There are a lot of video marketing guides out there—some of them will even give you a solid (albeit clinical) content development method. But in all the guides I’ve seen, useful or otherwise, there has only been the body of a strategy, with no soul. Unimaginative and riddled with tired tactics (one that I read prescribed support-topic walkthroughs!), they leave out the one element that really matters: empathy!

If you’re creating content, your purpose is not to address the needs of your brand, but to address the needs of your audience—demonstrating your value by giving your customers a fulfilling experience. You can’t simply ask (or expect) them to engage in what you have to say, you have to say something they want to engage in. So, the real litmus test of your video strategy is whether or not you can put yourself in the shoes of your customers and become an important voice in their day to day life.

Give, give, give

Think of your brand like a TV network—your job is to create programming that your audience will enjoy, so that they tune in. Only once you have a captive audience can you introduce the “advertising” (your promotional messages, mixed into your content as if it were an ad break). You give them content they will love, that fits in with your network masthead (your brand values), and you keep giving consistently. The more you give, the more you can ask for in return (and the more your audience will convert into customers!).

Brands that are nailing the art of the give (w/ network worthy engagement):

  • GoPro – an epic collage of awesome, adrenaline-fueled videos (all shot on GoPro of course)
  • ModCloth – fashion how-to’s, lifestyle guides, and other content curated for women
  • Rokenbok – stop motion cartoons for kids (and parents looking for a little P&Q)

Design content like you design products

Your content is a product in and of itself, so if it does not enrich your customers’ lives the same way your other products do, it is letting your brand down. The three key questions you must ask yourself are:

  1. Does this content make my customer’s life better somehow?
  2. Is this content different from all the other content out there?
  3. Does this content reflect our brand values/mission?

Iterate until you can answer these with a confident, “Yes”, test out your ideas on the people you’re creating for, and listen to their input, and you’ll start crafting stories that your customers actually care about (and take action on).

And use a little imagination!

Nothing is more compelling than a new, original idea. Throw out that list of generic tactics you might have read about and think outside the box. Your audience (and ultimately your bottom-line) will thank you greatly.

Still not sure how to create valuable content for your audience that also converts for your brand? Download a step-by-step walkthrough of the model we use to generate ROI for our clients here! And if you have questions, need advice, or just want to shoot the breeze, email me, at!

Written by Jenko Kent
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