In this article I’ll focus on getting the best out of your online small business video from a content perspective. In the second article in this series we’ll cover technical tips for effective online business videos.
What do you want to achieve?
Before doing anything else, think about what you want your small business video to achieve. Is it to educate, connect, sell, raise brand awareness, or change brand perception?
Ask yourself: What problem will my content solve for existing and prospective clients?
And don't say 'All of the above'. You have to make choices.
Don’t attempt to ad lib your video, no matter how much expertise you have.
I’ve filmed hundreds of business owners, keynote speakers and CEOs, and only a handful of those people manage to create concise, to the point video content on the fly. And the people who do have that unique skill tend to have had extensive training.
Even Barack Obama reads off an autocue. Do you think you can top that guy?
You may be able to give rousing speeches to a thousand people at a time, but presenting to camera really is a different ball game.
Get an hour or two of coaching on presenting to camera. What you learned in your Powerful Presentations course may not apply.
You need to care
Talk about something you’re really passionate about: you’ll look great on camera if you’re excited and fired up.
Don’t present content you’re not comfortable with. It comes across as though you don’t want to be there, and that’s not a good message to send to your target audience.
Keep it short and sweet
Only 20% of viewers actually make it to the end of the second minute of any video, so keep it short and to the point, unless it’s an educational video or a manual.
Stick to the point
Only try to get one point across per video. If you have more to share, make more small business videos. Cramming it all into one video won’t save you time or make you money.
Video needs to be surrounded by complementary content: a landing page, written content, a blog, a website. All these points of contact work together to create a connection. Your business proposition is only as strong as the weakest link in this chain.
Great content is essential
The success of your small business video depends almost entirely on the quality of the content. As a video producer, I spend about 60 percent of my time helping my clients to get the message right first. Only then do we roll the camera.
Writing for a video presentation is very different from writing web content or an article, so get a writer with experience in script writing to help you if you’re not sure.
Video is great at conveying non-verbal information such as what kind of person you are and how passionate you are about what you do. Use it for creating a connection.
On the other hand, avoid information overload. Video is terrible at conveying a lot of hard data or complicated processes. Viewers won't be able to retain that kind of information and will move on. Use written content or a downloadable PDF for this instead.
It’s also not a good idea to use the first minute of your video telling me about your 20 years of experience, degrees and all the major clients you’ve worked for. I can read all about that on your ‘About us’ page.
As with other types of social media, you’ll generally get better results sharing relevant information and offering client focussed solutions. Please, tell me something I don’t know yet. What problem can you solve for me?
So is a small business video worth it?
Absolutely! Video really brings what you offer to life, especially if your service or product depends on people interacting with you or your staff.
Video will help create that personal connection and it will lower the threshold for potential clients to contact you.
In summary, to get the best results from your video, make sure your content is relevant to your target audience and of great quality.
Have you been using small business video successfully on your site? Please share your tips and tricks with us.
Also, to get some ideas you may want to check out the small business video section on our website.
“ Even Barack Obama reads off an autocue. ”