30 Jan Guest Post: Three Pillars of Creating Effective Video That Gets Results
Online video has become such an important marketing tool for businesses of all sizes within the last few years. Video offers a conversion rate of over 68%, and we now know that search engines like Google are prioritizing websites with video. Because of these changes, cutting edge companies are now allocating more money for video than ever. Video allows the marketing materials to condense the information into just a few minutes of content. Viewers absorb more information from video, it puts a human face on the business, it engages the viewer, and most importantly, video offers a positive return on investment.
2017 was the year that video saw massive growth online. 2018 is going to be the start of quality video content. But how do you know that what you’re putting out is considered a quality video? To help, I’ve come up with three pillars that every video should have whether it’s a business promo video, a webinar, a customer testimonial, or even a Facebook live recording.
The Three Pillars of Effective Video
The three pillars of video that gets results are Engage, Educate, and Convert. Write that down, memorize it, type it in your phone, whatever it takes to make sure you have these three pillars down for your next video marketing strategy session.
Engage is the first pillar. An engaging video is one that will keep viewers wanting to continue to watch the video from the beginning to the end. Using a business promo video as an example, this means you need to have an effective intro to hook viewers into the content, you need to shoot with a variety of shots and angles to sustain interest, and your video should feature great music. The key to this is to not make the video look like a talking head. Those kinds of videos are often boring, but they have their place which we will discuss further later.
The strategy that I often take with my clients is to create a documentary-style approach to the video. Having an effective introduction is important to creating an engaging video, because those first 8-10 seconds are going to determine if the viewer is going to continue to watch or switch tabs. A common mistake is to put the logo upfront for 5-10 seconds before the video starts. I do not recommend that, unless the logo appears in an interactive way (such as an animated logo) and it’s kept to 3-4 seconds. The first 8-10 seconds should consist of the best shots of the whole video. Once the introduction has been set, you need a variety of shots (including the interview shots) to showcase what your business is about.
Get a lot of different angles, have the editing faster paced, shoot 3:1 ratio if the opportunity allows it, and make your video look as cinematic as possible. The third piece of ensuring engagement is to feature great music, and this can seriously make or break the video. The music should have the same feeling and tone that will represent your brand and fits the style of the video. Most of the time videographers will use a royalty-free song, but sometimes a videographer will go above and beyond and have an original piece crafted for the video.
As I mentioned, there are a lot of different types of videos out there besides a business promo video. Sometimes a “talking head” video is effective, when used for a webinar or a training video. The good news is that following all of these steps doesn’t need to be a 20+ hour project. I have filmed and edited many webinars and training videos, and the best way to keep the videos engaging is to use two cameras and slides. This way, the video can be cut with two different angles and cut to slides when the information is handy. It keeps the video personable, and yet still educational.
Check out the business promo video below about Poco Loco Paintball Park that I created and see how many different shots you can see.
The next Pillar is Educate. This is really focused on the story of the business or organization utilizing the Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How. Depending on the business, some of these may not fit in, but ultimately the goal of this pillar is to teach the viewer something new about the business that they didn’t know. How does a story get told through a business promo video? I generally use customer testimonials, or interviews of the staff. Using sound bites of these interviews is how you create the story, but sometimes using a formal script and a voiceover can be effective as well. The reason I prefer live interviews is that it can help establish who the target market is as well as create a more authentic piece. When creating the story structure of the video, here is the outline that I generally use:
- The business
- The problem
- The solution
- The unique selling proposition or USP
- The differentiation
- The objections and how to overcome them
Depending on the business, these too may change but it’s a great structure to follow. It’s important to note that when crafting the story you need to use both the interviews and the visuals to help tell the story in a way that creates emotion in the viewer. Here is an example video we produced last spring for Delaware Valley Friends School. Click the image to play!
Convert is the final Pillar and while it’s the simplest one, it is too often overlooked. Converting is what we call it when the viewer finishes watching the video and takes a desired action. At the end of the video, what do you want the viewer to do? Is it to give you a call? Sign up for a newsletter? Check out your website for more information? It can all vary depending on your sales process but the important thing is to have a call to action at the end of the video. It’s important to also note to really keep the call to action at two different actions.
You don’t want to have people take 5 different actions, that’s just too much both for the customer and the visuals. Stick to one or two powerful call to actions. Video is both a marketing and a sales tool to help grow your business. Check out this video that has a great call to action for veterinarians:
Following these three pillars will help you step up your video marketing game. Whether you are telling the story of your business, creating training videos for your customers, or educating prospects, it’s important to make sure that the video is engaging for them to watch until the end, its educational and adds a lot of value, and has steps for them to take that will allow them to contact you to create a business transaction. Remember, video is supposed to humanize your business and connect you with people! There has never been a better time to use video to grow your business.
If you would like to set up a time to connect and learn how video can work for you’re business feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.