Can You Sell Your Brand in Six Seconds?

Vine may be dead. But the six second video thing is still alive. And getting some serious play from Google. Their recent push behind six second video content presents an intriguing opportunity for real estate brokerages to sell their brand to a younger, wider audience. Here's how.

First, a little background

Pre-roll videos are ads that play before a YouTube video. You can allow viewers to skip your pre-roll ads. But if people can skip an ad, they will. And then your marketing content is for all intents and purposes impotent. As an alternative, you can pay for a pre-roll ad that people can't skip. Your content plays and viewers have no choice but to watch and/or listen if they want to access their content. However, the inability to skip these ads detracts from their effectiveness. That is to say, though these ads 'reach' their intended audience, they just annoy the crap out of everyone.

6 seconds

So Google also offers six-second pre-roll 'bumper' videos. The idea of these 'bumper' videos is to avoid annoying viewers with forced commercials and simultaneously prevent them from skipping them. The six second video works two reasons: one, according to YouTube, more than half of all YouTube videos are consumed on a mobile device. It's important to reach these viewers quickly, as videos eat data and data eats money. Two, humans only have an attention span of 8 seconds. That attention span is shorter than goldfish. And goldfish don't have smartphones.

So the six second video is an ideal length—especially for an audience with a historically short attention span that uses their smartphone on a daily basis to peruse miscellaneous YouTube videos.

The audience

Or, in other words, millennials. These 6 second bumper videos are perfect for reaching the biggest demographic in the United States. (Millennials, 18-34 years old, now outnumber baby boomers by about 8 million.) Wouldn't it be nice if your marketing content could connect with the biggest audience in the country and through a medium that reaches more of them than any cable network in the US? An audience that is rapidly maturing to child-rearing, settle-down-and-buy-a-house years?

The challenge and the reward

Google is intent on proving the viability of the six second video. They recently challenged global ad agencies like Leo Burnett and TBWA to come up with six second ads to be shown at the Sundance Film Festival. The results are stunning. (Click here to check out a playlist of the contributions. It'll only take you 138 seconds to watch all 23 videos.)

The challenge in making a six second video is that you don't have time to explain anything. You can't write anything out in detail. And yet your message has to be crystal clear. But this challenge is also the reward.

Think about it: a six second video is the ultimate elevator pitch. You have no choice but to distill everything you're about into a six second message. I will tell you this: when you start chipping away the jargon-laden language that coats your standard marketing content, you'll arrive at the truth: your brand.

When you can clearly communicate your brand to your audience then sales follow.

What is your brand

Can you sell your brand in six seconds? If you can't, you don't know what your brand is. If you don't know what your brand is, your agents certainly won't. If your agents don't know your brand, you can be damn sure your clients won't either.

On the other hand, if you do know your brand, you can plug your messaging into a six second video and it'll work. Guaranteed. Do it right and you can sell your brand to the largest demographic in the country in a way that they'll have no choice but to consume. Thanks for reading!