As videos become more popular, companies are investing more in video production and promoting their videos. Organizations no longer need large production studios, expensive equipment or teams of specialists to produce videos. Most firms can afford entry-level equipment, and most people can create good videos with a small amount of instruction.
That has led to the “democratization of video creation.” More types of personnel will become involved in video production as that trend continues.
“Much like employees are expected to create emails, documents, and presentations today, they will be empowered to create videos to improve the way they communicate across the business,” states Vidyard’s 2019 State of Video in Business report. That will prompt the widespread adoption of video capture and creation software, such as webcam and screen recording tools and lightweight video editing and entry-level video production gear.
These are some of the top video production and marketing trends and recommendations from Vidyard’s report:
Invest in equipment. If you are not yet producing content in-house, invest in entry-level equipment for your PR and marketing team. Train at least one person to be the video expert. Eighty-two percent of businesses reported greater investments in video in 2018 and Vidyard’s B2B clients published 83 percent more videos on a monthly basis compared to the previous year.
Go social first. Develop a ‘social-first’ video strategy for creating conversational and educational video content that is explicitly designed for distribution on your social media channels. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn all recently invested heavily in video, including live streaming content. That strategy reverses the standard route of creating a video for a website, then posting it to social media.
Add CTAs. Add video-centric calls-to-action on the company website — such as “Watch a Demo” — to generate leads. Brands can collect email addresses and other customer information by posting gated video content. Some of the favorite types of videos on websites include explainers, customer stories, and product demonstrations.
Align analytics. Align your video analytics and reporting strategy with the goals of your video content and broader marketing and sales programs.
New Video Formats: Hype and Reality
While there’s been plenty of hype over formats like 360 video, 3D experiences, and virtual reality (VR), these won’t materially impact most businesses in the near future. New approaches to traditional video — including series-based content, video podcasts, interactive video, and personalized video — are now helping early adopters boost engagement and expand their audiences, according to Vidyard.
Create a series. Podcasts have revealed the attraction of episodic content that’s shown in a series. Businesses are likely to expand on the concept with episodic videos. Create a branded episodic video series around a topic that is timely and relevant for your market. These can focus on short quick tips, how-to instruction, interviews with experts or business leaders, or a behind the scenes look at your operations.
Experiment. Consider experimenting with interactive and personalized video. Interactive CTAs in video content can drive immediate action. The most advanced brands are experimenting with interactive features like overlaid annotations (interactive pop-ups) and ‘choose-your-own-path’ capabilities.
Sell through videos. Sales executives, account managers, and sales engineers can use personalized videos to deliver tailored demonstrations, explain specific features or services and walk through sales proposals. Experiment with one-to-one video messaging within your sales development or inside sales team.
PR Specific Recommendations
For PR, videos can help win media placements. Solo PR Pro offers these tips to help.
Don’t fret about high-tech equipment. High-quality video can be obtained with devices like iPhones and iPads, and SLR cameras such as the Canon Rebel, as long as there is good quality lighting and sound.
Repeat: Good lighting is more important than a high-priced camera. Do a bit of background reading about basic lighting techniques.
Zoom with your feet. The zoom feature on inexpensive digital video recording devices can be awkward and result in a lower-quality outcome.
Keep the shot steady with a tripod. Even an iPhone can be stabilized on an inexpensive a tripod, which can mean the difference between a shot that can be used on-air, and one that can’t.
If you’re recording just a one-person video using an iPhone, you can use the phone’s included headphones if you put the earbud pieces inside your shirt and position the mic on the outside.
Keep it short. The average news story is one minute and 20 seconds. Even internet videos should be no more than two minutes. Provide B-roll video for all interviews – that is, video that can be used to cut away from the interview.
Don’t use your own graphics on the video, so the outlet can add their own. A common mistake is to place the title of the person speaking at the bottom of the screen. Instead, use a title card (slates) at the beginning or end of the video to provide that information.
Because you never know when an outlet will want to cut in or out, keep your camera static with no pans or zooms. Ideally, provide two perspectives of an interview – a long shot and a close-up so that the outlet can edit to their own needs.
Bottom Line: As more companies realize that video can produce sales leads and promote their brands more effectively than other formats, more companies and brands will embrace videos this year. With low-cost video equipment widely available, more PR and marketing professionals will create their own videos and promote them on social media and on television and online news outlets.
William J. Comcowich founded and served as CEO of CyberAlert LLC, the predecessor of Glean.info. He is currently serving as Interim CEO and member of the Board of Directors. Glean.info provides customized media monitoring, media measurement and analytics solutions across all types of traditional and social media.