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Michael Hay

Published on

November 10, 2020


Content Marketing, video

Pivoting in 2020 isn’t new. Brands have had to adapt their marketing, their processes, where they work, their teams, and often even their business offerings. This new way of doing things isn’t going anywhere any time soon, so now it’s time for marketers to ensure that their video content is also adapting.

There’s a huge audience out there with an insatiable appetite for video. According to GlobalWebIndex, 33% of Brits have been watching more videos online during the pandemic. Meanwhile, HubSpot have reported that marketers have found video posts to be the most successful when it comes to engaging social audiences. Need we say any more?

The beauty of video is that it is a tool for expressing art and emotion, and often holds a mirror up to society. It can evoke emotions and increase the sense of connection between audiences and brands. Whilst the way we do video may have changed, it’s important that the medium is able to continue to thrive.

What’s possible when it comes to creating videos in 2020?

Although video production has certainly been greatly affected, it is by no means null and void. Many styles of videos can be filmed with no difference at all. But for videos with people in them, audiences might find it strange to see a group of people mingling closely together, so filming a scene with actors keeping within the social distancing guidelines is highly appropriate. Videos can reflect society’s current situation by respecting social distance between actors, or even having actors wearing masks where required. Many studios are still open as long as film crews use masks, regularly wash their hands and practice social distancing.

Other approaches can include filming people on their own more, where they don’t have to mingle with other people, or filming people on conference calls on their laptops. This can also allow for remote filming of some actors without having to have a film crew present. People are used to seeing medium quality webcams on the television now on news broadcasts and this type of shot is more acceptable now in videos in general. Moreover, the use of stock footage can be used in the right way to great effect. Complete videos can be created using well sourced stock clips and good audio, and if done well often the viewer will be unaware that it was all stock footage. Lastly, animation will see an uplift as more companies use animated infographic style videos to communicate their message, along with voiceovers.

How can you keep things creative?

Whilst you may think restrictions limit creativity, the opposite can actually be true. Marketers, creatives, writers and producers all need to find new solutions and ways of doing things despite restraints and parameters. With any challenge comes the opportunity to try something different.

The brands that are quickest to adapt and seize the opportunity to create something new will be the ones to engage audiences. Who knows what new styles of video we’ll see over the coming weeks and months.

3 tips for creating great video content

1. Pick your stock footage wisely

If you’re using stock clips in a video, make sure you choose ones that stand out. Don’t just reach for the standard clips that we’ve all seen time and time again. Be wary of clips that also contain models that people might recognise. Instead, select more natural or unusual clips that evoke more of a bespoke or less contrived feel.

2. Understand the importance of audio

Even if you pick the ‘best’ visuals in the world, it won’t work if the audio isn’t right. Imagine watching a movie on a very small screen that has good quality audio. Whilst you might not be able to see too well, the amazing audio can make you feel completely immersed in the film. Compare that with watching something at home on a 50” screen with quiet audio. You’ll end up straining to hear the film and lose that sense of immersion.

This is why taking the time to pick a relevant music track is very important. Sound effects can also add an extra level of immersion. For example, if you are piecing together different clips of a snowy landscape scene, having one continuous sound effect of wind across them all can really link the clips together.

3. Make use of visual effects

If done in the right way, adding simple visual effects such as appropriate lens flares, lighting effects or colour grading can have a great impact. Whether you’re adding effects to filmed or stock clips, a simple change can increase the overall quality of the video whilst also giving a consistent look and feel. But be warned – dodgy effects can do the opposite!

Whilst filming original content may be more difficult than previously, it certainly isn’t impossible to make amazing videos that are highly effective. With a bit of creative thinking, quality stock and simple effects, brands continue to have the opportunity to tell their stories and connect with audiences through one of the most popular mediums – video.

It’s time to get creative with video.

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