Video has progressed over the years from being very expensive, and only for big brands, to now being very attractive for small businesses. The ability to shoot and edit has now come to the consumer. The ability to perform these functions is available on the mobile and desktop device.
If you own a small business and really want to use video, here are some tips that will help you get started. There is a small caveat here. If you want to produce for broadcast, or produce high production quality videos, this is not for you. It’s for the basic video producers who are device savvy, who also own small businesses. They want and need to use video, and want to do it on the nickel.
Ask yourself these six questions before you go invest time and money.
- Why do I want to use video?
- Can I promote my products and services with video?
- Is Shooting and editing difficult?
- How do I get video on my website?
- How do I get my customers to see the video?
- How Do I get started?
1. Why Do I Need To Use Video?
This is the perfect question to ask before you jump in and realize it’s much more complex than you probably thought. Chances are you have a story to tell and video is the perfect medium to do it. Customers nowadays watch a lot of video on the web and on mobile devices. Take advantage of this trend in user behavior and tell your story using a powerful, popular medium that’s here to stay for a very long time. Here are a few facts to wet your appetite for video. Credit: Mashable
- 36% Millennials watch online video multiple times per day
- 29% Gen X watch online video multiple times per day
- 23% Boomers watch online video multiple times per day
- 43% Watch online video to access what they want immediately
- 37% Watch online video because of the customized experience
- 36% Watch online video because they can share with others
2. Why Promote My Products And Services With Video?
Video helps to explain a concept very well. With motion, voiceover and music, you can talk about your products and services easily and effectively explain them in detail. This is much better than writing text on your website or even just showing a photo. Video takes the viewer to the location where the video is and draws them in. Video has a unique way of capturing the viewer’s attention with both sight and sound. You don’t need to have broadcast quality production. Today’s video is more more user-generated then ever before. That means people like you are shooting on an iPhone or iPad – really.
3. Is Shooting And Editing Difficult?
Yes and No. I know that’s not the answer you wanted. However, if it was easy, everyone would be doing it and I wouldn’t need to write this blog. Let’s start with shooting. If you have an iPhone, iPad or something similar, you can use the video camera capability directly from the phone, and the quality is fantastic. That is the easy part. Just remember to keep your hand steady when you’re holding the camera and don’t make any noises when shooting. Editing is a little harder, however there are lots of options for editing software. If you’re an Apple user like me, you have iMovie which is about as simple as it gets. The upgrade is Final Cut Pro, which is for heavy hitters. Both of these will perfectly import and edit video from your devices.
4. How Do I Get Video On My Website?
YouTube is an incredible tool. Set-up your free account first. Then, once you finish editing your video, simply upload it to your YouTube account. When it is complete, YouTube will provide you with a link and also a “share” embed code. This embed code is what you can use to insert the video on your website. If you are not sure how to do this, you can simply just use the link to the video on YouTube and cut and paste that link and put it on your website.
5. How Do I Get Customers To See The Video?
Now that you have the video on YouTube and on your website, you have a few options so that your customer can see the video. Social media is your best friend here. When you use Facebook or Twitter for example, make sure you use the link from YouTube and put it in your social media post. Here’s an example.
Social Media Post:
Watch the video to see the latest features on your #vacuum cleaner.
You can also use this same link when you send out emails to your customers. If you noticed, I used a hashtag before the word vacuum. I did this because I want any one that searches with the word #vacuum to have the opportunity to see my social media posts that also have #vacuum in it.
6. How Do I Get Started?
Determine what device (or camera) you want to use to shoot the video. I have used my iPhone and iPad, and the quality is excellent. Next, determine what software you will use to edit the video. As I stated earlier, iMovie and Final Cut Pro are both great options. iMovie is easier to use and more entry level. Both of those are only for Apple computer users. For PC users, there are lots of options. Premiere and Sony Movie Studio are just a few that you may want to use.
If you feel that you are a little more advanced, you will definitely want to take time to understand how video and SEO work together. Today’s digital culture may be confusing with social media, web, text and apps becoming the norm. However, the do-it-yourself marketer or small business owner now has more options and control over their online presence than ever before, and video is a huge part of that. Take advantage of video to help tell your story, feature your products and even create some news and event videos. Your customers will be far more engaged with your products and your company will stay top of mind more often. That is very important when customers are ready to make a buying decision.
If video has been on the wish list and you thought it was too expensive… don’t worry. Your mobile device will save you and help get you started and headed in the right direction.
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