16 Effective Ways To Create An Evergreen Video Ad Campaign

Consumers are engaging with online video more than ever, and social media users are constantly on the lookout for exciting stories to share with friends and followers online. This means the hype that a timely piece of video content creates can fade fast these days. The world and the media will rapidly move on to the next big thing after that specific, viral moment in time has passed.

Forbes Agency Council

On the other hand, evergreen content—as its name implies—always seems fresh, like a pine tree standing tall and green throughout the winter. And while one may not typically think of advertisements as having a long shelf life, when you combine evergreen content with the proven power of video to reach the masses, the content of a video ad can remain effective for an extended period of time.

An “evergreen” ad campaign might sound like an oxymoron to those not in the know, but not to experts of Forbes Agency Council. They understand that creating an ad that stands the test of time is a major win for a brand, and here, they explore various ways to achieve that elusive quality using video.

1. Provide Actual Utility For Consumers

For video content to be evergreen, it should feel less like an ad campaign and more like a brand helping the consumer. Videos with actual utility—those that guide a buyer through making the right decision for them, for instance—have a wonderfully longer shelf life. – Marc Paulenich, Hart

2. Include Three Necessary Ingredients

For me, there are key ingredients in any evergreen ad: a strong story that evokes emotion in the target audience, supporting visuals and the right choice of audio/music. Most brands focus on only one or two of these ingredients. The right audio/music is such a powerful ingredient that it creates a good mood and evokes a positive feeling even after the ad has been running for decades. – Nishant Mishra, The Higher Pitch

3. Focus On Universal Human Values

Video ads that focus on universal human values, such as kindness, love or hope, can become timeless if executed well. These are deeply rooted values that transcend cultures and countries, and they can provoke high levels of emotional engagement with the viewers regardless of the industry. – Gjoko Muratovski, Stanford Institute for Innovation in Developing Economies

4. Create Authentic, Upper-Funnel Content

Creating evergreen video content is 100% possible if you are willing to be authentic. If you want content that will last, highlight and create upper-funnel video content that embodies the values of your brand and products. There will always be relevant stories and subjects that can be used in a variety of ways. – Hunter Johnson, Xpedition

5. Appeal To Human Emotions

With brands such as Dove and Old Spice having created evergreen video ad campaigns, we know that it’s possible. The reason it worked for them was they contained humor or a human insight that hadn’t been explored before. Today, “riding the trend” is big, but that’s the thing with trends—they lack a shelf life. Being evergreen means standing out from the noise. Don’t follow; create. Can you create a viral-worthy message, jingle or hashtag? Appeal to human emotions; that’s the only trick. – Rohit Kumar, Zensciences

6. Focus On The Company And The Customer’s Needs

The best approach for creating evergreen video content is to focus it on the company rather than the product. As long as the company is relevant, so is the content. Products and services change and evolve, but content that supports the company and speaks to the customer’s needs can last through these changes. The customer’s needs are evergreen until you solve them. Make content that speaks to those needs. – A. Lee Judge, Content Monsta

7. Look To Other Timeless Campaigns

Look to other ad campaigns and brand positionings that have withstood the test of time. Mastercard and Budweiser are among the brands that have created iconic ads and messages that are truly timeless. Although creative treatments have evolved, the core ideas have remained constant. – Nancy A Shenker, theONswitch

8. Focus On Your Company’s ‘Why’

Go as high level as you can in expressing what makes you you, and capture B-roll without identifying too much of your “what.” If you can showcase the reason why your team gets out of bed each morning in your video content, you won’t need to go back and reshoot and edit every time you change a product, make an acquisition or update a landing page. – Sara Steever, Paulsen

9. Don’t Replace Meaningful Messages Too Quickly

Brands need to build real connections with consumers, so start with finding human truth and an authentic message. One mistake we tend to make as marketers is freshening up creative too quickly. We work so hard to land on a credible message and then swiftly replace it with a new idea, when, in reality, the solid, original message was just starting to take hold. When you land on a deep, meaningful message, stay the course. – Scott Harkey, OH Partners

10. Create A How-To Video

How-to videos are the most evergreen. Just about every brand can create them if they identify challenges their customers and prospects face. Such videos should provide step-by-step instructions with defined outcomes. Avoid references to trending topics or current events that will date the video. Include evergreen keywords in the video description so that it is easily found. – Robert Finlayson, Bold Marketing and Communications

11. Develop A Message That Builds Credibility Over Time

An evergreen video can be incredibly successful if it covers the simple basics—who, what, where and why—and includes a call to action. Think of the evergreen message as the mainstay video that builds your market share and establishes credibility over time, while new videos highlight special sales or newly added products/offerings without having to reintroduce your brand to the audience each time. – Chelsey Pendock, Innovision Advertising

12. Cater The Campaign To The Audience

An evergreen video campaign needs to be catered to the audience. One piece of creative cannot speak to everyone. Geico is a great example of a brand doing it right. For measurement, marketers can’t look at performance metrics such as new customer acquisitions or transaction volume. The only way to measure evergreen campaigns is to look at brand lift. It’s more about qualitative than quantitative results. – Michael Hubbard, Media Two Interactive

13. Help People Find Your Video Content All Year Long

Once you have your video content, publish it on all social media channels (YouTube, Facebook and Instagram) with the relevant hashtags and keywords so that people can find your content all year long. Sharing the video as part of a blog post on your website will also help consumers find your content throughout the year. – Adrian Falk, Believe Advertising & PR

14. Exclude Non-Evergreen Content

You can create evergreen video content by excluding non-evergreen content such as statistics, numerical figures, products, prices and trends, which are likely to change. Your content should focus on the long-lasting problem and solution that your product or brand provides. – Omer Riaz, Urtasker

15. Focus On A Core Element That Is Unlikely To Change

Evergreen campaigns can always be created if you focus on a core aspect of your business or a service that has been around for a long time, has been proven and is not likely to change. Focus on imagery that is fresh and somewhat neutral while still being modern, and avoid obviously trendy images that could change or become outdated quickly. – Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne LLC

16. Don’t Rely On Cultural References

It is possible to create evergreen video ad campaigns with a shelf life of two or even three years, as long as the concept and execution are tied to the brand and don’t rely on cultural references that could become irrelevant in a few months. Craft a message that resonates with your customers’ needs and wants and use the power of video to create an emotional connection around them. – Mary Ann O’Brien, OBI Creative

11 Expert Predictions On The Future Of Video Marketing

Video has been consumers’ favorite method of content delivery for some time now, but marketers are always finding unique ways to utilize it in their outreach to current and prospective customers. From short-form videos on TikTok and Instagram Reels to various livestreaming platforms and influencers unboxing products, the biggest trends in video marketing that compel consumers to check out brands and purchase their products and services are constantly evolving.

Of course, determining the best way to leverage video in your brand’s marketing this holiday season and into the new year isn’t as simple as reading a “top trends” list, but that’s one good way to start. Here, 11 members of Forbes Agency Council share their top predictions for the future of video marketing to help guide marketers in making the best use of this increasingly critical tool for reaching and capturing the attention of target audiences.
Forbes Agency Council

1. Data Will Drive Video Content Strategy For Each Platform

Video is still one of the best ways to connect emotionally with a consumer. Data will increasingly drive content strategy and optimization, while the speed at which video content is produced will continue to get even faster. Creating tailored content for each specific platform will become increasingly important as well—such as TikTok versus Instagram, a TV commercial or even long-form content, for example. – James Schiefer, Schiefer Chopshop

2. OTT/CTV Will Capture More Advertising Dollars

Over-the-top, connected TV will capture increasing portions of marketing budgets for several reasons, including audience size, user modality, ad completion rates and measurability for performance advertisers, as we can now measure CTV ad exposure against actual business outcomes such as clicks, sales and return on ad spend. And perhaps the overriding reason dollars will flow into OTT/CTV is that the TV remains the most powerful, influential screen in our lives. – Jason Fairchild, tvScientific, Inc.

3. Livestreaming Video Will Continue To Grow

Livestreaming video will continue its explosive growth, especially via esports. For example, adding Twitch has been a key factor in Amazon’s OTT viewership surge. Livestreaming offers opportunities where traditional sponsorships are out of reach due to high minimums. Plus, it provides richer analytics that are a broadcast/digital blend and tie in more closely to brand KPIs versus standard impression delivery/reach. – Greg Garunov, Sightly

4. Soundless Influencer Videos Will Drive Conversions

Video continues to be a key driver to close the sale of your company’s product. Partner with influencers who successfully use or demo your product in a time-lapsed or simple version without sound or a voice-over. This is key to having the product pop up in consumers’ social media feeds, leading users to demo it and click through to purchase. – Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne LLC

5. Promotion Via Free Video Features Will Keep Users Engaged

Videos are the most effective and popular way to grow an audience on social media. At this moment, there are only two free features to promote your product or service on Instagram, and both are video-based content: Reels and Live Rooms. TikTok is growing faster than other apps because videos keep users engaged better than text-based posts. – Oganes Vagramovich Barsegyan, Digital Beverly Marketing Solutions

6. Video Marketing Will Get Even More Granular To The Viewer

Mass video consumption through OTT will become much more specific thanks to retargeting capabilities, and you’ll see a lot more advertising in mainstream media formats that are individualized for that viewer. – Spencer Hadelman, Advantage Marketing

7. Data and Artificial Intelligence Are The Future Of Video Marketing

As more brands than ever integrate products directly into video content, and as that content continues to be decentralized, tech will be critical in predicting which options will be most impactful. AI unlocks insight into optimized brand/creator/influencer partnerships, allowing brands to maximize return on investment and granting creators the ability to monetize content. – Ricky Ray Butler, BEN

8. Audience Quantification Will Replace Household-Level Data

As consumers increasingly adopt digital video, the household-level data used for measurement must be replaced with more accurate audience quantification to capture true frequency and reach across linear, streaming and CTV. Additionally, engagement and acquisition will play a larger role in video marketing as attribution becomes more sophisticated, video formats blend and buying processes become less segmented. – Donna Robinson, Collective Measures

9. Video Will Soon Become A Necessity For Marketers

If you look at the current trends in digital (social, paid, email), notice the amount of movement that you are seeing on each channel. Then notice how much more prevalent it is than before. Since platforms (such as Instagram) are favoring accounts that post video content, this will very soon become a necessity for marketers. My advice is to step out of your comfort zone; you will need video soon. – Christopher Tompkins, The Go! Agency

10. More Niche Sites Offering Curated Videos Will Launch

Full-screen mobile video feeds, such as those seen on TikTok or Instagram Stories, will have a long shelf life with mobile users. These curated journeys provide an endless experience tailored exactly for each user. Expect to see more niche sites launch with similar forms of short-form, vertical video content. – Brian Meert, AdvertiseMint

11. Brands Will Need To Leverage Influencer Video Content

The future of video marketing is going to rely more on the content produced by a brand’s customers than the content produced by the brand itself. Regardless of what you think of influencers, the fact is their content is enjoyed more than any brand’s content. Smart organizations will need to leverage influencer video content if they want to stay ahead of their competitors. – Roger Hurni, Off Madison Ave

9 Best Practices For A Successful Video Marketing Campaign

Video is one of today’s most popular forms of content marketing. Engaging visuals are often more effective than the written word, so it’s no surprise that brands are using video to attract consumers. It can also yield a major ROI for a business — as long as it’s done right.

Video Marketing Campaign

If you’re interested in using video as part of your marketing strategy, follow these recommended best practices from the members of Ad Age Collective. Their tips can help you get started on a successful video marketing campaign.

1. Offer value first.

Make sure the video is interesting in style and look. Make sure you are telling a story visually, but remember to keep it short and give. Don’t just take and sell. Offer your followers something in return for their time. Video is super impactful and works. You will see more of it in 2020. – Shana Starr, Bastion Elevate

2. Make sure it passes the silent movie test.

Without the sound on, would the first five seconds of your video compel someone to watch the full-length version? That’s the test you should run your videos through before posting. People have short attention spans, and they most often see the first five seconds of your video playing with the sound off, whatever device they’re on. So treat the first frames of your video like it’s a silent movie. – Todd Morgano, Falls Communications

3. Make it mobile-friendly.

Remember the mobile-first mantra when producing video. If you’ve produced an action feature for a 40-inch screen, that’s just one version. Make sure you have a mobile version that can achieve impact in a four-inch square with no volume (which might require a few keywords on screen). – Moira Vetter, Modo Modo Agency

4. Don’t sound too scripted.

Video, despite its ROI, is a costly investment for any business. With so much at stake, it’s tempting to control every single part of the process, but this must be avoided. If you script every part, it sounds — surprise surprise — scripted! Instead, outline the points you want to hit and focus on having a conversation with the talent to yield those moments of raw emotion that only video can capture. – Patrick Ward, Rootstrap

5. Incorporate user-generated content.

Every day, people are creating amazing videos around your brand and sharing on social media. Ask individuals for permission to use this content in your video marketing. Visit Indy is one brand that is now running Facebook video ads made entirely from UGC video content sourced from locals and visitors. The result? Higher click-through rates and return on advertising spend because the content is more compelling and authentic to viewers. – Amrita Gurney, CrowdRiff

6. Customize your creative to the social platform.

Strong ROI on video advertising is closely tied to having compelling creative aligned to each individual platform and corresponding audience. You shouldn’t use creative for Facebook and Instagram interchangeably with YouTube, and you certainly shouldn’t just repurpose a TV spot. Video advertising offers the opportunity to tell a compelling story — invest in making that story great. – Adam Edwards, Metric Theory

7. Convey a clear, customer-focused message.

Make your videos count by ensuring your message is clear. In every single video, make sure the consumer knows how the brand will positively impact their life and why they need it. Pretty images only work if it’s worth their time, so make sure the imagery has a clear message that can provide a direct impact on the consumer and, therefore, generates ROI for the brand. – Jessica Hawthorne-CastroHawthorne Advertising

8. Lead the viewer to an action.

When you create a video, it’s important to lead the viewer into completing an activity that helps your business and them. Create a call to action, offer a discount or engage with them in some way. Asking your viewers to take action can lead to an increase in subscribers, your engagement rate and even conversions. – Syed Balkhi, WPBeginner

9. Find an authentic and compelling voice.

The biggest change in the way video messaging was done last century versus this one is the end of “The Authoritative Voice.” The story-delivering pros, actors and voice talent have lost out to voices that seem like one’s peers. They still need to be great storytellers and compelling characters, but their authenticity matters far more than their authoritative polish. – Scott Montgomery, Bradley and Montgomery (BaM)