This is a discussion we have here at The Day from time to time, and I see it cropping up in various video forums: Do the videos we produce need to stand alone as stories? I assume that most of us are publishing videos with at least a headline and a sentence or two of associated text. Many of the videos we publish at TheDay.com appear right on the page with a related story. It's certainly easier and quicker to make a video that is somewhat incomplete. To tell the full story, you might need more interviews and a well-written voiceover. This takes time, and can be hard to fit into a 90-second video piece.But most of us also publish our videos in players that have a "share" button. Whether you use YouTube, Brightcove, Vimeo, Catsfire or some other service, your videos can be embedded anywhere on the Web. Unless the video is incredibly interesting on its own, I fear we'll lose potential audience and give ourselves a less-than-professional reputation if videos are floating out there with our branding in the pre-roll but no context and incomplete storytelling.
I'd carry the conversation even farther and ask: do we need the title of the piece on/in the video?It sounds like we are all asking the same question at our respective news organizations.With the ability to share, link and re-post players I am starting to come down on the side of self-contained, tell the entire story in the video.My only caveat with this is that, especially with a news story, you may need to get something up fast with the story post and then refine the video and update it. More often than not we can always find ways to sharpen a video, rework it, make it better. Yes, I know that takes time.But when I look back at work I did a year ago, that ties in to a new story or a change in the story, the "old" video doesn't stand up as well.So my thought is to keep an eye on the longer "tail" of video, and that would seem to push telling the entire story in the video.
We (me and myself) have this discussion at the Tulsa World. It's also brought up the question of whether our video strategy should be based on the user experience RIGHT NOW, or should it be based on what we think WILL HAPPEN in the next 1.5-2 years.