AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

One-Minute MarketerVideo in the Aisles

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Video in the Aisles

I stood and watched people hustle by an aisle cap with a video display.  I could hear some of the audio, but with all the sounds in the Wal-Mart, it was impossible to make out any of the words. 20160724_144958

If this were a Facebook ad, we would have added words on the screen to make sure that the video’s audio communicated the story.  We would have also done some research–a bit more comprehensively than my observations, but I can tell you the video was way to long for anyone to get the message.

I’m guessing that the video was made for some other purpose, not in-store viewing.  It’s great to repurpose video content. The problem is that you must make sure the video is made for the medium in which it is used.

The other obvious problem is message alignment: The video is advertising fusions, yet the aisle-endcap has Miracle Whip featured.

Here are six rules for waiting-room videos, in-store videos or lobby videos:

  • Quick, bite-sized tidbits (10 to 20 seconds)
  • Apply closed captioning or subtitles to the video
  • Double your typical editing so the video really moves (edits should occur every 2 to 3 seconds)
  • Use large graphics to help tell the story
  • The first few seconds are critical so use techniques to attract attention
  • Talk to one person. “Hey you with the full cart, do you have any healthy, high vitamin cereal in that cart for your kids?”

Even if you believe that your audio is fantastic or key to the sale, know that someone who must hear the video all day (receptionists, shelve stockers, store salespeople) will turn it off or down very low.  Lights, camera, action, and no audio. Silent movies are now very much back in style in the aisles.

Written by:

Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle. After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant. He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.” Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.” One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College. Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board. Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.