Artists are very important for focusing and moulding our culture and reflecting the world back at us. Art brings people closer and helps us see the world both as it is and as it could be.
We can’t imagine a world devoid of music and art. A favourite quote is Oscar Wilde in The Decay of Lying (1891) when he wrote that “life imitates art far more than art imitates life”. It’s about how art affects the way we look at the world around us, how the aim of life is to find expression and art offers life a way to release and express creativity.
In what’s been a challenging year for everyone, we’re particularly proud of our work with a variety of fantastic artists throughout 2020 and of the entertainment content we have supported with live streaming this year. We hope you enjoy the examples below.
We partnered with Resonate to film and stream all their band performances which were either filmed at our purpose-built live streaming studio in the East End of Glasgow or sets were recorded in the fantastic Saint Luke’s music and arts venue, also in the East End of the city.
Another great one to watch is Sonnet Youth – our very own Scottish spoken word performers. We’re very happy to know their show is now sponsored by Creative Scotland.
Sonnet Youth’s show can be watched on their Facebook page and now on their patron site.
Care for a ceildih
We also recorded a heart – warming show for Care for a Ceilidh in partnership with CalMac Ferries. Care for a ceildih is a lovely initiative where Gaelic singers and traditional musicians provide short concerts to residents of hospices and care homes to entertain and lift the spirits of residents and staff. For this, the artists performed and we recorded the show in our studio https://www.facebook.com/CareForACeilidh/
CalMac Ferries decided to put together their very own CalMac Choir. 5 weeks of virtual choir lessons with local choir masters Vox were offered to all staff throughout November and December. Listen to the results here.
The group, that had never sang together before, learned a festive medley over zoom. The medley includes 3 songs, 3 part harmonies and some Gaelic, for good measure!
It’s been a very different and also difficult year for everyone in many ways but one positive is that’s it’s brought out a wealth of creativity and innovation and in some ways, a different way of viewing the world.
We’d like to thank all the artists, performers and everyone across the creative arts and all industries who worked with BlueStar Streaming this year and to wish all our clients, partners, supporters and friends a happy and relaxing Christmas as we all look forward to 2021.
For many, 2020 has become the year of the online event. Organisations whose usual business model is based on physical, venue-based live events and gatherings have had to revise their business models, to innovate and embrace new ways to engage and connect – to ensure their business stays relevant and sustainable and to turn challenges into opportunity.
At BlueStar Streaming, with years of planning and delivering successful online and live streamed events, the client support we offer includes:
Creating video content using remote filming and/or in our safe studio environment based in Glasgow
Putting content on-line – via video platforms such as YouTube and Vimeo or via a Content Delivery Network (CDN)
Adding payment gateways and monetization options, integrated into a web site or portal
Your one stop shop for online event planning and delivery
At BlueStar Streaming, with our experienced team, we can quickly and effectively deliver your online conference or event. With our in-house team there’s no need to go to multiple providers which reduces both cost and time and means our team can work closely with you to understand your requirements.
We advise on planning and setting up your online event and on advertising and marketing your event through Pay Per Click (PPC), social channels and Google Ads
We create content for you – for example filming remotely or in our safe, controlled studio environment
The content can be streamed live online or made available on demand, which means you can have a live event and with on demand viewing you aren’t constrained by viewer numbers, geography or time zone
We’ll help you add payment gateways and look at options to monetize your event and integration of your event with your website or web portal. We also look at increasing capacity if needed, ensuring your web site doesn’t crash with increased visitor/viewer numbers. Alternatively we can set up a micro site for your event that we host
Video content can be left online post event for a specified time or made available online indefinitely if needed
As well as the actual event, we can provide post event reviews, feedback and evaluations that you can use for reporting purposes and for future planning
Video marketing and live streaming experts
As a video marketing and live streaming specialist we regularly use live streaming with our clients, for a variety of purposes – including conferences, training and development, sporting events, award presentations, virtual tastings and tours, live interviews and Q& A sessions, music gigs and concerts, arts performances, media briefings, influencer outreach, product launches, demonstrations and more.
We thought we’d share how one of our clients, Dyslexia Scotland, has taken their annual conference virtual this year.
Normally a venue- based event with guest speakers, workshops, breakout and networking sessions, this year the conference was fully online.
The conference schedule was published online with new pre-recorded videos made available to view for each session.
Comfort breaks and networking opportunities were incorporated and participants were encouraged during their free times at lunch and during comfort breaks to visit the online Exhibitor section and film.
The morning session began with an introduction from the Chair followed by keynotes from a panel of speakers. Speakers shared their keynotes and presentations on screen and/or spoke directly to the audience, with all speakers filmed remotely at their own home locations or in our studios.
Participants were given tips and advice throughout on how to get the most out of their online conference sessions and were encouraged to tweet and share their comments about the sessions and to use the official conference hashtag.
The conference was monetized and this was a paid for event with a secure payment gateway set up. In this example, the conference was also part of participant CPD development.
The afternoon session included a live Q&A using Zoom. Participants were able to use the chat function for questions during the session and had been encouraged to email in questions during the morning. A secure link was also set up so that only those on the confirmed attendance list were admitted to the Zoom session.
The afternoon continued with a series of 5 workshops that participants could join such as the example below.
Participants were also encouraged to visit/view the Exhibitor space which had been set up specifically to showcase exhibitors participating and promoting their services.
Our role in planning and delivery of the conference
For this event, we worked with Dyslexia Scotland in a variety of ways including:
Support with planning and strategy to pivot the annual conference online
Filming and editing all footage including 5 workshops, 3 keynote speakers, 1 live Zoom session
Advised on and managed the video integration to Dyslexia Scotland website
Managed load balancing for increased/high volume traffic to their website
Set up and management of all Premiere video streaming content for the conference
Technical support during lead up and on the day of the event
Analysis and stats reporting
Feedback from both the client and the participants has been very positive. Being able to deliver online enabled this year’s conference to go ahead successfully. The content will remain online for a month to allow participants to access it and watch or re-watch any sessions.
“Our Education Conference is a very popular professional learning opportunity which teachers look forward to each year. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit our lives at the end of March, our Events team was in the early stages of planning this conference and quickly realised that, even if the conference could have gone ahead in October, it would be unlikely that we’d be able to accommodate our normal number of around 200 delegates due to social distancing. Therefore, we took the difficult, if somewhat radical, decision at that point, to plan to run it online. This was a challenging prospect, especially for Helen, our conference organiser, who has a lot of expertise and experience in running the conference in a physical venue, but who now had to face a huge learning curve to turn it into a virtual event. Trevor and his team at BlueStar Streaming were incredibly helpful in working with us to understand what we hoped to achieve and to guide Helen and our team patiently and expertly through that process. The outcome on the day was a professionally and slickly delivered virtual conference, with over 200 delegates and very positive feedback from them. For anyone planning to run a similar event, I cannot recommend Trevor and his team highly enough.” Cathy Magee – Chief Executive, Dyslexia Scotland
Bespoke planning for your event
We always work with clients to understand and support their individual business requirements and aspirations so all planning activities and each event will be specific to our clients’ needs and interests.
This is just one example. We’ve recently worked with other clients adopting a variety of business models to take their events online. Some online events are free streamed and operate on a ‘pay what you feel basis’. Some choose to split the revenues with, for example, 50% of donations allocated for operational costs and 50% donated to a different selected local partner charity. Other events are run as online ticketed paid events. Some include sponsorship opportunities for brands – offering businesses exposure to thousands of viewers at the virtual conferences and events.
For more information and examples of our work take a look at our showreel here. For more information on Dyslexia Scotland visit their website.
For friendly, professional advice and support for taking your conference and other events online, simply Contact Us for a no obligation discussion.
Over the last few months, we’ve made various changes to how we work, as have many other businesses. We’ve been kept busy helping our clients to create effective, remote content, to create and adapt their marketing strategies and to create effective, engaging virtual events ranging from webinars to quiz nights, team updates, safety announcements, and music gigs.
Currently we’re also seeing a rise in requests for studio-based product shoots.
This is a great way to showcase your products whilst maintaining social distancing, avoiding unnecessary travel, reducing costs and ensuring safety for everyone involved.
Many products can be shot in the studio and there are a wide range of advantages for why you might choose a studio shoot. Here are just a few:
A controlled environment
One key reason is total control. A studio- based shoot is done safely, with only the necessary team involved, in a totally controlled and sanitised environment.
There’s no concerns around typical issues and disturbances that can arise on location based shoots, such as weather conditions, transport arrangements, background noise, varying light conditions, filming and photography regulations and venue and people availability.
Because the environment is so controlled, it means more time can be focused on showcasing the product rather than dealing with external elements. Our studio has all the camera and lighting and other equipment needed including green and white screen facilities, all on site. So there’s no additional costs of equipment and location finding and hire and the studio shoot is quick, focused and cost effective.
Using greenscreen or other backdrops you still have a choice of backdrop, textures, colours and even virtual scenery and location backgrounds to showcase your product against. We can also create purpose-built bespoke sets for your products. If sound is included it’s easier to record in the studio where there’s full environmental control. We can even include special effects and whole new worlds if appropriate.
With a studio-based shoot we have full control over lighting including tone, shadow and mood and can create a variety of looks and moods.
Save time and costs and make planning easier
A studio- based shoot also means no need for expensive or time heavy travel and all the associated costs including accommodation, equipment, product and people transport, meals and other costs normally incurred on location shoots. Plus you can readily plan and schedule in your shoot based on studio availability rather than needing to co-ordinate venue, transport, accommodation and team.
Other advantages of a studio product shoot include privacy – there’s total control over who’s involved and on set plus your product and all equipment and set up is totally secure. Here are a few suggestions for getting the best out of your studio based product shoot.
Think about your product
Really know and think about the features of your product that you want to showcase. It might not just be external features. Think about what you want to communicate to your audience – features, values, even textures and feel.
Create the mood
It can be useful to create a mood board to help develop a visual reference to inform the shoot, lighting requirements, background etc
Storyboards and shot lists
Just as we create storyboards and shot lists for filming it can also be very useful to storyboard the shoot sequence and agree a shot list for studio shoots, particularly when you want or need a series of shots. This is something we always plan for and agree in advance with the client to ensure their requirements are met. It doesn’t mean we won’t look out for other great opportunities and ideas but it also ensures for everyone that nothing key is missed.
For some products it works really well to plan a story about the product – perhaps with a series of shots from pristine brand new product to how it looks after it’s been used for the purpose it’s designed for. Eg it could be as simple as an unopened branded box, an open box showing brand new trekking boots and another shot of muddied well worn and loved boots. The idea is to tell the story of your product – what it is, who would want it, what it’s purpose it and what context it’s used in and how it will make the buyer/user feel – and help shape what you want to communicate about it through the shoot.
A set provides context for your product and can add an extra dimension. It can be something very simple such as a coloured or plain backdrop, perhaps a piece of greenscreen magic, a whole or part room setup or just a simple piece of fabric. It’s not just about the set, it’s also about the grip or how you support and display the product. It’s worth thinking through your requirements for this and ensuring the studio has or can get the necessary items such as pins, tape, glue etc which any good studio would usually have.
Seeing the light
Lighting is of course a key part of great product shoots. In a studio environment where lighting is so highly controlled, the right lighting can really help showcase the different aspects and feel of your product. Also important is the angle and perspective used and in the studio we use stands and gantries to create the right shot. Whether it’s an overhead or close up shot or high definition detail, can really make a difference and give you the chance to create something with real impact.
Pre and post production strategies, marketing and distribution
We work closely with our clients to develop their marketing and digital strategies around showcasing their events, services and in this example, products.
As well as having a clear strategy for what you want out of your studio shoot, it’s also important to know how and across which platforms you plan to market and share the results of your shoot, something which we also work together with our clients on ensuring effective and timely distribution.
As in filming, so with product shoots, post-production edits, details and flawless finishing matters. We have a full post-production edit suite based in our studio which means our team can quickly and efficiently work on post production and get it quickly across to our clients for approval and distribution.
To find out more about our studio and using studio shoots to showcase your products, simply Contact Us and we’ll be happy to discuss.
Sonnet Youth is a great example of a business who’ve quickly and cleverly adapted to the challenges of Covid19 by moving online, introducing changes to their business model and successfully introducing new services.
Co-founded almost 5 years ago by award-winning spoken word artists Cat Hepburn (List Hot 100, BBC6 Music, Edinburgh Fringe) and Kevin P Gilday (BBC6 Music, Toronto Fringe, Glastonbury), Sonnet Youth is an exciting, very cool, spoken word theatre and cabaret organisation based in Glasgow.
They curate live performances and events, introducing audiences to an exciting and eclectic host of spoken word performers, authors, comedians, poets and musicians.
In addition to their monthly spoken word cabaret nights, they’ve curated performances for numerous festivals and events (Hidden Door, Belladrum, Pride). In 2018, they directed and produced the UK tour of Victoria McNulty’s solo spoken word Confessionals. In 2019 they took two successful spoken word theatre shows to the Fringe and from 2019 – early 2020 they produced the Scottish-wide tour of a spoken word theatre show, Thick Skin, Elastic Heart by Drew Taylor-Wilson.
Pre-lockdown, Sonnet Youth were producing and hosting a minimum of three monthly live gigs across Scotland with their partner venues including the Gilded Balloon (Edinburgh), The Old Hairdresser’s (Glasgow) and Creative Stirling.
Their usual business model is based on physical, venue-based live events. When it became clear that producing live venue shows to audience gatherings was no longer an option with restrictions in force, Sonnet Youth quickly came up with a plan to keep connecting with their audience, to introduce new digital services and innovations and to ensure the business stayed sustainable, turning a challenge into an opportunity.
They teamed up with Glasgow based live streaming specialists BlueStar Streaming to enable them to move their shows and performances online.
They created Sonnet Youth Social Club – a new online strand of the business, using livestreaming to bring performances into viewers homes.
Sonnet Youth Social Club is a fortnightly show on Facebook Premier Live, every second Thursday at 8:05pm. Produced by BlueStar Streaming, it is pre-recorded and features four artists (comedians, rappers, poets, musicians) with hosts Cat and Kevin.
The online shows are free streamed and operate on a ‘pay what you feel basis’ – with 50% of donations allocated for operational costs and 50% donated to a different selected local partner charity each week.
After just over 6 weeks of moving their shows online, the stats are looking good and growing weekly.
Average audience figures: 960 people tuning into each show
Just under 6000 viewers in the last six weeks
19K minutes viewed in the last 70 days
The audience is 57% women, 39% men, the majority between the ages of 25 – 44. Most viewers are in the UK with fans also in Ireland, the U.S.A, Canada, France, Denmark, Australia, Spain, Italy and Germany.
Feedback from audiences and performers has been extremely positive.
Just over 2 weeks ago, in early June, they also launched the new Sonnet Youth Podcast.
Another innovation Sonnet Youth have introduced alongside their exciting new online cabaret shows is sponsorship opportunities for brands – offering businesses exposure to thousands of viewers.
The new business model is proving sustainable and the team plan to be online for at least the next year.
With coronavirus causing global disruption and challenges for businesses and working practices, going virtual is a very practical option businesses can take as part of their continuity planning.
The need to postpone or cancel unnecessary travel, events, conferences, meetings and group gatherings, increased numbers of employees working remotely and self isolation means businesses need to think differently and creatively around managing current risks and minimising impact. When large scale gatherings aren’t practical or possible, live streaming is an effective alternative.
We realise it’s a challenging time for businesses right now. Using live streaming can make things easier and help businesses manage through this difficult time, working around travel and gathering restrictions whilst still connecting to their audiences.
As part of the support we can provide to our clients and other businesses we’re currently offering use of our Glasgow studio at reduced rates for live streaming.
Live streaming means you keep in contact with your audiences whether that’s employees, suppliers, partners or customers. You’ll be able to interact with your audiences – through real time comments, Q & A and feedback sessions and bringing in speakers working remotely. You’ll also be reducing travel costs and risks.
Live stream from our custom built studio in the East End of Glasgow or another suitable environment.
As a video marketing and live streaming specialist we regularly use live streaming with our clients, for a variety of purposes – including conferences, training and development, sporting events, award presentations, , virtual tastings and tours, live interviews and Q& A sessions, music gigs and concerts, arts performances, media briefings, influencer outreach, product launches, demonstrations and more. It needs careful planning, for example around objectives, audience, marketing, timing and of course technical set up but is a fantastic tool to include as part of an effective marketing strategy and right now, live streaming could well offer a lifeline for many businesses.
Have a look at the examples below of using live streaming and if you’d like to discuss how you can use it to support your brand and business, contact us.
Awards nominations, conferences and events
BAFTA regularly and very successfully use live streams for their nominations and awards events.
We’re excited to share our latest show reel of our work. Click on the image above and take a look to see just some of the many ways we work with clients.
From documentary style story telling and tv ads to short brand pieces and live streamed events, interviews and tastings. Whether it’s showcasing a venue, activity or destination, promoting a brand or product, corporate branding, interviews and events, creating premium content or filming on site, in the studio or across multiple sites, we’ve done it.
With all our own high quality kit, a professional custom – built filming studio and editing suite in Glasgow and an experienced in – house team, we offer clients a high quality service, affordable video production, rapid turnaround – and great results.
Want to know how video marketing can help you? Take the first step and contact us!
We’ve previously established that video marketing is a key part of an effective overall brand and marketing strategy. As such, with the new UK financial year starting soon, if you haven’t already done so, it’s time to make sure you’ve planned it into your budget for the year and thought about how to make the most of your allocated video marketing budget.
Costs and budgets are a concern for all businesses, particularly for small and medium size organisations who may be concerned about costs of video marketing, setting a realistic budget and deciding the most sensible way to spend it on video.
How do you get the most out of your video marketing budget in 2020?
Think about your strategy:
what are your objectives, how do you want to use video?
what outcomes do you want it to support?
what are the timescales?
what are the constraints, resources and priorities?
what would you consider a success?
do you want to produce a one-off video for a specific project or do you want to put out content as part of a year-long campaign?
is it something you’re willing to try to see what impact it has or have you previously used video or seen it used well elsewhere and want to expand on that?
Look at your overall marketing plan and think about how you could integrate video to create greater impact and results.
Really, the message is to begin with as clear an idea as you can about the outcome you want to achieve. Try to define the scope, allocate a budget and agree reasonably expected outcomes.
Even if you’re not sure how video can help you or exactly what way to approach it, if you’re not sure what a realistic budget or expected outcomes might be, that’s ok, BlueStar have years of experience to share with you .
At BlueStar Streaming we offer various levels of support including consultancy and training and work with our clients on anything from:
one off projects to multi -channel campaigns
content creation – from hero videos to micro moments
year-long support packages, reviews and longer term digital and agency partnerships
A good agency will help you make the most of your investment in video and film, using it across channels, integrating it with your social media and web strategy and helping or advising you market your video content and manage your campaigns. It all depends on your requirements and the level of support needed. It’s good to speak with an agency early on in your plans as they should be able to advise on what will work best for your needs, helping you clarify your video marketing strategy and save time and money. It’s not just about video production. For example, we’re used to working with our clients in a variety of ways from video production to consultancy and project management, to delivering and managing social and web strategy, content creation and campaigns.
What type of content?
Have you considered what type of video content will be useful to achieve your business outcomes?
There’s such a range of video content to choose from. Some you may be familiar with, others you may not have heard of or seen. Your video marketing agency can advise and suggest the best type of video content that will work for you.
From long-form video, tv ads and documentary style videos to short micro moments for use on Instagram and other social channels. Expert speaker or interview formats might work for you. Perhaps customer testimonials or product demonstrations. Live streaming on social channels is a great option to create engagement and interactive, participative customer experiences. Maybe you’d like to include some quirky cinemagraphs to catch the eye, perhaps 360 filming or drone footage, maybe some unusual and fun greenscreen studio content.
It’s also about being smart around planning your content creation. Can you tie in with key calendar dates, key themes or upcoming events? It can be as simple as asking relevant questions during a video interview or shooting footage that can then be edited for use later in the year at the relevant time. Thinking ahead means you get more value out of your video marketing budget by creating a bank of content that can used throughout the year.
It’s also usually possible to repurpose video for all platforms. That provides the opportunity to create great, relevant additional content for minimal additional cost. So the content created for a specific event can be reused – for example a 2-3 minute video can be edited into short micro moments of 20-30 seconds clips for use on social channels, video shot to promote an event this year can be reused to celebrate the success post event and to promote next year’s event. Secondary backup assets can be repurposed, for example backup audio recordings can be repurposed as standalone podcasts, another great, adaptable and cost-effective option for delivery of content to staff, partner organisations and customer audiences.
At BlueStar Streaming, in addition to the required footage, we always look to identify opportunities to create additional assets and added value, where possible, appropriate and relevant, including repurposing content.
You may not have the budget or need for an in- house video production team but that shouldn’t be a barrier to using video. Most organisations outsource video production – it’s a specialised area and maintaining a full time in-house team with the required equipment, software and know-how can be expensive and impractical. Even larger organisations who do have their own teams, will often call in other video marketing agencies to supplement their team, for specific projects (either internal or working with their clients) or to provide training and support for their in-house teams. We often work with social media and brand agencies who either introduce us to their clients as their specialist video marketing partners or we work as part of their in- house team, supplementing their skills to provide a seamless service to the client.
Using a professional video marketing agency such as BlueStar Streaming doesn’t have to be expensive and agencies generally offer various levels of support from full agency support to a hybrid model working with and supporting your own teams.
Many of the clients we work with like to work on an ongoing partnership basis which is why we introduced digital partnerships and year-long support packages for businesses a couple of years ago. It’s a great option as we get to know our clients’ businesses and teams well, understand how they like to work and have a deep understanding of their needs and objectives around video marketing. It makes it easier for the client to plan ahead and they know they can get great, effective and regular content at reasonable rates and that we’ll work with them closely to help come up with really cool content. It’s like having a team of video specialists embedded as part of your team that you can call on when needed. Using a professional video marketing agency makes it cost effective – it’s like having your own internal team but without the costs and the risk.
If you have an in-house marketing team your video marketing agency will work with them. If you need marketing support your video marketing agency can help with that and can even plan and manage campaigns for you or work with your team to provide support and advice as needed and to help them develop their skills.
You need great video content but once you have it, you need to market it or find someone to market it for you, if you’re going to get the business results you’re anticipating.
What will you do with your video content? It’s important to think how it will be used. Have you the resource in-house to plan and manage campaigns? If not, is that something your video production agency team can help with? If you’ve used video in previous campaigns, what were the lessons learned, what worked, what didn’t, what would you change?
How do you plan to distribute your video content? How will you get it out to your audiences? What platforms will you use? How will you track and measure the success and results of using your video content? All things to think about and plan for. It’s no good having amazing content if no one sees it. For agencies it’s also incredibly frustrating and disappointing to create fantastic video content for a client for them then to sit on it, not distribute and promote it or for them to do that so long after the event that the impact is reduced or lost. It’s not a good use of budget, time or resources so make sure you have a plan in place to distribute and promote your video content soon after you have it whether you do it yourself or work with an agency who plan and manage it on your behalf.
Businesses often want to hire studio space for their own shoots or for studio based interviews and live streams and that’s also a cost that should be considered as part of the planning process, as is cost of any kit you may need. At BlueStar Streaming we have our own dedicated studio space, meeting rooms and edit facilities for creating content. Based in the East End of Glasgow the studio has full green screen and studio lighting set-up for interviews and live streaming – minimising costs and maximising use of time for our clients. We also offer flexible cost-effective options including dry hire, where clients can bring in their own crew, equipment and catering or we can provide a wide range of production services for managed shoots.
Hire of production kit is also something to consider and make sure is factored in your costs and included within quotes from agencies. Equipment can be expensive to buy so hiring makes sense in many cases, even if using an in-house team for your shoot. It allows businesses to save on costs, transport and storage and is also something we offer for our clients with competitive camera and kit hire including and full technical support available if needed for their own shoots.
We have all our own in-house kit and professional editing suite for fast turn around and all post production including full editing and grading, film mixing, mastering, captions, voiceover, motion graphics, cross platform testing and full back up and storage on and off site.
As well as faster turnaround the advantage to clients is not having to deal with multiple providers and lower costs, working with the same specialised team throughout.
Those are just a few of the areas we advise thinking about when planning your video marketing budget for 2020. If you’d like to develop your video strategy, to plan your first or next campaign or simply discuss how video marketing can benefit your business, contact us and we’ll be delighted to chat.
2020 brings a renewed focus on video marketing as a key element of an overall digital marketing plan. Here we share a few of the top video marketing trends to be aware of this year.
Video content is now more important than ever with more brands using video as part of their overall digital marketing strategies. Factors such as the way people consume media, the growth of VR (virtual reality) and AR (augmented reality) particularly in the gaming and entertainment industries and the increasing use of stories across social media have all contributed to the growth.
This growth of online video has also been boosted by improvements in display sizes, quality and availability of mobile devices, faster mobile data connections, the spread of connected TVs and perhaps also through the creation and availability of more engaging and innovative content.
As a result, associated ad spend is also growing, to target the rapidly expanding audience markets. More advertisers are investing in online video ads to drive engagement, making online video now the fastest growing digital channel in terms of advertising expenditure.
Bearing that in mind, what are the key video marketing trends that industry experts believe you should be paying attention to and using to inform your digital marketing strategy in 2020?
More platforms and more dimensions
Companies should be using both multiple platforms and multiple dimensions for their videos. With more video platforms available, preferences for video dimensions will increase, whether your video is in vertical, square or horizontal format. Use of vertical video has increased through the popularity of Snapchat and Instagram Stories. However, with initial fairly low usage Instagram also supports normal horizontal video format on their video platform. YouTube and Facebook video also now support vertical video. Previously, square video content was considered best for Facebook and Instagram but then these platforms started supporting broader dimensions for photos and video. On Facebook and YouTube square video never really fully took off.
72% of consumers say they will now only engage with marketing messages that are personalised. Through personalisation you can build a relationship with your audience, providing tailored experiences and opportunities to engage with your brand, product or service.
Personalised video also helps you stand out from the competition, makes the customer remember you and recognise your brand and enables you to provide targeted and relevant solutions and recommendations to fit customers’ interests, needs and even pain points.
48% of consumers say they want videos to reflect the products and services they’re interested in and which will inform their decision making. Many also want now videos to be interactive so they can choose not just when but which information to view – which may be the next step in video personalisation.
Video personalisation isn’t new and its use has been growing over the last few years but it is still under – utilised. The increased interest and importance placed on it by consumers means we’re likely to see a growth in 2020.
A data-first approach
A one-size-fits-all approach is no longer good enough. A data-first approach helps ensure you’re targeting the right audience with the right message at the right time with the aim of increasing engagement and ultimately, conversion.
A data driven approach to video marketing allows brands to better understand what works when it comes to their videos – which platform is best, who should they target, what content is most relevant and effective? This makes sense – it provides insights and focus that can help inform your media and creative decisions and improve your video ROI. It’s an approach we always recommend and monitor with our clients, ensuring the best understanding and information informs decision making, creative approach, spend and expected returns from the start of the process. A data first approach also makes it easier to measure uplift and to identify which messaging works best for each audience rather than adopting a broad targeting approach. Platforms such as Google, Facebook, Twitter etc can easily be used to create and share content for specific audiences and/or for different stages of the buying cycle, offering a range of ways to adopt (and measure) a data driven approach to video marketing.
Long – form video
In recent years, short form (less than 5 minutes, typically 1-3 minutes) and micro videos (60-90 seconds) have been widely used to capture attention and engagement, particularly at a time when there are multiple channels and endless content competing for attention. However, it is the use of long – form video (including documentary style video) that’s really predicted to grow in 2020.
Shorter videos are great and still very much have a role to play – they’re easy to consume, particularly on mobile devices and great for social channels. But they generally don’t allow brands time to build deeper emotional connections with consumers. Longer videos (15 minutes or more) result in increased audience engagement, allow you to create and build a story, to educate the viewer in your brand values and to create memorable and emotionally engaging content.
Given that the average viewer will spend 88% more time on a website with video content, well planned long form video is certainly something to consider.
Big brands such as outdoor clothing brand Patagonia are great examples of using long – form video very effectively – creating cinematic style documentaries with real people telling their stories and sharing their experiences and connecting with the viewer on a more emotional level.
Here’s a couple of great examples of long – form videos that engage emotionally at the same time as they promote brand values and a sense of community.
360 degree video
360 degree video isn’t new but is generally under – utilised although it’s now becoming more accessible and (particularly interactive 360 video) is a huge trend at the moment. Increased availability and affordability of smart devices and VR and AR headsets and familiarity within the gaming industry are some of the drivers along with growing consumer interest in viewing 360 rather than traditional format video.
It’s another way to really stand out from the competition and showcase your brand, product or service through creating an immersive experience for your customer. We’ve used 360 filming (and also mobile 360 video) for a range of clients – particularly in the travel and tourism sector, sports and even heritage and fashion sectors. It can be used to provide a virtual tour experience of a venue, event or location, behind the scenes access and all sorts of exciting, immersive experiences for the customer. It also provides a different perspective, enables a brand to show their personality and really captivate their audience.
There’s also a sense of fun, innovation and difference, particularly for viewers new to the format. It’s also useful for viewers who might not be able to access the experience otherwise, due to geographical distance or physical mobility for example.
360 degree videos are another tool to help deliver increased ROI as well as brand awareness and engagement, with the customer as the focus and the opportunity for brands to experiment more – all reasons why 360 degree filming is expected to increase in popularity this year.
Live video – the rise of live streaming
Live streaming is a powerful tool and should be a key component of your digital content strategy. With Facebook Live, Snapchat and other social media platforms allowing audiences to connect with brands in real time, there’s been a rise in use of live streaming to boost social presence, generate exposure, grow brand loyalty and create customer connection.
As a video marketing and live streaming specialist we regularly use live streaming with our clients, for a variety of purposes – including virtual tastings and tours, live interviews and Q& A sessions, live streamed awards presentations, conferences, music gigs and concerts, arts performances, media briefings, influencer outreach, product launches, demonstrations and more. It needs careful planning, for example around objectives, audience, marketing, timing and of course technical set up but is well worth including as part of an effective marketing strategy.
A fully integrated approach
Something that we believe is key to getting the best out of video is to ensure it’s fully integrated across your full brand and marketing strategy and across all channels. We know video is a powerful content type for engaging and influencing certain audience behaviours. It’s not a nice to have, it’s a key component of any successful brand and marketing strategy.
87% of businesses now use video in some form as a marketing tool but there is plenty of opportunity to be smarter about how and when video is used, the content that’s created and how it’s evaluated.
In 2020 brands will increasingly integrate video content across their entire brand and marketing strategy, using video at various stages of the marketing funnel and across various channels. Expect to see more brands using more video content this year and beyond.
Trends come and go of course so we’re not suggesting anyone slavishly follow them but it is important to be aware of them and to then choose the most appropriate and effective approach for your brand.
For advice on how to use and integrate video into your marketing strategy, contact us.
It’s a bit of a cliché but as well as everyone busily finishing projects before the festive break, this time of year always feels like a good time to reflect back on the year that’s passed, to refocus on what we do and to look forward and plan for the new year, both individually and as a team.
BlueStar Streaming is heading into it’s 6th year and over the last 12 months we’ve been busier than ever and continue to grow.
Although we specialise in video marketing and live streaming, it’s really about helping our clients create and share their stories through rich content and engaging video and film to promote, support and grow their brand.
We create high quality (broadcast standard) corporate video, livestreams and video. We also work with our clients to plan and manage their social campaigns and to integrate their video content with their social media and web strategies in order to best promote their brands, products and services through considered, tailored solutions. We offer a range of support including training, marketing and consultancy, working on anything from one off projects to multi – channel campaigns and longer term digital and agency partnerships. We often work with larger agencies too, brought in as their specialist video marketing partners to provide a seamless service for their clients. Projects we’ve worked on include high profile music and awards events to travel and tourism, sports and leisure, arts and culture, education, charity and more.
If you’ve worked with us you’ll know we work closely with you to understand your requirements, to guide and advise on strategy and content and getting your video (your unique story) out there to ensure you get the best value and the most impact. If you haven’t, contact us to learn how we can help your brand in 2020!
We thought we’d share some of the changes we’ve made in 2019.
This summer we moved to larger premises. We’re still in the East End but it’s means we’ve more space to grow and to create a custom studio which is now available to hire as a fully flexible, multi-purpose film, video, live streaming and photography studio.
The studio is available for dry hire and for managed shoots so clients can bring their own crew, equipment and catering to run their shoot – or we can do it for them. We can provide a wide range of production services and support for managed shoots and we also now hire out kit, saving clients the cost of buying their own expensive kit as well as taking away any hassle of storing, maintaining and moving kit.
This is a unique purpose-built live video streaming studio that can be hired for half and full days, Monday to Friday and evenings and weekends on request, subject to availability. We have all the kit and technology to bring your multi camera live stream to life, with over 20 years of professional live streaming, technical and production experience, allowing our clients to interact with their customers and clients in real time. All live steams are also captured full HD video offline, providing full backup and for repurposing and social content after the event.
This is a great option for amazing content creation, product or event launches, publicity shoots, influencer shoots, interviews to camera, livestreams and podcasts. We have green and white screen facilities and can build a studio set to suit requirements plus we provide support to help storyboard ideas and bring them to life as well as technical support – the only limits are the studio space and your imagination. Find out more here or contact us for details and to book.
We work with a wide variety of private and public sector organisations but also do a lot of work with charities, non-profits and the third sector, helping promote their activities, providing training and advice, creating great video marketing and even helping them raise funding. Charities we’ve worked with include Dyslexia Scotland, Pink Saltire, The Willow Tea Rooms Trust and The Prince’s Trust. Read more here about how we work with charities, non-profits and the third sector.
We launched ‘Jibber Jabber’ – a series of live streamed masterclasses where experts from a range of sectors share their experience and tips for getting on within their industry. We wanted to learn more about how creative people in a range of industries do what they do, what makes them tick and inspires them, what they’ve learned along the way, what they’d do differently, advice they’d share with someone starting out and what’s their take on things.
Each Jibber Jabber masterclass is a live streamed informal chat in our studio in Glasgow’s East End, hosted by Duglas Stewart, best known as the frontman, lead vocalist and composer of Glaswegian indie pop band BMX Bandits.
The first Jibber Jabber sessions have focused on the music industry, illustration, art and design. Our final masterclass for 2019 was live streamed on Wednesday 11 December. We spoke with the ‘Glasgow Miracle’ Professor Ross Sinclair – a key figure in contemporary art in Glasgow in the 1990s and one of the creative minds who transformed the art scene in Scotland. A visual artist, musician and writer, Ross was born in Glasgow and studied at Glasgow School of Art where he now lectures alongside continuing his professional practice.
As well as producing Jibber Jabber ourselves, this is also an interesting option for brands and a way to engage directly with new and existing audiences and markets in an informal influencer style masterclass format. It’s an area we’re developing and exploring with brands wanting to develop their own masterclass live streams. The livestreamed sessions are shot in our custom studio in an informal conversational style. If you’d like to get involved or you’d like to promote your brand through your own style masterclass sessions contact us to discuss. Look out for more Jibber Jabber sessions in 2020 and catch up on our previous masterclasses here.
Growing the team
In September we welcomed Rosie Walker to the team. Rosie has joined us as Junior Video Production Assistant and will be an integral part of the team.
A graduate in Design and Communication from Glasgow Art School, she brings artistic flair and additional animation skills to our production team. We’ve also expanded our in – house marketing support.
Sir Jackie Stewart, sharing his experience of dyslexia in the Educate Me documentary
We do a lot of corporate filming but also relish the chance to film documentaries. Last year, BlueStar Streaming and Dyslexia Scotland worked together to create a short (25 minute), independent documentary film called ‘Educate Me’. It was a year in the making, shot using a predominantly dyslexic crew and created for general release supported through crowdfunding. This is one of a 4 part series that we hope to pitch as a full documentary to broadcasters. The film has been widely watched and used by the Scottish Education Board, by Dyslexia Scotland and various voluntary organisations and charity groups across Scotland. We created this documentary including all planning, strategy, story boarding, film interviews and film production.
It’s also personally important to us as our Managing Director, Trevor Thomson, is dyslexic and positively promotes disability awareness and equality through his role as Media Adviser for Dyslexia Scotland.
In 2020 we’ll be moving into Phase 2 with the second film of four and are excited to be starting pre-production in the New Year. To create the second Educate Me documentary promoting awareness of Dyslexia, we’ll again be raising funding to release the film through a kickstarter campaign on the Indiegogo crowdfunding platform. We’ll also be offering some great perks as a thank you for donations – more news on that soon!
If you’d like to help us raise funding we’ll be sharing a link and all the details in early 2020. If you’d like to get involved or help in other ways please contact us. We’d love to team up with other organisations in a variety of ways. Thank you in advance – your interest and support is appreciated and will help us launch a really useful educational documentary that we hope will increase understanding and positively improve the experience of everyone, particularly young people growing up and living with dyslexia.
It’s been a busy, vibrant 2019 with lots of change and interesting people and projects. And of course, we created some fabulous and very effective video and live streams for our clients!
We’d like to wish all our clients, partners, supporters and friends a very happy and festive Christmas and great New Year.
Thanks to everyone we’ve worked with in 2019 and here’s to looking forward to even more exciting and interesting projects and times in 2020 and beyond!
It’s just a few months since we started our ‘Jibber Jabber’ series of live stream masterclasses in September, on our entertainment facebook page Glitterati. What is Jibber Jabber? Well, it’s a great conversation with exciting, inspiring people. It’s a conversation you can get excited about and want to continue. For us it’s about getting under the skin of exciting, innovative and inspiring industries through informal, insider chats with a whole spectrum of amazing, interesting, diverse and creative people and experts.
Each Jibber Jabber masterclass is a live streamed chat in our studio in Glasgow’s East End, informal and (we hope) informative. We wanted to learn more about how creative people in a range of industries do what they do, what makes them tick and inspires them, what they’ve learned along the way, what they’d do differently, advice they’d share with someone starting out and what’s their take on things.
Each Jibber Jabber is hosted by Duglas Stewart, best known as the frontman, lead vocalist and composer of Glaswegian indie pop band BMX Bandits.
Our very first Jibber Jabber was with David Scott from The Pearlfishers talking with Duglas about their experience of getting started and working in the music industry. If you missed it, read and hear more on our LinkedIn post using the link below.
In October we were still focusing on the music industry. Click on the image below to read more and listen in to the conversation between Duglas and Marco Rea from The Wellgreen and Stilton as they discuss and share their experiences of song writing creative processes.
In November the conversation turned to graphic novels and a Jibber Jabber with graphic novelists Sandra Marrs and John Chalmers of Metaphrog talking about the inspiration behind their intriguing dark fairytale adaptations and other work. Have a listen below.
And we couldn’t resist including this – have a look at one of their brilliant animations with music by Mum and Hey.
Our final Jibber Jabber of 2019 was live streamed on Wednesday 11 December. We spoke with the ‘Glasgow Miracle’ Professor Ross Sinclair – a key figure in contemporary art in Glasgow in the 1990s, former band member of the Soup Dragons and one of the creative minds who transformed the art scene in Scotland.
A visual artist, musician and writer, Ross was born in Glasgow and studied at Glasgow School of Art where he now lectures alongside continuing his professional practice. He spoke about his inspiration, experience and what drives him to create.
Look out for more Jibber Jabber sessions in 2020 and in the meantime, wishing you a great Christmas and New Year filled with interesting conversations.