You know the future is video content, but you haven’t quite figured out why those wacky “unboxing” videos have such viral power.
While no one really has an explanation for those, Cenk Bulbul, YouTube’s head of strategy and insights, recently shared the necessary framework needed to make an effective video content channel that will resonate with your audience.
He presented his thoughts at NewsCred’s 2015 #ThinkContent Marketing Summit to a packed crowd to help them figure out “How Understanding Consumer Behavior Can Help Connect You to Your Audience.” In short, are you ready to deliver the video content that Generation C really wants to view and share, over and over?
What is Generation C?
Bulbul isn’t try to coin yet another generational phrase, but his idea of Generation C is all about creation, curation, connection, and community that engages consumers.
As explained via ThinkWithGoogle.com: “65% [of Gen C] are under 35 but they span the generations, empowered by technology to search out authentic content that they consume across all platforms and all screens, whenever and wherever they want.”Regardless of demographics, Bulbul pointed out some huge Gen C realities that every marketer today needs to know:
- The mobile screen is the first screen for Millennials, with 98% of them turning to smart phones first to view online video content.
- Gen C has a “curation mindset.” Three in four Millennials say if there’s a brand they love, they tell everyone about it; and they are just as likely to share content from a brand as they would any other video.
- It takes just a few seconds for the video content consumers to know what they do and don’t want to watch. So how can marketers determine if they will skip or stay? The key is to give them the power to decide. The only ads people want to watch are the ads that give them a chance to skip. “Choice drives action,” said Bulbul. “Consumers perceive videos that are ‘less like ads’ as more informative, authentic, and original.”
The 3 types of videos you need to create
So given the fact that Generation C is hungry for smartly created and curated content that connects with them and makes them feel like part of a community, what’s the formula for YouTube success? Bulbul said it’s having the trifecta of “Hero, Hub, and Help” content.
1. Hero – Hero content is usually the video that goes viral, like the “Epic Split” spot from Volvo. Bulbul explains that hero videos entertain, inspire, or evoke a strong emotional response, like crying or laughing. These are the videos to put your media dollars behind, and the ones in which brands explore the question: What’s our purpose?
“Purposeful ads influence purchase,” said Bulbul. He points to research in which consumers said that the brands that regularly provide useful information and engage them while demonstrating their principles are the brands they choose.
Hero content example: Always’ “Run Like a Girl.” Bulbul showed the clip and you could hear the sniffles in the room, probably even from those who have seen it before. “This was one of the top 10 ads on YouTube,” he said.
As part of a research study, Google conducted home visits with moms to see their reaction after watching the video. “The first thing they heard from the moms is do they have more videos like this? ‘I want to use this to start a conversation with the kids,’” Bulbul explained.
Which is the perfect segway into the true purpose of hero content: to lure consumers to your hub.
2. Hub – A brand YouTube channel should be a rich hub that is regularly updated with valuable and engaging content. As Bulbul explained: after wowing the audience with hero content you’ll have to work hard to keep the conversation going.
Hub content example: P&G, was ready for the traffic brought in from the “Run Like a Girl” spot with 10 additional videos of girls talking about their experiences.
3. Help – Lastly, you not only want to entertain your audience, but you want to educate and inform. Help content is essentially “how-to videos.” Bulbul shared the stat that 83% of surveyed moms said they search for answers to their questions online, and 2 in 3 use online video to answer their questions.
Help content example: Gerber, aware of this trend, examined Google searches for baby food to identify the top 40 questions moms had about feeding the baby, and they created a video for each question.
To wrap up his session, Bulbul encouraged marketers to keep on making purposeful content using the formula that he’s found to be effective. “We’re not doing different things,” he said. “We’re doing the same things, differently.”