Other than a physical visit to your location, no other marketing medium is more helpful to customers than a concise video profile of your business. In an ideal world, every business would have a video overview to better help customers find the business best-suited to their needs. When you, the business owner, hire a videographer to produce a video for your business, don’t make the mistake of producing something half-cocked. Make sure you put in the effort and do your part. When you collaborate with your videographer the right way, your added effort can substantially reduce billable time and improve video quality. Here are 10 hacks to enable you, the business owner, to efficiently add value to the production process.
- Start by reviewing other videos in your industry for ideas. Make a note of certain shots and sentences that connect with you as you are reviewing. By presenting your newly-hired videographer with example videos you like you are more clearly communicating what you want. This will reduce needed revisions and help insure that you are happy with the end product. To get an idea of the types of videos I am referring to, you can review dozens of videos by industry on Biveo.com here: https://biveo.com/video-directory
- Shoot some of the video yourself! Well before your shoot date, get in the habit of capturing highlight moments of your business on your smartphone. Highlight moments that add the most value to video are most often shots of your business busy with customers, shots of your employees performing work, or before and after shots of your workmanship. Sometimes it’s not practical to have a videographer visit at different times and/or different locations or to hire actors to play customers. These hard-to-time B-roll shots do not require sound collection so a smartphone can work great so long as you have a steady hand. You could collect as many as a dozen of these 5 to 10 second eye-level pans or stills as only a few seconds of each will be used.
- Create your own script. Many videographers use interview questions to capture natural-toned background narration, but if you can mimic this natural tone from a script, this is a better way to produce a controlled, concise and compelling narrative. Develop a script by jotting down selling points about your business as they come to you. When you hear something compelling in other videos, add it to your list. You can also pull ideas from your industry’s script template here: https://biveo.com/step/narration/auto-repair.
- Refine your speaking delivery before the shoot. You can save billable minutes and improve the quality of your narration if you get your delivery down before the shoot. Having a great speaking tone is tricky because it requires you to be relaxed and have high energy at the same time. Most people’s first attempt will come across as flat. Record yourself on your smartphone then watch it back to see how your voice comes across on video. Seeing yourself on video is key to nailing the tone. Your second attempt might have the right energy, but come across as overly confident or trying too hard to show humility. By your third attempt you should have found an ideal tone that is inviting to customers. https://biveo.com/step/narration
- If appropriate, try to include multiple speakers in your video as opposed to just one. If your business isn’t a solo operation and has multiple personnel, consider asking your employees to participate in the video. Videos with multiple speakers adding short blurbs can help make your business feel larger and more established to customers.
- Get customer feedback. Show your friends and/or trusted customers some of the example videos you have found. Ask them what aspects of those videos compels them and also what a video could say to inspire them to become customers.
- Ensure your video opens with a bird’s eye view of your business. If you have the type of business where customers visit your location (i.e. a brick and mortar store or shop), then the opening scene of your video should ideally be a distant shot of the building and its surroundings. This will help viewers recognize your business when traveling to it. If you instead have a business without a building that travels to customer locations (i.e. a home contractor, exterminator, landscaper, etc.), open with a shot of your company vehicle and crew arriving on site and getting to work.
- Choose a videographer you feel comfortable working with for a long time. Your business will evolve as the months and years go by. Therefore your video should evolve as well. Continue capturing 5-10 second highlights on your smartphone and jot down new features and selling points as you think of them. New and improved videos down the road can more easily be revisions to your existing video rather than starting from scratch.
- Keep the video concise and authentic. Avoid using stock footage, actors and photo slide shows. Try to include as much of the flattering, substantive aspects of your business as you can (such as before and after examples of work, buildings, equipment, vehicles, staff). Keep it between 30 seconds and 2 minutes. If your video is over 1 minute, pack your most substantive, compelling and attention-grabbing info in the first 30 seconds. Take that same concept even further by making your first 5 seconds your best attention grabber.
- Choose a videographer specialized in producing marketing videos. Try to avoid hiring your neighbor’s friend who only has experience shooting weddings or music videos. Try to choose a videographer who both has experience making the type of video you want and has good examples videos in his/her portfolio. Sites like Biveo.com feature a national directory of video producers that specialize in producing business videos.
For script templates and interview questions specific to industry, visit https://biveo.com/step/narration
The process for producing a small business marketing video is being improved and streamlined by a startup of 700 business videographers called Biveo. What might take over 20 hours for an amateur can be done in about 12 your first time, or by a pro in about 5 hours, and be of better, more professional quality.