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mistakes video marketing success

Unsuccessful Video? Learn from These 7 Mistakes!

Liesa Huppertz
Jul 5, 2019

Is your video not being well received? In this article you will learn the main reasons for your failure and learn about different approaches to solving it. Let’s get your video on the road to success!

Jump quickly to the appropriate section:

Although an incredible 82% of Internet traffic will be video by 2020, only a few champions can celebrate the success of their videos. They have countless views, a lot of interaction, and they are viral.

The most watched YouTube videos, by number of views as of March 2019, are the music videos by Luis Fonsi ft. Daddy Yankee "Despacito" with 6 billion views (status at the time of writing), followed by Ed Sheeran "Shape of You" with 4.1 billion hits (as of article creation date).

According to Digital Music News, these video producers belong to the 1% elite whose videos make up an incredible 93% of all YouTube views. This is madness!

Laut Digital Music News, gehören diese Video-Produzenten zur Elite von 1%, deren Videos unglaubliche 93% aller Views auf YouTube ausmachen. Das ist Wahnsinn!

Given these figures, some of you would probably like to bury your head in the sand. Small business owners in particular are certainly asking themselves why produce videos at all? But just hold on!

Views are not everything nor the most important thing. It depends much more on the customer commitment and the added value that you generate with your videos for the target group. But of course, if a video is not even seen, the aforementioned success factors will not help.

P&G's "Thank You, Mom" campaign was a successful video with storytelling and big emotion.

The failure of videos is usually due to a few basic mistakes. You can fix these yourself quickly and avoid them during the next video production. We will introduce you to these mistakes and provide you with direct advice and concrete recommendations for finding a solution.

Error #1: The Video Content Was Not Relevant

Your video should not be trying to please everybody. It is simply not possible to be everything for everyone. The needs, interests, and demands of people cannot be more different.

Of course, some people tick similarly. These can then be summarized under a target group. Basically, the following applies to marketing: Whoever wants to address everyone will ultimately not reach anyone.

This is why personalized content is all the more important. Millennials, especially, attach great importance to relevant video content. Win the millennials over because they are one of the world's largest and most influential target groups – the purchasing decision-makers of tomorrow.

Microsoft is building a relationship with millennials by reviving childhood memories.

If a video doesn't offer added value or entertainment, and is badly made, viewers shut down or jump to the next video. Worst case scenario- the brand is remembered negatively by the consumer.

How can you prevent this and increase the chances of success for your video? These solutions will help you.

The solution:

  • Design your content with meaning. The values and goals of your audience are a good point of reference.
  • Avoid clumsy advertising. Show more sensitivity when dealing with your target group.
  • Stay authentic. Only produce videos that underline your uniqueness and embody what you stand for.
  • Package your content in a creative way. Your best tools are storytelling and an emotional narrative style. Emotions serve as motivators and trigger certain actions for the customer. Acquire this success-enhancing narrative technique.

Ensure clarity in your content strategy: corporate identity, mission, goal, and message. Identify different topics, cluster them, and then develop concrete video projects.
content kategorien bilden

Create content categories: Transfer your main topics into the arrangement of your YouTube playlists (YouTube channel of Mynd).


Error #2: Bypassing the Topic- Too Boring or Too Controversial

There are two ways to have misproductions. First, the topic was chosen incorrectly. Second, while the intention may have been right, the delivery was wrong. 

Bad sound and lighting, unprofessional acting, and flat dialogues can make your production look like it's coming out of a cheesy soap opera.

There have been times when misproductions resulted in devastating backlash for the brand itself. See the Pepsi promotional clip. The reason for failure here is a different one, and one that can't be forgiven so quickly. This commercial misstep teaches marketers the importance of market research and understanding consumer behavior.

Please don't! Pepsi's video with Kendall Jenner.

As a marketer, it's not enough to sit comfortably in an office chair and make assumptions about the outside world. You need a multicultural team and contact with your target group. Talk to them to get to know different perspectives and be able to reproduce an authentic picture- one with which your people can identify.

In this case, Pepsi has failed to talk to protest groups and understand their emotional world.

This is how you gain attention with your content, but in a positive way:

The solution:

  • Follow a customer-oriented marketing approach. Every decision should be made for the benefit of the customer.
  • Observe current trends and make a statement.
  • Have an opinion and consistently represent it to the outside world.
  • Create content together with your target group. The supreme discipline in content creation is co-creation.

A successful marketing strategy stands or falls with the accuracy of your target group definition. Therefore, take enough time to reproduce it as truthfully as possible. All other decisions and orientations depend on it.
customer value and relationships

The customer at the heart of all business decisions (Book: Armstrong, Gary & Kotler, Philip (2012): Marketing An Introduction, 11. Aufl., Pearson).


Error #3: The Video Was Entertaining but Nothing More.

Have you ever found yourself watching videos because you were procrastinating and just trying to pass the time? If the added value of these videos is not clear to you, it's usually pure entertainment- not meaningful and problem solving. Companies can lose a lot of money as a result.

But where does this urge for entertainment come from?

In today's world of the information society and on-demand services, advertisers are very careful not to disturb consumers with their advertising messages in everyday life. Instead, they try to covertly guide interested parties through their sales funnel in order to win them over as loyal brand ambassadors.

For customers, communication with the company should feel like a natural dialogue and not a hardcore sales talk.

However, many companies run the risk of exaggerating out of fear of being too promotional. However, video measures that do not follow a specific goal do not count as marketing. It’s just pure entertainment!

With this advice you create target-oriented content:

The solution:

  • Create a sales funnel that is specifically tailored to your corporate goals- more commitment, shares, leads, sales, etc. You are the ones who set the course.
  • Create interesting content at every stage of the sales funnel so that potential customers can move forward in the sales process and gain positive experiences with the brand.
  • Monitor and optimize your sales funnel continuously (see next section on Marketing Analytics).
  • Respond to changing business structures, social change, and new technologies.

First create a buyer persona for your target group. Identify your problem and solve it with (free) content that adds value. 
example buyer persona  xtensio

Template of a Buyer Persona from Xtensio with which you can create target group profiles.


Error #4: Marketing Analytics Were Skillfully Ignored.

How well you solve a customer problem and create added value can be seen in the analysis and control of the previously defined Key Performance Indicators (KPI). The most important video indicators for this are views, the playback time, and the number of clicks on your call-to-action.

It's up to you! You don't leave the success of your company to chance with KPI’s.

If you have not defined any metrics and have not collected any data during a marketing campaign, you cannot evaluate anything. You remain unaware of the success of your campaign. You can’t even correct your development during the course of the campaign. In other words, you squander your money on unnecessary actions and miss unexpected potential. It’s so easy to test the click-through rates of different thumbnails.

The big data topic is on everyone's lips today. Companies must learn how to deal with growing information floods and data mountains and how to use them profitably for their decisions.

It is best to orient yourself on the individual steps of the management process: Plan, Do, Control, and Act (PDCA cycle). The following suggested solutions automatically follow the PDCA scheme.

qualitaetsmanagement mithilfe des pdca zyklus

 Qualitätsmanagement mithilfe des PDCA-Zykluses (Grafik von gründerkü

The solution:

  •  Make strategic decisions as a data-oriented marketer – You should ask yourself these 3 questions and act accordingly:
    • What do you want to achieve with your video?
    • How do you measure your success?
    • How can you optimize your videos?
    • Use a video analysis tool and track the customer journey of your customers.
    • Find out where they jump off the sales funnel.
    • Use the newly acquired knowledge to optimize your videos and find worthwhile projects for the future.

Quantitative data collections are important to understand the target group and its consumer behavior in the masses. Qualitative insights are just as important. By promoting customer engagement, i.e. interacting with customers, you can directly obtain their opinion (social listening). This allows you to supplement your stored data and tsee through your target group more and more.

Error #5: The Video Was Too Long.

Being permanently available and being able to consume information on demand is both a blessing and a curse. Our concentration suffers most from it. From the year 2000 to today, our attention span has dropped from 12 seconds to just 8 seconds. Anything that is not of interest is ignored.

So how long can a video be to hold the attention of the audience? According to Vidyard, 75% of the videos published in recent years are actually shorter than 2 minutes. Marketers, therefore, meticulously adhere to the 2-minute target.

In a similar report, Vidyard explained that the most popular video formats are product videos, demos, explainer videos, and webinars.

What does this show us? The 2-minute rule cannot be generalized and applied to all channels. The optimal video length therefore depends on the place of use and the objective. This means that if your primary goal is to provide detailed information via a webinar, this can take longer. A crisp TV spot, on the other hand, has a completely different goal.

video lenght platform

 Infographics from Mynd: The optimal video length by location.

Basically, you should try to convince your target audience in the first seconds and keep your video as short as possible because of short attention spans. The average display time in social media is just 1.7 seconds.

No more excessively long videos. How to master the challenge:g:

The solution:

  • Find out the right video length for each channel. We have summarized an overview for you here.
  • Prioritize your information points and arguments. Less important content is eliminated.
  • Name the customer benefits right at the beginning.
  • Roll up your story from behind. This will maintain the tension and reduce the turn-off rate


If your video is too long for the intended channel, simply split the content into several videos. This gives you more content for further marketing campaigns at the same time.

Error #6: Too Much Information at Once.

A video is often too long even when you're trying to convey too much information at once. This is not only error #5, but also error #6. Sometimes companies also tend to squeeze as much information as possible into a temporary video format.

We understand you. As an internal employee, all information is equally valuable to you. But does a potential customer need to know all this to understand your product? Not really. You have to learn to cut corners.

The human brain can process moving images 60,000 times faster than pure text. Therefore, meet the audience and process complex topics into easily digestible food. Break down the content into smaller, easily understandable building blocks. You can make the best possible use of the possibilities offered by the video format- without exaggerating.

The white board explainer video by Mynd.

The motto is, “Less is more.” Use these tricks to create easy-to-understand videos:

The solution:

  • Less text, more pictures- underline what you're saying with visual elements, animations, and other vivid examples.
  • Ensure a consistent presentation (e.g. color concepts, illustrations).
  • Speak a simple language without insider terminology and jargon.
  • Summarize the most important points.
  • Include a call-to-action in your message and make your contact details available to the customer so that they can contact you for further information.

You know your company and the offer inside out. This leads to blindness more often than not! Get an objective opinion to help you- e.g. colleagues from other areas. Find out what they think of your video. Or even better – ask your target group directly for feedback. The latter provides more information.

Error #7: No SEO Optimized Titles & Appealing Thumbnails.

Imagine that you have invested a lot of time and effort in video production. A script was written, it was filmed on set, and the video was edited afterwards. Then, the video software randomly selects the preview image. Additionally, the title and description are completely omitted.

It’s similar to if you wrote a book and forgot the book cover at the end. Would you choose this book from all the books on display in the bookstore, let alone discover it? Probably not! It's the same with videos.

Neil Patel’s YouTube Channel

 Neil Patel’s YouTube Channel: A cleverly selected video preview animates you to click.

In order for your video to generate attention and clicks, there are a few things to consider.

The solution:

  • Create your own thumbnails and turn them into creative posters, comparable to exciting cinema posters. For inspiration, follow our tips for the perfect thumbnail.
  • Integrate only as much text as you need to tease the content. Your intro should leave questions unanswered and be mystical. This arouses curiosity in the viewers who are looking for answers.
  • Optimize your title and description according to the SEO requirements. Above all, be sure to include the most important keywords. This will make it easier for customers to find you.
  • Test your thumbnails, as well as texts, and optimize them based on your knowledge.

SEO Guru Neil Patel: How to improve your Google ranking even without budget.


Videos increase your SEO performance. They ensure more traffic and a longer stay on your website. For search engines, this is an indicator of the great relevance of your website so that you appear higher in the ranking. Invest in the SEO area!

Your Golden Video Times Are Now!

You now know the most common reasons for a video's failure and how to avoid them.

So what are you waiting for? Start your own video project today. Even if the great success story does not wait for you, there is always room for improvement. You never stop learning. And that's a good thing. Otherwise, life would be pretty boring- don't you think?

If you need support with your video projects, we are there for you. We can advise you without obligation and free of charge »

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