Ask yourself how many times you’ve tuned out a video or commercial because you had no idea where it was going. The message was unclear, or the execution was poor, or a combination of the two. Having a clear structure within an online video seems like the simplest idea in the world. How hard could it be to make a cohesive beginning, middle, and end? The truth is that it is much harder than it seems. Losing interest in a video is often symptomatic of an unclear plot structure.
Video, and online marketing in particular, is an economical medium. There should be no extraneous or excessive material in the course of the video’s short duration. The best way to ensure this is to stick to the tried and true formula of narrative structure employed in a variety of ways by countless artists and videographers.
The beginning is the introduction. This is where the premise is set up, as clearly and quickly as possible. The point of view is established here, and it’s best to start with something bold and attention grabbing. The middle is the crisis and climax. Don’t be frightened by the word ‘crisis’ – it simply means the culmination of the video occurs here. This is where the pitch is made, the joke is delivered, or the product is touted. The final piece of a social marketing video is the end, or the falling action. A mediocre video peters out, but a truly great one delivers a final, clear note that reintroduces the theme of the video and wraps the whole piece up.
Structure is key to helping build a fantastic social marketing or online video. By establishing a clear introduction, a crisis and climax, and falling period of action, a short piece can grab an audiences attention and leave a lasting impression.