Cannes, France — Grey’s Jason Kahner brought one of his heroes to the stage to kick off the second day of Lions Health. Hashem Al-Ghaili studied molecular biotechnology but left the lab to create films. He is now one of the most followed scientific film makers in social media. He garnered 2.5 million followers in just 10 months on Facebook and has collected 2 billion organic views across networks.
Al-Ghaili has eight commandments for creating video that people can’t resist watching:
- Content quality. Of course, it all starts there.
- Language simplicity. “You don’t just have scientists on Facebook, you have farmers, too,” said Al-Ghaili, “You have to present content in language everyone can understand.”
- Visual presentation. Even if people don’t share a language or turn on the sound, they can still take a lot away from a video. That means showing ideas and experiences, not talking heads. Al-Ghaili also underlined the importance of the first three seconds. That’s what autoplays and where you can catch all those people who still haven’t figured out how to turn off that feature in their Facebook feed.
- Length. There are two basic lengths with a best practice for each: showcasing with images and music (50 seconds to 1:30 seconds) and content based mini documentaries (3 to 5 minutes).
- Music and sound. That’s what touches the emotion AND it’s also what could be standing between your content and the mute button.
- Shareability. That compelling collision of all of the above. Plus, content that really matters to people and feels like it will change their lives today or tomorrow.
- Media customization. Every platform has a different audience and a different culture. What works on Facebook might not work on Youtube and likely won’t work for the fierce critics on Reddit. Brands have to create and recreate for each destination.
- Partnerships. Of course, this is where the viral reach can come in. Working with like minded organizations can rapidly expand your audience.
Kahner chose this topic because showing compelling science has long been a struggle in healthcare marketing. We push and pull with clients, regulatory, and even ourselves. Kahner said, “When those tensions go unresolved you end up creating advertising that appeals to the lowest common denominator.” Cue the reel of sea-of-sameness pharmaceutical ads.
Grey quantified the challenge in a May survey of ~300 advertising professionals. What’s the biggest burden in healthcare creative design, they asked. The answers:
- 61% science visualization
- 21% regulatory issues
- 8% storytelling
- 5% brand integration
BTW: The still in the main image for this post is Al-Ghaili’s anecdote to that challenge. See the full video on Facebook.