Believe it or not, we're already mid-way through November. Mind-blowing, right? As the old saying goes, time waits for no man, so we thought we'd help you get the jump on your social media video strategy for the year ahead.
Why is a social media video strategy important, we hear you ask. Well, unless you’ve been living under a rock, you might have noticed that moving content dominates our share of attention right now. The platforms that win out in terms of screen time are all optimised towards video. So what does this mean for your brand? Well, if you don’t have one already, you’re going to need a content strategy. If you haven’t got one in place, fear not, we’ve got you.
Fundamentally, your customers want video. 78% of people watch videos online every week, and 55% are tuning in to watch online every day! Furthermore, 54% want to see more social media video content from the brands they support. Essentially, your customers are demanding it.
Step 1: Outline your social media video goals.
Every strong social media video strategy starts with a definition of what you are trying to achieve. For example, are you trying to get more traffic to your website? Are you trying to drive engagement on your Instagram? Or are you looking to convert sales?
Your objectives define the platforms you publish to, what format you shoot in, whether you produce long or short-form videos, or whether you decide to host a live stream.
Step 2: Define the audience you are targeting.
When creating a video for social media, you need to define which of your audience personas you are looking to target. Sure, you could go for something with broad appeal, which will work well to drive brand awareness or web traffic. However, if you’re looking to convert more customers, a targeted approach will serve you well.
A good definition of your target audience should include details on who they are, what they enjoy, and what they don’t! Additionally, creating a typical customer journey for each persona will help shape your content and ensure you deliver it on the right platform to grab their attention.
Your journey map needs to cover off the following details:
- Target personas.
Who is it you’re looking to generate a response from?
- Journey timeline.
Where will your target viewer see the content, and how do you want them to respond to it?
What will they be feeling when they see your content? How will seeing it change their state? What lasting impression do you intend to leave?
At what point will your target persona come into contact with you? How does the piece you are creating sit into the broader context of branded content? Should it integrate, or should it stand apart?
Will your audience target see the content once? Will it be in one format? Knowing this will define whether ads or your website should replicate the look and feel of your social media video content, for example.
Step 3: Draw up a production plan and prepare your social media video shoot.
Defining a production plan can be as complex or as simple as you like – it doesn’t have to be an intimidating process. It is an important one, however. Creating a plan upfront ensures you engagingly tell the whole story and, most importantly, in an appropriate format. What do we mean by this? Well, imagine you’re creating a reel for Instagram. You might decide that the best way to capture that is with a smartphone. However, suppose you’re producing some longer-format content for YouTube. In that case, you’re likely to want to invest in a higher-quality production.
A strong social media video production schedule should include the following details:
- The Script
Writing a great script depends on several factors. For instance, it should fit the target audience and the talent’s tone of voice while hitting the key points you’re communicating. Make sure it’s natural too. Share it ahead of time with the actors to ensure you can factor in their unique point of view and act on any crucial feedback.
- A Storyboard
Knowing how your shots will flow in the edit before you shoot them is pretty important to have nailed. A clear storyboard outlines how each element you capture will stitch together and ensures you record all the detail you need. This will make shooting social videos so much smoother.
- Filming Locations.
Settling on your chosen locations ahead of time is crucial to keeping your production on time. There is a lot to consider with location scouting, so make sure you don’t leave it to the last minute. Things to consider are how the light changes throughout the day, ambient noise, or local permissions you need to seek.
- Equipment List.
Drawing up a detailed equipment list ahead of time will ensure you have everything on the day. Trust us, nothing impacts a shoot day more than lack of the correct kit – so get this part right. Include everything you’ll need, from the obvious things like cameras, lenses, lights and mics, and the not so obvious, like markers, tape, food and drink (gotta stay hydrated 😌).
- Talent Details.
Choosing the right talent for your shoot is crucial to getting your message across clearly to your target audience. For example, this could mean selecting a voice-over actor with the proper accent or casting someone that looks like your target customer. Nailing this will ensure your content resonates.
- Shooting Schedule.
Think of this like your diary for the day. It should include who needs to be where and by what time. What order will you be shooting each location, and finally, what shots are you looking to get at each one.
Step 4: Make your social media video content as accessible as possible.
Remember, when you post on social media, you’re going out to a global audience. While you’re targeting specific customers, there is a good chance your brand will be noticed by people from all over the world. Think about using subtitles and animation to get your point across clearly and succinctly.
Closed captions are particularly useful to anyone that might be hard of hearing, or for those that don’t speak the language your video was shot in. Technology on YouTube has progressed to the point where these subtitles can be translated automatically – which opens your content up to global audiences quickly and easily!
Step 5: End on a solid call to action 💪
Remember what we said in step 1? Your social media video strategy should be driven by an objective. The best way to ensure you meet that objective is to be clear about what you want your audience to do.
If that’s to visit your website for more information or make a purchase, then weave that call to action into your narrative. Alternatively, if you’re publishing on platforms with in-video commerce, then include purchase links directly in your video to make ordering as easy as possible.
Clarity around what you want the people viewing your content to do will ensure your strategy delivers results.
If you are looking for a content marketing agency to support your brand’s next campaign, get in touch with us. We Are Even are UK-based experts in social media video production, with extensive experience delivering for some inspiring brands across the automotive, lifestyle, tech and music industries. You can watch some of our recent social media video production projects here.