Wibbitz's in-house editorial team creates daily Top Story news videos using our text-to-video Control Room platform. In his guest post, Wibbitz Editor Kyle gives us expert advice on creating evergreen video content that will stand the test of time.
Creating content is hard, especially video content. The sheer volume of options makes it difficult to nail down just one topic, especially when you consider that most topics have an expiration date, after which their views will dwindle and no longer generate revenue. However, there is a way to get around the roadblock of expiring video content: create evergreen videos.
Evergreen videos, as the name suggests, are videos that have an unlimited shelf life and as such, can be reused at any time. It’s important to have a large bank of evergreen videos because on any given day, you can exponentially increase your video output by simply republishing them. For publishers that have access to the Wibbitz Control Room platform, our editorial team (myself included) keeps the platform stocked with Top Story evergreen content that we create on a regular basis, covering a variety of topics, holidays, and interests.
There are two subsections that evergreen videos can be split into: sustainable and timeless. A sustainable evergreen video is a video that needs to be updated slightly in order to stay relevant. An example of this would be a video on “How to setup wifi on your Mac,” something that will stay relevant as long as it is updated every time something changes. A timeless evergreen video is one that is likely to never change. For example, “10 delicious toppings to put on your bagel” is a video that will probably never expire unless someone radically changes what a bagel tastes like (and who would?).
It is important to be careful in the creation process of your evergreen videos because a single misstep could stop the video from being evergreen and instead give the video a more permanent expiration date. Here are some of the best practices to remember when creating evergreen videos:
1. Pick a topic that is always relevant and relatable
First things first, make sure your content is relevant and relatable to your users. Topics like “Tips for Staying Healthy” or “The Cutest Puppies of Instagram” will always be relevant - however, if you run a website about technology, your users probably don’t want to see a video about why you shouldn’t use cotton swabs in your ears. Stick to the topics you know best and give your audiences what they came for. The following Top Story video could be re-published every year on a site that caters to pet parents:
7 Spring Activities Your Pup Will Love
2. Pick the best format for your content
Format is an incredibly important part of what makes a good evergreen video. Fortunately, there are a ton of different options to choose from. Some of the easiest videos to make are lists, reviews of movies, books, products, etc., and explanation videos (for example, why do people celebrate Memorial Day?). While these formats do lend themselves well to evergreen content, making a video in any of those formats does not automatically qualify it as evergreen. Below are two examples of lists - can you guess which one is and isn’t an evergreen video?
A. 5 of the Biggest NCAA March Madness Snubs
B. 10 of the Most Influential African American Athletes
Answer: A. is NOT evergreen, B. most definitely is.
3. Use media that can’t be dated
When creating evergreen videos, making sure the text (or script) evergreen isn’t enough - your media footage also has to be able to stand the test of time. The media that you choose has to stay as relevant as your topic, meaning you can’t choose images or video clips that can be drawn to a specific date. For most evergreen topics, stock footage from providers like Getty Images are the way to go, as they won’t have any branding or timestamp. The following Top Story video was packaged entirely with (potty-related) media from Getty, whose entire library is readily available in the Wibbitz Control Room platform: