5 Signs a Video Story May Work

A few weeks ago I wrote about how it’s important to determine your story first, then choose a good format to tell it. Your story will give you clues as to the best way to share it. If you are a business, you might be telling the story of your founding or sharing a customer experience. If you are a non-profit, perhaps your story offers why your work is important or how donations make a difference. When should you use video for a story? Based on my experience, here are some signs that video may work:

  1. A process is involved that you can show. For example, you could showcase how people use your product or the way your product is made.
  2. People in the video are engaging and confident on camera.
  3. Movement is included. I literally mean things are moving in the video - people walking, flags fluttering, children jumping, etc.
  4. Kids or animals are subjects - they are usually appealing on camera.
  5. Hearing emotion in the voice and/or showing emotion in the faces of people is important to the story.

Let’s look at a great example of an engaging and effective video:


This might be the best public service announcement I’ve ever seen. According to the non-profit’s website, this ad was created to raise awareness of the importance of wearing a seatbelt. The organization stated it didn’t want to go with the “shock and awe” approach commonly found in road safety ads. Despite a fairly simple concept and camera set up, the emotion, surprise, and slow-motion make this video very memorable. It was a creative and interesting idea executed really well.

Another place you can go for inspiring and interesting video stories is Kickstarter.

Now, think about the stories you could tell about your own business or organization. Which story can you tell via video?