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Writers, Don’t Dread the Rise of Video

Marketers are always on the lookout for innovative ways to capture the attention of audiences and video has increasingly become an important part of that conversation. Video is no longer just some hot new marketing tactic that you should probably think about maybe looking into. It’s here, it’s not going anywhere, and it has proven itself as a powerful way of communicating your brand’s story and building relationships with prospective customers. But what about all the content writers? Or the text journalists? How do they stand to fare in this modern marketing world entangled in video?

writers and the rise of video

Here’s why those who specialize in writing and editing might think video is negatively impacting their career. Let’s also see what the best course of actin is for dealing with this major disruptor to the marketing industry.

Writing and marketing go hand-in-hand.

For decades, writers have been an integral piece of the marketing team. In the 1950s and 1960s, brands sought to understand the consumer better than their competitors and get the brand recipe just right. More than the logo or the price of a product or service, the brand is the packaging, the advertising, the promotions – all of which are guided by perfectly worded statements. From getting the captions on print ads just right or composing a catchy jingle, to today’s world of SEO, content marketing, email promotions, and social media, someone has the job of composing text that catches the attention of buyers. “Proven,” “love,” “discover,” “you,” “click,” “free,” “increase,” “opportunity,” “learn,” “find,” “easiest,” “grow,” “exclusive” – these are just a few powerful words that persuade people to take action. Words sell. 

Language is the foundation of how we humans communicate. But storytelling has changed; visual storytelling is experiencing a surge in popularity and with it, changes to writing professionals’ jobs.

It’s no joke – video is taking over.

A lot has changed since the “Mad Men” era of advertising. Now, the market looks very different to just 20 years ago. The evolution of digital marketing has led to many changes, including the growing trend of video marketing.

A few convincing stats for you…

The speed of change in the marketing and sales industry and the speed at which new digital challenges arise is, to say the least, challenging. We’ve seen how businesses must redefine how they communicate with their target audiences and market across a wide variety of social channels and other content publishing platforms. Having a blog and website is no longer enough, right? Companies must do more if they wish to grab the attention of prospective buyers/donors/consumers. And one tactic is video.

Video is a great channel for connecting with prospects. On the flip side, it has the potential to make many folks’ day jobs disappear. And that is frightening. All the videographers out there can sleep easy knowing they’re in a stable career. But where does that leave the writers??

writers and the rise of video

How are writers dealing with video disrupting the marketing landscape?

…Not well. There seems to be a mixture of dread and fear in the atmosphere. As HubSpot’s State of Inbound 2017 report indicates, many marketers who currently make a living writing and editing are worried their careers will become less and less important. If you’re a worrying writer, pause a moment and take a deep breath with me.

Video will not wipe out all the writing jobs.  

For those who are still worrying, try to view video as a great connection between a brand and its customers. People are after that raw, honest, personal connection and video is one medium that creates that relationship well. Only those who resist the change will view it as a disruption. True, many media companies, as they make the great pivot to video, have laid off staff. But writing jobs will not disappear permanently because of video.

There’s a new role for writers.

Video will change those jobs, however.

Here’s how I think of it: writers can be cynical fearful individuals OR … writers can choose to get trained. Even though video has flipped everything on it its head, skilled content writers will quickly adapt and learn how to write for video. Every video needs a quality script and in the rush to pivot to video content, there are many people making videos who simply don’t know how to write for them. So, my dear skilled writer, that’s where you come in.

Don’t let the general atmosphere of fear and resentment get you down. Learn the new video tactics. (Need a few resources for learning video marketing? Here are our favorites.) Looking at the future of marketing, it is clear that content distribution channels such as YouTube and Facebook video are at the top of the list. Seize the opportunity and add to your repertoire in order to stake your claim and keep your job.

As the industry moves towards more live videos and video content on social media, brands must adapt their marketing approaches to be less intrusive and more subtle, if they want conversions – and don’t we all?The struggle to adapt is rough but marketers are already accounting for video content’s rising popularity. Content writers must prepare as well. Looking more into video and creating visual content will ensure you are publishing relevant content that consumers enjoy consuming.

~ ~ ~

Content marketers who specialize in writing and editing worry about the impact video will have on their careers. But, as with any skilled worker, if you are willing to put in the extra effort to continuously grow and learn new skills and are able to create compelling, high-quality work then your writing job isn’t going anywhere.

The constantly changing tech landscape keeps marketing teams on their toes. People are still unsure whether video tool is a cure-all or just a bandaid. Is it even what audiences want? I say yes, but regardless, it has already forever changed the marketing landscape and marketers should embrace the move towards more video content.

Effectively managing the rapidly growing social media landscape warrants a significant resource allocation. Video is only going to get bigger! So stop dreading it. Writers, lean into it and embrace your new roles in a video world. In the modern marketing realm, video is taking over social media. Print ads no longer rule so grab your boom mic, your lighting gear, and a green screen and let’s make a video!

Looking for more insights into marketing challenges such as video? Check out the State of Inbound report for the latest benchmark data on the future of inbound.

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