A couple of months ago I wrote an article for the good people at NuBlue. It’s here if you’re interested. The thrust of the article was that when you’re making videos that sell (or have any impact really) you’ve got 8 seconds to get your viewer ‘hooked’ – otherwise they’ll click away and the opportunity is lost – perhaps for ever. It’s interesting really that this article was published at about the same time as Twitter retired their video sharing app, Vine. An app that was primarily designed for people who had the attention span of a gnat, because its videos were only 7 (or was it 8?) seconds long.

I always thought of Vine as a massive waste of time so no tears were shed here when Twitter announced its demise.

The format allowed just enough time to get interested and then – pfff! It was gone! Obviously the people at Twitter had the same thought and they did the sensible thing and killed it off. Because 8 seconds isn’t long enough. But you’d be surprised at what is. Research has proved that the shorter the video, the more likely it is to be watched in full. And, believe me, you need it to be watched in full! There’s an interesting article all about that here from The Next Web: So no surprises there – an ad/video of 30 seconds ends up with over 80% of viewers staying on to watch the end. And bear in mind that includes the rubbish ones as well as good ones, so if your 30″ spot is even half good you’ll see a lot more traction than that.

And this really brings me back to where I started in this business many years ago – making TV commercials.

Often these days they’re not book-ending the SuperBowl or first up in the Coronation Street centre-break, but for all intents and purposes they’re TV ads all the same – just placed as pre-rolls or centre breaks on You Tube. Making TV ads requires a certain mind-set and a certain way of approaching things – plus a heck of lot of discipline as a film-maker. Many less experienced people in the film business haven’t ever had to work to those strictures before and as a result many struggle to make the format work – and the results are sometimes truly pitiful!

So next time your company or organisation is looking to commission a video – bear in mind that oftentimes you’ll actually be wanting to commission a TV COMMERCIAL in all but name.

And look for a team with the experience and track record of commercials to make that happen! For great ideas on how to make your web videos as cool as commercial, contact me now. 

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