Power to the People: Visual Storytelling

Image via ecohustler.co.uk

Image via ecohustler.co.uk

Today more than ever, the media is in the hands of the people. In 30 days, we upload more video content to the internet than major U.S. television networks have created in 30 years.

For grassroots organizations, values-driven businesses and social entrepreneurs, this is something to celebrate! The power to reach your audience with visual storytelling and compelling video marketing is easy to reach, and in many cases, within the capacities of your smartphone.

Work it.

Before you hit record, drafting a little strategy
will go a long way.

While much of your video content may be transferable across platforms, being mindful of the particular platform you’re using will allow you to best harness the opportunities it offers and be well-received by your audience. Not sure what’s out there or where to start?

Noticed. has got your back with this guide to video marketing on social media.

With each platform you engage, consider these factors:

  • What is the context of this platform?
    • Consider the video formats (read: creative opportunities!) offered by this particular platform. Do a little research into why your audience visits that platform and keep in mind what types of content they’ll be receptive to.
       
  • What’s the challenge/solution?
    • Stay focused on your mission and desired impact. Create video content that supports these goals.
       
  • How will my content reflect my brand persona?

Part 1: 

instagram logo.png

Let’s take a look at how these factors apply to Instagram.

Research shows that by and large, people visit Instagram for recreation. Take this opportunity to relate to your audience with a greater playfulness than offered by other platforms such as LinkedIn. Because your Instagram audience is likely in a casual mindset, this is a great platform for a behind-the-scenes look at your team, your process, or your organization’s content.

Instagram offers two ways to deliver video marketing: Stories and timeline videos. Keep your brand persona and desired impact at the forefront, and allow these formats to inspire your creative voice.

Image via  r  ollinghills.org

STORIES

Stories are an opportunity to share a series of photos or videos that feature at the top of your followers’ feeds with a lifespan of 24-hours. In light of the new Instagram algorithm that no longer arranges a feed based solely on time of posting, Stories offer a way to keep your content in front of your audience regardless of your posting frequency.

Ways to Use Stories

  • Introduce a member of your team
  • Show a day-in-the-life of your work
  • Make a limited time offer (valid within the span of the story) -- keep followers coming back to your stories to catch deals
  • Have an influencer “take over” for a day or a week
  • Promote your latest product or campaign

Want to share something text-based? Stories can help you break down your content into bites your audience can easily devour. Noticed. put this into practice last month to share our blog with you:

Follow  @noticedmedia on Instagram to catch the latest news, tips and inspiration.

Follow @noticedmedia on Instagram to catch the latest news, tips and inspiration.

Logistics to keep in mind:

  • Film vertically

Unlike your timeline, Stories dimensions are 1080p by 1920p. Filming vertically will ensure the most immersive, full-screen experience for your viewers.

  • Saving to highlights

While your story will disappear after 24-hours, you have the option to share it as a post in your timeline and/or save to your highlights, an archive on your profile. Be sure to save the last story first so it will remain in the intended order.

  • Hashtags

Using hashtags in stories will make your story appear when users search for relevant tags. Pro tip: hide your hashtags behind an emoji that fits your brand.

Now onto the format you may be more familiar with --

TIMELINE VIDEOS

IG now allows up to 1 minute videos on your timeline, and they don’t have to be square.

With your timeline videos, quality goes a long way. Though Instagram may be a more casual and recreational platform than some others, casual doesn’t mean you can’t also be polished and share high-quality content. Understand your abilities and limitations when it comes to creating compelling visuals, and be willing to invest in professional support when appropriate.

content well-suited for timeline videos:

  • Short commercials
  • Promotions for upcoming workshops
  • Timelapses of projects you’re working on or your production process
  • Brief interviews with staff, clients or community members impacted by your work
  • Product tours -- simple, hands-on demos of your product being used
  • Sharing clips of content you’re already creating

Remember last month’s blog on content strategy? Leverage what you’re already making, whether it’s footage from a recent keynote by your organization’s director, clips from recent performances at your mission-driven venue, or a video pan of the letters to representatives your organization has collected on behalf of a cause.

Check out our client Digital Democracy putting this in action:

Contact Noticed. today to make the most of your media power, and stay tuned for Part 2 of our guide coming mid-April!