When you're making a marketing video, it's easy to focus completely on production and lose sight of making content that not only looks great but actually has a positive impact on the brand. Whether you're working on a large campaign, or a single video this is the pre-flight checklist I always go back to in order to ensure our project is 100% aligned with our marketing goals.

The checklist is divided into three sections with a few questions in each. If I run through this list and don’t have the right information, I know I need to course correct or at least get my facts straight.

If I can answer these questions confidently however, I know I'm on the right track to build a successful campaign and I have a solid vocabulary to communicate my plan to others.

1. Making the right content for your audience

It's easy to get excited about an idea. You may let your creativity run wild and wind up with an awesome concept that you love. But if it’s not something that the audience will be as excited about it could hurt your marketing goals in the end. Don't make content for yourself (unless of course that's your target audience). Truly effective content that resonates with your audience is specifically designed to accomplish a marketing goal for that audience. These are the four questions I ask to make sure we're on the right track.

  1. Who is our audience and will this idea resonate with them?
  2. Do I have a clear understanding of our goals and objectives?
  3. What's our plan to achieve these goals with the campaign/content?
  4. What are our key performance indicators (KPIs) for measuring success?

2. Ensuring your content makes an impact

Now it's time to dive a little deeper. You're aligned on a concept and execution but it’s all riding on your distribution plan. Don’t wait until after you finish production to start thinking about this step or you may have just wasted a lot of time. How and where you’re distributing your video can have a huge impact on how you produce it. This involves deciding what concrete steps to take so the creative actually does what you need. Here’s what I make sure to answer here:

  1. What channels should we be sharing this content on?
  2. How will we tailor the video for each platform? (aspect ratio, captions)
  3. How are we reporting on our KPIs and how are we including organic feedback?
  4. How can we use that insight and analytics to improve the campaign moving forward?

3. Setting Up A Smooth Production Process

Concept and strategy are important, but if you fall short in production you'll struggle to accomplish your objectives. Before we start prep, these are the key things I need to answer to make sure production goes smoothly and we create the video we've planned.

  1. Who needs to be on the creative team to execute this idea?
  2. What kind of outside crew/talent do we need to bring in?
  3. What access, equipment, or information does the team need in order to succeed?
  4. Who else needs to be looped in to assist with scheduling and logistics?

Having solid answers to each of these questions gives me the confidence that I have the information necessary to launch a campaign and produce content for it. There's so much more to think about during prep, production, post and launch but these are the prerequisites for getting started.

With this information, you’ll always be able to speak clearly about what your concept is and how to accomplish your marketing goals.

Click here to download a pdf checklist to refer back to as you start your next project.

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