For social media to work, you need to create regular content. With so many marketing messages, it is easy for people to forget about you, but being there every week in a valuable way keeps you top of mind and builds relationships over time. Creating a tweet or taking a photo for Instagram is easy compared to creating a video. Creating one video is tough. Creating a series of video, especially on a weekly basis, can seem impossible. The internet is crowded with video that no one wants to watch. So, what do you do to keep from adding to the pile?
First, quality is more important than quantity. However, just like your favorite TV show, people need to know that there will be more videos for them to watch. If you can’t create weekly content, then figure out what frequency works for you and then stick to that schedule and let your audience know when to expect your next video.
There are many different styles of video content that you can create but, no matter what style you create, your content needs to do one of three things: inspire, educate or entertain. If you can make a video that does all 3 things, it will be an even bigger win. You can talk directly to the camera or do an interview talk show style. Look for what no one else is doing in your industry and use that opportunity to be unique. I like to challenge the brands we work with to create more entertainment-type content, especially if they are in a business that is already full of thought leaders. Entertainment type content is more expensive, but it is more engaging. My favorite example was the reality show we created called “Shoot for Broke.” We learned that it works really well but it was too expensive for us to continue for now.
Choose the style of video that fits you budget and your brand. If you are the Ferrari or Nordstrom of your industry or selling to high end clients, you need to make sure the videos you create match your brand. For smaller brands or a solopreneur, a smartphone with microphone and a tripod might be enough to create video content. Don’t try to hide behind animation or PowerPoint slides. People will connect with a real person. This will humanize your brand. Your spokesperson could be your CEO or a sales person. You could even do some camera tests with your employees and choose the person who is the most natural on camera. Some choose to hire professional actors to be in their videos. For weekly content, I recommend using a real thought leader from your company. By investing in an internal thought leader, you will both benefit. As they are building your brand, they will also be building their personal brand which is a win-win.
You can write a script and read it from a teleprompter, or you can write out some bullet points and start recording. If you don’t have a teleprompter or if you try out the teleprompter and find that it doesn’t work for you, you can record your scripts in chunks by memorizing a small part and recording that part and then memorizing another small part and recording again until the video is done. If you want to avoid scripting all together, you can use an interview-style to save money on script writing. This might also help you look more authentic on camera.
Here is the process our Orange County video production company went through for one of our clients, the American Marketing Association of Orange County: The video series was called “The Marketing Minute.” When we started talking with the AMAOC about creating a video series, we found that we were not hearing the voice of the marketers inside of companies in their community, so, that became our focus: marketers who were working inside of companies. In order for social media to engage your followers, you need to provide value. It is really easy as a brand to only post content online that talks about our company and product or, in the AMAOC’s case, their events. Here is how and why we created the series. (You can follow these steps when creating a video series for your business.)
If you are going to do weekly or episode video content, the format of the videos needs to have some consistent elements so viewers can recognize it as one of your videos before they even watch them.
For the format of “The Marketing Minute” video series, we start with an opening statement from this week’s guest. We try to pick the most interesting comment from the video. The bolder the statement is, the better. We then cut to the AMAOC logo for branding. We keep this really short, between 3 and 5 seconds. It also provides a little production value. We then come back and let the guest introduce themselves. I wouldn’t do this if we had the same person on camera each week, but since it’s a different guest from week to week, an introduction is important to help the guest build credibility with the viewer. This also could have been done by the host of the interview if they are on camera too. I then ask them a few questions to get the information we teased at the beginning of the video. We close out with a call to action that was tailored to the social media platform they were watching the video on. We would also invite them to attend one of the group’s events. On YouTube, we leverage the end cards feature and invite viewers to watch more videos.
We also make sure we have a custom thumbnail that can be used across all of the social media platforms. The design of this thumbnail is very strategic to attract viewers.
Here are a few other things that we do:
- We show up weekly. This helps us gain followers or subscribers because they know that if they subscribe, we will come back every week, just like their favorite tv show.
- We release the show at 3 a.m. PST every Tuesday so when people wake up, if they have subscribed, they will get a notification so they can watch the video while they eat their breakfast. This also allows the guest and the rest of the AMAOC team to share the video when they wake up.
Suggested Reading: You May Want to Create YouTube Reality Show
The key to creating a weekly video is to batch the content. We shoot as many interviews as we could in one day. Typically, we get two months of video content in one 8-hour day; which is good when you consider that we only spend 2.5 hour at each location and 1 hour of actual recording time with each person. We have a system that we use for our clients that allows us to get a 6 – 12 month’s worth of content in one day. That system doesn’t work for this particular video series because part of the story is the unique locations of each of the experts we are talking to. Here is an example of some of the videos from the series.
No matter the type of video you create, you can’t just hire a videographer or video editor and expect to get results. This process starts with a video strategist and is followed by a creative director. You need both to make sure you are creating the right message for the right audience.
The other thing we did as a part of this series was to lay a proper foundation of videos online with a video sales funnel. We did this by creating a video that explains what the group is all about and a few videos that answer some frequently asked questions about membership. Sales Video Funnels are very important to the success of your video content. It allows you to increase sales. Videos are not a one and done type of marketing asset. If the videos are created around evergreen topics, they have at least a 5-year life span. They can be re-shared over and over again. So, look at this as a long-term investment.
The next step for the success of your weekly content is you need to buy ads. For people to watch your videos, it takes ads because social media has become pay to play. Even if someone follows your brand, it is unlikely that they will see your video without ads that lead them to it. What I love about video ads is once someone has watched, let’s say 75% of your video, you can setup another ad to watch more of your videos. This is called retargeting. Your retargeting audience is your most important audience because they have shown interest in something you have posted. Someone might watch a few second or make a mistake and click on video and watch a few seconds but if they watch 75% or more, that shows some kind of interest in what your video is about. This is your big moment to share another video, and at some point, share a sales video or invite them to talk with a salesperson.
What are your competitors doing with video content and where is the opportunity for your brand to use regular video to stand out and increase sales?
For more details on why video is a vital component of your marketing campaign, check out this great infographic from Impactana.