Jun 25, 2019

3 Brands Effectively Using Long-Form Video

An audience’s attention span is no longer confined to just eight seconds, consumer behaviour is changing and brands should adapt their content accordingly.

  • Audiences can consume content in many forms and across many channels, but to really stand out and engage, the adoption of long-form video means brands can generate key audience loyalty and begin building real connections.
  • In the past, research indicated that video had been largely ignored, with a surprising 30% of B2B marketers believing that the use of video was crucial to their content marketing success.
  • Internet video traffic now accounts for 80% of all consumer Internet traffic, with large, well-known brands like Patagonia leading the way by incorporating long-form video into their marketing strategy with great success.

The average user spends 88% more time on a website that makes use of video content.

This statistic alone should be enough to demonstrate to brands how much more engaging video content is to the majority of demographics - it is a more digestible, engaging, and captivating marketing strategy.

Benefits of long-form video:

  • With this method of content distribution, there is more room for a brand to tell a real story that has a better opportunity to create emotional connections with an audience than for example, long, daunting pieces of text. This ability to tell an in-depth story allows for a more meaningful connection between consumer and brand. As well as creating brand awareness, a video means there is an opportunity to change how the consumer thinks about the brand.
  • Using video can take an audience on a journey, and it is a more effective way to educate. If a brand wants a key message to be taken away from their consumers, video is without a doubt an efficient way to achieve this.

1. Patagonia

A well-known value of Patagonia’s brand experience is the way they use their business to inspire and put into action solutions that better the environment. 

A key way they are doing this is through encouraging their consumers to keep their clothing for as long as possible before passing them on to loved ones, instead of disposing of them. This is a surprising message from a clothing brand, as one would assume they would prefer people to dispose of and then make further purchases of their items. However, Patagonia’s passion for the environment and adventure resonates clearly through their actions and messages to consumers. This project that encourages consumers to recycle and reuse their Patagonia gear not only demonstrates the quality of the items they sell but also makes the consumer part of the story they are telling. To stimulate awareness for this project, Patagonia created the short film, ‘Worn Wear.’

This video shares the story of a handful of Patagonia customers along with the story behind their clothes. The ages range from 11 to 30+ so as to target a variety of audiences, and each clip features a well-worn and well-loved Patagonia item with the story attached to that item.

“The most responsible thing you can do is buy used clothes.”

This video has received over 600,000 views on YouTube and demonstrates the opportunity that comes with long-form videos. Brands are able to tell captivating stories that encompass their brand ethos or mission. Consumers now strongly believe in shared values between themselves and the brand they are buying into and long-form provides a clear pathway to show consumers that there are mutual values. 

2. REI

What began as a group of 23 mountain climbers, the brand quickly developed into a community of active people with a passion for the outdoors.

This forms part of what makes REI a unique brand. To draw focus on their unique communities and camaraderie that comes with these communities and teamwork, REI decided to adopt long-form video content.

This powerful documentary titled ‘Paul’s Boots’ tells the story of a man named Paul, who dreamed of hiking the Appalachian Trail, but following his death, REI and partner The Dirtbag Diaries found 400 hikers who were willing to carry Paul’s boots the length of the entire trail. The documentary tells the story of each hiker’s journey through their own eyes, bringing together a community of individuals who shared a desire to help achieve Paul’s dream. 

“We all help each other achieve dreams.”

Despite sharing a similar ethos to Patagonia, REI’s original take by using their customers as inspiration to form the basis of their video content is effective in making their customers feel special by celebrating their journeys to the world. 

3. Airbnb

As part of their Host With Pride campaign, Airbnb showcased a key message to “help create a world where all love is not only accepted, but welcomed.”

Their campaign demonstrates support to San Francisco Pride Week along with the company's commitment to diversity and inclusion. The video is a montage of interviews from LGBTQ+ couples from around the world, telling their stories, experiences, and issues while travelling.

Through the use of long-form video, they are able to intertwine the stories of several couples, building up their personalities and giving them time to really tell their stories. This video educates and allows the audience to form emotional connections with the people in the video.

“Airbnb, Belong anywhere.”

Again, as demonstrated with Patagonia and REI, through celebrating and showcasing their values, Airbnb is presenting their audience with aligning values which means consumers will be more likely to continue watching and join in the discussion.

Long-form video is a great opportunity for marketers to connect with their audiences on a deeper level and these are just a few brands that are setting the bar for what is to come.