The Blockbuster Launch
Everyone is familiar with the movie launch recipe for success. They release teasers, interviews and get everyone talking about it. Then they explode onscreen with the film’s debut. Finally they explore through reviews and “behind the scenes” deeper themes of what it stands for and what it all took to bring it all together.
In a nutshell, their repeatable recipe is Excite, Explode, Explore.
So it seems fitting that the Toronto International Film Festival applied this mantra and to their 100% online event – a first in their 45 year history. By livestreaming guest speakers, film screenings and awards, affording new opportunities to connect with audiences beyond Toronto. They also encouraged those at home to dress up in a red carpet style while watching the events at home.
For your event, think about the people you can engage before, during and after the event, like key stakeholders or consumers that will benefit from what you are doing.
Ask them what excites them, or how it’ll help them, or what it has taken to put together. You can even use the movie trailer theme of problem vs. solution to build up understanding and interest for your customers and your colleagues the positive impacts that your launch product or service is all about.
And get your consumers in on the action by fostering involvement in the launch encouraging them to posting specific content with a purpose using your unique hashtag.
Social platforms continue to evolve their live content options, making it easier to use and even preview. Most social media algorithms place higher value on live content, and given that Live videos produce notifications that ping your fans and followers is an added bonus for helping your videos stand out too.
Social media ultimately rewards those who create compelling, real-time video for their audiences and embrace going live.
And you can also incorporate other video options, such as Reels which Instagram also places higher value on, to build excitement and awareness of your live content, as well as giving it another place for new possible audiences to discover your content.
While Zoom might come to mind as a safer way to livestream, it comes with a lot of challenges. While you can easily record meetings, the biggest danger is poor quality audio and video which is influenced by each participant’s connection, and is well out of the organizers control.
If you are planning on using any live tools – practice first.
Even just filming yourself walking through your planned live content will help you smooth out any issues before you go live. While the point of going live is to be authentic, it’s important to prepare. Many of the platforms allow you to play around with their live tools in a draft or unpublished mode. Take note of the things that you can control, like where you’ll be filming, time of day (if there is any natural light), possible background distractions, noise interference – any details that might distract or conflict with your messaging.
Delivery on Demand
Make you event launch like an exclusive restaurant dinner delivered to their home.
If people can’t come to your event – let your event come to them!
Set a dress code, make playlists of mood-setting music available and release customized video content throughout your virtual event. And you can even get further content created by having your host “go live” answering comments, and get your audience to submit content of themselves at their virtual event attendance. You can even use more traditional means of sharing your content by using posted print materials like invites, postcards, party favours, or multiple sealed letters to be opened at prescribed times with QR codes to access the content. These are just a few ideas that can add excitement and a thoughtful personalized touch to your event, always be sure to think about what approach and ideas your audience will connect with best.
Even high end restaurants have been turning ordering meals into an at-home event, like Toronto’s Alo Restaurant. With a limited number of bookings for their take-home multi-course dinner service, you receive not only the restaurant quality food but also a curated playlist and personalized menu brochures with your names, date and meals.
This approach can also be utilized for products, not just events. Casper mattresses released playlists on Spotify and YouTube to coincide with new product launches. By having these “sleep channels” on multiple channels they are also reaching different audiences as key demographics in your audience will most likely use different platforms.
We The People
Instead of focusing on your event as a one-off, use this opportunity to create a community around your brand or product. A great way to kick this off is with a strategic video content strategy that motivates your audience to get involved.
This can range from high-quality professionally filmed testimonials, strong emotional narrative-led content or attention grabbing consumer-created video content.
Most important factor is what your audience cares about, and how to ignite people’s interest and create genuine engagement with not just content – but a cause.
This cause doesn’t have to be a complex topic. It could be uniting people through video challenges or competitions. Or sharing the ongoing experience of your brand in everyday life.
The most effective campaigns are those where the call to action is simple. Make it shareable, easy (& safe) to participate in, and something that people will want to watch. When you’re considering video, storytelling is the key to unlock their attention and starting a relationship. It’s also important to consider who is the best fit to deliver your message. Think about what your brand stands for, and how your product or service helps people, and the different ways video can showcase this.
A terrific example of this is the Ask a Swede campaign where people could dial a number and be put through to people (who had signed up to be a part of this programme as Swedish Telephone Ambassadors). This strategy allowed the Swedish Tourist board to not only make real connections between people, but also created honest and compelling user generated content in the form of authentic Swede voices from everyday people.
Before you make plans to create event content, make sure you partner with an event video production company who’s done it before, and knows how to really connect with your audience.
As we all face these challenges together of navigating the new normal, it’s important to partner with those who have the skills to adapt, and get the job done.
If you haven’t tried video before, or if you’re looking for a new way to do things, we’re here to answer your questions.