As a Yankee’s fan, this is hard for me to admit, but the Braves hit a homerun with their new music video: Baselines.
This video showed up all over my social media today. It’s a great view and can inspire bands and labels to better utilize the power of video in their marketing and outreach.
This kind of social marketing can be a real bonus for bands who want to grab interest about a big show, new CD or a cause the band is involved in helping. You don’t have to create a music video like this, of course. There is no end to what you can come up with. I’d suggest tying it into current events somehow. Let your imagination run free.
What does this video accomplish that can be of benefit to independent bands?
1. It’s appealing. Whether you are creating a music video or leveraging the power of video to sell out a show or new CD, your video MUST capture your AUDIENCE and hold their attention. When you plan and shoot your video, make sure to get outside opinion and feedback on it. Does it draw the viewer in and hold their attention? If you can’t afford to hire a production team, then brainstorm with friends who aren’t in the music industry. Get their insight into the scripting of the video and ideas about how to shoot it. Since you want the video to appeal to your audience, you need to know WHAT appeals to them. What you THINK appeals to them may be completely different than their reality. *NOTE: Don’t ask your mom or girlfriend – they’ll always tell you your efforts are amazing no matter how bad the video is.
2. Smart use of #hashtags. Without saying a single word about following them on Twitter or utilizing the #FearTheChop hashtag, this video created a movement that is sure to trend. Yes, I know they’re the Braves so it’s easier for them to hit critical mass but you can still use this not-so-subtle technique to your advantage.
3. Have fun with it. Make the experience both enjoyable and memorable for your audience. Whether your goal is to tug at heart strings or make people laugh, you have to create that “feeling” within the video. That begins with YOU actually ‘feeling’ it when shooting the video. But it reaches farther than that. This is where I suggest getting outside help. Take the time to scour the internet for tips on how to make a video truly engaging. Do your homework and make the video WORTH someone’s 2 minutes. And that brings up another important point – it’s better the video ends when your viewers are wanting more than to extend it past the point of interest. This would be the perfect time to be the 30 second wonder.
4. Get fans involved. If possible, find a way to involve fans. This might be handing them the camera and asking them to come up with something to market a show or it could mean inviting fans to be a part of the filming. But, it could also encompass things like the embedded #hashtag that speaks directly to your fans without saying a word. What if you filmed a short, upbeat and funny invitation to a gig with each band member wearing a brightly colored wig? What if you asked them to tweet which wig was the favorite and let them know that the band member who got the most tweets would wear the wig during the performance, where the results would be announced? Be more creative than that, of course. Do the wild and unexpected.
5. Be unique. We’ve seen enough video’s of bands singing in their vehicles. STOP. Find your own thing. Do it well and ask your fans to help share your efforts. If you’ve built good rapport with your fans, they’ll help you spread the word.
Video is both the hottest way to share information and the most under-utilized medium out there. Whether you create fun, 6-second Vines or a one-minute Halloween-themed who-dunnit, video is the way to go to harness the power of your audience.
Post your video here in the comments. I’d love to see what you come up with.