If you are thinking of sharing a message by means of a short video there are a number of vital considerations – especially if it is a long message! Naturally, you need to keep the audience’s attention, plus the audience needs to easily understand what you are trying to say. To do so you would need the right words, a clear structure, and relevant audiovisual input to support communication. A perfect combination of these elements results in flawless communication.
Firstly, you need to know who the message is intended for, as this will determine the tone and style of communication. It is crucial to consider your target audience as well as the aim of the message from the outset. Who is the video meant for and what do you want to achieve? Only once you have determined this can you focus on the relevant content that will engage that particular target audience. If you know your audience you will also know what their interests are. This can be used as a starting point for your message.
Simplifying the message is imperative for short video communication! Of course, this is especially true if it is a complicated concept that you need to communicate. But even a simple concept needs careful consideration in order to make the message concise. So, how does one simplify a message? By making use of simple terms! This starts with the script. Write it in a simple style that even laymen can understand. Keep sentences short and make sure to use sections or parts. Each part needs to make a point to make communication clear and effective.
Just like headings and sub-headings make it easier to read a text, sections, or “parts” that divide the content of a video also aid understanding. Therefore, make use of points, steps, stages, etc. in your video. It is easier to digest small pieces of information as opposed to a large block of information. Here is what you need to aim for if you want to communicate effectively in a short video: simplicity – achieved through the use of short sentences, short paragraphs, and short scenes. And so, the video is kept short too!
Choose specific words very carefully. You will not be able to communicate successfully if you use complex words – these aid complexity and not simplification! If your audience cannot understand the words that you use they will also not clearly understand your message! So, make sure that you use language that your audience understands. (If there is a definite need for the use of complicated terminology first explain them in easy terms.)
A long explanation that seems to go nowhere will result in dwindled attention and hinder effective communication. Get to the point quickly. There must not be side-tracks in the message. Make the message concise and direct. Do not bombard your audience with information. Only give them the essentials to understand what you are saying. (Also, do not go so fast that they do not have time to absorb the information!)
Anecdotes & Examples
If a topic is very complex, make use of examples and anecdotes to simplify the content. (Again, be careful not to get side-tracked – the examples, analogies, and anecdotes need to be short and to the point too!) When audio and visual elements are combined a message can be simplified even further, provided that you do not overuse the imagery. Use visuals effectively by sticking to the essentials and by using simple images that will enhance your communication.
The reality is that messages that are too long and too detailed often result in failed communication as audiences are more likely to lose interest. So, if you want to get your message across clearly and concisely, make use of a short video!