As life science associations and journal publications seek to increase their digital channels, we wanted to take a look at the value of video as a medium for abstracts. Are video abstracts helpful? Or are they just another way of using technology for technology’s sake?

Engagement
There are a few of reasons why video works to engage an audience. Images are easier to process than text. It’s one less step the brain has to go through to interpret the information. For this reason, video often leads to higher recognition, memory and recall rates. But more importantly – video creates a personal connection that cannot be achieved with paper. It changes an audience’s interaction with content – and therefore, their perception of it. So a video abstract gives the author more control over the conclusions the audience draws.

Reach
Journals offer video abstracts as a digital channel to attract a larger audience and a larger number of authors. The video is usually published on a web portal provided by the journal, but can also be promoted to social media channels. If you are creating a video abstract for a journal submission, the more bells and whistles you have the better. Animation, voiceover narration and other special effects will earn you more clicks, views and citations.

Creating Engagement on a Budget
If you are developing a video abstract for a congress, and are restricted by budget or submission, here are some tricks you can use to enhance your video without breaking your budget.
Make it personal The most important objective of the video abstract is to put a face to the research. The best way to make a connection is for the author to provide some personal insight into their research. How did they select this topic for research? What aspect of their data excites them the most? Two authors are better than one. Dialogue is better than monologue. It adds dimension to the video.
Think about delivery If the video abstract will be presented at a larger congress, consider using subtitles or onscreen text to help attendees clearly follow the author above any background noise. You don’t want to lose your message because of poor planning.
Use Props People understand concepts better when they are presented through visuals. If you don’t have the bandwidth for high-end animation, print your infographics tables or figures on large posters or banner stands that the author can refer to during the video. The imagery will hold the audience’s attention while the motion of the camera from the author to the visual will add add dimension to the video.

Video abstracts enable life science professionals to better engage with their audience by personalizing the content and resulting in a more memorable, impactful interaction. If your next congress is offering video abstracts, take advantage of it! Whether it’s a simple talking head format or a more dynamic animated video, it will engage your audience more than a static text-driven presentation.

Creative MediaWorks offers custom web development, graphic design and print solutions to the Life Science industry and their agencies with a focus on quality, deadline and accuracy. We achieve our quality standards through defined workflow processes, direct access to on-staff project talent, proofreading and quality assurance expertise backed by an uncompromising commitment to the most responsive customer service in the business.

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