Are you using video to market your small business? If not, here’s a couple statistics that might get your attention:
Marketers saw an 80% increase in conversion when using video on landing pages – Reel SEO
Consumers are 64% more likely to purchase a product after watching a related video – Comscore
Video has evolved a lot in recent years making it a viable, and extremely attractive marketing medium. The cost and complexity of creating quality video content has dropped dramatically opening things up for businesses of all sizes. It’s simply not the big production it once was to create video for marketing use. A few basics to consider:
Start with your story
Even though creating video can be done reasonably from a cost standpoint, it’s still critically important to have a clear, compelling story or message. No need to be the next Spielberg or Tarantino, but you should understand your audience, how your business addresses their problem, issue or challenge and how your video communicates the connection between customer challenge and business solution. Shorter is better, nobody wants to watch a long, rambling, self-promotional video. Address the consumer’s pain point or area of interest and provide your business solution.
Keep it simple
Simple is always better. Per the point above, message is what’s most important. Nail the problem/solution in the most direct way possible and chances are you’ll have an effective video. This applies to the cameras, lighting, editing and distribution of your video as well. Don’t get in your own way using distracting effects, complicated video players or other extraneous tools or technologies.
Try your phone
You’ve probably heard about Sundance films and professional commercials being shot entirely on a smartphones? The quality of video shot on a phone can be perfectly suitable for a marketing video. Of course the video needs to be shot respecting some basic video techniques, but assuming the basics are solid, a phone should render a perfectly acceptable level of quality. If you have access to higher quality camera equipment that’s never a bad thing, but the phone you likely already have is more than adequate to get started.
Learn some basics
There are plenty of articles and online resources similar to this one about how to shoot video. For amateurs who want to go deep there is a wealth of information, but for those just looking to get a few foundational pointers this kind of resource can be useful.
Lighting and sound are incredibly important
One of the areas covered in most video basics content is the importance of lighting and audio. Getting it right doesn’t need to be complex, but missing the mark in either of these areas can ruin your video. Don’t be overly bright or dark with your lighting and think ahead on how you’ll assure quality audio. Most video basic resources will have simple suggestions on best practices in both areas.
Edit to excellence
Your raw video has to be decent quality, but editing, or what video pros call “post production”, can make good footage into something fantastic. There are a number of reasonably priced editing tools like iMovie or others. Like everything related to video, there are ways to make these things expensive or complex, but there is no need to purchase pricey software. The free, or reasonably-priced tools used well are more than enough for most basic videos. Editing is another area where knowing some basic principles is enough to support creating a quality end result.
Distributing or posting your videos
There are a number of video platforms within reach for small businesses. Of course there is YouTube, which is proven and inexpensive as well as options like Vimeo, Wistia, Vidyard and others. Most WordPress themes have video player options for uploading videos as well. Keep in mind some platforms make for easier sharing of your content via embeds or social integration, but there are plenty of inexpensive, easy to use options available.
It’s easy to get pulled into complexity as you start to explore the video space, but it doesn’t need to be complicated at all. Start modestly, use your phone, some basic lighting, audio and editing software and distribute through one of the many inexpensive platforms and you can make video work for your small business.