Remember! You should think digitally right from the idea stage. Consider the platform and the medium when planning your feature. Quality over quantity
BEFORE YOU BEGIN
Audio is Swedish Radio’s main product, but video can be a good complement or a good way to promote audio content on social media, when it is not possible to play the audio file directly.
Social media platforms prioritise video to a large extent but what works where varies. It is well worth thinking about what your goal is with the video before you begin.
Is your idea and your material best suited to video?
What is your target group?
What platform do you intend to use the video on?
How much planning and preparation does the video require?
Can the reporter be part of the editing process? They are often the ones with the expertise.
SHOULD YOU REALLY MAKE A VIDEO?
Today, most Swedish media corporations use a lot of video on social media. The feeling that has emerged is that ‘everyone’ should make videos, but should you really? Is your material best suited for video?
The moving image can be effective in communicating journalism, but there is no point in making a video solely for the sake of the algorithms. If the quality is poor, it will just leave a negative impression. So try to think ahead and ensure that you always have a fundamental idea, keep a focus on the dramaturgy, and have content that is suitable for video.
The Norwegian public service broadcaster NRK has set up three rules of thumb that are good to bear in mind when producing content for social media:
Would you yourself like or share your video? If the answer is NO: don’t make the video.
Does the video evoke an emotion in you? If the answer is NO: don’t make the video.
Is the content going to work better in a video than in photos and/or text? If the answer is NO: don’t make the video.
A video showing children on a ski slope evokes emotions, seems just made for sharing and it’s very obviously best on video, and as expected it was indeed a viral success.
But what about if the video is intended to reach a particular community? Although you don’t always need to personally want to share the video, if it is directed towards a specific target group that you and your newsroom/department believe will be engaged by it, it may be worthwhile making the video anyway.
In short: the content decides.
Dutch satire programme Zondag met Lubach went viral with its Trump video.
Compare them with your most successful posts (and those that didn’t go so well) and look for the common denominator to learn from for the future. But remember that trends and behaviours change over time, so it’s important to keep up to date.