The Three Pillars of Great Video Content: An Exclusive Q&A with Jonathan Perelman, VP of Motion Pictures at BuzzFeed

by Jenna Sindle

All of the current buzz surrounding multimedia and visual content can leave the modern marketer wondering how to stand out. What’s the magic formula for creating exciting, shareable visual content? Jonathan Perelman, Vice President of BuzzFeed Motion Pictures, shares his tips for multimedia content creation:

Tell us a little about your roll at BuzzFeed:

I’ve been at BuzzFeed for two years and in my current role for about eight months. My role as Vice President of BuzzFeed Motion Pictures covers all elements of our Motion Picture operation in LA. We’re doing great things, and I’m really excited about our branded video team. The work we’re doing with brands is accelerating like crazy. Already, more videos have been released in the first eight months of this year then all of last year, and it’s just the beginning.

I’m also responsible for all operations and partnerships of the studio, and thrilled with our syndication efforts getting our content on many different platforms. Our Future of Fiction division with Michael Shamberg is also incredibly exciting and I can’t wait to see what come out of it.

 When it comes to digital marketing, what are your top three tips for capturing an audience quickly, creatively, and effectively?

Digital marketing is such a broad topic, it’s difficult to answer. I believe that sharing is the most effective way to build an audience online. Studies have shown that when a piece of branded content is shared with someone, there is a perceived endorsement and metrics such as purchase intent, or willingness to try a new product can see brand lift in the 100’s of percents. Programmatic is capturing the attention of the industry, but nothing beats a good media mix.

Multimedia and visual storytelling are hot topics in the marketing world. As the VP of BuzzFeed Motion Pictures, why do you think a visual story is so impactful?

The power of sight, sound and motion is undeniable. The convergence of social and mobile has created a perfect opportunity for video, and all visual images. Today, people will send an animated gif, as it expresses the feeling they are having better than words can. We have only begun to feel the impact and possibility of the next generation of visual storytelling.

What makes a great piece of video content?

There’s no panacea, or simple answer for making a great piece of video content. At BuzzFeed we have three pillars by which we create content and about 40 formats. The pillars are:

  1. Emotional Gift: “How will this content make you feel?”
  2. Identity: “Can this video say more about you than you would say about yourself?”
  3. Information: “Can you present something in a new, different or unique way?”

One of our most successful videos of all time is ‘Dear Kitten‘, a branded video. Watch this and think about those three pillars.

What are you most looking forward to at this year’s Future of Marketing Summit?

Hearing from the other speakers. The group assembled is a world class group of executives and I’m excited to hear what they have to say about the future of marketing. The FT always puts on great events, I’m sure this will be no different.