I was recently the lucky* recipient of an email entitled “127 facts you probably didn’t know about video marketing”. I’ve been in marketing long enough to know that listicles content such as “X things you need to know about X” can sometimes be relatively useful. But one hundred and twenty seven? C’mon. Who has time for that? Well, as it turned out, me!

*Sarcasm really doesn’t work in blogs.

The typo in the article’s introduction aside, it was the first bullet point (beneath a ‘These interesting facts include’ headline) that really caught my attention. It read as follows… “48 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube every minute”.

It was however my “WHY DOES THAT MATTER TO ME?!?!?” scream that caught the attention of my snoozing dog.

The bullet points continued; 96% of marketers invested in video marketing in 2016 and 70% of agencies believe video is the most effective form of marketing. Of all the facts and stats, there was no mention of engaging content, or how to successfully tell stories through the power of film. Instead, it was a boring stat-fest!

So in the interests of balance, I’m not going to give you 127 ‘interesting’ titbits. I’m going to give you just one. That’s right, just one simple tip for how to engage your video viewers. And yes you guessed it, it was in the article’s headline all along; Be more Hardy and less Scott. Once you understand what I mean by that, it really is that simple.

Let’s start with Scott. And by Scott, I’m talking about my namesake Barry Scott. The loud mouth buffoon from the Cillit Bang adverts.

You really don’t need to press play y’know

Scott’s adverts are nothing more than watching a foreign tourist bellowing at a local that doesn’t understand them.

I’ve never been able to comprehend why he has to shout at us. But equally, I’ve never understood why this dumbed-down patronising approach is also embraced by some brands in their ‘let’s really spell it out for the audience’ marketing content. In my previous blogs I’ve written about how brands need to show their audience integrity and intelligence in return for their attention and time. But this style of marketing is the antithesis and has the opposite effect the client was hoping for. You could say it’s more a case of “BANG and the customer’s gone!”.

Which brings me on to Hardy. And no I don’t mean Laurel’s sidekick or the great Poet, I mean Tom Hardy.

In stark contrast from his roles as Bane, Bronson and both Krays, Tom Hardy plays himself in Sky Mobile’s new series of TV ads and online films.

The polar opposite of Mr Scott, Tom’s delivery is slower, highly considered and wise…because it really didn’t need to be more. The production values are brilliantly simple too. One man, some sugar cubes and a baggy cardigan.

It’s not going to win any BAFTAs, but it’s glorious proof that intelligent storytelling doesn’t have to be complex. It just needs to be believable.

That’s the difference. We know Barry Scott thinks we’re stupid. Tom Hardy and Sky on the other hand, don’t.

Credit-giving content is more valuable than you think. But producing this style of content requires consideration and time. We regularly hold, what we call ‘FocusPuller’ sessions with our clients to ensure that their marketing content works as hard as possible.

I feel that I’ve been unduly harsh on Barry Scott. But as you will see, Cillit Bang made him vanish eventually. So I leave you with cinematic proof of how to not only earn your audience’s attention, but also what happens when your less Scott and more Hardy…

Barry Richardson is the Founder & Creative Director of BRAVO
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