The Top 5 Video Storytelling Formats That Drive Engagement

If you’re in marketing, you already know  video content reigns supreme.

Video content captures an audience’s attention and drives engagement in a way that static content simply can’t. Here’s how powerful a tool video is in marketing right now:

  • 91 percent of marketers use video as a marketing tool.
  • 96  percent of marketers say video is an essential part of their strategy
  • 92 percent of video marketers in 2023 say video gives them a good ROI
  • 91 percent of consumers want to see more video content from brands

Source: Wyzowl

Those are some heavy numbers. And, as a marketer, we’re sure you don’t need convincing on the importance of video. But knowing which kind of video content best supports your brand’s vision and mission can be a different story.

In this article, we’ll discuss the top types of videos businesses use to connect with their audiences and drive engagement.

The Top Video Storytelling Formats in Marketing

explainer video’s main goal is to paint a clear, vibrant picture of what you have to offer

1. Explainer Videos

compelling story is at the heart of every successful product or service. Explainer videos are your tool to tell that story.

Often synonymous with ‘sales videos,’ an explainer video’s main goal is to paint a clear, vibrant picture of what you have to offer. By breaking down intricate concepts into digestible, relatable chunks, explainer videos ensure that viewers come away with a holistic understanding of your product or service. They use all types of methods to do this, like:

  • Interviews
  • Presentations
  • B-roll footage
  • Product shots
  • Animations
  • On-screen text
  • User-generated content

The best ones weave multiple types on this list to create a potent combination that turns curious viewers into customers.

Who’s doing it well?

Honestly, we weren’t expecting to do this. But our parent company, Fiverr, created a great explainer video about the “Fiverr Journey,” showcasing entrepreneurs benefiting from the platform’s services. You’ve got high-quality video footage, an upbeat soundtrack, and great video editing that clearly takes you through the story Fiverr’s telling.

2. Testimonials

At their core, customer testimonials are simple  a real voice sharing an authentic experience with a product or service.

Referrals are one of the most powerful ways to build trust with your target audience. A satisfied customer speaking about their experience isn’t a sales pitch; it’s a reliable narrative about success.

There are several ways you can shoot your testimonial video content. You can take the straightforward, low-budget approach, having the customer tell their story directly to the camera. Or you can go a full-on short documentary style. Sometimes, the low-budget approach can be more effective because it feels real and unscripted.  Other times, high-quality visuals and strategic editing can make the testimonial more compelling.

Regardless of your approach, if the story and sincerity are there, the impact will be there too.

A quick note: If you’re nervous about asking a client to participate in testimonials, don’t be. Most satisfied customers are happy to participate and speak about their experience. It has value for them as well.

Who’s doing it well?

Blue Apron does a great job combining testimonials with social media. Here’s a particularly good example: Chef Alex and Olivia cook up the latest recipe. This video checks a couple of boxes. It walks you through how to make the recipe and showcases how easy and delicious Blue Apron’s product is. It also has the priceless extra ingredient of having an extremely cute dog in a small chef’s hat. That’s hard to beat.

Behind-the-scenes (BTS) videos give viewers a peak behind the curtain.

3. Behind-the-scenes Videos

These days, it’s all about authenticity. Customers want to feel like they know the brands they’re using. The greater the personal connection, the stronger the brand loyalty. Behind-the-scenes (BTS) videos give viewers a peak behind the curtain. BTS videos can also double as brand videos, showcasing your company’s culture and highlighting why you’re an impactful brand to engage with.

Here are a few benefits of BTS videos:

  • Authentic engagement: BTS videos are a chance to forego polished content and use genuine, unscripted moments to create an emotional investment from the audience.
  • Humanizes your brand: That authenticity also recalibrates how your audience sees you. It’s not a business-to-human relationship anymore. It’s human-to-human.
  • Builds trust: The human connection helps build trust. But BTS videos also show you have nothing to hide. That transparency increases your brand’s integrity and reputation.
  • Educates: Walking the audience through your process educates them and accentuates your value.

With BTS videos, you can blend candid moments, narrated processes, and team insights that provide a well-rounded view of your brand. It’s not just about showing the audience. You can also tell them. Why are certain processes you use crucial? How does your team’s collaboration enhance productivity? Highlighting those nuances can take your video from generally informative to personally impactful.

Who’s doing it well?

Red Bull does action videos better than just about any company on earth, but they’ve also done a great job connecting with viewers through BTS videos. Check out this video of Christian Horner’s Red Bull Racing Garage Tour. It’s a great, high-quality walkthrough of their Formula One garage set-up. Viewers feel like they are getting to peak behind the curtain, creating intimacy. Plus, Christian Horner is personably talking to the camera, and you get to see workers in action around the garage.

4. Company Culture Videos

Videos can capture a brand’s essence better than any other content type.

Company culture videos give viewers the “why” behind the “what.” We’re going to say it again  authenticity. Your goal as a brand is to be more than just a logo, product, or service. You want people to see your business and immediately know and feel your values.

Company culture videos impact your audiences through:

  • Emotional connection: Your brand video is your chance to build a bridge between you and the audience. The best brand stories create a feeling inside the viewer. And when viewers feel, they remember.
  • Value proposition: An effective company culture video answers the question, “Why us?” By showcasing your values, you’ll attract customers whose beliefs match yours.
  • Taking a stand: The modern consumer is discerning, informed, and value-driven. They’re not just buying a product. They’re investing in a brand’s philosophy. Advocating for social causes that relate to your brand elevates you into a responsible thought leader.

Who’s doing it well?

We’re including two videos here because we like them so much. First up, Netflix. Netflix likes to showcase its unique and diverse work culture. In their company culture video, they spotlight their values of “Freedom” and “Responsibility” through candid interviews with some of their workers worldwide. It’s super effective at demonstrating their company culture while humanizing their brand through human interviews. 

The second is Patagonia’s company culture video. Here, one of their executives takes you through their established culture and environment while also telling their company’s story. In it, you get a fantastic mix of interview footage mixed with B-roll and BTS. 

Social media videos are a great way to reach new customers and show them who you are and what you value.

5. Social Media Videos

Social media videos are a great way to reach new customers and show them who you are and what you value. The best ones strike a balance between viewer engagement and brand messaging. They need to be designed for maximum impact in minimal time.

Here’s how they shine:

  • Immediate Engagement: You have a direct line to your customers on social media. That increases your chance of engagement while also creating the chance to get immediate feedback.
  • Broad Reach: Social platforms offer unprecedented access to massive user bases. A strong social media strategy can use that potential to attract new customers and directly engage with audience segments that match your buyer personas.
  • Versatility: Social media videos can be almost anything, whether it’s a quick product demo, behind-the-scenes glimpse, user testimonial, or a fun challenge.
  • Increase Sales: Social media videos can also compress the timeline of the buyer’s journey through their direct engagement, leading viewers to purchase your product or service.

Who’s doing it well?

GoPro’s Instagram account is a great example of combining two strategies: social media videos and user-generated content. Encouraging users to post their own videos using their product has multiple benefits:

  • It makes their engagement with their audience a two-way street
  • It gets people excited and feeling like they’re part of a community
  • It creates brand ambassadors for them and their products
  • It spotlights people using their products and having a great time
  • Leveraging customers’ videos keeps their own video marketing cost-effective

Where Are You Taking Your Video Storytelling Next?

With the wealth of video marketing strategies and content types, there are a lot of paths you could take. Whether you’re looking for guidance or help with your execution, ClearVoice has you covered. Our content solutions and expert team members can help you craft captivating videos that capture your audience’s attention and skyrocket engagement. Talk to a specialist today to see how.

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