Persuasive language (either in the video itself, or the accompanying captions)

  • Dynamic colour palettes

  • Crafty animation techniques

  • Ensuring creative combinations of text and moving image

We’ve got more where those came from too...

4. Contact the experts

It was the delightful Kevin Kruse for Forbes in 2018 who interviewed Donald Miller, CEO of StoryBrand, and reminded us that:

“What people don't realise is that there are basically seven story formulas. What that means is, for 2,000 years, really smart people have studied the best practices on captivating a human being's attention.”

You’re the expert in whatever it is that your company does. You don’t need to be the expert in captivating a human being’s attention.

The great thing is this: that part is up to us.

Contact us today to find out how.