What Make’s a Great Showreel?

a picture of a circle with 1 in the middle, it is representing a countdown to a film

Whether you are a speaker, actor, marketing agency, digital marketing or production house you need a good showreel to help you attract new business and highlight what kind of work you are producing. This blog will help you narrow down all the key areas needed to create a showreel that not only gets noticed but also leaves an impression.

Getting Noticed…

In this saturated media world people are becoming overwhelmed and disengaged with the amount of content thrown at them on a daily basis on TV, social media, radio and through apps on their phones. In a study by Red Crow Marketing Inc On average most Westerners are exposed to around 4,000 to 10,000 advertisements each day. Which begs the question: what’s the probability of you watching something that resonates with you given the deluge of content out there?

So why does this apply to having a good showreel?

Showreels are effectively adverts that showcase all of your best work in a respectable time frame of around 1-3 minutes. Showreels (Sizzle reels to some) are symbolic for actors, artists, presenters, marketing agencies and production houses as they act as a main marketing tool. According to study by Time the average human attention span is only 8 seconds (a second less than a gold fish) a fact that has fundamentally forced individuals brands, production houses, actors and artists to rethink their output and re-strategize their approach to getting noticed. No doubt this is the main reason why 56% of all online videos published over the last year are less than two minutes in length according to 2060 Digital.

So, how can you get people hooked after the first 2 seconds? And also, How can you get people excited enough to take further action after watching your showreel?

This is how…

First and last scenes are the most important…It’s sound pretty obvious, but the opening scene of any showreel has to be so impactful that it naturally sparks curiosity to invest time in watching it, and also keep people entertained and engaged. You want it to be fast-paced, enough to show a range of skills and clips without overwhelming someone watching it. Be strict, ensure each clip isn’t taking up too much time in your showreel and more importantly they aren’t repeated clips this can look really bad and as if you have a lack of good content. Think of the opening scene as a HOOK something that grips the attention immediately, if you haven’t already seen our showreel the opening scene is striking and powerful, we knew we had to create an impact and we did that through a compelling opening scene, a showreel is a powerful tool if used right. The last scene has to summarise everything and end on a bang, followed by a call to action (CTA). If you are a production agency or creative media agency ‘work with us’ followed by your contact details after the video works very well. If someone has sat there and watched your entire showreel (it has to be a really good for this to happen) putting your contact details at the end increases your chances of getting more enquires.

Keep it short, punchy and keep the pace up…

People don’t have 20 minutes to sit there watching your showreel nor do they have the attention span. So keep it 1-3 minutes max, 2 minutes is now the norm for most content, including showreels. Naturally certain social media platforms like Facebook tell you that the likelihood of your content being watched above 10 seconds if it exceeds 90 seconds in length is very unlikely. Each social media platform is different; uploading a showreel to Facebook will be completely different to LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube. Different social media networks have different levels of interaction for example Facebook had more than 8 billion videos viewed every 24 hours alone according to Techcrunch. Brands, agencies, artists and actors are quickly moving towards this highly engaging format to connect and communicate their messages across to multiple social media platforms and you need to curate your showreel to fit into each individual network to receive the best interaction.

Subtitles In Your Reel…

It is crucial that you include subtitles in your showreels and videos as typically people will watch it with the sound off. In a study by Digiday 85% of Facebook content is consumed without the sound on, so having subtitles on your reel is very important for interaction and comprehension. Also we live in a scrolling culture where our brains struggle to process all the information in front of us, we scroll through data and content at rapid speeds and often miss a lot of content, pay little to no attention to some content and the content we are interested in we usually watch without sound, ensure those subtitles are included in the video for maximum interaction and exposure.

Showreel Updates and Revamps…

Showreels are very similar to cars; they need a service once a year to ensure they are performing at their optimum level. Depending on what industry you are in it’s key you update your showreel every 3-6 months with new fresh captivating content to keep people interested in your work. Something that also works very well for us are 1 month mini sizzle reels which summarize that month’s content in 30 seconds, this is very effective in driving continuous interest.

To recap:

1. Ensure your showreel (sizzle reel) is 1-3 minutes long (2 minutes becoming the norm).

2. Make the opening scene incredible, keep up the pace and end of a breath-taking highpoint.

3. Tailor your showreel to different social networks.

4. Put calls to action at the end of your showreel.

5. Create 1 month round-ups of the content you have produced/worked on in that month to encourage more engagement.

6. Get your showreel updated every 3-6 months to mix it up.

7. Include subtitles in your showreels as most content watched is with the sound off.

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