Gorkana Insight & Analysis Team
Darren Ryan, associate director and head of video content at 4mediarelations, on visual media blogs taking the PR world by storm and why PRs should think about a visual spin on their sell ins...
The digital media landscape is moving at a great pace, information is being published and consumed faster than ever before. In order to capture the attention of your media contacts it has become even more imperative to use rich, multimedia assets to accompany the traditional press release.
Journalists, just like consumers, want much more digestible information and don't have the time to read through pages and pages of press releases and media biogs to find out more about someone or something. Instead, what PRs should be, and many are, thinking about is introducing a visual element into their sell in, producing topical videos, or inserting links to a video featuring key experts related to the story.
Videos accompanying a release have been big business for a while. But what I believe will soon take the PR world by storm are visual media biogs.
We all know that media biogs are so important. Today's technology has enabled us to make them exactly what we want them to become. A media biog with just some written copy and an image is a thing of the past; we've got the opportunity to treat journalists and consumers with a visual opportunity to know more about our experts. A short and engaging 'visual' comment from senior level executives or expert spokespeople about the company, its products and services, is a great way to establish and build your client's profile to journalists. By watching them in action, journalists actually get a feel of who they are and know that they would be great experts to feature on TV or radio.
They can also take soundbites for any videos they may be producing. And by listening to them speak about the thing they feel passionate about, some of that passion rubs off, it encourages media to trust them, to like them and ultimately to feature them – and surely that is what we are all looking for?
There is no denying that the use of video can be very effective in communicating a company's messages and continues to be an invaluable way to differentiate your client's offering, in turn educating customers and influencing the influencers.
Practical tips for PRs to create a video that is going to appeal to journalists and engage consumers:
- Don't make it too long – short is good! According to SEO experts, if you retain the interest of a visitor for the first 20 seconds they are seven times more likely to want to find out more.
- Whoever is introducing, make sure they're engaging – and relevant. For example, we recently produced a video for Dental Care Month for a dog food brand and got [TV vet] Marc Abraham on board to give his advice. Not only is he a trusted name in the industry but he's also a fantastic talker that people like to listen to.
- Don't over plug – some websites won't want the branding on the video so make sure you have two versions – with and without to suit.
- Make sure any content has takeaway information – what's in it for the viewer?
- A short video biog can demonstrate your client's area of expertise and the brand's strength in a very subtle and sophisticated way.
- Finally ask yourself – do you find it interesting – would you watch it? If it's a yes, you're probably onto a winner.
Darren Ryan, associate director and head of video content at 4mediarelations