We all know how excited people get when the Super Bowl rolls around every year. For some, it's about their team potentially winning a world championship, for most it's about a team that is NOT "their team" but enjoying one of the biggest television events every year. For me, it's about the commercials. You can always watch them the day after, you always remember the funniest, and the ones that give you goosebumps...you know the ones I am talking about. Now, we know there are 364 more days then just that Sunday in February, which means there are videos & commercials that can make the same "hair raising" impact. From a digital marketing aspect, we see these videos first hand.
Now, everyone has an opinion on what makes a video impactful, but to keep it high level, we are going to focus on videos that leave a lasting impression on their audience. These video marketing ads and the success they have accumulated can all be viewed differently, so if you don't read the fine print along with each example, you're going to miss the points I make as to why they have made an impact...so read the damn fine print folks.
We have all gotten to know Facebook over the years...from the earliest days where we weren't quite sure if this would stick, through all of the poke wars you had with friends (what the hell was that, by the way?), to the Facebook we know today. A machine, a behemoth, a platform that keeps you connected with everyone and everything you could wish to be connected with, even if you check in once a month. But as Facebook grows, so does it's capabilities, and heck if any of us know the numerous updates and new features they pack in on a daily basis...so what did they do? They made a 12 part "Facebook Tips" video series. The longest video is 30 seconds, each being made in a simplistic graphic design, to grasp EVERY user, whether a "what's Faycebuk" noob, or an "FB Saboteur" who knows it inside and out. Facebook allows everyone to learn about their product, learn how to use it, no matter your experience level. Not only that, but every video is the length of the annoying ads seen on most social video sites, so you gather intel quickly. The simplicity, yet broad following message of each piece makes it something impactful, because everyone can watch, and everybody can learn.
Hotels.com - Captain Obvious
Speaking of the pesky ads we find on sites like YouTube, we move to one of my favorite video marketing ads from Hotels.com. An ad that ACTUALLY pokes fun at video ads. And, if you are familiar with the "Captain Obvious" campaign, you will find this lighthearted ad speaking to you, for the hours of 15 second ads you experience, sometimes crying "when will it enddddddd?!" When an ad speaks to you, and has a message that correlates with both positive and negative emotions that such a large piece of the population share, you are doing something right. Not enough companies do this. They may take a global view, focusing on a PSA style message, such as Texting and Driving ads, or those really noteworthy "Above The Influence" Marijuana ads from the good old days. Please don't take this out of context. I fully support ads such as the Texting and Driving campaign because there is a clear issue of awareness there. What I am saying, is that there are so few companies that take a more practical approach, dangling what some would consider #realworldprobs, such as 15 second YouTube ads, and turning it into marketing gold. Real world "probs", is a joke, and we all know this, but the idea that that phrase is known to everybody as something that is in fact NOT an actual real world problem leaves hundreds of identical small scale nuisances (like YouTube Ads) dangling like a piece of marketing fruit. Hotels.com gets it, and they took it, and ran with it to produce what most would see as a hilarious ad.
I feel as if they may be cheating, to use an actual Super Bowl ad, but I don't care and you will see why. Also, if you haven't heard of GoPro, what the heck have you been doing with your life? Sheer domination in all things action and adventure-based (and more), GoPro not only produces an exciting product, but based on that product, their content is handed to them on a silver platter from a video marketing standpoint. Living in Colorado, it's hard to imagine just being a "sitting on the couch" guy. We live in the mecca for outdoor adventure and sport. With every video GoPro releases, based on being a POV style device, you get to live this adventure from anywhere. We all dream. Some may dream of becoming a princess, others of shredding the ski slopes in the dead of summer. What's the one thing you want to do if you fit that second persona? Watch videos of people shredding the slopes! The greatest thing about GoPro, is EVERYBODY can feed your video watching needs...everybody posts videos of the coolest content in a broad range of activities. Now, for the ad itself...no one can say "wow GoPro, that's different of you", because the ad is a perfect representation of themselves. But they aren't afraid to get better either in the lesser known impactful areas. The cutting of the music as the finger turns the GoPro on, and the ending wipe of feeling like you are entering the water with them is enough to say "damn". GoPro is taking their marketing videos to the next level with timely and sensory based editing, which if you have eyes and ears, you feel like you are in the video.
Bonus Points: Just to add to GoPro and their campaigns if you feel on the fence of their impact, remember that they aren't afraid to step out of their niche market. They have been known to grasp the hearts of non-action adventure enthusiasts. Remember this ad? This is a statement, and one that clearly steps out of their market, and it left an impact on more than just the GoPro followers.
This video from First Descents really needs no explanation of how it lights a fire in their market. A nonprofit organization, First Descents gives opportunity to young adults who are either battling, or have won their fight with cancer. Their message of defying the odds, and kicking ass against a disease that doesn't need any explanation to it's effect, is one of the most gripping brand identities in existence. It's about giving to those who need it, but way more important, giving these people the ability to conquer their biggest fears in life and adventure, and gaining confidence through their efforts. The video itself sends waves of hair raising chills through anyone who watches it. First Descents doesn't just SHOW you their brand through the numerous adventures and stories, but right off the bat they drive home the impact that cancer has on young adults. You see it, right at the beginning..."a young adult is diagnosed with cancer every 8 minutes." That fact alone scares me, and it most definitely scares everyone affected in one way or another by this disease. The perseverance and fight, and the journey through an epic adventure with First Descents bleeds through this two and a half minute branding video. The icing on the cake is the music...it's not tragic, it's not a sorrowful song, it's one of strength and grit, because that's what First Descents is about.
American Greetings - #worldstoughestjob
How badly were you sweating in your first interview? If you are like me (Eric Pratt, you still haunt my first interview memory...just kidding, but kind of...), your armpits could be classified as a Great Lake. American Greetings hashes every nightmare job role you never wish to have in a job. It's everything you ever think of when you have a job interview "what are they going to ask me?", "What are the job roles?", "Am I even qualified for this position?". Yeah, you know the feeling. They set up a fake job, and held REAL interviews with hopeful candidates. I won't spoil it, please watch it before you read further!
Before you even reach the end, and this happened to me, is "why is a greetings card company doing this? Fake jobs and interviewing for a very high level position?" It leaves you a bit confused, but needing to watch to the end...success #1, you need and want to watch it through completion. The times I close out of a video before even 50% of it is mind boggling. Then you get to these job roles and requests that are beyond outlandish, and the thing that stuck out to me is the candidates answers...I don't know if it's because I am a "yes" man, but these people are strong individuals (remember, they have no idea this is fake). So in a sense, you know the job is fake, but these people and the message is so real...success #2, the authenticity is something we ALL relate to. And finally, you come to the conclusion. Cue the tears...seriously. It now makes sense why a greetings card company is holding interviews for a fake job (well a real one actually): Mothers Day. At that moment, we all think of our mothers, and the immense feeling of their "job". The sentiment, the love, everything you feel for your mother, all rush to you at once in this ad...and damnit, you want to tell her that right then, with a card. I do recommend watching it a second time, because every single job responsibility they mention, will make you think of how tough it is to be a mother. This ad alone, encompasses everything in regards to a connecting and emotional impact that it's really hard to put words to it...so I won't...
Video marketing is here to stay, but what will always remain is the question of success and "have you made an impact?" These ads prove that brands are putting in the work. It's not just about how cool you can make your video with cool animations and cuts (although I would argue that...see example #1 and #2), but it's about knowing your audience. If you're ready to connect the two, then drop us a line, and we may make you cry tears of joy with a video that's waiting to be created.