Monday, January 28, 2013

These 3 Videos Are Content Marketing Gold

This weekend, I treated myself to a few videos I had saved in my inbox from the week, and my instincts must have been right, as I don't save every video I get, and most likely neither do you. However, they all confirmed and inspired what I would call the "new" content marketing. Storytelling not just for its own sake, but that moves us, has a principle theme of overcoming obstacles, and includes a clear but not in-your-face Call to Action. Here they are:
1. Dog Rescue: How an iPhone Saved the Lives of Five Dogs, created by Hope for Paws, tells a great rescue story, and the creators weren't shy about taking up 7 minutes to do so, which some might think is an eternity in YouTube time. In Copyblogger's post on this, The Three Things This Viral Video Gets Exactly Right, Sonia Simone does a great job describing why this video is so effective, including the fact that it has a dramatic soundtrack, intrigues viewers with twists and turns (suspense) along the way, and has a clear Call to Action, to Share and of course, to Donate. When I checked the YouTube stats, I noticed the video had only been uploaded on January 7, and had already received nearly 200,000 views. Marketers should also take note that the video had a very real time feel, no fancy effects, and minimal editing. Watch. Learn. Donate. I know I will.
2. Good Life Project: Jonathan Fields Interviews Leo Babauta, is an insightful glimpse into the life of Leo Babauta, the mastermind behind Zen Habits. While the video is straightforward, and just under an hour, Leo's story is so compelling, as is his message of simplicity, that the style is appropriate for the content. I also liked the fact that while both Babauta and Fields are prolific authors, there was no book promotion or selling going on, which is refreshing in these days of "marketing offer overload," or MOO. OK, I made that up, but you get the idea. By the way, what is the storytelling premise? Overcoming adversity. Babauta describes a former life just a few years ago, in which he was in debt, overworked, overweight, frustrated, and unhappy. Giving up smoking marked the start of a new life, that includes a devotion to simplicity, health and fitness, family, decluttering, balance, and a global following. Viewers will appreciate this video as well as the Good Life Project series, for its inspirations and revelations.
3. Where The Hell is Matt from 2008, is my go-to video case study, ingenious for its simple yet complex approach, and what better way to tell a story then by dancing the jig in 44 countries over 14 months. Matt's videos are viewable on YouTube, Google Video, Vimeo and his own site. His "Where the Hell is Matt? (2008)" video has been watched over 43,700,000 times on YouTube. This is a great example of a simple message going viral, without any master plan or agenda. It's good to see Matt keeping the positive vibe going, with more recent videos sharing variations on what is now a pretty famous theme.
What say you? Have you seen an effective, moving, or inspiring video lately that you shared or took action on? Feel free to share in the comments.

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