Make sure to track your reach, clicks and sales for each ad and consider A/B testing one element of your video or caption and then run it again. Needls Co-Founder Michael Koral points out that, “by testing two videos against each other, you can isolate what messaging does the best for you (and at a larger scale because more eyes will be on your content) to see what provides the best engagement and ROI from their advertising.” As you create more and more videos you will be able to track your business trends and what wins your audience over.
Next, consider your audience and the overall mood for your production. Are you targeting a small audience that will appreciate the newest, underground hip-hop track, or do you need something that will appeal to many demographics? Are you creating a practical product tutorial or an upbeat event recap? Be sure to choose music that enhances the overall tone of your video.
Before you start filming, set a music budget and research your local copyright laws. Copyright law can be very difficult to decipher, especially when you're dealing with digital content. Bottom line: Most music isn't free. If you use another artist's music without permission or proper licensing, you risk video removal and legal action. In order to avoid copyright infringement, you'll need to find royalty free tunes or pay a composer to create an original score. Royalty free songs aren't free to use; they're quality songs available for a single flat fee. This means you don't have to worry about paying additional licensing fees or royalties in the future. YouTube, Pond5, and PremiumBeat are all great sites to find royalty free music.
Today, YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world behind Google. Whenever someone wants to learn something visually, they head there. You've likely done it yourself countless times. So just ask yourself what you could teach in your business that would help consumers solve some pain point? What got you into business in the first place?
Tripods range tremendously in price, and the quality of your tripod should depend on the level of camera and lens you have. If you're shooting with your phone, you can get by with a table mount like the Arkon Tripod Mount or a full-size tripod like the Acuvar 50” Aluminum Tripod. For a DSLR, Manfrotto makes a variety of trustworthy tripods starting with the Manfrotto BeFree and increasing in quality and price from there.
This is any form of content which was paid for, usually by a company promoting another company or brand. It is written in the style of the site publishing it, much like native advertising, but isn’t actually an ad — it’s a valuable piece of written or visual content meant to inform the viewer. Usually, sponsored posts get organically shared via social networks, too, so they get an extra push when it comes to distribution.
Determine whether it’s better to create the video content in-house or to hire an agency to handle it. It’s tempting to go the in-house route as it’s generally seen as the most cost effective, but that can be a mistake. As Sophia Bernazzani writes, “Videos are hard to make – and it shows. The internet is populated with far too many slideshows and photos set to music that are masquerading as videos.”
Text: It’s all about a hook. Successful video marketing is held in the balance on the first 3 seconds of every video ad. Write a piece of copy that makes someone say “tell me more”. Too many ideas will be the death of any content item so no need to overload yourself. Micro-copy is the way to go. If you’re feeling a bit stuck, a question hitting on the needs of your target audience is a great way to begin.
To make your videos as memorable as possible, ensure that you’re keeping them in line with your brand strategy. This means keeping colors, fonts, logos and voice the same in your video marketing as they are in your blogs and articles. While videos do things text content doesn’t, users should still be able to recognize the style and format of your brand’s videos online.
After you’ve honed in on your audience, focus in on where they spend the most time online. That is where you want to run your video content. For example, if your audience is on Facebook, you’ve got loads of helpful features to support your efforts and creative freedom. If your audience is largely on Instagram or YouTube, you’ll want to continue your analysis to see the style of video that works best on these highly visual platforms.
What does it take to do that? Simply put, you have to take a step back for a moment. You have to analyze and understand the basic mechanics of your message and how to effectively reach a larger audience without losing your shirt. The secret to all of this? No matter what marketing strategy you use, if you don't have an effective sales funnel and optimize your conversions, you'll just be throwing money away.
Next come audience insights. You can't create video content useful to your audience without first researching who that audience is, what they care about and what their problems are. To discover what makes your target audience tick you'll need to go far beyond just demographics to qualitative data gathered from interviews and surveys. Finally, dividing your audience into marketing or buyer personas allows you to create even more relevant content tailored to their specific wants and needs.
“With the emergence of micro video apps like Twitter’s Vine and now Instagram’s video sharing feature, we’re seeing even more movement toward real-time video sharing,” says my friend Jayson DeMers, founder and CEO of AudienceBloom. “And not just any videos; with Instagram allowing 3-15 seconds per video, and Vine allowing precisely 6 seconds, users are even more likely to create and share videos from their smartphones.”
Bottom line, overall strategy and data should drive your video marketing strategy. First, plan a solid strategy to develop video(s) for each level of your sales funnel. Outline the content and goals of each individual video. Determine what metrics will best determine a video’s success. Then, test. Analyze. Tweak your videos (and their deployment), when necessary. Work to make them more effective. And whatever you do, do do video; in 2017 and beyond, it’s the cornerstone of your brand’s marketing efforts.
Tone: Are you serious or sarcastic? A great approach to define your tone is to use the "We are ____, but we are not ____" exercise. In this framework, develop three bullets to help you understand the tone of the video content you're going to produce. For example, "We are humorous, but we are not over-the-top." These tone bullets are meant to guide you toward consistency.
Sadly, posting a video on an otherwise blank page won’t do much for your SEO. Make sure you embed your video on a page full of relevant and informative content. This will let search engine crawlers know you have not only engaging multimedia on your site, but that you provide a ton of valuable and useful information. Be sure the content relates to your video — sometimes, posting the video transcript can help a lot, too.
A note about shooting with two cameras: Your editor will need to sync the footage between the different views. To help them do this, clap your hands loudly in the view of both cameras right before you ask the first interview question … yes, just like an old fashion clapboard. Modern editing software has auto-sync features, but this loud clap will help you initially line up the clips.
The engage stage is the hardest to correlate to cold, hard sales. Because users aren’t necessarily looking to purchase here, they can watch your video, learn some information, and not come back to your website for a long time. Try to implement detailed tracking information to show you big-picture user behavior; drop cookies and retrieve path information for every person who views your video or goes to your site. Then, you can see what percentage of visitors end up buying from you.
By planning your video content in advance, as is done at the strategy stage, you give yourself the opportunity to more efficiently and effectively create that content. Filming and editing footage in batches across multiple videos allows you to embrace economies of scale. If you're producing a lot of similar content then video templates can help you keep a consistent look and feel to your videos, in line with your brand. Basically, as with most things in life, planning ahead saves you time and money in the long run — and more importantly it sets you up for success.
In the section on preparing talent, we discussed how to record your script in short sections. If the editor were to stitch these sections together side-by-side, the subject's face and hands might abruptly switch between clips. This is called a jump cut, and for editors, it poses an interesting challenge. Thankfully, this is where b-roll comes in handy, to mask these jump cuts.
Now comes the script writing, the search for the perfect agency, the video review and edits, and celebrating finally having a beautiful, well-crafted video you can be proud of. The entire production process should take about two months with the right partner, but be sure to plan more time than you need for each of the following individual production stages so you don’t fall behind.