I’m often surprised when I hear about organisations that have tried video but consider it didn’t work for them. After a bit of digging it appears most had a poor experience due to one or more of the following:
The number one reason a video fails to get the right message across to the right audience is a bad concept. It needs to be relevant, engaging and if at all possible original. Also will your message actually work on video? Any kind of video should be viewed as a potential advertisement for your organisation and, like an advertisement, it has to be planned carefully and executed with precision.
Time should be spent developing a script and/or a storyboard that will help all parties visualise what is required and what will be delivered.
Actors & Presenters
Yes we know John in sales is a great talker and customers love him but how will he come across in front of a camera. A quick screen test will let him know what he’s in for and tell you if he’s the right guy. Too many clients paint themselves into a corner by insisting on a particular presenter, then have to ‘make do’ on the day.
If no one in an organisation is suitable then professional presenters and actors aren’t that expensive and they take away the risk. Alternatively you may consider just a voice-over.
A lot of video production companies bang on about their equipment… ‘my camera cost £10,000, we have the best lights’ etc etc. Yes, having good equipment is important but it should not be the sole reason for choosing someone to work with. Do they have experience in your industry or something similar? Ask to see relevant examples of their work.
When it comes to the filming (or more accurately the videoing) where it is done is very important. A studio is fine but filming on location will add another dimension and will enable viewers to put your message into context. Using a mixture of studio and location will break up the video and help maintain levels of interest.
Most people have a limited attention span, and that seems to be getting shorter by the year. They want information presented in small digestible chunks, if your video is too long viewers will simply get bored. Most online video players show the viewer how long the clip is even before they hit the play button – too long and they simply won’t watch. For most businesses the ideal duration is 100 seconds, if you have more to say simply chop it up into multiple videos.
Good editing, graphics and music will also add energy and dynamism to the production, but unless it is relevant steer away from anything too artistic or with too much movement, you don’t want your viewers feeling nauseous.
Don’t go to all the trouble of shooting a video and then hide it away somewhere on your website. Have a clear strategy on how you will use it before you start filming. Of course put it on your website but why not on the home page? Does your organisation use social media – post links to the video on there and also upload it to all those sites that can accommodate video, it will help with your SEO.
Are there any events planned such as a conference or trade show where you can have the video running in a loop? Why not include a link in all emails, and not just those sent from the Sales department. If you are doing online advertising consider links from banner ads and MPU, some sites will also allow video ads. You can also link to the video from print ads by using QR codes or Blippar. USB memory sticks are very popular give-aways, why not put your video on them?
Your strategy should also include re-edits of the video, to freshen it up and add new content, this can be done for a very modest cost but will prolong the life considerably.
There are many other reasons why video does not work for organisations, but if you address these five to start with you are well on your way to a production that delivers results.