By now, I am sure you are convinced by the power of video and you have likely arrived at this article having decided you wish or need to employ video as part of your company’s marketing strategy - but why?
Why do you want to make a video? What do you hope to gain from it? What is its purpose? Is it a tool to promote your products? Is it to provide internal information or training to staff? Perhaps it’s a video blog to drive traffic to your website or to be used at seminars to enhance your presentations.
Your video needs a clear purpose and direction and it’s important to nail these down before you consider the “who, what, where, when and how.” Trying to produce a multi-purpose video is risky as these often end up as long, meandering videos that confuse the audience and make them switch off. Of course many videos can be used in several situations but a good video production company should guide you as to how such a video can be made in the most effective and efficient way.
If you are making a video purely to keep up with the competition or because you have money left at the end of the year, please don’t. These are poor reasons as they rush you, do not focus your mind and risk trying to be carbon copies of what’s already our there.
Below is a list of the most popular forms of corporate video production to help you to identify which would be most suitable for your business. It is by no means exhaustive and I’m sure you can think of other uses for video not listed here.
Short for ‘Video Blog,’ this is a popular format on YouTube. It is, as you would expect, a blog in video form, regularly updated whenever you have interesting information to share with your customers and potential customers.
This could take the form of a Vlog for a wider audience but can also be used at conferences, exhibitions and presentations if you have developments you wish to share with a more targeted audience. It could be internal for staff or members of an organization or external to inform clients and/or customers.
CORPORATE PROMOTIONAL VIDEO
This heading is a broad, umbrella term which includes many of the other forms as they can be used on websites, exhibition screens, embedded in PowerPoint presentations, video cards, and uploaded to video hosting sites to be e-mailed as links or embedded videos in mail outs. The best examples offer brief, passionate information in highly creative styles as an overview of your business, services and/or products. It’s a resume of your business in video form.
These videos sit at the top of your homepage begging to be played as soon as a visitor opens your site. The best ones offer short, efficient information on your business in a creative way that matches your site and brand. They should be designed to tease the viewer with the basics and entice them to read more on your website or contact you for further information.
Videos designed to sell your product and/or service to potential or existing clients and customers. These can take many forms – from a simple, 20 second, rotating product shot, to a 6 minute, in depth description of the product’s features and benefits.
These videos can be aimed at both the general public (how to operate and maintain a carpet cleaner they have purchased from you or set up a home entertainment system) or your staff (how to operate the various features your road maintenance vans). In the past, these videos would have been sent out as a DVD with the product but are increasingly offered now as a link to an online video as they are more accessible in any location on mobile devices.
By this I don’t mean the scary, safety films on TV in the 1970s. These videos are a means of selling your business services by offering essential information. They are soft sales tools. They work by providing the public with information they need and then offering them a service to help them understand or implement the information. It’s marketing at it’s most basic – highlight their pain by offering the helpful information and then softly offer your service as the cure.
The most closed form of video as they normally contain information that companies do not wish to share with the public – new company procedures, cost cutting schemes, financial information, etc. These too can take several forms – from highly creative, artistic showcases to be shown at corporations’ AGMs, to messages from a CEO mailed out internally to employees.
In the past, all training was carried out ‘live’ by trainers from the various departments within a business. As man-hours become increasingly valuable, much of this training is now delivered in video form. Health and safety is a good example – from safe practices for excavation works in public areas, slips, trips and falls hazards and specific site H&S procedures and practices. Inductees can be given an overview of various departments without the need for managers to be present. “How To” videos are also increasingly popular for the public and businesses alike – e.g. how to ice cup cakes, how to apply various makeup, how to improve your online marketing and how to turn leads into sales. These, again, are effective soft-sell tools for many businesses.
Again, these can take several forms, from a short video to show the highlights of an event to interview based videos to explain the key points of a seminar to full length, 30 minute speaker presentations with PowerPoint slides. The shorter form video can either be sent to attendees as a memory of the event and thank you for attending or as a carrot to entice visitors to the next event. The longer form videos are normally aimed at very specific audiences who have a need for the information given in the full presentations. For this reason the viewership of the longer presentations, although still highly valuable, will be much lower.
EXHIBITION STAND VIDEOS
Normally highly creative videos designed specifically to catch the eye. It is worth marking this as a separate heading as there are often special factors to consider when showing videos in exhibition spaces such as external sound issues. Exhibition spaces can be loud so any spoken information may be lost in these areas. Videos edited to music with textual information may work best in such spaces.
CELEBRATION / THANK YOU
An important but often overlooked form. Staff will respond well to a video from their company thanking them for their efforts. It makes them feel valued and will keep them loyal. Similarly, loyalty can be gained by sending thank you messages to valued customers and clients. A video Christmas card (as we send to our customers every year) will make you memorable. Similarly, filming a staff event (party or fun day) can act as an online reminder of how much a business values its staff.
An increasingly popular format, highly creative and normally involving ad agencies and/or larger production crews. A longer form of advertisement designed to burn a brand into the consciousness. They often take the form of short documentaries or series concentrating on products and/or brands. They take a lot of pre-planning and all of these points make them more expensive than many of the other forms.
Perhaps the most expensive and most useful for larger companies, who have instant company information to share either with their staff or the public – e.g. a computer manufacturer wishing to instantly share new products with the world at a launch event or a bank that needs to share conference information instantly with managers and employees around the world. Normally involving several cameras, larger crews and uplink fees.
Video is everywhere – on banner ads, tube station escalator advertising boards, online newspaper job vacancy pages, in estate agents’ windows, etc, etc. The uses of video are limited only by our own imaginations. You may find all of the above forms relevant for your business or only a few. Whichever form(s) you choose, it is important to get your message right and in the next article, “WHAT?”, we will deal with this subject.
If you have any questions or suggestions arising from this article, please leave a comment below or contact us via our CONTACT PAGE and we'll be happy to chat with you about any aspect of video production.