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Video marketing is becoming huge, with content strategists increasingly using this medium to gain momentum and interest through their campaigns. However, it is vital to recognise that the first five seconds of a video are crucial for maintaining interest. If a brand is unable to hook a viewer immediately it risks losing some business, so it’s essential to focus on video openings.

New research from Cisco suggests that over 69 per cent of content could consist of video by 2017. This shows that the video marketing approach continues to excel; however, it also indicates there will be far more competition than ever before, meaning that videos must be expertly curated if they’re to keep consumer attention. Users are becoming extremely fussy over what they watch during their precious time, so companies need to catch them during the first five seconds, otherwise, people will simply move on. If it’s a small firm they’ve lost interest in, they may well forget that brand name forever.

There are numerous reasons why the first seconds are vital. For example, research has shown that the average attention span has shortened. In just 15 years, it has dropped from 12 seconds to 8.25 seconds. It now means that human beings have an attention span less than goldfish; which has an average of nine seconds. With it being harder to catch and keep people’s attention, brands must now offer some form of instant gratification.

Viewers need to be hooked instantly if they’re not to click back and forget about a brand. To do this, video needs to speak to the consumer directly and answer any questions to confirm they’ve found the information they’re looking for. When a consumer knows they’re in the right place, they’re more likely to stay around. In addition, the first five seconds of a video can be used to set the tone – not only of the content to come – but the brand overall. There are many ways to do this, including voice tone, visual style and music.

Finally, all video content must spark curiosity. Most consumers will not stay around long enough to watch the entire piece if it doesn’t make them wonder what’s to come. Five seconds is not a lot of time to work with and it’s a huge challenge to get any form of complex idea across. However, by hooking viewers and making them curious about the content, people are more likely to stay for longer. One good tip is to open with a question they’ve asked themselves; thereby indicating the content has the answer. Alternatively, outlining a common situation they may find themselves in and indicating that the video will have solutions is a good option.

Video marketing is set to continue growing in appeal over the coming months and years. It is, therefore, essential for content strategists to start honing their expertise in this space. With falling attention spans, hooking consumers immediately is of growing importance, especially if brands are to get people to watch an entire video, regardless of its length.


For many companies, especially small firms and start-ups, there may be a temptation to try to conduct every aspect of business in-house. At first glance, this might be a way to save money. However, content marketing can be extremely complex and challenging, so it’s a good idea to utilise experts. If such a choice is made, it is essential to make an educated decision about just which agency should be contracted so that the full advantage can be had.

There are many benefits in using a professional agency instead of trying to conduct content marketing work without the right expertise. Firstly, there are actual cost savings to be realised. In addition to having a better chance of avoiding expensive mistakes, hiring outside help often works out to be cheaper than hiring a full-time employee to handle this workload. Agencies often provide competitive rates, and workloads can be scalable too, allowing businesses to access as many or as few skills desired. Agency contracts also provide a way to access multiple specialists instead of having to rely on a single generalist. Even if a business is extremely specific in its operations, having a multi-skilled strategy team on hand ensures that content is delivered as perfectly as possible. Many agencies will also be able to provide better content too, as they can use a group of marketers to strategise instead of a single employee trying to cope with all advertising processes.

Another important consideration to take into account is that by using an agency, companies gain a degree of higher accountability; after all, an agency may be obliged to perform as part of their contract. It enables firms to pass some of the responsibility for success to the experts who, in turn, have a stake in obtaining successful results. It also means that if snags occur, there are a team of experts on hand to identify issues and offer solutions. This potential for brainstorming can often resolve problems more quickly, allowing normal service to resume.

With the content strategy niche an ever-changing world, it is vital to try to stay abreast of trends. Even with a costly in-house team, this can be difficult to do – particularly if they are focussed on one sector. Whilst this is an important part of honing any marketing plan, it is also a good idea to keep one eye on the overall progression of the industry to ensure that possible opportunities are not missed. For example, another industry might be using an innovative new strategy that, with a few tweaks, might also work for another sector.

For many firms with the right capital there is, obviously, the option to hire and develop an on-site team. However, with the best strategists being costly, it only takes a small team to cost thousands of pounds each month, which can negatively affect bottom lines. It is also possible that newly constructed teams will not see positive returns right away, meaning that positive return on investment (ROI) could take far longer. Therefore, utilising a content agency is often the ideal way to kick off new strategies.