Home / Internet Marketing News / You Ought to Be in Pictures: 5 Amazingly Successful Brand Video Marketing Campaigns

You Ought to Be in Pictures: 5 Amazingly Successful Brand Video Marketing Campaigns


My first cell phone was the unbreakable Nokia 3310. You could run over that thing with a tank and it would still be up for a game of Snake. At the time, its green-and-black display was a technological marvel: You could play games! Look at (pixelated monochrome) pictures! What a modern marvel it was.

Now, of course, almost all of us have a pocket-sized screen that puts the 3310’s to shame (if only they were half as durable…). Most of us are never more than arm’s length from our smartphone. And we’re using those screens primarily for video—fully 50% of all mobile traffic is video streaming.

Whether you’re B2B or C2C, your audience is watching videos. They spend more time with video content than blog content. Even senior executives watch and share: 75% watch work-related videos weekly, and over half share videos with their colleagues.

For marketers, the video revolution represents an enormous opportunity. But getting people to choose your video over thousands of other options can be a challenge. As with all content in a content-logged world, brands need to create extraordinary video to earn attention, likes, and shares.

The following five brands took content marketing best practices, applied them to tell extraordinary stories with visual interest, and experienced incredible success. Here’s how:

#1 – American Greetings: World’s Toughest Job

Most of us have experienced the nerve-wracking ordeal that is a job interview. Combine a job interview with the inherent awkwardness of video conferencing, and you have the recipe for a truly uncomfortable situation.

Greeting card company American Greetings capitalized on those fears by posting a fake job listing, then doing video conference interviews with respondents. Watch the video before you read the spoiler below:

As the interviewer details the harsh working conditions the job entails—no breaks, extra work on holidays, not even time off to sleep—the interviewees squirm in discomfort. Finally, he reveals the twist: He’s describing what moms do every day. The interviewees wipe away tears, talk about their own mothers, and the video ends with a quick link to American Greetings’ card creation website.

Why it Works:

American Greetings examines a familiar societal role in an unexpected way. The real people being interviewed are a surrogate for the viewer; our reaction mirrors theirs. Most importantly, they put the product in the background, focusing on the emotional heft of the content.


  • Get at the meaning behind your product—people don’t buy cards because they enjoy spending money on folded paper.
  • Candid ‘reaction’ videos are hugely popular, and for good reason. They let the viewer imagine him or herself in the same situation.

#2 – Android: Friends Furever

It’s estimated that nearly 90% of web traffic is videos and pictures of cute animals doing cute things. Okay, I made that up—but if you check your Facebook feed, 90% seems about right. Android jumps into the cute animal trend with this simple-but-engaging video. It’s composed entirely of stock footage of animals in unlikely pairs, but still gets across Android’s point: Their software works on a variety of devices, not one monolithic product line. (*cough* Apple *cough*)

The video is charming, and definitely earned its over 23 million views. My favorite part, though, is in the comments. Android reveals that many of the animals in the video are cared for by non-profit organizations, and provides links to learn more and support them.

Why It Works:

Android puts the adorable animals front-and-center. It looks like any number of wildly-shared viral animal videos, until the slogan and logo come peeking in at the end. It seems designed to brighten someone’s day more than sell a product—so it’s free to do both.


  • Less is more. Sometimes you can mute the dialog and let the video speak for itself.
  • Trust your audience. Android could have added a more pointed jab at Apple, or highlighted its product catalog, but they trusted the audience to make that connection.

#3 – Gainsight: Blank Space

Gainsight’s annual Pulse Conference is their biggest event—and biggest expense—of the year. They needed to bring in attendees to make sure the event was a success. Instead of a video with talking heads of the featured speakers, Gainsight earned attention with a playful approach unique for B2B conference marketing. They recruited Chief Customer Officers and VPs of Customer Success to lip sync an a capella version of Taylor Swift’s “Blank Space,” with new lyrics:

The resulting video is a win for everyone involved. Gainsight attracted 2,000 new inquiries about the conference, the executives were featured in front of their company logo bringing humanity to their brands, and viewers got a catchy tune about customer satisfaction.

Why It Works:

Gainsight went all out with the production on this video. They drafted new lyrics to the song, hired an a capella group to perform it, and got their influencers to lip sync pretty convincingly. It’s light and playful, but still gets across the information: Gainsight knows a lot about customer satisfaction, they work with these brands, and they have a conference coming up.


  • Employ influencers in unexpected ways. You can bet every exec featured in this video shared it with their network.
  • For top-of-funnel video, entertaining the viewer is paramount. Make it fun, make it catchy, and people will watch through to the CTA.

#4 – Always: Like a Girl

Ads for feminine hygiene products have not, historically, been the most compelling pieces of content marketing. Usually they go for the “blue liquid pouring into a pad” or “women walking through a meadow talking about life” tropes.

Always took a sledgehammer to those tropes with their #LikeAGirl campaign. They asked young women to throw “like a girl,” or hit “like a girl,” with the expected results. Then they asked younger girls—those who hadn’t absorbed negative stereotypes—the same question. The striking difference provides a humbling lesson in what “like a girl” can—and should—mean.

The resulting video is empowering, inspiring, and contains not a single scene of blue liquid being dumped on anything.

Why it Works:

Like American Greetings did with motherhood, Always challenges the audience to examine something they usually take for granted. They don’t hold back on their message of empowerment, and they’re aiming for a cultural stereotype far broader than their product line.


  • Think about customers outside of where their lives intersect with your product.
  • Take a stand: How can you use your brand and your platform to make the world a better place?

#5 – GoPro: Hero in Action

As one of the kings of content marketing, GoPro has built an empire out of user-generated content from skateboarders, surfers, and other extreme sports fans. So it’s surprising that one of their more popular videos doesn’t feature a single half pipe or mountain face:

The fireman who attempts to save the kitten originally uploaded the video to his YouTube account. GoPro spotted the footage, and with the owner’s permission re-packaged it and posted it to the main GoPro account. Currently the video sits at just under 30 million views.

Why It Works:

With this video, GoPro expanded the idea of what their product was for. It could highlight instances of everyday heroism, not just extreme-sports hedonism. They were able to tell a compelling, human story that reached a wider audience than their usual fare.

The Takeaways:

  • Always take an opportunity to celebrate everyday heroes.
  • Don’t be afraid to broaden your brand’s emotional palette.

There’s No Business Like Show Business

With the advent of content marketing, brands suddenly had to become publishing houses. Will video marketing turn every brand into a Hollywood studio?

Probably not. You don’t need a whole film crew to make most of the videos on this list. Keep your content relevant, customer-focused, and entertaining, and you won’t need Michael Bay-size budgets to excel.

Want to learn more about content marketing strategy? How can we help?

Header image via Shutterstock


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The post You Ought to Be in Pictures: 5 Amazingly Successful Brand Video Marketing Campaigns appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

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About Daniel Rodgers

A lot of news that you will not see in the paper. A lot of technology that is coming out that will not see in the paper.

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5 Key Traits of the Best B2B Influencers

Traits B2B Influencers

Traits B2B Influencers

Marketers are still asking, what is B2B influencer marketing? Here’s a definition I’ve been using over the past 5 years or so:

B2B influencer marketing is activating internal and external subject matter experts with engaged networks to advocate and co-create content of mutual value that drives measurable business goals.

As the groundswell around influencer marketing rises and becomes a normal part of the B2B marketing mix, the volume of information and misinformation on the topic also increases.

One of the most popular questions people also ask about B2B influencer marketing focuses on what makes a good business influencer? By now we all know that popularity alone does not make someone influential. It’s certainly important, it's just not the only thing.

As B2B marketers mature in their understanding of the role influence plays and how the dynamic of brand content co-created with industry experts plays out with customers, they begin to realize that other factors matter. Topical relevance matters of course as well as resonance of the topic amongst an influencer’s community.

B2B Marketing Influencers

The intersection of individual expertise, how well that expertise resonates with followers and the size of network creates a baseline of characteristics when evaluating whether a certain influencer might be a match.

But there’s more than that. Understanding what makes a great influencer is both art and science, soft and hard skills. The success of identifying, qualifying and engaging influencers is also directly tied to how they will be engaged and to what end.

Some people reading this might think that influencer marketing isn’t the magic pill some are playing it up to be. There’s a reason for that, because it’s not magic. It’s more like alchemy.

The reality is, there’s no one formula for the perfect B2B influencer, but there are some common characteristics that B2B brands should look for in varying proportions according to what’s important to a program or activation. I call those characteristics:

The 5 Ps of B2B Influence

Proficiency - In B2B marketing, the vast majority of those considered influential possess deep expertise in the field they work in. This is a significant difference from many B2C influencers who are often self proclaimed as influential with clever media creation skills.

As B2C influencer content and engagement tactics evolve, some are crossing over into B2B with a trickle of opportunists successfully creating influence amongst B2B audiences not solely for their expertise, but for a combination of adept social media content creation skills and some expertise. B2B marketers who do their due diligence will be able to filter accordingly.

Popularity - While network size is not the only thing, nor is it the most important thing, it is definitely a metric to consider. Some marketers swing in the direction of ignoring audience size altogether because of lower engagement rates with popular influencers. This is simply foolish. All things being the same, I’ll take 2% engagement of an influencer with a million followers over 2% from someone that has 1,000 followers.

What matters is how network size factors in with the type of influencer you need. For example, popular influencers aka “brandividuals” are often best for top of funnel content. Niche domain expert influencers are better for middle and end of funnel content. Engaging a brandividual and expecting conversions is just naive.

Personality - If you’ve worked in B2C influencer marketing and been exposed to all the characters there, B2B is going to seem a bit dry. Now there are some colorful characters in the B2B influencer community, no doubt. But personality is often a trait that needs to be uncovered when you’re working with some types of business influencers.

The good news is that savvy influencer marketing practitioners know how to plant the seeds that can grow and blossom within an otherwise introverted influencer. You don’t need them to be a colorful character, ripe with personality per se, but you do want them to connect with the passion they have with their craft and how their expertise can help others be successful.

Publishing - Content is the media that conveys the ideas of influence and while B2B influencers are not expected to produce the same types and quantity of content as in B2C, it is ideal when there’s a platform where the influencer publishes. At a minimum, that would be social networks but to be a B2B influencer, it’s most likely that also includes articles contributed to publications if not research, books and presentations.

Promotion - The value a B2B influencer brings beyond adding expertise and credibility to brand content is the ability to share what they helped create with their network. Trust of brand content is at a low, especially with advertising. Customers yearn for authentic content and the right kind of influencer collaboration can give them that, delivered via the influencer’s own distribution channels. That means social networks for course but also potentially blogs, email newsletters, podcast, LinkedIn Live, contributed articles or columns in industry publications.

I know some people reading this are thinking there could be even more P’s like being Prolific, Persuasive or Passion. Yes, there could be so many more but we have to draw the line somewhere! It's important to be able to manage the data and insights necessary to factor these characteristics into selection, qualification and engagement.

Some of these traits will not fully reveal themselves until you work with an influencer on a few content activations. Others will fluctuate over time and that is normal. It's important to understand that influence is a temporal thing. It is not fixed or permanent. It’s important marketers realize that before they disengage an influencer in the short term due to lower performance. The same goes for high expectations after great performance.

Organic influencer engagement is a little dynamic and what you don’t spend on paid influencers like an ad buy you will (in part) need to invest in relationship management, education and even tips that will help the influencers be more effective.

B2B brands with high influencer churn or low performance often apply “ad buy” perspectives to a what is actually a relationship driven effort. Mismatched expectations are not helpful for anyone, so think about the 5Ps as you evaluate and nurture your influencer community. Consider where of each your ideal influencers need to score on the 5 Ps in order to be a good match for the kind of activation you have in mind.

When there’s 5P alignment, there's happiness: for customers, influencers and your B2B brand.

The post 5 Key Traits of the Best B2B Influencers appeared first on Online Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

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