Charities are realising the power of the campaign video, but with new videos uploaded to YouTube every day, how will yours stand out?

If you want to bring your videos to life and to stand out in a list of thousands, use a simple but little understood technique called YouTube Video Annotations. Instead of a static, linear timeline, your video narratives can be fluid and changing. Viewers can engage with multiple links to personlise their experience of your stories. This is the future of video: it’s interactive and it’s social.

Use YouTube Video Annotations to get the impact you want. Few charities have adopted it effectively. If you act fast, your next campaign could go viral and get the attention it deserves.

But what are annotations?

You may have noticed when watching a video there may be layered text, hotspots or links over the top of what you’re watching. These can be clicked and lead you to other videos or to other websites. This means you can add interactive commentary to your video, allowing you to:

  • add background information about the video, such as statistics.
  • create stories with multiple possibilities. This could be applied to campaigns where choice is a theme, such as sexual health or volunteering.
  • link to related YouTube videos, channels, or search results from within the video itself. Making marketing simpler.

Five effective interactive YouTube videos

So know we know what annotations are. Let’s look at how annotations have been used effectively.

Choose a different ending

Choose a Different Ending was created for the Drop the Weapons campaign. The video is about a teenager making right and wrong choices, as seen from a first person perspective. From those choices you could see the consequences in a realistic setting.

Hug the world

Free hugs is the real life controversial story of Juan Mann, a man whose sole mission was to reach out and hug a stranger to brighten up their lives.

Blend your own adventure

Choose any two elements and blend them together. This video demonstrates how you can build elements of choiceinto your videos.

Hold your breath

As well as an engaging video, Hold your breath encourages the viewer to  participate in the challenge.

Advertising agency Boone Oakley used annotations to present their entire website on YouTube.

How do I add annotations?

The videos above look like they can only be made by tech savvy professionals. In reality the process is very simple and with ten minutes practice you too could make videos of this standard.

Watch a step by step guide to making YouTube Annotations.

Find out more about web or YouTube Annotations:

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