Marketers need to tell storiesDespite your attempts to subscribe, follow, and opt-in to receive communications from your favourite brands and thought leaders, have you ever thought about the amount of content online that you don’t get the chance to consume in your day, simply because you missed it in your feeds?
This question begs another question: Who’s missing out on the content that you’re so carefully crafting and sharing to engage with your target audiences?

Your content consumers are in control, and that’s a shift that organizations — particularly marketers — have been challenged to roll with across all of their initiatives. To fulfill the need for value-based communications and engagement, marketers are leveraging content marketing strategies to support their communities’ information needs and build a relationship as a trusted advisor.

You can put your best foot forward to cultivate a role in the ‘circle of trust’ by sharing valuable content that supports the discovery process, but the real key to ramping up your rapport with the right communities is to create shareable content. Content so good that, as author Ann Handley puts it, people have to thank you for it.

Video is a great way to engage with people because it’s visual, easy to digest, and available and shareable across all channels. It’s also one of the greatest ways to truly execute on the constant demand to tell stories – both about your end users and your brand.

Here are 4 storytelling rules for the video marketer, with a few examples of videos that take the cake for great storytelling!

1. Don’t be vain

Carly Simon said it best: this song is not about you. Effectively engaging video content is about the goals, problems, and shared interests of your audiences and community. We build connections and relationships with content that delights, educates, and compels people to take action. Use video to profile your end users, their solutions to common problems, and if you’ve got to inject your brand into it, focus on the use case. It’s customer first!

2. keep it contextual

Borrow basic journalism principles (who, what, why, where, when, and how) to convey that your content is centered on its consumers and their interests, as well as the information and changes that affect them in their everyday roles. By now you’ve seen Chipotle’s “Scarecrow” video, which is a leap pad to promote the company’s interactive app game. This video is a great example of how to stay contextual because it profiles the human interest of its customers: sustainability and health consciousness.
Chipotle’s contextual “Scarecrow” video marketing:

3. Find your format

What’s your company’s signature? If it makes sense for your business, consider a video series to consistently engage with your audience and allow them to come back for more insights. Our social business team at Oracle Eloqua just rolled out our “Modern Marketing Minute” video series. We’ll offer tips, news bits, and/or executive commentary, in about a minute. Consider white boarding, how-to’s, and customer profiles to find your format.

4. Make corporate compelling

Some organizations have more flexibility than others when it comes to the vibrancy and “colour’” of your video marketing. It can be difficult to step outside corporate parameters with limiting marketing realities. But you can easily leverage your social media channels, customer communities, and blogs to create more personalized corporate communications and spread your own word. Check out this cool example of how Oracle personalized its brand by profiling employees for an “It Gets Better” campaign video. It’s a great touch that highlights real employee stories by a corporate brand.

Amanda Batista

As part of the Oracle Eloqua Marketing organization, Amanda drives Eloqua’s major content initiatives to support thought leadership, team enablement, and educate customer communities. She also manages the award-winning ‘It’s All About Revenue’ Blog, crafting content that helps marketers and salespeople bridge their gaps and rethink technology to meaningfully engage with their communities. Follow Amanda on Twitter @AmandaF_Batista.