Red Sauce

February 3, 2016

Flying saucer videos, open rates and a doggie body cam




Strategy in Motion

In quenching today’s voracious appetite for video, it can be easy to waste money on the predictable, boring or overpriced. Follow along with us as we explore nine lessons for more engaging videos from three very different recent productions.



Capture a sense of place

You can sell a product without actually showing the product. No fireplaces or kitchen sinks appear in this video for a new residential community. Instead you’re taken on an exhilarating ride where the outdoor lifestyle is the star. A few strategic words on screen are the only dialogue needed.

  1. Angle for drama
    Sometimes the story of a place requires multiple perspectives─from treetops to handlebars to ankle bones. Add a doggie body cam or a bird’s-eye drone to surprise and hold the viewer to the end.

  2. Choose your pace
    Joyous, gloomy or frenetic? Set the mood with music and synchronize your shots to set the tone.

  3. Plan it in pictures
    A detailed storyboard, prop list and actors’ instructions put everyone on the same page and limit costly rework. Precision planning is even greater with multiple locations and all amateur talent.



Mark the moment

Video can punctuate an announcement, making big news bigger online and off.

  1. Put down the camera
    Ditch the talking-head default when making your next announcement. Animation can be a refreshing break from the expected. Producing animated video also is a good option when timelines are short or on-camera talent is unavailable.

  2. Animate the infographic
    Don’t make video production more complicated than it needs to be. Add motion to the elements of an infographic to make complex material easy to understand and fun to follow.

  3. Keep it short and shareable
    Exciting or interesting news will have more impact when it’s short and memorable. Lively words and compelling visuals will give the “share” button a workout.



Banish boredom in the boardroom

Strategies and statistics can be shared via video without lulling viewers to sleep. On-screen graphics, key words and workplace footage mixed with on-camera narration keep the video from looking like presentation slides.

  1. Borrow from Mad Men
    Borrow techniques from ads for cars and pharmaceuticals to convey information-laden content. Choose a spokesperson who conveys authority and credibility. Bring the script to life with simple metaphors and on-screen graphics to inform without boring.

  2. Integrate the package
    Video can be a star when the message is complex and you need buy-in. Use the video as an engaging overview, introduced by a trusted leader, reinforced with written materials and followed by discussion. We are more likely to act when presented with good information multiple times in multiple ways.

  3. Make it timeless, placeless
    Most budgets can’t support a new video every year. Extend the shelf life of your video by scrubbing date references. Eliminate logos or signs that give away the location.

Moms and 59% of executives prefer video

My phone just pinged alerting me to a video of my daughter sliding on a saucer down a snowy mountainside in Colorado. A shrill “Aw shiiiiii…” was the only audio. But it communicated a lot. In a few seconds I knew why she wasn’t answering my texts. She was out of town playing.

Video—that’s how many of us communicate in our personal and professional lives. And data show that video can be enormously powerful for business:

  • “Video” in an email subject line increases open rates by 19% and click-through-rates by 65%. (Source: Reel SEO)
  • 59% of senior executives report they prefer video to text when both are available on the same topic on the page. (Source: Forbes Insight)
  • Including video on a website can increase the likelihood of appearing on the first page of Google search results by 50 times. (Source: Forrester)
  • Homepage videos are shown to increase conversion rates by 20% or more. (Source: Reel SEO)

So unleash your creativity and say it with video.

About Kathleen

Kathleen watches business-related videos with a serving of strategy when she’s working as JayRay president and owner. At home on the couch, it’s the latest Netflix release.