Thinking of creating a custom video to help you achieve some specific marketing goals? Use our video marketing guide as a starting point to give you some good insights into all the ins and outs involved in making a masterpiece that will help you win fans and boost your brand.
First Answer the Question “Why is Video Marketing is Important?”
Video marketing has become one of the most powerful strategies for promoting and growing your brand online. More consumers are interacting with videos today than ever before and, in 2019, it’s imperative that video is an active ingredient in your digital marketing.
You see, videos have a convincing way of fostering engagement, producing results like click-throughs, shares, lead generation, and sales. But don’t take our word for it! These nine stats prove why every brand needs video marketing, with tips on how you can implement it in your overall online marketing strategy:
#1 Companies using video enjoy 41% more web traffic from search than non-users (Source: SmallBizTrends)
Video is an excellent tool to boost brand awareness and visibility in online searches. Owned by Google, YouTube is the second-largest search engine on the web. Ramping up your channel while optimizing your videos positions you to get in front of your ideal customer and bring more exposure to what you do.
#2 Video posts on Facebook have 135% greater organic reach than photo posts (Source: Social Media Today)
With more brands leveraging Facebook for their social strategy, finding ways to separate yourself from the sea of content being shared is vital for reaching your audience. Uploading videos directly to your business page can give you that slight edge.
Not only will it capture attention, but this tactic also has greater potential in touching more of your audience than traditional text or image posts.
#3 Social video produces 1200% more shares than text and images combined (Source: SmallBizTrends)
Here’s another statistic illustrating the positive impact videos have on social media. If you’re looking for ways to amplify and improve your social marketing, adding videos is your best approach.
#4 Video in an email leads to a 200-300% increase in click-through rates (Source: Hubspot)
This is huge! With email marketing being a top way for generating revenue, incorporating video can boost sales for your business. Open and click-through rates are key metrics in proving the effectiveness of your email marketing. Any tool that can raise these numbers is worth including in your strategy.
By the way, adding the word “video” to the subject line has shown to increase open rates, too!
#5 Including a video on a landing page can boost conversion rates by 80% (Source: Unbounce)
We can agree that growing your email list is the lifeblood of your business. Since videos have a compelling way of drawing users in and moving them to action, it’s the perfect tool to complement your landing page. You’ll build your sales funnel more efficiently by using the power of video.
For a complete list of reasons, you can check out one of our most popular posts about video marketing for more amazing video marketing statistics.
Determine The Goal of Your Video
Before you jump into creating a video, give some thought to what your specific end goals might be —in other words, what do you want the video to do?
You’ll need to settle on some clear objectives to help your company determine if the video was a success — and everything you do in planning and creating your video should drive you towards this goal.
Are you aiming to drive traffic to your website? Sell a product or service? Educate the viewer on a new product or technology? Demonstrate “social proof” through real testimonials? Or maybe feature a specific lifestyle that aligns with your brand?
Instead of trying to plan marketing after creating the video, think about your marketing approach as a whole before you get started, and then determine where the video will fit in.
Then Decide Where Your Video Will Live
Thinking about where your video will end up being seen is an often overlooked step, but your answer can actually help you effectively plan out your video’s style, technical specs, and even the concept. As you might imagine, a video made for a Facebook ad probably won’t perform as well on a tradeshow display — so be sure to think through your video’s final destination before you get going.
A few examples of where your video might live:
- Social Media Post
- Facebook / Instagram Ad
- In-store Display
Choose Your Ideal Type of Video
Once you’ve settled on the primary goal you want your video to accomplish and where it will live, it’s time to determine what type of video you’ll create.
Video types you can choose from:
- Brand / Company Video
- How-To or Explainer Video
- Testimonial Video
- Case Study Video
- App Video
- Animated Video
Work Up a Video Budget
Bringing up the budget might feel a bit uncomfortable, but the fact is that funding plays a huge role in the video marketing strategy. Obviously, the size of your company/brand is a factor when shaping the budget, but you can look at the video’s ultimate goal as your key deciding factor. If your marketing goals are achieved with this video, what is the value of that goal to your company? You can also consider the other steps — like deciding where the video will live — and how these might affect your budget. For example, a video intended for a TV audience should have higher production value than one made for a social media post. And a brand or company video should look more polished then a testimonial video. You get the idea.
Just know that in the end, your budget is going to limit your production value as well as your concept scope — but these limitations don’t necessarily have to be a negative; Setting boundaries can have huge benefits to the creative process when it comes to developing concepts and making production decisions.
Your video budget should factor in the following:
- Number of shooting days
- Number of actors (paid or volunteer)
- Number and cost of locations
- Props, set designs and wardrobe
- Special or visual effects
- Level of animation and graphics
- Music and sound effects
- Final mastering like color correction or audio mixing
Nail Down a Video Concept
As with most marketing efforts, the concept is key, and it’s no different when it comes to video marketing. Many people believe that their concept needs to be viral in order for their video to be a success. In reality, there is no one formula for going viral, so it’s better to focus on the sales, the big-picture goal, and where the video will live to give you the best shot at success.
Keep the following in mind when developing your video concept:
- What do customers love about the product or service?
- What does the typical customer look like?
- What is the problem or problems the product is designed to solve?
- Who are the main competitors of the product? And how is this product better or different?
- Will viewers already know they want this product? Or do you need to show them that the solution exists before they will want the product?
- What doubts about the product need to be overcome in order to convert a viewer to a customer?
Start big and prepare to fail. Even with all of this preparation up front, you will probably come up with 10 or more bad concepts before you find your ideal approach. Brainstorm a bunch of concepts and share them with friends and co-workers to see which ones stick. Get a group together to mine for great ideas — you never know where your big “aha” moment might be hiding. You can tap their brain power in-person or collaborate remotely on Google Docs or other online venue.
Having a professional creative agency jump in to lead you through these beginning steps can be a tremendous help in nailing down an innovative video concept that will set you up for success. Just think of how many fun and powerful storylines you’ll be able to generate when you mix your company’s best and brightest with an experienced team of videographers, writers and editors who know what’s creating a buzz in the video world right now. The sky’s the limit!
Build Your Video Concept Structure
One you have your video concept nailed down, it’s time to work on structuring your video so that it performs just the way you intended. Keep it simple by starting with the basics, then you can evolve it from there if you want to take a more complex track.
Here are the essential parts of a video that effectively reaches out to its target audience:
You need to grab the audience’s attention FAST, since you can’t sell a viewer on your product if they don’t hang around long enough to watch your video. The hook is what makes them stay.
Introduce the specific problem that your product is intending to fix. Make the viewer feel the problem and connect with them so they are invested in finding a solution.
Show the audience your unique solution with more than just a clever one-liner; make sure you explain what all the current customers love about the product.
The call-to-action tells the view what they are supposed to do next. Do you want them to follow a link to buy your product, visit your website, learn more, or maybe share the video? Make the next step obvious.
Finally got your concept? It’s time to head into production!
Understand the Video Production Process
Now that you are fully prepared with a solid concept and structure, you can move forward with the production of your video. There is a lot of work that needs to be done here, so if you are not experienced, it’s highly recommended that you hire a professional team to lead you through the process. To get a feel for what’s involved, below is a shortened summary of the typical flow of a Sparkhouse production — or you can click the link to view a more in-depth description of each step.
Pre-production is where all the planning happens. This can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, depending on the concept’s complexity. A successful pre-production process will set up the actual production (shoot) to go smoothly, so it’s especially important to avoid cutting corners on the pre-production planning. Keep in mind that once you get into production, it can be pretty expensive to go back to make changes.
Key steps in pre-production include:
- Script Breakdown
- Shot List
- Itemized Breakdown
- Location sourcing and permits
- Props / Wardrobe
- Shot Schedule
Production is the step where most of your budget will be spent, and it’s also the most exciting part in the video-making process. Here you will be renting locations, hiring crew and actors, and, depending on your position, you might be yelling “lights, camera, action!” Shooting can take a few days or a few weeks; it all depends on the concept and your budget. Remember to take good notes to assure the hand-off to the post-production team is seamless.
A successful production has many moving parts, including:
- Craft Services
- Equipment Prep / Rental
- Actors / Talent Releases
- Crew / Payroll
- Location / Permits
- Hair and Makeup
- Scene Lighting and Prep
- Walkthroughs and Blocking
- Shooting and Circle Takes
Post-production is where all your hard work starts to pay off and you get to see the concept come to life. It’s a tedious process, but if the right steps were taken in pre-production and production, post-production can be a great place for creativity and collaboration as the editors put the final touches on your video. This step can take from a few days to a few weeks, depending on the concept and how many cooks you have in the approval kitchen.
Some elements of post-production:
- Transferring and organizing
- Syncing and Trimming
- Story Cut
- First Cut
- Client Review
- Final Cut
- Graphic / Titles
- Visual Effects
- Color Mastering
- Audio Mastering
- Exporting for Delivery
And Lastly, Distribute Your Finished Video
Your video might be completed, but you’re not done yet! It’s now time to give your video a proper distribution to get the right eyeballs on it. If your masterpiece is headed for TV, you’ll need a strong media buying strategy. If the video will be placed on your website, ask your webmaster to tag the video with proper keywords and descriptions. If it’s bound for social media, make sure you have a strategy ready for posting it during optimal days and times to garner the most views.
If you have the time, you can also test different variables to optimize your branding video’s performance. Try giving it a different title, changing the call-to-action, or switching up the editing structures to drive different results. Keep an eye on how many views it’s racking up — if exposure is dropping, switch it up and see what happens!
Any company that’s committed to growing and building strong customer relationships can look to video marketing as an effective way to reach customers where they’re at — on social media sites, websites, TV, crowdfunding and other arenas. But just because your first video is done and distributed, it’s no excuse to sit back and let all your hard work lose traction. To get the most out of your production, test your results as often as possible, get feedback, and use what you learn to plan your next video. Use video marketing as an ongoing tool to continue building your brand and connect with current and potential customers in new and different ways.
We hope our guide to video marketing has been useful in demystifying the video production process for you. The general structure we described can be applied to videos of any size budget — from $5K to $1M — no matter if they require a one-man crew or 100-plus team members.
Before you make your next video, review the steps above, take your time, and most importantly — have fun along the way.
Best of luck!