Maybe you’ve watched Bear Grylls’s You vs. Wild (2019) or you’ve read one of those ‘choose your own adventure’ books, like Choose Your Own Disaster by Dana Schwartz. Viewers, readers, or both, are actively involved in progressing the plot. Or so it seems. Whatever the medium, anything interactive is always a win. Why? Mainly because it feels as if the content is personalized for each viewer or reader. See here an initial screening of Weber’s Late Shift at the Neuchâtel International Fantastic Film Festival. Voting with their phones, audiences feel there’s an added layer of participation to the typically passive activity.

Screening of Late Shift (2016), Tobias Weber (Swiss director).

Video is a medium people watch, interact with and share on a monthly, or to be honest, even daily. The importance of video is a factor we take to heart here at SmartCuts Creative, and something we explored further in a blog post from September on video ads. That said, you can go the extra mile and argue that interactive videos should be the way forward. Not just in the limits of cinema, but for corporate video production as well. 

The popularity of interactive videos is on the rise. As Rozakis (2019) remarks that “70% of marketers say interactive video engages audiences ‘well’ or ‘very well’ while 64% of consumers would spend more time on a video if they could interact with the content.” Whilst some have not gone with the wave on interactive videos, others suggest that it may be what your marketing campaigns need. 

In this article, you’ll find ideas to create effective interactive videos for your company and digital marketing strategy. You’ll have the foundation steps to make interactive videos that are not only entertaining but that also allow your brand to draw in more customers than you can imagine.

Promising Engagement with Interactive Videos

1. What is an Interactive Video?
2. The Benefits of Implementing Interactive Videos to Your Marketing Strategy
3. Memory and Interactive Videos
4. 4 Types of Interactive Videos to look out for
5. Key Questions before making your Next Interactive Video
6. 3 Examples of Interactive Videos.

What is an Interactive Video?

All this talk about interactivity, yet we haven’t defined it as a key concept. According to the Collins Dictionary, interactive, as an adjective, is defined as when people communicate with each other. In the same way, this can be applied to interactive videos. If people communicate with each other and are therefore interacting, users can interact with videos. That could mean, for example, that users are able to click on the video as a command, and the computer follows that task. 

In other words, interactive videos urge viewers to become involved in some way. Yes, other forms of animation, like video adverts, can have engaging elements like a CTA (Call to action), encouraging viewers to do something. But nothing is quite as appealing and quite literally interactive as an interactive video.

The Benefits of Interactive Videos for Your Sales & Marketing Strategies

You may be thinking, at this point, that interactive videos seem captivating. But, it’s difficult to fully comprehend their capabilities without watching examples. See listed below, the benefits to interactive videos:

1) User Engagement. You feel like you are completely in control of videos. With this control, users can ultimately decide everything in relation to whatever you are showing in your interactive video, whether that’s a product or a service.

2) Receive Quality Feedback. With interactive videos, your sales & marketing teams can discover exactly what customers want and need. From there, you can create more accurate marketing strategies based on more specific target markets.  

3) Game-like Experience. Who doesn’t enjoy a game? Members of the psychology community argue that “when playing games, we compete and excel on so many levels, feeling empowered.” (New Hope Psychology, 2022) In that case, interactive videos are something users will enjoy participating in, arguably more than passively watching a video. 

But is it only these elements that make interactive videos a great device for future marketing campaigns? 

Can we Remember more with Interactive Videos?

After watching a video, all you want is for your customers to remember key elements from the video. The hope is they go on to visit your website. The dream is that they buy your products and services. 

Studies have shown that interactive learning is beneficial to educational systems. Jonathan Savage (2015), reveals a study “found that the participants learned almost 5 times as much material, compared to traditional learning methods.” This is closely linked with the idea that you can improve knowledge retention through interactive videos.

For example, a viewer watches your video, remembers key parts of the video, and then goes on to share their thoughts/experience with someone else. That sharing process could increase conversions or generate more loyal customers. 

Rozakis’s Types of Interactive Videos

Current Senior Director of Marketing at AnyClip, Rebecca Rozakis, has pointed out 3 types of interactive videos to look out for. In addition to her types, I have added why and when you might want to use them.

1) Learning & Development. This can be applied to your company’s teams and the development of their skills. For instance, maybe there’s an interactive video on leadership coaching. 

2) Recruitment and Onboarding. Maybe a new intern or other employee is about to start at your company. One of the ways you can onboard them, and ensure they remember key information and your values, is through entertaining and engaging interactive videos. See one of our favorite examples below to illustrate this.

3) Marketing and Customer Experience. When you want to explain a product, or show a product demo, interactive videos can be a great solution. Customer satisfaction will increase whilst revealing key product information. 

Key Questions before creating your Next Interactive Video…

In other words, find out the ways in which you can make your interactive videos stand out. This will help convert prospective clients and increase engagement. In an article from Cinema8, you’ll find outlined 3 key factors behind the creation of an interactive video, and I’ve added their importance. 

Especially if you’re working in tangent with a video production company, you want to know several aspects to ease the collaboration process: 

1) Know your Purpose. Before developing storyboards for your interactive videos and thinking up as many creative concepts as you can, you might want to ask the question why? If you don’t know why, go back to the drawing board. This question will be the basis of your video in terms of messaging. 

2) Know your Audience. In other words, know your target market. Who are they, what do they want, what do they need? That’s the basis of all good marketing and sales strategies. If this isn’t part of your marketing bread and butter, you might want to start baking up new recipes now. 

3) Know Your Style. Maybe it’s inline with your company’s aesthetic and colors. Are you classy and elegant? Funky? You may think it’s obvious, but it’s important to be sure. What are your color schemes? 

Three Salient Examples of Interactive Videos

Interactive videos and films exist at every corner of the internet; they’re everywhere. Just so you don’t have to, we’ve narrowed down three examples of interactive videos that illustrate the type of standard we strive for at SmartCuts Creative.

1) See how Jon Favreau’s The Jungle Book was brought to life here. This ingenious interactive video gives viewers a taste of the behind the scenes, but at their own pace.

2) Recruiting for Deloitte. Making sure a new employee will fit in and making sure they understand the fundamental values is what is highlighted in this interactive video. 

3) In this interactive explainer video for Lifesaver, we’re shown the lifesaving power of CPR and the Heimlich maneuver. You become part of the rescue when you lick on any of the four scenarios for Jake, Rebecca, Harry and Peter. Being part of the action will allow you to learn and retain essential information better that could quite possibly save somebody’s life.

Interactivity with SmartCuts

As well as the examples above, I thought I’d give you a taste of what SmartCuts has to offer in terms of interactive videos.

In relation to travel and documentary, we worked alongside National Geographic to make an interactive video. Sticking with that sense of documented adventure National Geographic magazines convey, the same techniques have been applied to the video. Throughout the video, you can click on the interactive icons and find additional information. The interactive process is highlighted in the images below.

We’re making watching your videos an interactive and exciting experience.

Final Thoughts: Interactivity Promising Engagement

As you can tell from this article, interactive video can be a much more engaging type of video production than classic static video. That doesn’t mean you should rule out other types of video production, but it’s only an encouraging factor to look beyond video formats like animation. Maybe there’s a more unique way to illustrate your concept through interactive video.

SmartCuts Creative provides a cutting-edge creative communication service: original concepts; clear, creative and concise content delivered competently. In other words, we help you get your message across through the following tools and services: 

Video Production & Animation – corporate video, social media video, drone, interviews, interactive, video marketing, explainer videos, infographics, motion graphics and lots more.

Design & Branding – digital concept development & strategy, web & interactive design, visual identity, graphic design. 

Digital & Social Media Marketing – campaign strategy, design & management, copy & content writing, blogs & SEO.

Virtual-hybrid Events & Tours / Video-conferencing – webinars, full event development & management, moderation & hosting, virtual visits.

Media Trainingpublic speaking & coaching, look & sound great on camera.

Green-screen Production Studio – large video & photo production studio, 100% soundproof, professionally equipped 360o green-screen.

SmartCuts has 10+ years of experience, 100+ satisfied customers and 1,000+ successful productions.
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