7 Tips for Your Next Mobile Video Campaign
If you plan to include video in your next marketing campaign — and you should, because video will make up 82 percent of all consumer Internet traffic by 2021 — keep these tips in mind to make sure your video shines on mobile.
1. The First Few Seconds Matter
In the world of autoplay, your audience will keep on scrolling if you don’t capture their attention right off the bat. You don’t have to start with a loud bang (in fact, you probably shouldn’t … see No. 3), but make sure not to waste that precious intro time. If you’re telling a story, try starting in the middle of the action. If you’ve got a message, don’t withhold it until the end — share it up front. And skip the fade-in from a black screen; instead, think crisp, engaging images in striking colors.
2. Simple Performs Best on the Small Screen
Mobile screens are really small. Highly detailed visuals and tiny text are both great ways to lose your audience. Keep your graphics simple, clean and bold to ensure people actually see them. This is especially key when you’re choosing your video’s thumbnail. Select a clean still with bright color to catch the viewer’s eye on even the smallest device. And don’t worry about getting your title into the thumbnail — you’ll be able to attach metadata to your file when you share it online.
3. Embrace Silence
No one wants to get caught surfing social media at work, so it’s no surprise that 85 percent of Facebook videos are watched without sound. What does this mean for your video content? You’ve got to tell your story visually, without relying heavily on voice over, or even building a mood with music. Think of these elements as a nice compliment when the sound is on, but don’t let them become a crucial component. Instead, build an emotional arc through the action in scenes, and if you must use language, show important words as text on screen. This is where it’s useful to remember that old adage: show, don’t tell.
4. Try Live
Platforms like Facebook and YouTube allow you to directly engage your audience in real time by streaming live video, straight from your mobile device to your audience’s mobile devices.
Live video has the distinct benefit of coming off as casual and authentic, which makes it great for building trust with your audience. Because you can answer viewer questions in real-time, this format works well for Q&As, how-to videos, or behind-the-scenes sneak peeks. Plus, you can choose to keep the live video session in your feed so that your audience can continue to derive value from it. Just one tip: Very few people rock live video on the first try, so treat it like any video shoot and do a few takes without the camera rolling first.
5. Go Short — Really Short
We all know that 15-second video content performs better than 30-second video content, but the world of video is going even shorter. With YouTube, Fox, and now Facebook adopting the 6-second ad, we’re starting to see a ton of creative content squeezed into the space between two blinks. And because this phenomenon is new enough that viewers expect content to be original and thus are paying attention, it’s worth being a little daring and experimenting with this extremely short form.
6. Consider the Context
Where will your audience encounter your video? Are you posting it on a video-only platform, or are you
deploying it to social media, where they’ll see it in their newsfeeds? Imagine the experience of the viewer the moment before stumbling across your video, and don’t pull the viewer out of it. If viewers are scrolling through Facebook, looking to get updates on friends and family, they’ll be most likely to pause and keep watching a video that suits that frame of mind. If they’re exploring Vimeo, they’re probably in the mood for something creative or artistic. Think about why they came there, and make sure your video meets that need.
7. Don’t Forget Your Call to Action
Video is a fantastic way to introduce viewers to your brand, but don’t stop at an introduction. Aim for engagement. Direct your audience back to your website, let them know how they can contact you, or tell them where to learn more. They might even be ready to buy your product, so make it easy for them to do from their mobile devices. Measure your success and you’ll see why video is taking over: It works.
Nearly every person in your target audience has watched a video online this week — in fact, most people have probably watched dozens. The next video they see could be yours, so what are you waiting for? Grab your camera and tell your story.
Sarah Mannone is the Executive Vice President of Trekk, a tech-driven creative services agency. She works with Trekk clients to develop strategic marketing plans and craft measurable programs that that span print, web, social, and mobile. As part of the Trekk management team, Sarah is involved in the decisions and strategy around adopting new technologies and applications to meet the current and future needs of Trekk clients. Sarah is a member of the Forbes Agency Council and a frequent speaker at marketing industry events.