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How to Create Marketing Videos That Connect with Your Audience

How to Create Marketing Videos That Connect with Your Audience

Video marketing has become one of the most powerful tools in a marketer's toolkit. However, creating videos that genuinely connect with your audience and achieve your business goals requires strategic thinking and planning.

In this comprehensive guide, I'll walk you through the entire process of creating high-quality marketing videos—from identifying your audience and defining goals to writing compelling scripts, selecting formats, and distributing your content. Follow these proven steps, and you can produce viral videos that boost brand awareness, increase conversions, and grow your bottom line.

Step 1: Define Your Goals and Target Audience

Before you start storyboarding or shooting footage, get clear on what you want your video to accomplish. Ask yourself:

  • What is the primary purpose of this video? Is it to entertain, inform, educate, or inspire?
  • Who is the intended audience? Be as specific as possible about their demographics, interests, and needs.
  • What do you want viewers to think, feel, or do after watching the video? Include concrete goals, like directing people to a landing page or increasing social shares.

When you have a clear picture of your audience and objectives, it becomes much easier to shape content that resonates. For example, a video meant to convert sales reps needs a very different tone and style than one geared towards 18-35-year-old gamers. Keep your goals and audience in mind as you proceed through the production process.

Step 2: Choose the Right Video Format

Types Of Videos For Marketing 2024

With your goals defined, now decide on a format that aligns with the type of content you need to communicate. Some top options include:

Explainer Videos

These animated videos use characters, graphics, and minimal text to explain a complex product or concept clearly. They work well when you need to simplify an abstract idea or walk through a multi-step process.

Testimonial Videos

Real customers and users share their first-hand experiences with your brand in their own words. These authentic storytelling videos build trust and social proof.

Demo Videos

Show your product or service in action through demos and tutorials. Let viewers see how it works rather than just telling them about features.

Live Action

Use interviews, B-roll footage, and on-location scenes with real people to humanise your brand. Cinematic quality and storytelling help forge emotional connections.

Screen Recordings

For software companies, this format captures a user’s on-screen interactions like clicking buttons, inputting data, and navigating through an app interface.

Interactive Videos

Let viewers engage with hotspots, annotations, data integrations, and other interactive elements to create a hands-on experience.

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Behind-the-Scenes Videos

Give an authentic look at your company culture, workplace environment, manufacturing process, etc.

Compilations

Edit together highlights from live streams, webinars, conferences, or other existing long-form content into snackable clips.

Animated GIFs

These ultra-short looping videos work well for social media and quickly capture attention in busy feeds.

There are no complex rules, so feel free to get creative and blend multiple formats. Ensure the style aligns with your goals, brand personality, and audience preferences.

Step 3: Write a Compelling Script

The visuals are meaningless without an engaging underlying storyline. Take time to script out your video narration, dialogue, subtitles, and any necessary on-screen text.

Outline First

Map out the general narrative flow with 3-5 key scenes or plot points. What story must you tell to achieve your goals and speak to your target audience?

Lead Strong

Hook viewers in the first 5-10 seconds before their attention wanes. Ask a provocative question, highlight a pain point, or tease what’s coming.

Structure with a Journey

Model the classic story arc: Set up the problem, escalate tension through trials/challenges, and resolve it with your brand as the hero.

Show, Don’t Just Tell

Communicate your message visually through bold typography, data visualisations, reconstructions of scenarios, etc. Avoid blocks of text.

Be Concise

Get your point across in the shortest possible time. Cut the fluff ruthlessly. Longer videos see higher drop-off rates.

Speak Like a Human

Use conversational language. Build rapport with inclusive language like “we” and “you.” Ask questions and anticipate objections.

End Strong

Close the story loop with concrete instructions, like links, CTAs, and contact info. End at the peak emotional moment to leave viewers wanting more.

Step 4: Create a Storyboard

With your script in hand, visualise each scene with a storyboard. This step is crucial for mapping out how you’ll stitch static visuals, motion graphics, live footage, and other elements into a cohesive narrative.

  • Draw each pivotal scene.
    Quick sketches are fine. Include major visual components and dialogue/text.
  • Map scene transitions
    Note how you’ll transition between scenes or blend elements like a voiceover on top of a b-roll.
  • Identify visual assets
    List any existing images, clips, or graphics you want to incorporate versus what you’ll need to shoot/create custom.
  • Add other creative elements.
    Music, sound effects, animations, logos, subtitles, graphics, etc.

Having every scene visually laid out lets you identify missing gaps and keeps you focused during filming and editing. It also facilitates collaboration and feedback from stakeholders.

Step 5: Create Visual Assets

Infographic Maker Canva

With your storyboard as a guide, now produce or curate all the visual components you’ll stitch together during editing.

Get Footage

  • Shoot primary footage like interviews, action shots, b-roll, etc. Ensure it supports the style and story in your script.
  • Search stock image and video sites like Shutterstock for supplementary high-quality media assets. Look for authentic moments that your audience will emotionally connect with.
  • Gather relevant existing images and clips from your company, like product photos, event coverage, testimonials, etc.

Design Graphics

Engaging text animations, data visualisations, illustrations, logos and lower thirds help convey information clearly and keep attention locked in.

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Source Music

Set the desired mood with either licensed music and sound effects or original compositions. Even background scores subtly influence viewers emotionally.

Record Voiceover

In a studio environment, capture clear audio of your script narration. Hire professional VO talent if needed.

Step 6: Edit and Refine Your Video

This is where you can flex your creativity and transform raw footage into a polished marketing video. Maintain momentum by following these tips:

Create an Editing Roadmap

Lay out your storyboard sequentially and plug-in timestamps for each scene based on footage lengths. Having this bird's eye view minimises hiccups in the flow.

Hook Attention Fast

Frontload your best visuals and make the first 5 seconds count. Remember, quick teasers, questions and startling stats grab interest right away.

Prioritise Branding

Splice in logo reveals, animations, and other identifiers strategically. But don’t overdo it—you don’t want them to distract from the story.

Mix Up Pacing

Blend faster-paced scenes with slower moments to create a natural rhythm. The match cuts to beats in the background music track.

Enhance with B-Roll

Cutaway footage fills gaps and immerses viewers in your story’s world. The right b-roll invokes emotions to complement the narration.

Mind Continuity Details

Ensure elements like colour grading, tone, lighting, costumes, and dialogue match across disconnected scenes. Viewers notice discrepancies.

Refine Transitions

Play with various transition techniques (cuts, wipes, dissolves, etc.) between scenes and clips for seamless flow.

Add Subtitles

aid visual storytelling and accommodate different audiences. Time them correctly so viewers have enough time to absorb the visuals and text.

Test and Iterate

Give your rough cuts to a diverse test audience early and often. Collect feedback and keep polishing until the video effectively hits all your goals.

Distribution and Promotion

Youtube Content Creators Best

You’ve created a fantastic video asset. But a marketing video is pointless if no one sees it. Now, craft a distribution plan to share it far and wide.

Make it Discoverable

  • Upload to YouTube with optimised titles, descriptions and metadata so it appears in search and suggested videos.
  • Create short-form teasers to share natively on the social platforms where your audience is most active.
  • Post on LinkedIn with targeted headlines and text intros explaining the relevance.
  • Embed it prominently on crucial landing pages, like your homepage

Promote and Amplify

  • Share natively in social posts and ads
  • Pitch to industry media and influencers for reviews and coverage
  • Promote email campaigns, webinars, and gated content offers
  • Run paid video ads on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, etc.
  • Distribute on OTT and Connected TV channels like Roku and Apple TV

Analyse Performance

  • Track views, completion rates, conversions, and other critical metrics for each distribution channel in your analytics
  • Ask for audience feedback directly through surveys and interviews
  • Refine based on insights into highest-performing formats, messaging, calls-to-action, etc.

Repurpose creatively

  • Excerpt snippets into pre-roll ads, social videos, or gifs
  • Reimagine scenes from different angles as a video series
  • Animate your storyboard into a 2D motion graphic video

The most effective marketing videos continue working long after initial distribution through creative repurposing. Keep these videos spotlighted by maximising reach across channels and iterations.

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FAQs on Marketing Videos

What makes a compelling marketing video?

A compelling marketing video clearly defines its audience and objectives upfront, adopts the correct format to suit the content, follows a clear story arc, utilises solid visuals and music, and ensures high production quality. Distributing across channels where your audience is active and tracking performance data also boosts impact.

How long should a marketing video be?

Stick to 2 minutes or less when possible. Viewer attention and retention plummet after the first 30 seconds. Longer videos work only if they are highly educational, entertaining or compelling enough to justify the length.

What’s a reasonable budget for a high-quality marketing video?

Professional marketing videos range from $2,000 to $20,000+ depending on length, production quality and complexity—budget at least $5,000 for an engaging animated or live-action video under 2 minutes. For more straightforward videos, DIY tools like Animoto may work.

When should you consider hiring a video marketing agency versus handling production in-house?

If you need incredibly high production quality, sophisticated formats like animation, or if you lack creative video skills in-house, it makes sense to hire video experts. But for more straightforward videos, essential editing software and DIY tools mean you can now produce decent videos without outsourcing.

What should you do if your video isn’t getting traction?

Try sharing it natively on different social platforms, re-editing it into multiple short-form versions, adding subtitles in other languages, incorporating interactive elements, or distributing it through less saturated channels. Repurposing it into new, fresh formats can also revive interest.

Conclusion

The video has become indispensable in every modern marketer's playbook. But simply creating videos is not enough. To capitalise on this powerful medium, you must be thoughtful and strategic—from planning your content and format to distribution and promotion. Following the process outlined in this guide, you'll be equipped to produce sleek marketing videos that attract attention, spark meaningful engagement, and deliver ROI for your brand.

The critical components are defining your goals, shaping content for your specific audience, telling compelling stories, and utilising solid visuals. Invest in production quality. Then, distribute far and wide across platforms where your viewers are active. Test and refine constantly. With the right strategy and execution, your marketing videos will be positioned to delight and convert viewers into loyal brand advocates.

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Stuart Crawford

Stuart Crawford is an award-winning creative director and brand strategist with over 15 years of experience building memorable and influential brands. As Creative Director at Inkbot Design, a leading branding agency, Stuart oversees all creative projects and ensures each client receives a customised brand strategy and visual identity.

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