We’re a simple people. We really just want one thing from our video, right? For it to WORK! When it’s effective, video holds the number one spot amongst marketers as the most important individual element in any given campaign (the actual number cited is 600% more effective than other marketing medium)
Ok, let’s all rush out and buy video! Yes! But, wait, to get the most out of your time, money, energy, etc., you should understand how to win at video (and at video marketing.)
First, a caveat. 62% of viewers cited a negative brand perception when presented with a poorly produced video. That’s not only a total waste of time, money, energy, etc, but actually works against your business. Tread carefully. Do your research. If you’re hiring a production house, hire them based on their previous work samples. If you like the work they do, chances are great that your audience will, too. You don’t? Well, do you really think they’re going to do a better job this time? You may spend a little extra, but turning 62% of your prospects off will always be more expensive than a minor differential in pricing.
Ok, you get it, don’t rush out. But still buy video! How?
Creating a winning video starts with you. A little bit of homework will go a long way in helping you succeed. Answer a few quick questions, and then you’re ready. A seasoned producer can then help you shape your plan into an effective video that wins results over, and over, and over, and . . .
1) What action do I want the viewer to take once they’ve seen this video? It should be clear, actionable, and simple – just one action. “I want them to visit our website and learn more.” “I want them to call us to schedule a meeting”. “I want them to order my product.” “I want them to apply for a job here.” One thing. One action. This allows you to create one cohesive experience throughout the video that drives them to that action, and gets them ready to take the plunge.
2) What is the profile of the ideal viewer? To be effective, a video must speak to the individual. Create an audience profile. Answer that viewer’s questions, speak in that viewer’s language, create a visual experience that resonates with that viewer. If you attempt to reach everyone, you’ll end up reaching no one. Focusing in will help you create a stronger message, and make a larger impact.
3) How will I reach my ideal viewer? The great thing about online distribution is that it’s pretty cheap, often even free. But different platforms do call for different approaches. For social media, you’ll want to deliver the content in short, self contained bites. But your website, emails, YouTube channel, live presentations, etc, may call for longer, more complex stories. Training videos, streaming services, direct response TV, these all have distinctive styles and come with a set of expectations. Create a map of where your ideal viewer lives online, and design your video strategy with that in mind from the very start.
4) What is my timeline? If you have a trade show, or a product launch, or a big presentation, it can be easy to say “I want my video completed by this day.” If not, video can become one of those “someday” items (like cleaning my desk). Here’s a hint – if you don’t have it, it’s definitely not working for you. Another hint, your competition is already planning theirs. And yet another, your audience is already searching for it. Recognize video as the must have marketing tool that it has become. And then repeat steps 1-4 until you’ve built up a library of relevant content. And then repeat again to update that content.