3 Video Marketing Lessons from 100 Big Cats

July 29, 2014
Video marketing lessons from Big Cat Rescue

In 2006 Florida-based nonprofit Big Cat Rescue created a YouTube channel and uploaded their first video. Since then the staff has uploaded hundreds of videos dedicated to educating viewers about big cats. Here’s three lessons their videos can teach you about your video marketing strategy.

Lesson 1: Mix it up

BCR posts one video per week, with each falling into a variety of categories:

  • Silly (“Do Big Cats Like Catnip?”)
  • Educational (“Do Big Cats Purr?”)
  • Species spotlights (Sand Cats, Tigers, Cougars)
  • Day-to-day sanctuary activity (Feeding, medical care, donation usage)
  • Abuse prevention (Rescue and conservation)

Videos are short and focused on a single topic, making them easier to produce and allowing the sanctuary to spread videos out over a longer period of time.

Lesson 2: Always be prepared

  • Make sure all personnel and props are in place and ready to go prior to beginning shooting.
  • Have a phone or camera on hand at all times to grab interesting footage or photos.
  • Plan in advance each video you want to create, and consider scripting and storyboarding for maximum efficiency.

Lesson 3: Tell a great story

Big Cat Rescue has clearly learned the lesson that all nonprofits must: your cause is not your story.

Instead of focusing on their cause — the constant need for funds — the staff instead concentrates on telling stories about specific cats’ histories and lives.

So when I finally decide to donate, I don’t think of it as donating to keep the sanctuary stocked with toilet paper or chicken wire — I think of it as helping save Joseph or Divinity or Pharaoh.

Lessons worth learning

Whether you’re old hat or just dipping your toe into the world of video marketing, there’s a lot to learn from Big Cat Rescue and other organizations who are doing it well.

Your product or service is likely different than rescuing exotic animals, but that doesn’t mean you can’t incorporate similar tactics in your video marketing.

Are you taking notes?

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[Image: Big Cat Rescue]