Keys to Creating Compelling Social Video Content

keys to compelling social media video content 2015

By Danni Eickenhorst, UMSL Digital Adjunct Professor
keys to compelling social media video content 2015In today’s class, I discussed the keys of compelling video with my students at UMSL Digital. Too often, this knowledge stays internal at my company, Blank Page, or between just me and my students, so I wanted to stop and share the notes and takeaways I shared with them.
Video has always been an incredibly powerful medium. It allows you to show your business, your mission in action, your benefits and impact in a deeper way that will connect with your audience. In fact, in a recent survey, 52% of marketers claim their clients have seen the highest Return On Investment (ROI) through video, more than any other medium. Why, then is it just now taking off with marketers in a broader way?
The short answer: It’s hard.
Well… it’s harder than taking 3 minutes to create a quick infographic on Canva – or writing a short blog. But it shouldn’t be impossible. If you can create a strong piece of video content, studies show that consumers will have a better understanding of your brand

Be Brief

Adweek performed an audit of marketing videos that showed the average length of a video to be 2:54. Averagevideo length for marketing videos 2:54. Other studies have shown that you have 10 seconds on average to capture someone’s attention, and another 10 seconds where people are very likely to click away. As more videocontent comes to the forefront, this is likely to continue to shorten. Therefore, be mindful of how to capture someone’s attention in just seconds.

Two ways to capture your audience & keep them interested:

  • WIFFM: Tell them why they should care – quickly make an emotional hook that’s all about them and not your brand.
  • GRAPHIC & TEXT ON VIDEO: With the 2015 mega-rise of video, videos are autoplayed without sound. Capture their interest with a powerful text and graphic overlay.
  • BE STRATEGIC & TARGETED: Your video can’t and shouldn’t be for everyone. You need to hone in on their preferences, language, interests.
  • BE BRIGHT: Be creative, compelling, approach something traditional from a new angle. Watch this short video that transforms the old notion of a clothing catalog. It’s cute, it’s compelling, and it uses psychological principles to keep and capture our attention – pay special attention to the strategic pauses and “jerks” in the video.
  • CALL TO ACTION TEXT OVERLAY: Utilize the YouTube annotations to get more than just brand awareness from your videos – but to get people to your website to engage, purchase or learn more.

There’s nothing sadder than taking the time to create a gorgeous piece of video content, and not have anyone see it. Uploading to YouTube alone simply doesn’t do the trick. Consider real-world applications for the video – events, presentations. Then, upload videos to each social network individually. Facebook, Twitter, and others prefer and sometimes require you to do this – but they also reward you with a far greater level of visibility than if you fed it through a YouTube link. Create shortened teasers that link to the longer video when possible for use on channels with time constraints such as Twitter, Vine, and Instagram.
Email your video out to your mailing list. Did you know that using the word “Video” in the subject line of your emails will increase open rates by 19%, click-thru rates by up to 65%?


Review your metrics after release, draw conclusions that will help you connect with your audience in a stronger way next time.


As marketers, it’s our role to be invisible most of the time. When you’re working to get a testimonial, most especially, you are looking to focus your limited video time on really compelling quotes from outside sources (third party testimonials carry far more weight than brand promises). To preserve those testimonials and interviews, here are some tips for interviewing your subjects:

  • Encourage your interviewee not to look at camera, but to look at interviewer.
  • Interviewer should be invisible. Don’t overlap your talking over other person – remember to stifle your laughs too much. (More editing later)
  • Get more footage than you need.
  • Encourage your subject to answer questions completely, because you usually won’t include the interviewer’s questions in the final cut – so the answers should stand by themselves.

Looking for help with your video? We have some of the best videographers in the region at Blank Page Marketing for your smaller projects – and great larger video production partners like our friends at Pounds Media for projects that require next-level production techniques. We’d love to chat about your next project – or to help you find creative ways to revive and promote your existing video material!
About Danni Eickenhorst:
Danni Eickenhorst is an UMSL Digital Adjunct Professor. She is also a renowned inbound marketing expert and social media consultant, working at St. Louis marketing agency Blank Page Consulting.