July 5, 2023

Seeing is believing: Why video is the go-to medium for climate communications

With record temperatures being set each year and extreme weather events like wildfires and hurricanes becoming the norm, the chorus of voices denying the climate crisis seems to be quieting. But for all our deepened understanding of the severity of the issue, it can sometimes feel as though progress is being made slowly and incrementally. 

To that end, a message that is starting to gain some traction, and one we’re encouraged by in our daily work at Yulu, is: we already have the technology and solutions necessary to address the climate crisis. Those solutions exist. And what better way to make them real for people than by letting them see with their own eyes, through a camera lens?

The eye-heart connection

Video can provide a direct and powerful emotional connection with audiences that are aware of, but not necessarily committed to, joining the fight against climate change. Consider Planet Earth, and how Sir David Attenborough has helped galvanize a previously uninspired group of boomers and millennials to care deeply about our natural environment. 

Video can also help to explain a complex solution in a way that an article or infographic might not be able to. Video has a unique ability to capture the emotions of the viewer almost instantly, but it’s still important to optimize the story for the intended viewer. Where boomers, Gen X and millennials might have more patience for in-depth storytelling on YouTube, Gen Z has been raised on readily digestible videos of TikTok and Instagram. This connection can be achieved through original onsite video capture, curated stock footage, or animation.

Here are some considerations for using video to communicate climate solutions:

Be prepared to commit and dive deep into the entire video production process, including creative ideation, scripting, voice-over recording, capturing and selecting footage, editing, and revisions. It’s a time-intensive process but well worth the investment.

Once the video is in a place that everyone is happy with, deploy your launch plan. Roll the video out across social media channels, include it in pitches to the press, and boost it with an ad spend to cut through social feed algorithms.

Before you start, also consider whether video is the right medium for your particular story. Because of the time commitment required to create great video, it’s not always a suitable platform for every announcement. Consider the visual aspects of each project and where investing in video can make the biggest impact.

Yulu’s environmental PR team saw great traction with our client partner Kore Infrastructure‘s Earth Day video. We knew Kore had an opportunity to tie into the Earth Day conversations already happening around novel climate solutions with the potential for great impact, so we produced a video to tell the story of how the company’s organic waste-to-energy technology can help protect our shared planet.

We published the video at the very beginning of the last working day before Earth Day, and through a multi-channel campaign achieved 37k+ views on YouTube, 25k+ views on LinkedIn, and nearly 3k views on Twitter (and counting). Kore Infrastructure’s website was linked throughout the campaign, which led to direct clicks to help generate leads for the company’s solution.

We think video will be key to reaching the next generation of environmentalists, for which climate anxiety is already prevalent and the solutions not always obvious. That’s why we’ve invested heavily in building out our video production capabilities. Reach out to us if you’d like to learn more.