Marketing with Video & How to Rise Above the Noise

Your average scroll through your social media feed will only confirm what we’ve known about the human species since… well, ever: visuals grab our attention. We know this so well that we sometimes have to remind ourselves not to fall for it (i.e. “don’t judge a book by its cover”). But with this natural pull in mind, it’s no surprise that video is increasingly becoming the go-to marketing method, particularly on social media.

So, how do you use video to your advantage? And how can you stand out from the crowd?

The truth is, you have to treat video content how you’d treat everything else (written content, photo content, etc.). It can be easy to only think of a video as a stand-alone piece of marketing – and complete videos with a full story (news stories, commercials, interviews, etc.) can be just that – but just like the right photo, passage, or tagline, video can also be implemented as part of a larger picture. For instance, many business websites have begun to implement video directly on their landing pages, either as background imagery or as featured sections of the site (think of testimonials). As a result, businesses are seeing better conversion rates, as well as other benefits. [For more ideas on how companies are using video, click here.]

I must admit, I purchased a piano keyboard precisely because of effective video (and I’m ashamed to say that I don’t use it often enough).

If you don’t have seven minutes to spare, I’ll sum up the content. A keyboard connoisseur, if you will, spends the entirety of the video discussing his collection, and eventually plays the Williams keyboard. Only around the 5:15 mark does the video actually address the product. It seems lengthy, but in reality the video creates a purposeful and strong build-up of credibility in the musician that leads to a trustworthy conclusion about the instrument. It’s a strong testimonial, and it does better to display the capabilities (and quality) of the instrument than any short demo could do.

Why did this work on me? Because it resonated. The video was of a high quality (which reflects back on the quality of the product), they knew their audience (customers who were unsure of the quality of the product for the price), and it was genuine. The musician’s delight of the quality of the instrument mirrored the company’s desire to share it with customers, and it made the purchase of the keyboard more of a buy-in to their passion for music as a whole.

Viewers want to know that you care about whatever product, idea, etc. you’re trying to sell them, and that needs to be evidenced by the production quality of your video content. Does your video need to be able to win a short film fest? No. Do viewers need to be able to clearly hear dialogue of an interviewee (for example) rather than a blaring backing track? I’d wager so. (Will I continue to use lots of questions? Probably. Please bear with me.)

Now that we know what makes video content worth watching, surely the next question is how to stand out when everyone will inevitably be pushing video content. Some experts suggest keeping up with trends and tailoring your message, but I personally wouldn’t focus on trends (especially if that feels untrue to your brand). Chasing trends can lead you astray from your brand – or at least lead to eye rolls (or worse) from the very audience you are trying to attract. (Surely a quick search can provide examples of Twitter hashtags gone wrong.)

The honest answer is that if it resonates, people will spread it. If a viewer takes the time to watch something and ends up feeling it wasn’t worth their time, they won’t be checking out the next one. However, quality content that is engaging and satisfying will lead to its spread. If viewers connect with it, they are likely to share it with friends. After all, what’s better: reaching a wide audience for a short time with one topical post, or building a reputation amongst friend groups, peer groups, communities, etc.?

Finally, in a world of click-bait, don’t be that guy (or girl). If you have quality content that stands alone, give it the headline/title/caption it deserves.

If any of this is starting to sound applicable to social media in general, that’s because it is. While video is rising in popularity and setting competitors apart from those who aren’t up to speed, the audience is the same. We’re still visual creatures. The same rules apply.

And we can still see through disingenuous crap.


By Amber Schadenfroh, Business Major – IUPUC

As a part-time student, Amber is aiming to graduate with dual concentrations in Marketing and Management. While most creative fields garner her interest, she most aspires to someday work in the film industry.


Actions speak louder than words

A famous proverb reads “actions speak louder than words” but what exactly does that mean? The proverb is referring to nonverbal communication specifically. Research has proven that we are communicating more and more through nonverbal means.  However what even is nonverbal communication? Nonverbal communication is the act of conveying a thought, feeling, or idea through Gestures, Posture, facial expressions, and eye contact. An example of nonverbal communication dealing with gestures is waving, pointing, and using fingers to indicate numeric amounts. Gestures are commonly used in courtrooms by lawyers in order to sway juror opinions. Posture is also another common way we communicate nonverbally an example of this is  Arm/ leg crossing. Posture can indicate feelings and attitudes. Another way we communicate nonverbally is through facial expressions. So much information can be gathered about a person when looking at their facial expression. This is the first thing we notice about a person even before they speak. You can tell a persons mood by the look their face. For example if they are happy they will probably be smiling and if they are angry they will be frowning. The good thing about nonverbal communication through facial expression is throughout the world facial expression relatively mean the same thing.  Finally eye contact is another way that we communicate nonverbally. Examples of this include eye glazing over and rolling of the eyes. Everyone takes nonverbal communication in differently so that is what we need to be aware of when doing it.

We use nonverbal communication in conjunction with verbal communication to repeat, emphasize, support, or contradict the verbal message that was stated. One way it can be used to our advantage is complementing a verbal message by adding to its meaning.  Another way nonverbal communication can be used is to help people who are mentally or physically impaired.  Nonverbal communication specifically helps out deaf people through the movement of hands, fingers, eyes. Finally nonverbal communication can be used to our advantage by reducing wastage of time. Non verbal communication message can reach the receiver very fast.

While there are some advantages of nonverbal communication there are also some disadvantages. One disadvantage is nonverbal communication can sometimes be vague. Since no words are used which can clarify the meaning it can be difficult to figure out what someone meant by their non verbal communication. No dictionary can accurately describe someone means of non verbal communication. Another disadvantage is it is multi-channeled. For example if you are watching someones eyes you may miss a significant hand gesture, which may make it confusing  to try to keep up with everything.   Another disadvantage of Nonverbal communication is it is cultural bound. An example of this is thumbs up which means good job here in the United States, however in other culture this is seen as obscene gesture. Finally distortion of information is a disadvantage of Nonverbal communication. People commonly misinterpret peoples body language for example.

Nonverbal communication can be an excellent way to communicate with others if used correctly. However in order to be a more successful communicator we need both equal amounts of non verbal and verbal communication.

Closing the Age Gap

If I had a dollar every time my grandparents asked me how to use Facebook, fix their phone, or even how to send a text with a picture attached, I’d be rich. In today’s society of ever-evolving technology, the baby boomers seem to have a much steeper learning curve than the millennials.

The communication style between these two generations is drastically different for many reasons. One of which being that the technology that is available today is very different than the technology that was available in the 1970s/1980s. Many millennials have grown up communicating through texts and snapchats instead of through outdated letters and phone calls. Baby boomers would not be able to figure out snapchat and can barely figure out how to text. Most of them would much rather call if they need to talk or reach someone. Although these two styles of communication are much different, the same idea is behind each form of communication and the same goal is achieved, just in a different way.

Another big difference between baby boomers and millennials is cell phone usage. Today, it is becoming more and more acceptable to carry a conversation through text, while also carrying a conversation in person. If you have ever tried to even send just one text while talking to a baby boomer, you most likely received a dirty look, or a snarky remark about your phone. To them, the act of even just checking your phone while carrying a casual conversation can come across as extremely disrespectful.

Even though at times the communication styles between these two age groups seems to be drastically different, the one thing we all have in common is all generations have a need for human interaction. No matter the form.


Emma Sanders

Psychology Major at IUPUC