I was recently talking to a young music graduate who was hoping to make a career in the industry, so I asked him what the most important thing is to succeed? He told me it was simple – too ‘be relevant’.

He listed a number of bands who were relevant today and I got quite a shock! It wasn’t necessarily the more recent bands, but a mix of new and old. One thing that stood out was the experimental bands or the ones who were always doing something different, re-creating themselves throughout their careers, were the ones who stay relevant! It’s the ones who changed the landscape. Relevant music has to not only have a big impact but also be influential to other musicians.

It got my head spinning as to what that meant for the craft of making videos and I realised it’s just as…. erm…. relevant! We’ve all seen it – our social media feeds filling up with yet another event ‘highlights’ video about how great an event was, or an interview about an old piece of news you have seen 2 weeks earlier. This may well explain why your video doesn’t get the hits you would like – it’s not relevant anymore!

Let’s take the event highlights video for example – why isn’t that relevant to a general LinkedIN audience? You know you’ve all seen them and probably switched off if you had nothing to do with the event. Basically it’s only relevant to the people who were at the event and the stakeholders at that event, so likely to be irrelevant to the general LinkedIn viewer (and re the style, we’ve all seen the sped up time-lapse footage or drone shot of a boring conference hall countless times, sorry!)

Which brings me neatly onto style – another key to making video content relevant is the style in which it’s shot. Like music, if your video content looks like its shot on an old style video camera it will look like it was filmed in the 1980’s and so not particularly relevant to today. These days ‘video’ footage looks like film footage! People love watching well shot cinematic footage – ‘the look’ gives the content a reason to watch and so it’s relevance to the viewer (or perhaps i’m biased as a Film maker myself!) If your video does add a new style or a new way of communicating something it is even more likely to be relevant in todays fast paced and ever changing media landscape.

Other relevant themes are videos that show how things are made, or news pieces with ‘new’ stories or a recent discovery or an explainer video explaining a new topical concept perhaps. They are relevant to todays news feeds and will attract a lot more interest from your audience.

So before you put any video content on an external platform, think about how relevant it is! You don’t want to put an internal comms video on LinkedIN let’s say, or a business themed interview on Facebook or Instagram. You need to think about who those audiences are and what kind of thing they watch, and finally what the style is before even thinking about hitting record!

james@jwp.tv