The Entrepreneur: Top 10 Basic Tips for Producing Video Content
Along with our website redevelopment we spoke of in last month's article, we at RM2 are moving toward producing video content for our website. We want to offer our audience as many different way of engaging with what we have to offer as possible, in order to create the widest reach. During the process we have picked up (and found out) some useful approaches and areas to consider if your company is also looking into producing video content. Video content is increasingly popular as younger generations often seek out answers in the form of "how to..." media online. This trend has been supported by Google's purchase of YouTube, which has created greater scope for more video content to appear in the search engine's results.
Planning ahead when considering video content will produce a better end-result. It will also help structure the production processes, in addition to making the team involved with the process more comfortable and aware of the deadlines that need to be met. A great way to do this is to map out the timeline of the video in a simple flowchart, including a filming schedule and production responsibilities.
What do you have to add value?
If your business has collected a few client testimonials, they can be translated into video. This will allow your prospects to easily see the benefits of the product or service your company is providing. For more complicated services or products, a short video summary can be a simple, engaging alternative to help your prospects truly understand your offering.
'Think story' is a phrase that came up a lot when we were researching the best video content practices, and there is a good reason for it. The importance of taking your viewers on a journey is paramount. The journey itself does not need to be complex; on the contrary, it can often be more effective to keep things simple and direct. For example, if you are looking to share statistics that might not be that interesting at a glance, try doing so in a story. Your viewers want to be engaged, so it's crucial to take a topic of this nature, and convert it into an interesting message that will grab your audiences' attention. Motion graphics and animation are commonly used techniques that can help accomplish this.
Depending on what you are looking to achieve, it might be easier than it seems to create a high-quality video using just a few basic tools. Once you have assessed what you need to create your video, ask yourself 'what can my company do itself?'
For example, a plain white or pale background could be ideal for a tutorial video (where it's likely you'd want the focus to be on the speaker). Could you use your office space as a setting? There is a time cost that goes with the learning curve, but by trialling and testing different locations, amounts of lighting, etc. it is possible to find a something that works for you. The only thing that is going to be especially crucial when it comes to production value is having a clean audio. Audio is essential, so considering using tie microphones to ensure what you are trying to convey is heard.
- Use a Script. It may not be something you would have considered originally, but we have found this to be particularly useful for us. Your video should be structured with a desired length and a desired message, sticking to a script can help ensure things stay on track. If you have an employee or industry expert featuring in the video, it can help offer a more natural tone if you let them write the script, or even just translate it into their own words.Plan your Composition. As well as planning what you want to say, you should also consider how objects and people are going to be positioned within the frame. With a little experimentation, you will soon notice that different compositions can have a strong impact on the message you are trying to convey.
- Be Concise and to the point. People have very short attention spans nowadays, especially in relation to internet video. You may be familiar with the rule of 15 seconds? In the context of video content, it is widely considered important that you change the pace, rhythm and/or content rotation every 15 seconds. These changes do not have to be radical, but something to keep the attention of your audience. You may see a lot advice relating to optimum video length, but we have found that if your video is engaging, an audience will watch it.
A good way to save yourself time and minimise delays in the production of your video (particularly in relation to the transition between filming and editing), you may want to use multiple cameras, or film content more than once. This will help ensure you have a better supply of content to work with when it comes to editing, and save you the time cost of having to re-arrange another shoot.
You might be running a series of videos, or there might be follow-up content either on your site – Either way, outline the next step at the end of the video and confirm your audience are kept informed.
Post and host your video on popular sites (such as YouTube). Once it's been uploaded, share it with clients and prospects on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and your blog. Encourage your employees to share the video links with clients, and include the links in emails where relevant, and keep a video library on your company website so it is easy for interested prospects to find key content.
It's also vital you know your audience. You should be able to describe your demographic in detail (their age range, job types, location, etc.). This will help you work out what are the trigger words that will capture their attention, and what benefits they are looking for? It may seem simple, but the success of your video depends on it. If your target audience covers a diverse range that could be difficult to market to from one standpoint, it may take some research, but try filtering your approach to those most likely to engage with your video content.
Without going into massive detail, SEO Optimisation is very, very important. It is basically how a search engine will 'read' the content you have created, so you need to ensure your content is structured in the correct way. After all, search engines are in the business of providing people with the answers to their questions, so don't waste time trying to find shortcuts! The search engines are always one step ahead!
There is plenty of great literature on SEO optimisation for video content, so I would advise taking some time to understand what it's all about and how it works and why this is a marketing trend that you should not ignore.
Feedback & Discussion
Personally I find allowing an audience the opportunity to offer constructive feedback or join in with the debate a great way to get a measure of how the message is being perceived, and can also potentially open up a new networking channel. However, (and this is a big however) be careful and monitor it carefully as competitors can use an open feedback format as a source of new leads... My advice would be to decide this during the planning stage and ascertain how your content is best presented. For example, a short promotional video introducing your business or brand might not need an option for someone to comment, whereas a FAQs video might benefit from an 'open' structure.
We will be launching our new website with 3 Prezis and are looking to incorporate a monthly share plan FAQs video which we will be producing ourselves. Our Resources archive on the new site will also have video content from recorded talks and presentations. If you have any questions regarding the content of this article, or any questions you'd like us to answer in one of our upcoming FAQs videos – email Chris.Pipe@rm2.co.uk and let us know!