In this modern world, video content is king when it comes to digital marketing. As consumers, we are bombarded daily with an abundance of text-based, online information – so it is no wonder that the easily consumable format of videos takes consumer preference.
Video marketing is a highly versatile and engaging form of content, however, as technology advances and creating captivating video becomes easier, generating content that inspires people to engage with your brand becomes tougher. Equally, as consumers, we have developed a throwaway culture and while many years ago effective advertising and marketing would resonate with consumers for months, nowadays it quickly fades from memory and is replaced with the next big thing.
Everything that you post should be aimed at driving traffic towards your pages, boosting your engagement, and, most crucially, help to increase your brand awareness. In recent years digital content marketers have been adopting the ‘three H’s’ approach when it comes to creating viral-worthy content, helping to set their brand apart from their competitors.
What is the Three H approach?
The three H’s, Hero, Hub, and Hygiene, are not an entirely new concept, with the buzzwords first becoming used back in 2014. Developed by YouTube, Hero, Hub, Hygiene is a content strategy for brands looking to use video content in their marketing and is designed to attract new potential customers while equally keeping existing followers engaged.
So what does each word mean?
Think of your Hero content as the big video pieces that you create. The high-end, often expensive content that produces a high-impact result. Your Hero content is designed to put your brand in front of a big new audience and help you to build an engaging connection with the general public.
Typically, a brand would launch a piece of Hero content when they are building up towards a new product unveiling or an important event. These are those viral videos that remain at the forefront of consumers’ minds for long periods of time. For example:
Volvo’s Epic Split
Back in 2013, Volvo teamed up with Jean-Claude Van Damme to have the legendary actor and martial arts expert perform his famous splits between two new Volvo trucks. Designed to raise awareness of the brand and its latest vehicles, the video was seen by hundreds of millions of people around the world.
Red Bull’s Project Stratos
Another great example of Hero video content is the Red Bull Project Stratos jump, which saw Felix Baumgartner create the world’s highest freefall jump – with the stunt being live-streamed around the world. The viral video helped play along with the company’s well-known catchphrase, “gives you wings”.
Although Hero content can be expensive to create, it does not always need to be expensive to be successful. Focusing on a clear and unique angle should be your priority and ensuring as is telling the story in a creative, hilarious, or shocking manner.
Due to the big budgets often required for Hero content, most big brands will typically create something between one to three times a year; ensuring they are constantly at the forefront of consumer’s minds.
Hub content, on the other hand, is your regular content. It is what keeps your day-to-day followers entertained and regularly coming back to your site; creating a content ‘hub’ that keeps visitors engaged with your brand.
Although these videos will be posted more frequently, they should still be highly valuable to your followers and incentivise them to engage with, and follow, your brand. You can even use your Hub content to build-up to big events and Hero content, or use it as a behind-the-scenes series following your big event.
The intention of Hub content is to continue to generate your brand awareness but also drive viewers into your sales funnel. Some strong examples of Hub content include:
In this testimonial, mobile network Verizon sat down with their customer Angela to find out how she was getting on with their new 5G wireless technology. The 15-second clip helps to drive customers towards their website to learn more and despite being under a year old it is one of the highest watched testimonial videos on YouTube.
Gillette are known for creating regular and insightful Hub content on their channel. These entertaining videos bring in a range of Q&As and interviews with real people – such as their Tinder Dating Test, which had the overall aim of driving people towards their products.
The most successful Hub content is that which is able to keep your audience engaged, so it is important that you truly understand what they need. You also need to understand how your followers are interacting with your brand and on what platforms; allowing you to target them directly.
Although your hygiene content is not ground-breaking content that always stands out amongst the noise, it is a vital part of your digital marketing strategy. Your hygiene content should be the basis of what forms your plan, acting as the primary source of engagement between your brand and the consumer.
Effective Hygiene content will help to significantly (and organically) boost your SEO and visibility. The fact that this style of content should be the most cost-effective, it can end up producing the highest possible return on your investment.
The overall goal of your hygiene content is to improve your ranking for your chosen keywords, so spending time focusing on the most suitable for your brand can significantly boost your end results. If you find that over time some of these keywords are no longer as effective as they once were, remember that hygiene content should be fluid, so that you can quickly adapt and change the content as needed.
Some examples of great Hygiene content include:
BMW How To…
Car manufacturer BMW is very good at providing their followers with useful content that helps them interact with the brand and learn new skills.
Nike top tips
Another great example of hygiene content comes from global sporting brand Nike, who provide their followers with regular top tips on how to improve their fitness and exercise.
There is no blueprint for creating hygiene content and every brand will have different aims and goals that they want to achieve. By focusing on what your goals are, your brand can ensure that it is an insightful and sustainable strategy for your marketing.
With billions of users creating, posting, and sharing content online every single day, cutting through the noise and generating powerful content is a difficult objective. Adopting the ‘three H’s’ approach can transform your digital presence and bring you closer to your consumers.
By focusing on what attracts customers to your brand and ensuring your content supports your overall digital strategy, you can boost your engagement, increase your customer sales, and raise your profit.
Tom Bendix is the founder of Social Films, a video production company based in London. Tom has been personally involved in creating thousands of videos that have been viewed over 25 million times worldwide and generated over £30 million in revenue. For 15 years, Social Films has helped startups and brands to create stunning ‘done-for-you’ videos that turn likes, comments and clicks in to profit.