January 15, 2018
We have all heard it, “Video is King.” No matter what online platform you talk about, video is favored above all other forms of communication. Brands know this. And everyone from large corporations to small “Moms and Pops” are trying to get into the video game.
Though videos are taking over all of our feeds and in turn our audience’s feeds as well- that doesn’t mean the video content out in the market is getting any better. No. For the most part, the “talking head videos” and “car rants” are overtaking our audience’s feeds. These types of videos rarely get the watch let alone the buy.
And the statics are proving that most videos are complete failures because
Video views drop off dramatically after the first 20 seconds.
85% of videos on Facebook are watched without sound.
Only 5% of top videos retain their viewer’s attention until the very end.
With facts like these to contend with what is a brand to do when they don’t have big bucks to pour into their online videos, but still want the conversions?
Video vet, Emmy Wu owner of Emmy Wu Media () based in Portland, OR, in her January 2018 article titled “Kill The 20 Second View Rule With Pattern Interruptions” () originally featured in EmpiHER™ magazine ( ), Wu says, “Great videos have less to do with the budget than most people realize. Videos that engage and convert begin with understanding the human brain: we are wired for pattern recognition.”
In her article, Wu gives the reader three distinct ways to use the human mind to a brand’s advantage and create videos that engage.
Pattern Recognition. The human brain is hardwired for “cue and reaction.” “When we see the postal truck pulling up the street, we can anticipate that the mail’s going to be dropped off. These are all bits of information about the world around us that we take for granted because the relationship between “cue” and “reaction” are so deeply ingrained in our psyche. Simply put, we don’t question why a match with gasoline is a bad idea because these patterns become a web of information that’s helped us to navigate the world efficiently.” says Wu.
“By understanding that we are all wired to simplify information, to tune out unless you’re specifically cued to react, you actually have an edge in your marketing. If people are not engaging with your videos, it’s not that your content is inherently boring. Instead, it’s opportunity to disrupt the patterns that your viewers have grown so accustomed (and bored!) from.” Wu states.
Visual Pattern Interrupts. It is a fact that the human eye is designed to track movement. With regards to this Wu says, ‘This is another quirk of the human brain to simplify the stimulus around us: objects that remain still tend to “fall out” of our field of vision. We don’t “need” this information for survival, and thus, it becomes a moot point for us to take notice.” Wu goes on to suggest that using movement within the first few seconds of a brand video or fast motion stock footage, in the beginning, will increase viewer engagement and recognition.
Audio Pattern Interrupts. Certain sounds, just like certain images, become commonplace and in turn, the human brain naturally tunes out. To overcome this Wu suggests, “Create interest and tension with interesting sound design: using audio and images that your audience wouldn’t normally expect together. Thunder rolling in on a seemingly peaceful vista, rustling of approaching steps against a closed door, or even speaking footage that’s interrupted by the sound of coins flying from a winning slot machine, all help your viewers to stay engaged and anticipating what’s next.”
“At the heart of this is understanding the state of your audience as they are scrolling through social media: they’re being hit by a barrage of content all vying for their attention. Humans are programmed to simplify information, so as the marketer, you need to find unusual images that break the pattern to elicit a response. Not just any response. The response you want them to feel to begin engaging with your content. Remember, people actually want you to surprise, entertain and delight them, so don’t be afraid to step out on a limb to try new ideas that your competition hasn’t even thought of yet.” says Wu.
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