This blog article was written by our very own Marcus Johnson as a guest post for the All About Digital Marketing blog.
Videos are everywhere. We watch them for entertainment, we rely on them to educate ourselves and keep ourselves regularly informed. For a small or medium-sized business, the idea of diving into the huge world of video content can feel unbelievably daunting. Where do you start? How do you make a camera work? Does anyone even want to watch your videos? All of these are valid concerns, but can easily get in the way of producing any video content at all. Starting is the main thing and the rest will roll from there.
Over the course of this article I’m going to give you some video content ideas that you can produce easily, straight away. These types of video are ideal building blocks for small and medium sized businesses who want to reap the many benefits of video marketing. If you’re worried I was just going to throw some tips your way and leave you to struggle alone then worry no longer. I’ll even provide an insight into the best way to utilise video content and all the long term marketing benefits that come with it.
What are we waiting for? Let’s start making some videos!
Start Simple And Build Up
Before I start prescribing you a whole bunch of different video ideas, I think it’s only fair to provide a few tips that will make the whole process run more smoothly. Firstly, start simple! Video production can reach all levels of unknown complexity. High tech production can produce all sorts of wonderment when done in the right way, but this is something to build towards. As with anything worth doing in the long term, it is about getting started. But to get to the stage where you’re producing all forms of grade A content, you need to actually get the record button pressed on a camera and let your clients and customers see some move images that show them what you are all about.
Humanise The Brand
Secondly, this is an exercise in humanising your brand. You may think video is all about showing off and producing a great spectacle. This is useful in the right circumstance, but where video content is most effective is when it is humanising the subject of the video. If you think of it this way, the techniques of making short videos are the same as big film productions. You are looking to create a connection between the subject of the film and the audience. If a film is eliciting an emotion from the viewer, then it is doing its job well. This is exactly what we want to do with our short videos as it is one of the key aims of marketing.
If your business is creating an emotional connection between itself and the client or customer then that relationship becomes so much stronger. How do we do this? We show off the human qualities behind the business. Get your team in front of the camera, demonstrate the reasons why your business exists. Display how you make your customers and clients’ lives better. If we look to humanise our communications, we will see the best response possible. Video content absolutely has the power to do this, so lets make sure we make the most of it.
Three Short Video Ideas
Firstly, a thought leadership piece is a great place to start. Long has the premise of being a respected and knowledgeable figure in your industry been a beneficial asset to a business. Whether this is through blog form or seminars, we all understand how sharing your expertise builds trust amongst clients and customers. So let’s apply this same principle to video content.
Delivering a series of videos where you talk directly to the camera is the perfect way of doing this. You can dive into this straight away with your smartphone and a smart looking location. The key here is just to talk. Don’t get held back by the fear of your content being unbelievably fluid. If you’re passionate and know what you’re talking about, this will come across to the audience. Start off with a few key talking points and talk through this over the course of a few minutes. This can then expand to a mini series covering different themes and before you know it you’ve got interesting and informative content that will help to build respect for you and your brand.
Secondly, the concept of a day in the life of video is another very good avenue to go down. The idea here is that you’re capturing little snippets of footage from throughout your working day. Just think how effective photos of your team, daily activities and any standout company moments are within your digital marketing output. Adding video to the mix in this style is another highly effective way of giving your customs a peak behind the curtain and showing off the more informal side of your business.
Once again, this is easily done with smartphone footage and can be put together, for instance, in the style of a series of Instagram Stories. The key here is to show your clients and customers what you get up to day-to-day, rather than sell them a highly polished version of your offering. This style of video can be re-purposed in many different styles and compliments other set-piece marketing content that you have out there. The casual and ongoing nature of this style of video means that the audience feel continuously connected to the more informal side of your business.
Finally, interviews and conversations with team members. No, we’re not going to re-create everyone’s job interview, the trick here is to capture the casual conversational style that works so well in podcasts. As opposed to speaking straight to camera, in this style of video there will be two people having a conversation with each other. This means the content is less direct, however, it captures a more natural tone and flow. This means it is great at sharing ideas and emotions with the audience. Two things that really connect people with what they are watching. On top of this it is a brilliant way to get more team members on camera and achieve that all important humanising element.
Again a simple set up for this would be a wide landscape shot including two of your team members sat in a location of your choosing. The aim of this style is to create a video where you riff on a topic that will be of interest to your audience. This could very easily be a new trend in the industry you work in. Once again we are displaying the knowledge of those involved with the business. As a result building trust and respect. Furthermore this style engages the audience. A podcast is so successful because it has all the natural elements of conversation that lead us to being happy chatting to our friends for hours.
This style doesn’t need vast amounts of preparation and can lead to a vast amount of content. For instance, a long unedited version can be released. As well as this you can produce shorter edits, cuts of the topic specific sections, lift key quotes and use the audio for an actual podcast. Instantly from a video with little preparation you have tons of information and interesting content that will only take 20 – 30 minutes to film.
How To Use Video Content Effectively
You’ve spent the time planning and producing some great video content, but what do you do with it now? Great question, that only requires a pretty simple answer. As we’re in the mindset of stripping things back and starting from the beginning, let’s apply this principle to utilisation of the content. The one main approach we should be taking here is; integrating the content into your existing marketing strategy.
Video often gets overlooked as businesses think it’s a whole new realm of marketing. But in its most basic form, video content is a way of leveling up your current marketing efforts and increasing the effectiveness of the work you’re already doing.
In practice this looks like this. No doubt you’ll already have a website with lots of content on. You’ll be sending newsletters out, updating your social media accounts and working on your SEO performance. These are already areas of heavy time and financial investment for a business. Quite rightly so, they have plenty of proven historical success. But straight away without much extra effort, video can enhance the effectiveness of all of these.
Very easily straight away you can include your new videos in your content. Compliment or replace the wordy About Us section on your site. Add extra content to the Meet The Team page and add your thought leadership pieces to your products and services pages. Next up, integrate video into your newsletters. This will vary up the content which can often turn stale and has a proven record of increasing click through rates.
Furthermore, social media platforms adore video content. Straight away with just a basic release strategy, most social platforms will boost your posts merely because they contain video content. Reach a wider audience with your message just by adding video. Finally, click through rates are proven to increase on landing pages if you include video content. Landing pages are a huge part of SEO strategies and take a lot of time to develop and refine. Now you’ve got the content, make the most of it.
Plus another new trick which will help out is utilising the power of Youtube. As Google own Youtube, the platforms are highly interlinked. Therefore search optimised video content on Youtube will do wonders for your SEO success as a whole. Plus, you are accessing a whole new audience on top of this. It really is a top platform to get on right now.
It’s Time To Start Video Marketing
As you have seen, video content can be very simple to create and very easy to utilise to great effect. It’s understandable how video content can be overwhelming when first approaching it, but following these basic principles is a brilliant way to start out.
Once you get the ball rolling with the basics, you’ll see the opportunities video content offers unfold in front of you. It can then take you and your business in all sorts of exciting directions. Higher quality and more ambitious content will follow and then give you access to different audiences whilst eliciting positive reactions from your existing clients and customers. High end branded video content is a whole other world which can take small businesses into the echelons of big media producers.
But let’s not get too carried away just yet. My main message from this is start simple, but don’t be scared to dip your toe in the water. I’m very confident that once you feel just how warm the water is you’ll be diving straight in off the 10 metre platform in no time.