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Branding is one of the most important aspects of creating video content that you need to keep in mind. After all, strong branding is what turned the iconic Nike ‘swoosh’ logo into an icon recognizable across the entire world.
A major attribute of successful video content is proper storytelling. Although this sounds simple in practice, not everyone knows how to go about it.
Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about video storytelling secrets that you need to keep in mind.
1. Strive for Authenticity
One of the most attributes of solid video storytelling is having an authentic feel to your content. After all, you’re far more likely to establish a connection with your audience if they feel like you’re speaking to them as yourself and not as a brand.
Of course, there may be situations where you’ll need to be a bit more formal when addressing your views (such as if you’re speaking to/on behalf of an entire organization or a client).
In general, though, it’s in your best interest to loosen up and be as natural as possible.
As previously mentioned, this is likely to make your audience far more comfortable with you as a content creator, making it an essential practice that you should always strive for in your videos.
2. Edit Appropriately
Nothing loses a viewer’s interest easier than a long, unedited video that’s full of awkward pauses or that has a lack of structure.
Unfortunately, once you’ve lost your audience’s attention it can be exceedingly difficult to get it back. In some cases, people may avoid interacting with your brand altogether.
Instead, take the time to sharpen your editing skills and make your videos as interesting as possible. This can include things like:
- Having a captivating (but brief) intro
- Solid transitions between different segments of your video
- Effects that are applied tastefully
Ironically, it’s fairly easy to ‘over-edit’ content, which will essentially make it overwhelming for your viewer.
You should strive to find a balance between keeping your content interesting while also ensuring that it’s comfortable to watch.
3. Don’t Neglect Your Aesthetic
You can have notably engaging, high-quality content within your video, but it won’t mean much if you haven’t refined your overall aesthetic.
People will easily notice (and become distracted by) nuances such as poor audio quality, poor lighting.
Have a look at the section about lighting for tips and tricks to get good lighting in your videos.
Also, check out this article on how to get good audio in your videos.
All of these factors can give off the impression that you’re unprofessional, which will make your audience far less likely to engage with the story you’re conveying.
Depending on what type of content you create, take the time to plan out the angles you’re shooting from, the overall conditions in the location you’re recording at, and even what’s in the background of your video.
If you want to get good ideas for camera angles have a look at this article.
For example, using B-roll footage of nature to help evoke an emotional response from your audience won’t be as effective as it could be if someone briefly walks in front of the camera.
4. Give Your Stories Structure
As with videos that have poor editing, a story without structure is more of a rambling than it is a cohesive experience for the viewer.
As previously mentioned, this can easily cause your audience to become far less engaged with your content than you strive for them to be.
Fortunately, planning your storytelling is a relatively easy process to get started with.
You should treat video content as a written story in the sense that it needs to have a beginning, a middle, and an end.
The beginning is particularly important, as it’s your one chance to grab the viewer’s attention and instill a desire to learn more. Grab the viewers’ attention with a great hook.
The middle should have some sort of climax— this is where you’ll mention the most important aspects of your story.
For instance, let’s assume your video is on the rampant deforestation that’s occurring in South America. The ‘meat’ of this topic should be in the middle, with the most important information being more or less in the center of this section.
Afterward, the rest of your video should be built around wrapping up what was discussed and also offer a form of continuity. In many cases, this could be a link to a page to find out more, a ‘part two’ of the same topic, etc.
5. A Simple Voiceover Can Go a Long Way
Incorporating a voiceover within your content is one of the most effective ways to both convey your story and keep your audience engaged.
Since watching content that’s presented in only a single way can cause people to lose focus, recording a voiceover while you paly B-roll footage is a great way to keep your viewers interested.
It’s also ideal for explaining visual content that you showcase on your screen during the recording. For instance, you could record a voiceover that thoroughly explores the details of a chart that you display.
Voiceovers are also great to use as the only form of speaking throughout the video since it will establish the presence of a ‘narrator’ as opposed to an individual who speaks directly to the camera. For many types of content (such as explanations, reviews, etc.) this can even be ideal.
You should always strive to achieve the highest quality audio, though— a cheap mic can easily detract from what would otherwise be an amazing voiceover.
If you want to dive more into voice-overs you should read this article How To Record A Great Voice-Over For Your Video.
Optimizing Your Video Storytelling Can Seem Difficult
But it doesn’t have to be.
With the above information about video storytelling in mind, you’ll be well on your way toward making the decisions that are best for you and your brand.
Want to learn more tips that can help you out in the future? Be sure to check out the rest of our blog.
About the author:
Jan Sørup is a videographer and photographer from Denmark. He’s the owner of filmdaft.com and of the Danish company Apertura, which produces video content for big companies in Denmark and Scandinavia. Jan has a background in music, has drawn webcomics, and is a former lecturer at the University of Copenhagen.