A Quick Guide to Video Production for Businesses
- Choosing a Production Vendor, distribute and promote your video Video Production for Businesses, Guide to Video Production, Why is video branding important for your business?
- September 13, 2019
We live in a world where the video is king. From short, animated GIFs and YouTube videos to streaming services and immersive virtual reality experiences, it’s nearly impossible to spend any amount of time online without encountering some video-based content.
According to Gizmodo, video viewing accounts for roughly 70 percent of global internet traffic. In 2015, video views on the eponymous – if somewhat controversial – social media platform Facebook made a staggering leap from four to eight billion per year.
On the other hand, while the prevalence of video content may have increased dramatically over recent years, its effectiveness varies greatly. Gizmodo also found that more than a third of YouTube videos have less than ten views.
Does that mean, videos that are being made and shared strictly fall under entertainment or news domains? NO, on contrary businesses are using videos as a mode of educating end-users, branding means, and product marketing. So, what stands out in video format that it is now becoming the preferred mode of marketing?
Why is video branding important for your business?
Video has a unique ability to paint a picture in our mind that other mediums just can’t. It doesn’t require us to use our imaginations in the way that text or a still image does. It can simultaneously entertain audiences while delivering content that might seem over-complicated in other formats.
While long-form documents and banner ads might very well compel potential customers to click, they’re rarely memorable.
Entertaining television commercials with catchy jingles, or clever pre-roll ads on your favorite YouTube-hosted cat video, are often much easier to recall.
Marketers are shifting away from traditional advertising copy to video, and consumers are following that trend, developing a preference for watching – as opposed to reading –marketing content, especially online.
Another factor is a shift towards mobile media consumption. Ten years ago, bandwidth consumption made video playback challenging, but in the modern world, watching content on mobile is easier than reading on the same device.
Video is the key to a successful marketing strategy in the modern world. But if you’re considering using it in your next campaign, advertising initiative, or corporate event, there are a few things you’ll need to consider – and learn about – before you start work.
Define your goals
There are a few questions that you’ll want to ask yourself before investing time and money in video production. Successful projects always derive directly from effective research and planning, so it’s always best to be ready.
What is the main goal of your video(s)?
You might want to increase your web traffic, raise conversion numbers, increase views in specific demographics, etc. Think about the big picture here – this will be the roadmap that guides the overall message and direction of your video.
What are your deadlines, and what is your budget?
Establish a clear deadline with measurable milestones to avoid delays and extra costs. Promote accountability, and ensure that everyone involved knows where it is you’re going and how you intend to get there. Similarly, defining a budget and sharing it allows your vendor to provide you with the best product possible within your specific limits.
Who is your target audience, and who are your key stakeholders?
When it comes to establishing the message, tone, and style of your video, knowing your audience is critical. The same is true when looking at how you’ll structure meetings, pitches, and project reviews. Make sure you’re clear on who your key stakeholders are, and their importance to the project.
How will you distribute and promote your video, and what will success look like?
Different video types will be appropriate for different distribution channels – what works on Netflix, isn’t necessarily going to perform as well on social media or YouTube.Choose the right promotional tools – such as social media or email campaigns – to ensure you meet your goals. (e.g., number of views, click-through rate, conversions, etc.)
Types & Styles of Videos
There are a variety of different types of video you could produce, and a variety of styles in which to make them. For example, the kind of video might be an explainer or demonstration, while the style might be live-action or animation.
Types of video could include company overviews, broadcast or web commercials, marketing campaigns, testimonials or case studies, recruitment, social media shorts, highlight reels, trade show loops, and event openers.
Some styles of video are more suitable for some marketing purposes than others. Let’s take live-action again, for example, which would suit a company overview, event opener, or commercial, among others.
Other styles might include 2D or 3D animation, narrative, interview, screen capture, hand-drawn animation, stop motion, multi-screen, documentary, and virtual reality.
Choosing a Production Vendor
Once you’ve figured out your needs, goals, and budget (more on that later), you should consider whether working with a vendor might be a good fit.
Sometimes a do-it-yourself look is appropriate, in which case you might want to shoot your video by yourself. But you’ll likely want to go with a professional video production vendor in most cases. Vendors often have access to resources and expertise that internal marketing teams might not.
There are a few things that you might want to consider when selecting the right vendor for your video. That includes the strength of their portfolio, their existing client base, how well they’re likely to fit your budget, their business and creative savvy, and your own gut.
Their portfolio is an obvious place to start. Do they work in a variety of video types and styles? Does their work have the production value you want? Do they work with – and understand – other organizations in your industry?
You’re trusting them to bring your valuable ideas to life, so it’s crucial to be able to trust them. Check out their client relations before agreeing to work together, as the most telling sign that a company is easy to work with is their repeat clientele. Look for a company that communicates well and often, and commits to long-term business relationships.
Choose a vendor who will make a trendy video with messaging that’s on-point and appropriate. We’re talking about people who understand cutting-edge creativity as well as old school business skills that pay the bills.
Ask your vendors what experience they have with marketing techniques such as marketing automation and campaigns, integrated advertising, and social media strategy. A marketing-savvy vendor can provide a product that meets your business goal while keeping your audience interested.
Finally, listen to your gut. Ask yourself these questions: who had the best response rate? Who seemed to understand your needs most? Who seemed confident, but not too cocky? And with whom did you feel the most connected?
Budgeting is an important consideration when choosing a vendor – and an important part of any project – but it shouldn’t be your primary consideration. That said, make sure that you ask for a detailed breakdown of any quotes, and check what is and isn’t included, such as actors, music, voice-over talent, and source files.
Depending on the style and type of video, and your choice of vendor, the cost of video production can vary greatly. This can usually be anything from around US$4K for a good demonstration video to US$80K for the best broadcast commercials.
As you close in on the end of your project, defining a budget and a timeline is essential, and, in many cases, connected. An aggressive timeline could incur rush fees, while a lax timeline might drag things out for longer than is strictly necessary.
Remember that most marketing videos usually take around four to six weeks from the project kickoff call to the delivery of final assets, and keep this in mind when setting a timeline.
Make sure that you include all your stakeholders in your project kickoff to avoid misunderstandings about goals, budgets, and timelines. Define the key messages in your video early on in the process, and make sure that you have specific, manageable, and measurable goals.
Define a creative direction and stick with it. Collect assets to share with your vendor, including any content that will help you to share your vision. Make sure that you consolidate and deliver feedback to your vendor quickly.
Video content is increasingly prevalent online, making it an essential part of any modern marketing strategy. There are many styles and types of videos, and a right vendor will help you understand your options and make the right choices for your business and goals.
Take the time to ask – and answer – critical questions upfront to save time and cost later, as well as avoiding potential confusion about goals, timelines, or cost. Being proactive and maintaining effective communications between your team and your vendor can positively impact the timeline and budget of your project.
Don’t hesitate to shop around for the best vendor for your needs, and ask the right questions during that process. Creating a video for your organization is a rewarding process, but it’s not one that should be undertaken lightly, as video content can make or break your marketing plans.
Understanding the process and working with the right vendor will help you to enjoy the process while still meeting your goals.