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4 Activities to Help Teams Generate Great Video Ideas

A great video can go viral, netting new customers for your business. But to get the boss’s approval, you will first need great video ideas. After all, just because you spend a lot of money on a video doesn’t necessarily mean it will be effective. So how do you find the right idea? 

The best way to generate great video ideas is to work with the rest of your team. Start by setting up a creative environment where everyone is aware of the constraints of the campaign (budget, timing) as well as the goals (gain new customers, promote specific service). Bat around some ideas and then verify that there’s actually interest by doing an online search. Now, you’re ready to approach a video creation company like Dream It Reel to bring your idea to life, quickly and professionally.

Here are four activities that can help you discover an epic video idea that works for your brand.

#1 – Mind mapping and working with customer profiles

Pull out some sticky notes and immerse yourself in the customer journey. This is a fail-proof way to come up with on-brand ideas for your next great video. If you’re in person with your team, set aside an afternoon and get people together in the same room for a mind mapping activity. Provide color-coded sticky notes and pens. 

Assign a pair of people to a customer profile and direct them to explore the customer journey from that person’s perspective. Ask them to come up with emotions that the customer might feel during each stage. Positive emotions should be written on one color and negative emotions on another. When posted, you can quickly understand the dominant emotions of this customer’s experience. 

Now, decide which emotions you could change in your video. You could create a video that highlights the negative emotions a customer feels at the beginning of their journey, showing you understand their frustrations and have a solution. Alternatively, you could create a video that presents the positive moments in their journey: the satisfaction of receiving a product that actually solves their problem, helpful customer service when they need it, or an easy-to-use online shopping experience.

A man in a black jacket sits atop a yellow car on a dirt road, smiling joyfully.

#2 – Exploring visual references and tapping into creativity

If you’re still stumped, try an activity that’s a bit less intellectual. After all, videos are visual. People often respond viscerally to the colors and shapes of a video before they even realize what the video is about (music videos are a great example of this). The fancy terms for this are color psychology and visual hierarchy. Ask your branding team to lead this activity but be sure to include people from the entire company. Do this activity after lunch with your team for a fun brainstorming session and you’ll definitely generate some great video ideas.

Give everyone this prompt: Choose three images that collectively represent our company’s brand. Ask people to bring photo references. They could be from other marketing campaigns, from Instagram, or even famous works of art. If your team is really creative, invite people to sketch something to get their ideas across. 

This activity should help you nail the visual language of your video, which can inspire the content itself. For instance, you might discover a trend that people perceive your brand as red and pink, with circles and soft lines instead of sharp edges. Use this to create a visual world where you’ll locate your video.

#3 – Researching keywords and commonly asked questions in your niche

Now, it’s time to get strategic. For teams that prefer to start with research instead of doodling, invite them to look up keyword combinations that are popular in your industry. Keep an eye out for formats that speak to your target market (or will stand out from the crowd). For example, would your audience be more intrigued by an interview format or a tutorial-style video?

Sift through forums, or even your own customer service records, to find commonly asked questions about your product or industry. Brainstorm videos that could answer these questions, providing value while also providing entertainment. That is the true recipe for video success.

See what your competitors are doing—but don’t copy them! The best videos for your company won’t be duplicates of another company’s videos. Think about the Dollar Shave Club videos. They didn’t improve upon Gillette’s marketing videos. Instead, they went in a completely different direction with a candid tone, a low-budget production that spoke directly to their target market. They stood out from the crowd rather than attempting the impossible task of competing with a multibillion-dollar marketing budget. Use a search engine to discover what your audience actually wants to see and hear, and then create videos based on your discoveries.

A classical art museum. The room is empty of people but contains several large paintings and a sculpture.

#4 – Take a (virtual) field trip

If all else fails, get outside your own industry. If you’re in software, go take a virtual field trip to the YouTube pages of food and beverage companies. Take your team on a virtual tour of an art museum. Get inspired by the textures, moods, and stories in other worlds besides your own. Your customers don’t live in a vacuum, and neither should you.

Ask your team to bring in examples of other marketing ads, films, or even sketch comedy moments that made them laugh. Discuss why they love these videos, and if any of these elements or ideas could translate appropriately to your target market and your brand identity.

Feeling excited? Dream It Reel is available for brainstorm sessions for your next video production! We are a global video production service that offers streamlined production and gorgeous, effective content. Get help from the pros and start your next video campaign now.