Narrative structure

byIJNetJun 9, 2022 in Mobile Journalism
A man talking into the camera.

How your video is structured is just as important as the content it contains . Here are three tips on how to best structure your video to ensure your viewers watch them in their entirety: 


  • Use the most engaging content – the most controversial fact, the most visually entertaining scene, or the funniest line – in the first three seconds of a video. This is the average time it takes most people to decide whether to watch the entirety of a video, or to continue scrolling. 
  • Speak to visuals. When using the idiom “painting over” to describe obscuring or hiding something, add a video of someone painting. When speaking about traveling from London to New York, add a video of an airplane taking off or landing. These visual cues help your audience follow your story. 
  • End with a question – how are you helping your community? What does press freedom mean to you? This gets people talking, commenting and resharing, which makes it appear more important to Facebook or Instagram’s algorithms. More conversations lead to more engagement, which leads to more views. 

IJNet's parent organization, ICFJ, partnered with the Meta Journalism Project and Seen on its Facebook Video Storytellers-Africa program.