Seven flavours for your next videos: Thinking of your audience

Branded video content... Online content marketing... Advertiser-funded production... these are pretty ugly phrases for opportunities that should actually be pretty thrilling.

As we know from personal experience, we're living through a time we'll never see again – a great disruption where what used to be "the audience" now has the ability to broadcast too.

We're all "fans" today and there are no barriers (or excuses) to stop brands from directly finding their community of fans.

But as technologies, norms and etiquettes change by the week, there are some basic ideas that, time and again, still have an impact... and we'd like to share some of these flavours with you.

Team Seven filming Jobsite: The Advantage

While working up your next video idea from initial brief to final delivery, they might be worth throwing into the mix...

Thinking of the audience - acknowledging that your potential fans crave a beginning, a middle and an end.

Formats - an idea that could transform the structure of your single video into a regular series that grows.

Interactivity - even TV companies forget that the web isn't just a transmission mast; could your video premise be a two-way street?

Longevity - does your video absolutely only have to serve a goal for this quarter?

Real People - might your story have more authenticity and resonate on an emotional level if told in the words of real people?

Quick Turnaround - is there a win to be had by covering an event and uploading it soon after?

Best Teams - drawing upon specialist skillsets to execute the idea, behind the camera and the YouTube login.

We'll have fun exploring these over the coming weeks, but the first flavour we'll try tasting is...

Acknowledging that your potential fans crave a beginning, a middle and an end.

We think that traditional, one-way 30-second messages and propaganda struggle to make an impact online. They risk coming off as interruptive... even oafish.

They don't seem interested in encouraging an ongoing relationship or offer a reason to subscribe.

This isn't why your audience is online and they can go elsewhere with a single click.

So similar to the ambition of TV programming... we try to keep the viewer on board by structuring our videos with a setup, obstacles and payoff.

Or more simply, a beginning-middle-end.

We love these examples of intriguing the viewer and for rewarding us for our time with unexpected moments: – Our Blades Are F***ing Great

We love that it's still a succinct message – hanging a lantern on the fact that the company is trying to convey what it does, and even making fun of that premise.

The Guild: Episode 1

Or there's using a literal narrative structure.

The Guild has built a community from scratch, which raises the possibilities of creating entire webseries.

Drawing in viewers and intriguing us enough with webisode-end cliffhangers to keep bringing us back for more...

Jobsite: The Advantage trailer

For Jobsite: The Advantage, we used the same production, editing and scripting techniques as a reality TV show trailer.

Hopefully, we can keep you on board because you recognise the parody... which means we've also hopefully bought the right to deliver the call to action as the ending.

Jobsite: The Advantage - Behind the Scenes

Jon Salmon is Head of Video at Seven. For more insight and ideas for your next production contact

Posted in CMA blog
1stJul 2014

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