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Your Recipe for Effective Video Content

What’s the recipe for addictive video content? Well, sometimes the ingredients are complex, and sometimes they’re simple, but they’re usually displayed right on the screen with a little jingle as the BuzzFeed Tasty team is whipping up not only decadence, but their next viral video. The new-media digital publisher has blazed new trails and it’s paying off, literally. Nearly half of BuzzFeed’s revenue comes from Tasty videos.


The BuzzFeed Effect.  If you haven’t seen a BuzzFeed Tasty video in your newsfeed…I don’t even want to finish the sentence. If you haven’t, go watch one then come back. The Facebook channel amasses more than 50 million likes and its videos are viewed on average about 2 billion times each month. You read that correctly, 2 billion.


So not only have they cracked the code and have millions of us enthralled in basic hotplate-style cooking, but nearly half of their revenue comes from video sponsorships related to Tasty. An ode to multi-channel content marketing at its finest. But how do we crack the code?


According to Content Marketing Institute, nearly 90% of B2B marketers are incorporating content marketing, and 85% of survey respondents said that high-quality, efficient content creation is the most important factor in their success. So taking a step back and developing the recipe for great content can make you more efficient and more effective when creating content.


What is the recipe for great video content? We mere mortals idolize the viral video content, so let’s shoot for the moon, but we’re all doing just fine if we land among the stars and produce great content.


Recipe for Effective Video Content

Start with a clean kitchen. It starts with a clean (or decently-clean) workspace. This is where you should complete an audit of your current content. Open the cupboards and see what you’re working with. Do you have an outdated content strategy that needs some dusting off, or have you never used a strategy and just created a few blogs here, a case study or two and maybe a video testimonial from like four years ago. Make note of what you have, measure how successful it has been (views, clicks, downloads) and make note of what is good and what needs improvement for each of these pieces.


It’s not always from scratch. Homemade ziti is fantastic, but sometimes, you need to use Hamburger Helper and you’ve got the noodles and the sauce and the meat, and sure it’s kind of the same. All of those items you just identified in your content audit – how can they be used as a launchpad for your next piece of content? Don’t be nervous to combine something already generated and inject it with a fresh perspective, new data, a recent example, and bam, it’s a whole new dish. Starting from scratch has its merits, but don’t reinvent the wheel if you have the resources in front of you to make a great piece of content. Leveraging what you have around you will make you more efficient and will help your content have a similar voice, and tone.

Side note: If this seems like a different idea, you’re not alone. Only 29% of leading marketers systematically reuse and repurpose content.


Cheese-covered vegetables still count. Don’t think that asserting subject-matter expertise means that your content needs to be uber-professional, well-balanced, good for the soul, etc. What are you, a rice cake? We consume so much content every day: blogs, social, video, podcasts, television, etc. So while your vegetables are definitely important, and they should be included as often as possible, don’t forget to add some personality. Your brand voice and personality are what set you apart, so don’t be afraid to add some cheese.


So there’s no recipe? You’re not alone. When asked if their organization has a content marketing strategy, 41% of survey respondents said “Yes, but it is not documented.” Ok so you’re going by memory, and that’s alright occasionally. But write down the recipe for future use. When you continually guess, the result is never quite the same and before you know it, you’ll have so many iterations that one piece to the next is unrecognizable. As we all know, in food and in marketing, moderation is important. So while the documented recipe should be your guide, don’t let it thwart your creative vision.


If you didn’t Instagram it, did it even happen? You know what we mean – food pictures all over Instagram. (Oh and good news, we can re-gram them even faster now, #FoodEnvy ensues). If you didn’t take a picture of your latte with the heart swirl in it, did it even really happen? This is where the multi-channel marketing comes into play. It’s essential to take your content and apply it across all appropriate channels. Video made for YouTube is not the same as Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. (Facebook also 100% prefers native videos and that affects your organic viewership). With written content – how can you graphic-ize it to be relevant on Instagram, or tease short Twitter tidbits? You can’t just host content on your website and expect someone to stumble on it. Show off your masterpiece!


Listen to the people!

Rave reviews? Or if it’s anything like my cooking, I get a very sweet but swift, “better luck next time.” What do the BuzzFeed videos have in common? Everything! Upbeat music, ingredients that are more drool-worthy than physician-recommended. Your feedback loop needs to be rock-solid in order to optimize your strategy and content production moving forward.


What to measure is up to you, but we caution you not to fall into the trap of tracking everything and then reporting on everything. You need to add thought into the data-driven marketing model you want to build.


Voila, your recipe for effective, and addictive, video content that leverages audience feedback and multi-channel marketing to tell your brand’s story. You can store that recipe right next to this one.  


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