713.417.5189 kawika@helpmesayit.com

You want to know how to set yourself up for success as you enter the slipstream of content marketing with video. Yes, you need video. But do you know why?

The same reason Frito-Lay Inc. started using “betcha can’t eat just one” as their slogan in 1961. They kept versions of it for the next five decades. Video is the way we want to consume information today. Your audience craves more than just one. When efficiently sliced, a single potato yields enough chips to fill four single-serving bags.

Efficiently sliced is the key. Successful video production requires a strategy that does not focus on how many potatoes you have (your budget). It’s how you’ll use the potatoes to create a sufficient campaign to satisfy your audience.


It’s not time for “how” or “what.”

The pitfalls in video marketing often boil down to a “one-off” mentality or the misconception that high production value alone trumps strategy. You need a blueprint. The steps in your plan should adhere to a well-defined policy, and the outcomes must be quantifiable. Begin by formulating decisive answers to crucial questions.

  • Why video? What’s your objective? Move beyond vague goals like “increasing brand engagement” unless you have metrics to back it up.
  • What are the explicit challenges or problems you want video marketing to help you with?
  • How will you maintain consistency, so your videos align with the rest of your marketing material?

The brainstorming from these questions creates a video marketing mission statement. Aim to distill it into a one-liner, explaining what you want to accomplish, and why.

You might find that video serves multiple target audiences, each with different actions you’d like them to take. Recognize this and compile your set of key messages. Hold off on the champagne—these messages aren’t your strategy. The strategy emerges from your mission statement or statements.


Focus on frustrations.

Visual storytelling stands unparalleled in its capability to educate and offer a nuanced perspective. It shows a product or service in action and allows for an emotional connection, addressing the end state—the why.

Capacity and resources are fundamental. If video is not part of your preliminary marketing planning, it’s time to integrate it. The focus of your video content should first address challenges or issues before transitioning to solutions. It’s at the intersection of inward reflection and outward observation where real impact occurs.


Do you give yourself sufficient time?

Not enough time means you think it will take too much time. It often stems from the lack of a cohesive strategy for your visual storytelling. Strategizing eliminates the need to reinvent the wheel for every video project. Your challenges dissipate when you shift from an ad hoc approach to a coordinated strategy.

Time constraints can often make video appear an afterthought in your marketing initiatives. In contrast, a proactive strategy enables your visual storytelling to grow in sync with your branding or new product launches. This way, you have the bandwidth to fine-tune your approach based on customer relevance.


It’s not time for scriptwriting yet.

Video marketing is a strategy, but it’s also a goal. The pieces of visual storytelling represent a thorough analysis of understanding ways to engage prospects and transform them into customers. Know why you’re creating them before understanding how you’ll make them.

Video marketing initiates not from a script but from a robust strategy. This approach prioritizes crafting a unified, quantifiable method for employing visual storytelling. The aim is to guide diverse individuals through their initial discovery to eventual purchase. Additionally, this strategy accounts for intersecting with these individuals at multiple touchpoints throughout their journey.


Where do your videos take viewers?

Your inbound marketing ushers customers through the buyer’s journey—your video content strategy needs to align with this mission.

  • In the awareness stage, focus on educational videos to establish your expertise in addressing the problem. Explainer videos fit the bill. Integrate metrics to gauge the influx of new visitors to your digital platforms.
  • When you reach the consideration stage, steer the conversation toward solutions. How-to videos guide prospects through resolving their issues and building trust. Incorporate analytics to assess online conversions and the quality of incoming leads.
  • At the decision stage, assure prospects they’re in good company. Align your brand, product, or service with their outlook through customer testimonials and authentic company stories. People seek a connection with the human element of a brand alongside solutions to their problems. Embed metrics to track sales directly stemming from this visual narrative.


Once is not enough.

What you measure, you manage. Calculating return on investment becomes straightforward with the right metrics. A one-off video won’t provide the nuanced visual storytelling required to guide people through the buyer’s journey. You must tell it again and again. You’ll get tired of telling it long before others embrace it.

When gauging success, you must think about the buyer’s journey. Overall views work well as a metric for videos aimed at the awareness stage. But if you’re targeting people at the consideration stage, that metric won’t give you actionable insights.

Before diving into the creative elements, define your success criteria. What behavior do you want to encourage? How will you quantify success? Remember, these metrics are not your strategy; they’re the yardstick you’ll use to evaluate how well your strategy works.

You lay the groundwork for an efficient strategy once you map out where video intersects with the buyer’s journey. The shift happens. Instead of fretting about affording multiple videos, you focus on orchestrating a production process designed to deliver a spectrum of messages. Why plan for a single batch of potato chips when you know you’ll need a warehouse full of servings?


Do you understand the actual cost?

Video production is expensive, but not for the reason you might expect. You won’t replicate Dollar Shave Club CEO Michael Dublin’s success and produce a low(er) budget video that goes viral.

A decade ago, Slate Magazine delved into what it takes for a video to go viral. Today, the surge in user-generated content on social platforms has altered the landscape. StackAdapt sums it up nicely: The odds of hitting virality are so steep now that organic reach has ceded ground to paid strategies for targeting the right audience.

Production value doesn’t guarantee popularity anymore. What matters is aligning your costs with your objectives. Videos get expensive when there’s no clear strategy. Without one, you miss capturing the storytelling elements that serve as the bedrock for entire campaigns.

This proactive strategy equips video teams to meet the demands of an ever-expanding platform landscape. Expense isn’t about the price tag; it’s about achieving the desired impact by creating reusable elements. Videos become cost-effective through smart planning.

But don’t fall for the trap that making a single video for multiple audiences boosts production quality. That just leads to a visually stunning but thoroughly confusing mess.

Which brings us back to potato chips. You’re not making just one. Every script you write, every scene you shoot, every animation you generate, every voiceover or music bed you record—how will you slice it, dice it, extend it, or remix it?


Modular thinking for scriptwriting.

People often ask me why, with all of the scriptwriting apps and software out there, I still prefer a boring two-column Microsoft Word template. The answer is simple: I’m not writing just one script.

I am telling a singular story meant to resonate with a specific audience at a particular point in their buyer’s journey. But do I see connections back to the video strategy? Can I envision connections forward to a future video? Is this a reusable element? If the answer is no, it’s likely because my storytelling brain has wandered away from the foundational messaging and value propositions at the core of the video strategy. And that strategy is incompatible with one-off thinking.

This modular approach creates a repository. I can quickly assemble a new video. I can even pursue a new audience with a different solution.

A video strategy of efficiency and consistency does not diminish creativity. It extends the value of a concrete production budget.

Kill your one-off video darlings. Kill them today. They are expensive and resist distillation. A video strategy allows you not to have to choose between quality or quantity. And considering the appetite of your audiences, betcha can’t make
just one.

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