You have probably seen all the statistics about how important video is to your business. There is certainly no denying that if you have a video on your landing page there is a good chance people will click it. It is also true that the majority of your new customers are likely to visit your home page and watch your video before they contact you in any other way. Your existing clients probably also frequently visit your website, Facebook page etc and will see your video there. Video can also be a big boost in relation to how high up the page you appear on a Google search. I could continue to provide evidence of why you need video but I think the message it pretty clear.
The next stage is a little more difficult because it is here that people often ask the wrong question. The question commonly asked by a client recognises the need for a video is ‘what sort of video do I need’? In actual fact the question should be
“What am I saying with a video”?
You cannot decide what sort of video you should go for unless you have decided what it is you are trying to tell the viewer.
The reason this is so important is that the video is a tool. If you want to put a screw in a piece of wood you get a screwdriver. If you want to get a message over you get yourself a video. Hold on a second though, when you reach for a screwdriver do you ask yourself if the head of the screw is cross thread or not? Of course you do and it should be the same with your video. When I propose that ‘what am I saying’ is the first thing to ask yourself it’s because that question will usually rule out several approaches to your production.
For example if what you are trying to say is ‘we are a small, local business which provides a friendly dog walking service’ then you can safely discard a documentary/corporate style video. The best option may well be a simple cartoonish moving powerpoint you can do yourself online. If you do go for a real video go for something short and sweet that shows you and lots of safe, happy dogs having a great time.
On the other hand if you are trying to say ‘We are a highly professional health care provider’ then you should probably discard a commonly used generic approach like the moving powerpoint style cartoon. Your video will need to instill confidence and display your professionalism. So here you are probably going to want to go for customer testimonials and lots of shots of you showing off your skills in a professional environment. Cartoons would certainly not be a good idea.
Sadly, these examples are based on real and rather terrible videos I have seen over the years. I have changed the subjects to dog walking and health professionals but the originals were not a million miles from this. As a result of not asking the right question a serious professional had watered down her message to a cartoon with a word scribbling hand and similarly a fun, cottage industry style of business had produced a serious ‘arty’ documentary that presented them rather pretentious and a bit silly.
Video is a powerful tool.
Your video ‘is’ your business so the kind of video is a choice you make based on the message you want to send.
Finally, unless there is a very good reason not to do so, I would always urge you to show real people to send your message. You may well hate the thought of being in the video (most of us do) but the chances are you are the best ambassador for your business.
Of course the next question has to be ‘what sort of video do I need’ right? Well, actually no, it shouldn’t. A good video maker will make their next question ‘who will be watching this’? But that’s a something for another article.
Ep 132 – Tool of the day
In today's episode, Julia talks about some products that may help you with video creation (if you are putting together screen videos from home). The key products mentioned were: