I got back from Space Camp yesterday.
No, I’m not eleven and I wasn’t in Florida. Space Camp is an annual video marketing event put on by a company, Vidyard out of Canada. Their platform integrates with CRM’s and helps increase sales through publishing and tracking videos. It seems like pretty solid software for helping companies do a lot with their videos published natively.
Video Space Camp is two info-packed days down on Market at 6th streets in San Francisco (Image). Which is still a semi-ungentrified area of the city I grew up in so I really loved going down there as it’s a vivid reminder of what San Francisco once was.
But I digress. For those of you that didn’t attend or did, but only saw the 24/7 open bar, here are the top takeaways from 2015 Vidyard, Video Space Camp:
1. Measuring video KPI’s is in its infancy – At emotion studios, we have a clear goal: measure how the content we produce does by brand and by channel KPIs. We look at how that content affects brand sentiment, sales, and customer acquisition to come up with the ROI for emotion clients. This process for measuring video is currently very difficult for a variety of reasons that we will discuss in future posts. NOTE: Please email us right away if you know of a solution that does for video what Sprinklr, Sysomos, or Social Cloud does for content.
2. Writing is key. Be creative – Brands in attendance from LinkedIn to Cisco and everyone in-between all agree that boring, talking head, unemotional content is bad. So a major theme of the conference was to learn as much as possible about script writing and story theory. Study Aristotle’s Poetics, read Robert McKee’s Story, and understand Joseph Campbell’s The Power of Myth if you’re serious about doing this well for the long haul. Creativity is again king and to be compelling at video and possibly achieve virality, creativity and quality writing is the key. Heidi Bullock, VP of Demand Gen at Marketo said it best, “your video marketing won’t work if your videos are bad.”
3. Emotional storytelling comes from personalization – The only way to accomplish personalized, emotional storytelling (the goal of all marketing) is to really know who you are talking to. Who is your audience? Then make the stories for them. Show (don’t tell) that you care more about your customer than anyone else. Be generous and solve their problems. This is how to stand out from the competition. Don’t make this about your brand, make it about your customer. One of the products announced at the event adds a personal name into videos in email marketing. This personalization increased open and engagement rates by over 10%.
4. What’s next – at the end of day one, there was a great panel about the current state of video marketing. Near the end, the four panelists were asked what is the future of video marketing. Two said personalization and then one vote each for Virtual Reality and Rob Humphrey, Sr. Content Producer of LinkedIn, said that good writing has to be the future. He went on to share that LinkedIn starts with characters first and then tells their creative story, across divisions, from there. Additionally, many forecast that new positions like Video Content Strategist and Director of Visual Storytelling will become the growth roles in business moving forward.
5. Nothing will ever surpass the in-person experience. Probably – With VR coming soon and fast, perhaps conferences like Space Camp and other meetings will be held virtually moving forward. But from someone who is very bullish on VR, I will always opt for going physically to an event like this. Because, it’s the people that you meet by accident at these events that leave the lasting impressions and create the deepest connections. They are the people you end up speaking completely openly and transparently with about all sorts of subjects and ultimately make you a better (business) person.
Finally, building a quick storyboard of today’s video playing field: Basically, the future is now. Many are moving fast to be on the frontline of adoption. So there will be growing pains with story, quality, and matching goals to results. ROI is still very difficult to quantify in video marketing. Honestly, it feels very similar to the start of social media marketing. E.g. everyone knows they should be doing it, but are not totally sure how or, more importantly, how to get a budget from the C-suite. To that end, big companies are moving away from their Agency of Record to niche specific companies who specialize. Notable companies who have just made this jump for production and strategy are Facebook and Zipcar.
Additionally, many are still wondering how to make videos in-house. And they are beginning to figure it out. But the comparison was made at the event that you want to have a few high-quality pieces from a production company that knows what they are doing. Similar to having a few really nice pieces of clothing that make your everyday accessories look even better.
The last great takeaway was again from Heidi Bullock of Marketo about achieving your marketing goals for video and to, “write your video success press release first and work backward.” This way you can reverse engineer production based on your desired results and ensuring you are making your customers very happy.
Oh and Commander Chris Hadfield gave an unforgettable presentation on how to create great content and finished with a version of his viral sensation of David Bowies’ Space Oddity from the International Space station.