ANSWERS TO THE 3 MOST COMMON OBJECTIONS
-Humans are visual creatures, processing information based on what we see.
-And 65 percent of us are visual learners, according to the Social Science Research Network.
-So why don’t companies produce more video?
According to Animato’s 2018 State of Social Video: Consumer Trends report, the top three reasons companies don’t produce more video are: (1) video creation is too time-consuming, (2) video tools and software are too complicated, and (3) video is beyond their budget.
Let’s define video as information presented and viewed in a video format. A video could be an animation, a series of still shots with overlaid text, or a talking head. You don’t even really need sound. Now, let’s address the barriers to using video.
Local TV stations livestream updates and teasers for the evening news on Facebook. Realtors livestream new listings. I’m sure that somewhere, savvy restaurant owners are livestreaming the dinner specials. One wood finisher I know livestreams updates on his custom flooring and restoration projects, demonstrating techniques and job progress. Even if you don’t livestream, you can use your phone to record tips and tricks, instructional videos, or product demonstrations, and post them on your YouTube channel.
Screen recording is another option, especially for events you’re already hosting like webinars, online meetings, or courses. Let’s say you have a new website feature for customers. You can walk them through it by simply recording what’s on your computer screen and recording your voice explaining what they’re seeing. Of course, you could also record a “talking head” introduction and/or conclusion to make it more personal.
Some useful apps for screen recording are Bandicam, CamStudio, Capture, Camtasia, EZVid, Free Screen Video Recorder, IceCream, Jing, Loom, Movavi, Snagit, SRecorder, and TinyTake, to name a few. Pro Tip: to find more options for any app, search “apps similar to” or “competitors of.”
Most teleconferencing apps like Skype and GoToMeeting also offer a recording feature. With PowerPoint, you can directly record video, slides, and audio, then upload to any social media platform or your website.
Video tools and software are too complicated
Not ready to take on custom production? Try one of these easy-to-use video creation tools. There are several apps available with a library of images, photos, videos, and text options. Most platforms allow you to start from scratch using your own or their library of included photos and videos. And almost all of them provide drag-and-drop templates.
Here are some tools you can use to create quick explainer videos, product features, and announcements.
• Biteable.com – use clips to create custom videos from scratch or use templates, including templates for creating social media ads using video.
• Promo by Slidely – try this easy-to-use video creator with customizable templates and video clips.
• Powtoon – choose from preformatted templates and fill in the blanks to create animated videos.
• Raw Shorts – use artificial intelligence to transform text into animated videos or start from a blank slate.
• Vyond – adapt their pre-existing animated stories with dynamic charts, graphs, and transitions.
• Wideo – try your hand at creating animated videos with their free, seven-day trial.
• Wochit – check this out if you produce several videos per day; pricing is available on request.
Several of these tools include audio tracks and the ability to customize the colors, photos, background music, and font sizes and styles.
Choose an app or platform and start playing. To determine which one is best for you, visit the website and look at samples, check sites like G2Crowd for unbiased reviews, and read comments by actual users. Many options offer a free trial period, so you can log in and start playing immediately. Even if you choose a paid option, most platforms don’t require a long-term contract. That’s one of the benefits of software as a service.
Once you’re comfortable with these “starter” apps, you may want to graduate to a more sophisticated program like Adobe Premiere, Avid Media Composer, Filmora, Final Cut, iMovie, or Windows Movie Maker.
Video is beyond our budget
The video platforms mentioned in the previous section are relatively inexpensive; many offer free basic subscriptions. Paid options start as low as $19 per month. But you have other options.
Hire a local freelancer. Check with your local university, community college, or high school for production clubs or students who take on projects for class credit or extra cash.
Browse online marketplaces. Fiverr is perhaps the best-known site for hiring freelancers for graphic design, animation, voiceovers, and of course, video production for as little as $5. Other alternatives are crowdSPRING, DesignCrowd, Freelancer, Gigbucks (which caps projects at $50), Guru, Microworkers, PeoplePerHour, Upwork, or Work Market.
No matter where you look, consider these guidelines for working with freelancers.
• Look at examples of their work and read reviews from clients. Read their terms and ask a lot of questions about deliverables and costs.
• Start with a small project. See if you work well together and if you’re comfortable with the process.
• When assigning a project, provide background about your target audience, goal, and strategy, so he or she knows what you’re trying to accomplish.
• Communicate clearly about your deadlines and expectations. Put it in writing.
• Be upfront about your preferences – show samples of pieces you like. Discuss what key points, photos, or images you’ll provide.
• Outline the project parameters including style, length, and format.
Those companies with a more generous budget might consider working with a professional video production company or videographer and editor. Companies like Gisteo, Explainify, and Video Explainers will produce explainer videos for a fee. Also, local television stations and cable companies sometimes offer video production for fee, without requiring a media buy.
Still not convinced?
Video is growing in popularity. Depending on which study you read, by 2020, video will account for somewhere between 75 to 85 percent of the United States’ mobile data traffic. (Sources include Cisco and Entrepreneur.) Also, according to the Cisco study, by 2020, online videos will make up more than 80 percent of all consumer internet traffic (85 percent in the U.S.).
MORE MARKETERS ARE USING VIDEO
Social Media Examiner claims 76 percent of marketers plan to increase their use of YouTube and video marketing.
CUSTOMERS PREFER VIDEO, ESPECIALLY WHEN LEARNING ABOUT NEW PRODUCTS
According to Hubspot, 72 percent of customers would rather learn about a product or service by way of video. And video increases comprehension. Viewers retain 95 percent of a message when they watch it in a video, compared to 10 percent when reading it in text, according to Forbes.
EVEN EXECUTIVES PREFER VIDEO
Half of executives will look for more information after seeing a product/service in a video, and 59 percent of executives would rather watch a video than read text, also according to Forbes.
If you’re not using video, it’s time to start. Grab your phone and livestream; or try the apps listed. Post your videos on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Embed them in emails and put them on your website. Then track your views and responses to gauge effectiveness.
Katrina Olson is a marketing consultant, trainer, writer, and principal of Katrina Olson Marketing + Training. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.