There was a time when it didn’t matter how long your videos were because people were happy to watch most anything online if they had a fast connection. Then came the video deluge, with millions and billions of videos all competing for eyeballs. “Make it short! Make it snappy!” was the cry of the day.
These days people watch all lengths of videos, as long as they are interesting. Think about Netflix and the other movie and television services – viewers stay glued to those videos for hours at a time, which is great training to watch your videos, too. But that doesn’t mean you can bumble and stumble and ramble on. Here are seven tips for getting your videos watched and acted upon:
1. Continue to favor short videos. If you can make your video shorter while still delivering the same content, do it.
2. Don’t get crazy with the intros. Have you ever clicked on a video only to get a 30-second intro before the actual video started? Did you stay for the whole 30 seconds? Most people don’t. Start your videos off with a bang, delivering immediate content to get the viewer hooked.
3. Don’t bury your lead. Burying the lead is an old newspaper term for hiding your biggest point somewhere in the story, instead of leading with it. If your video is going to show them how to double their profits, start with that – not with how you grew up on a Kansas wheat farm.
4. Use energy and enthusiasm throughout your video. Steven Wright the comic can get away with speaking in a dry, monotone voice because he makes it funny. The rest of us need to inject plenty of energy to keep viewers watching.
5. Don’t hide your call to action at the end. No matter how great your video is, not everyone will watch it all the way through. If you want them to click on something, try inserting a clickable annotation within the first few seconds or at least within the first minute. People in a hurry will appreciate this.
6. Do you have a long training to present? Break it up into a series of shorter videos.
7. Have you got a great speech or show to share? Don’t break it up. Instead, allow your audience to sit back and enjoy the full experience of it.
The best rule of all – never, ever, ever be boring – not even for a second. If you can follow just this one rule, your videos will be viewed and shared like gangbusters.