Video production has traditionally been an expensive marketing option. Once reserved only for businesses with five or six figure marketing budgets, the broadband revolution has made it affordable for any company serious about marketing, to jump right in.
That same revolution has created a digital gold rush, making video marketing a necessity. Nearly all social media platforms now support and encourage some type of video content. Similar to websites becoming an essential part of business around 2010, that same trend is happening now with video.
Are You Using Social Media?
If you depend on social media to promote your brand or product, you need video. Producing an effective video on equal footing with other videos in your industry is critical to maintain, or even enhance your brand image. Even though video is a powerful tool, it should be only one aspect of a multi-dimensional marketing approach.
Video production is a delicate dance of scripting, marketing psychology, creative imagery, interpersonal communication, visual science, graphic design, computer expertise, project and time management. All the individual elements building your video must work in harmony to achieve maximum potential. From the lights, camera, tripod, and microphones, to the script, actors, narrators, and crew, to the computers, editing software, video editors and graphic designers… your final video will only be strong as the weakest link.
When all elements of production achieve that maximum harmony, the final result rises above all expectation and becomes something amazing and memorable. That’s when viewers want to watch and share the experience.
The True Challenge
You have 3 seconds to capture that attention, 10 seconds to keep it, and 90 seconds, on average, to share your story. Typically, the more targeted your message, the more time you have to offer detail, and the clearer that message becomes.
That focus becomes essential, especially considering over 50 percent of people watch some type of internet video every day. Even while watching traditional television, over 60 percent of those viewers will multi-task and watch something on YouTube at the same time.
YouTube’s most popular videos were once unintentional viral accidents created by everyday people. Now the top content is video with purpose, monetized and produced by professionals. It’s the wild west with professional video shooters ready and willing to try anything to become a viral sensation.
Video can be the most powerful marketing tool available when incorporated properly. The key is having realistic expectations. You can’t judge the success of your video on view counts alone. Most videos posted on YouTube are lucky to get a few hundred views.
The old saying holds true, “it’s not the quantity, but the quality” of your views which count.
Most platforms offer detailed analytics about how a video is viewed, down to the second.
You can see what average percentage of your video is being watched.
When they stop and rewind to watch a specific scene again.
And when the viewers simply stop watching.
Many videos see a significant drop after 10 seconds. The viewer has sampled the content and they’re not interested. The next drop is around 30 seconds. If you can get viewers to watch at least 45 percent of your video, it’s approaching better than average success rates. Anything above 65 percent average viewership, you have a very strong video reaching your target audience.
Once a company is ready to produce their first video, one of the biggest mistakes is taking the path of least resistance. Some companies try to establish a foothold in video, relying upon a friend or family member who’s a YouTube hobbyist. Even with the cost of entry the lowest it’s ever been, costs can quickly escalate without a detailed plan.
When considering the production of your own video, review these points:
What do you hope to achieve with your video?
Who is your target audience, or the audience you want to target with your video?
Identify your core message.
Are you establishing your brand or selling a product or service?
How long will your video need to be and how many videos should be produced?
If your message has multiple bullet points, consider a video for each point.
Consider custom videos reflecting expectations of the final destination.
What style or approach should your video take?
Image or branding videos should reflect the personality of the company.
Consider your target audience viewing habits and expectations.
How will you track viewers and measure success?
Every box is checked and you’re ready to start production! But wait, there’s more.
Video Has a Shelf-Life?
One aspect business doesn’t consider when producing a video; the lifespan before it’s considered out-of-date. Even video has a shelf-life.
Consider the changing trends in culture, politics, style, and general social consciousness. As a country, such trends dramatically shift every 7-10 years, while the trends of style and culture shift every 2-3 years. That’s the maximum time your video should be posted. After 24-36 months, it’s time to start over… or at least freshen it up.