Banning Branding

August 2, 2019
99 ways to shoot yourself (in the foot) - Part 1

Sorry for the click-bait title: the truth is I am not going to go through 99 ways to kill your viewership. In fact, I'm only going to mention one, which opens the list of 5 Video Marketing Mistakes mentioned in a recent post somewhere else. In the article, Andrew Hubbard cleverly remarks that video intros are often the culprit. 

It doesn’t matter how good the content is if you fail to get users to watch past those first few seconds; no one will see the gold that lies further in.

The short version of the argument is that you have, at best, 6 seconds to prove to the viewer that the rest of the media is worth watching. If you waste those precious few seconds in a display of vanity -- for example, by showing an expensive 3D animation of your brand's logo -- then you're not doing anyone, including yourself, a favor. You still wasted your viewers some precious seconds, and you ensured that they will never know, let alone remember, you or the message that you are trying to convey. 

The point is: get to the point, and do so as quickly as possible. I'm sorry, but in case you didn't already know for a fact: nobody cares about you or your brand. Unless you have an established brand and you are explicitly reaching out to existing customers -- people who recognize and love the brand -- then there's no point in wasting their time or visual attention with branding. It's not going help your brand at all.

In a digital video, your audience is by no mean captive. Unless people are sitting in a movie theater -- and trust me: they are not -- most of the times your audience is as fleeting as a butterfly at night. The media will show up in a timeline on social media, or floating somewhere on a page as an ad, or else will be inserted as an optional, complementary element in a post. In all cases, the media can be skipped or ignored, and it will be.

Your story -- which means: whatever the message of your video is -- should lead to your brand. Not the other way around. 

One down, 98 to go. I'll see you around soon.

Yannick is a service provided by Codecide, a company located in Chicago, IL USA.
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