Small Business Guide to Video Marketing

 

Its a really good idea to start having your business create videos to promote itself. I’ll tell you how after I show you why you should care. 

Video’s stock has gone up substantially. A Hubspot Research report stated that 4/6 top channels in which video is consumed are social media channels. 

If you look at the graph below,  you will see that consumers want video more than any other content from the brands they support. 

It goes beyond just want consumers want:

 A landing page with a video will increase your conversion rate by 80%.

90% of customers say videos helped them make a buying decision. 

1/3rd of the time people spend online is devoted to watching videos. 

There are 4 times more buyers that prefer to watch a video about a product than those that prefer to read about it.  

Because of these profound statistics, video is changing how marketing and sales is done. 

Many companies use video on how to use their product(s), meet the team, behind the scenes, customer success, knowledge/industry seminars, the list goes on! The creative potential of video is unlimited. 

…and the best part, is that any business, at any size, can do it at any time. You don’t need a million-dollar marketing budget to create good video content. Don’t believe me? Click here, these are a bunch of low-budget videos that had a HUGE impact, because of one key factor: they were authentic. 

Hubspot Research has confirmed that consumers and customers actually prefer authenticity, even if the video comes off as “lower quality.” There has never been a better time to incorporate video into your marketing strategies.

Want to get started? Let’s first start by….

Step 1: What is the goal of your video?

Start by asking yourself some questions. When making a video you really want to drill down exactly what the point of it is going to be. Having a clear goal makes script and storyboard creation concise and easier. 

Think about your companies target customers. What are they like? What do they value?

What do you want to accomplish with this video? More consultations? Sell more products?  Is it an explainer video? An advertisement? Increase awareness of something particular? 

Where will the video be hosted on the internet? A social media website? A landing page on your website? Different websites cater to different audiences too. This report tells you which demographic each social media website attracts. 

There are also logistical considerations to be made. How much money can you spend? When does it need to be completed? How many resources do you want to commit to this video? 

How does this video fit into your business strategy? 

Step 2: Creating Script and Storyboard

With a goal in mind begin crafting a script of how to draw the audience in. 

If you have written an essay before, think of the script as an outline. What are the key pain points that your audience has, and how do you solve them? What’s a clever, unique way to communicate and empathize with your potential prospect? 

Skip this step and everything else takes longer as it will lack a cohesive structure. 

Whatever the format might be, try to keep it to the point. A clear, concise, short message is better than a long, drawn out, confusing message, and without a script its very easy to have your message be muddled. 

One last point, and I can’t emphasize this enough, scripts are read out loud, articles are not. If I was to make a video about this article I would use very different sentence syntax and “voice” then what I am writing now. 

Step 3: Equipment

Most likely you already have a very serviceable video camera in your pocket – your phone. Be it Android, iPhone, Windows Phone, etc. all of these phones have ways to shoot video in very good resolutions. 

Whatever you might have, you are going to want these basic things:

1) A camera

2) A tripod

3) A proper microphone

4) Lighting equipment (desirable, not needed) 

5) Video editing software

There is already a lot of content on the internet about what is the best version of each of these. I won’t go very in depth about how to use all this equipment in shooting. 

Step 4: Basic Cinematography

There are certain techniques that you should keep in mind when creating a video. 

1) The rule of thirds

2) Elevation on shots

3) B-roll

4) Continuity

Let’s touch on each of these. 

1) The Rule of Thirds:

Video is 99.99% of the time viewed as a rectangle. When framing a shot, (that is to say where the camera is going to be physically pointed) divide the rectangle into even thirds. Then, line your subject up on one of those lines. See the figure below.

2) Elevation on shots:

There is a lot of “tricks” you can use when shooting. Whatever you may be shooting, having a basic sense of how the camera position changes the dynamic and emotional impact of a scene is crucial. 

Here is a very detailed explanation of all the camera tricks I am talking about. 

3) The B-Roll:

Think of b-roll as supplementary footage. These would be scenes like you talking to a customer, an opening landscape shot, someone walking down the hallway, someone on the phone, an employee punching in/out, going into a room and turning on your computer, that thing documentaries do where they zoom something into focus when it was way out of focus, etc. 

Like anything you put into your video, it should serve to enhance your goal or narrative you’re pushing. 

B-roll is important and is simple to shoot. Trust me, when you sit down to edit up this video you will be very happy that you have content to work with. 

4) Continuity:

You will have to film multiple scenes multiple times before you get the best take. It’s just the nature of film. Make sure that elements remain consistent to whatever scene you are shooting. It doesn’t make sense for a glass of water to become empty from one shot to another if nobody “drank” it in the video. Keep elements consistent across the self-contained narrative of the video. 

Step 5: Shooting for the Edit

Remember that everything is ultimately going to be edited. If you shoot with this in mind you can save a lot of time later on in the project, and it’s very simple to do! 

Before and after every scene is shot, leave a buffer. 3-5 seconds is enough. These are called “handles.” It allows editors greater flexibility in cutting up shots, because they won’t have to “literally” cut it close. 

After a particularly fantastic take, make sure to “mark” it in some way. Wave your hand in front of the lense, or a clipboard, something that allows the editor to know where to clip. 

Step 6: Shoot the video!

Put it all together! Stick to the script, and start shooting your video! Keep these concepts in mind when shooting. Remember that authenticity is the most important part for audiences. You’re going to want to use best practices for the distribution of your video. We touch on that here if you really want to hone this in. 

In our eBook below we go into how this video you are planning to shoot can be made into multiple pieces of content. Remember that this video can be a game-changer and give you tons of social proof (a concept we touch on here). Make sure you have the right strategy to back up your hard shot video! Check it out below. 

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