Summary: This article spells out the need to effectively plan the creation of online video content in order to achieve specific business objectives. Associated with this article is a our downloadable Online Video Brief. It’s an easy to follow, prompt driven, document that holds the hand and guides the way for anyone wanting to plan and strategize the production of video content for their business.
This sounds crazy, but at times over the years, we’ve actually found ourselves talking people out of commissioning video content! Now, I’ve stretched the point here for the sake of attention; but in all seriousness, at times we have find ourselves explaining to some businesses that their primary reasons for wanting to put video on their website are irrational, whimsical or just plain weak and so, not really worth the investment!
The majority of people appreciate that video content is very much à la mode on websites presently and so, swept up in the spirit of the time, they feel the insatiable need to ‘get something up’ and what results is something less than the best, produced and placed on their site: bad news!
Your website is your shop front: a place to capture the attention, interests and imagination of visitors. Now I’m sure I just made a few people cringe with the ‘imagination’ remark, but if I clarify that by saying: imagination, not in the Disney, small world, pixie dust sense, but imagination, in the sense that your site visitors look, reflect and consider your offering as it applies to them and so think “Could this work for me?” That’s imagination in the marketing sense!
DODGE THE BULLET OF DISAPPOINTMENT
The plaudits that the zeitgeist of video gets are certainly not undeserved. If its made to measure: meaning, if video is conceived with clear objectives in mind and produced accordingly, video CAN be a perfectly beneficial fit for any business large or small.
Assuming that no business would be so wild as to trade without a plan, or invest in marketing and promotional activities without a strategy, we can safely trust that no company would dare commission video content on a whim. The sad fact is a massive percentage of organisations do! Just like social media, QR codes and other supposed golden tickets and miracle cures for business, ill conceived online video content is commissioned and created and sits on a site as a useless tool, distracting, confusing or turning visitors off to the offering. Such would have been better off with just good design, text and images.
Video in all its audio visual glory can do so much more than design, text and images alone on a site. The persuasive, emotive, 3-dimensional nature of the moving image has been powerfully affecting audiences, en masse, for the past 100 years and it can work for your business.
Good planning, as simple as operating with an end in mind, can help businesses to understand the video medium and value it appropriately along side other marketing tools. Seeing video for what it can be engenders the prudent planning required to dodge the bullet of disappointment that lame, or even brand damaging, ad hoc content can cause.
FIND THE BEST FIT
Most think of video on websites as straight promos or the intro “This is Such & Such Ltd” video. Whilst the promo can be a powerful way to quickly colour in the details implied in your sites headline copy it certainly isn’t the only format that well crafted video content can form to drive a marketing strategy.
Online video formats can take the shape of case studies, product demos, user guides, skill train sessions, expert insights and much, much more. Each format reaches out and touches a target audience in distinct ways; always remembering that target audience and target market are one in the same thing!
(Our next article “What Kind of Video Do I Need On My Website?” will explain all of these video variants and more.)
The bottom line is this: plan your videos well and they will serve your business well. To help you get started formulating a plan, help yourself to our Online Video Brief document.