How to create the perfect video
Video is the new frontier in marketing. Used correctly, and the results can be astonishing, argues director of Lasco PR and marketing, Nathan Bushell.
Not long ago, video production required the services of a professional team, days of planning and a big budget. And even then, the results may not have been what you were expecting.
Today, we are all potential film-makers, because most of the technology required is available on our phone and on our laptop. But, as the old adage goes, just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.
However, I am going to explain why you definitely should, and I’m going to give you a few tips to help you make your videos a success.
Tell a story
First of all, why?
In the B2B sector, we have seen the growth of LinkedIn, and the growth of online trade media where video is increasingly being used to tell stories and report news.
And for retail companies, homeowners are spending much more time online researching products before they approach you. Social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram are popular places to start that research process, and videos are now a regular part of the mix.
In both examples, you will want to bring customers back to your website, where they can view more informative video content.
If you are a B2B manufacturer of home improvement products, with video you can:
- Discuss the latest regulations and your product’s compliance.
- Film a factory tour to demonstrate the manufacturing process.
- Conduct short interviews with staff to show the human side of your business.
- Film customer installations to show products in situ.
- Film ‘how-to’ videos, which can include tips, adjusting frames, or handling techniques.
If you are a retail business, you can:
- Showcase individual products, explaining key features & options.
- Explain how upgrading windows and doors can improve thermal efficiency and save money.
- Create videos that give answers to frequently asked consumer questions.
- Offer maintenance advice.
- Film some of your favourite installations, and encourage homeowners to explain why they are satisfied (a promise of a bottle of wine might help!).
Take your time
Once you know what you are filming, how do you create the most engaging video? A little bit of preparation goes a long way.
- Take lots of footage. If you are recording an interview, you will want to break up the video with other bits of film, while keeping the audio the same – we call this footage ‘b-roll’.
- Get the lighting and audio right. A separate light and microphone will elevate your finished product dramatically.
- Tripods and gimbals will help prevent camera shake, and can create a professional looking finish.
- Graphics and audio. Create titles and captions and add a backing track. Take care with copyright though…
- Take time editing. Keep your finished product to under three minutes, and keep dialogue running smoothly – remove pauses, hesitations and repetitions.
Once you have a finished product, there are ways to make it stand out once it is uploaded.
- Let the video play natively. For example, upload a video directly to LinkedIn, rather than link to YouTube. It will automatically play in someone’s news feed, and it improves the metrics.
- Use captions. A lot of people view social media with the sound turned down, so using captions (subtitles) can dramatically improve engagement.
- Share! Once you have uploaded your video, tell people where it is, and get your colleagues to do the same.
- Take the content and write a press release, or use as an e-shot to existing customers.
- Use as part of a wider strategy. Make sure that your messages are consistent across all platforms, and that your videos don’t stand in isolation. You want your marketing channels to work together.
Professional videos can look amazing, and they are the perfect solution for some applications. But for the majority of cases, these ‘True-Shot’ videos described above are ideal ways to get your messages across in a fun and engaging way.