Music is a huge aspect of any anthem video; it defines the viewer’s emotional response and affects the way viewers perceive the brand. But when sharing these types of videos on the three largest video sharing websites (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter) the most important aspect to maximize engagement and outreach is through quick, fast cut, interesting visuals that tell a story. If done properly these visuals should hold their own and be able to convey emotion and keep viewers hooked without the need for music or dialogue.

A perfect example of this technique is shown in The North Face campaign Question Madness.

Last year The North Face approached Sid Lee to create an ad campaign to remind the world why exploration matters. The campaign explores “a fine line” between preconceived ideas of extreme sports and the explorers own ambitions and goals, teaching the viewer that striving for what you love is important. The story is told through a series of beautiful and captivating shots which explore the natural world, intermixed with emotional closeups showcasing the struggles and determination of these brave explorers.

The ad starts slow, featuring long atmospheric establishing shots of the environment (mountains) building to the struggles and trials of the explorers. As the ad progresses the space between shots begins to quicken until the energy explodes focusing on the rewards and wins that comes with deep persistence and passion.

Aside from the brief speech at the beginning from Alex Honnold and some dialogue from Emily Harrington all branding messages are conveyed purely through the use of captions. The captions visually expand on the concept of “a fine line” with two words stacked and separated by a horizontal line, the bottom word upside down and illegible. For a moment the second word is hard to read, but when the words flip it is then easy to understand the whole meaning.

This is best demonstrated by one of the last captions “Pioneers | Freaks”. There is a fine line between Pioneers and Freaks and it’s only until an individual accomplishes something (the words flip) do we recognize them as pioneers.  The ad ends on the iconic North Face red and their new slogan “NEVER STOP”, which replaces their previous slogan “never stop exploring”.

Alongside this Sid Lee produced a series of 30 second ads designed specifically for Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Each video focuses on a different aspect from their long form video.



When watching the next three videos pay close attention to the music, as you will notice there isn’t any. These videos are designed to be viewed without any music or sound, using visuals and captions to influence people’s attention.


This campaign show just how important it is to create videos that do not require sound. The main reason not to focus on dialogue are social media websites. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter all auto play video but do not auto play sound. Along with this most people view these websites on their phones, and most of the time will have the sound off.

Once you’ve grabbed their attention with interesting visuals the next most important way to leverage their attention is by providing more direct messages through captions. If dialogue or sound is used most people be confused missing crucial information and will scroll away, but an ad that has simple to understand, interesting visuals and provides additional information through captions will be highly successful in this medium.