Platforms like TikTok and YouTube have made it easy for anyone to create and publish videos that are seen by millions of people around the world, but when it comes to creating a video that drives your audience to take action, there’s more science than art behind it.

So, what are the makings of a great video? What helps your audience stay engaged with your brand? Is it a compelling story? Or is it about reaching the right audience at the right time?

Whether you’re creating an incredibly creative video that’s heavy on animation, a quick and straightforward video interviewing a happy customer, or a viral video for a new product you’re introducing, there are certain secrets and traits that all great video marketing strategies have in common.

Let’s take a look at some of the ways that you can create videos that sell.

Focus on stories instead of sales

Has anyone ever told you, ‘It’s not what you say, but how you say it’?

When it comes to the future of marketing, your ability to sell stories is essential. Why? A compelling story isn’t something that can be measured with numbers. They rely on connecting with people on an emotional level where they can build loyalty and appreciation through well-crafted stories.

With today’s consumers always looking for transparency about their products before making any purchasing decisions, it’s easy to see why the focus has shifted away from traditional marketing campaigns.

One of the best examples of storytelling is making videos that have a dual purpose such as entertaining and educating consumers, but if you’re creating videos that are entertaining but don’t have a message or any value to your audience then they may end up tuning you out before you have a chance to convey your story.

One of the brands that have excelled in telling compelling stories over the years is Dove. Their ‘Self-Esteem Project’ created waves when it challenged traditional beauty standards. They used real-life stories to convey their brand values and demonstrate their relatability as a brand.

Pain points and solutions

It’s important to get the word out about your product or service and show your audience what it does. The problem is that many businesses miss the mark by not ultimately showing their audience how the product or service can help them solve their problems—large or small.

Kicking off your video with a story that helps your customers see that your brand can relate to their problems and then engaging them with your story by presenting the solutions you offer in a simple and easily understandable way can help them fully grasp what you’re offering. Simply trying to wow your audience with a shiny new product isn’t going to work so you need to think about convincing them to buy your product or service over another.

Another way to do this is by giving your customers a visual tour of how your product or service will help them. You can use screenshots and product photos, and if you really want, you can take it one step further and have someone—it could even be a satisfied customer—demonstrate how your product or service works and what it has to offer.

Avoid doing too much and keep it short

8.25 seconds. That’s the average human attention span so you don’t want to give them any reason to close your video before you’ve had a chance to show them everything they need to know.

Think about Facebook videos for a moment. It’s reported that the first three seconds of a Facebook video ad make up 47% of the total campaign value. This is why 65% of users who watch the first three seconds are more likely to continue watching for up to 10 seconds.

Speaking about attention spans, you will want to start off your video with a strong brand introduction before they start closing the video. Even in the event that they only hear a small part of it, putting your name front and centre will keep it in their minds for a longer time.

Use great visuals that capture your story

Whether we want to admit it or not, the majority of us judge books by their covers. Businesses are judged by their website and videos by their quality.

You may think that you need to spend money on expensive videographers and equipment, but you simply need to make a video crisp, clean, and look professional. You can even use a really good smartphone to shoot your videos and use stock images or animation sequences to spruce up your video.

While you’re at it, don’t forget to think about your video’s settings. For instance, if you’re shooting a live video then step outside for what the pros refer to as the ‘golden hour’—the hour before sunset and after sunrise. If you’re shooting your video indoors then plan out your natural and artificial lighting to make sure your video doesn’t look dark.

Loosen up and be funny

Customers are just like you, they like to laugh and have fun. If you think about videos that have gone viral, the majority of them have been based on humour. 

From Aviation Gin to the Dollar Shave Club, there are many brands that have banked on creating humorous videos that have helped their brands go viral.

Adding some humour to your videos will show your audience the lighter and more human side of your business. They’re also the most likely to go viral and help your brand get noticed by a much larger audience than you originally targeted.

Drive results with strategic video marketing

No matter which industry you belong to, the world is filled with competition.

While offering the same products and services with unique tweaks can help, it’s how you sell it to your audience that’s going to make your brand into something extraordinary.

Once you’ve created a video marketing strategy that really speaks to your audience and captures their attention, you’ll be well on your way to giving your consumers what they’re hungry for!