The following is a guest post by Meryl Ayres, a writer and editor at Wistia.
As soon as you begin making videos for your website, you may find yourself relating to the Pringles slogan: “Once you pop, the fun don’t stop.”
Videos can help you increase conversion rates, educate your employees and customers, and scale your sales efforts. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
At the most elementary level, videos allow you to communicate messages in compelling ways, and who doesn’t want to do that?
If you’ve never made a video for your website, there’s no better time to tackle this hurdle than now.
The reality is, if you don’t do it, your competitor probably will. That wasn’t meant to sound scary. Purely motivational. Did it work?
The added bonus is that the experience of making your first video is often a rewarding team-building activity. Unless of course you’re a party of one, in which case, you’ll learn a lot about yourself!
Whether you just boarded the video train or you’re barreling down the track, it’s always beneficial to fuel the engine with some creative coal.
The following list contains four videos that are low risk and relatively simple to produce. Quiet on the set – we're rolling!
1. The support video
Do you find yourself answering the same question(s) from your customers again and again?
Are there aspects of your product or service that could use some extra explanation?
Often times, a crystal-clear screencast guiding your customer through a multi-step process can go a long way. Check out this helpful example from MailChimp.
A screencast with a voice-over is about as low pressure as you can get, and the editing for this kind of project is relatively minimal. If you’re feeling gung-ho about creating a simple video, check out this little ditty about one of our favorite screencasting tools or learn how to shoot video on your smartphone.
2. The customer testimonial video
How many times have you bought something because someone else recommended it? Heck, I just ordered basil fried rice for lunch solely because two of my coworkers gave it rave reviews, and I’m not one for playing games with lunch orders.
Including a customer testimonial video on your business’s website can boost your credibility and generate excitement around your product. Sure, those written endorsements won’t hurt your sales efforts, but a video of a real person delivering genuine compliments about your product is far more effective.
I chalk it up to good ol’ human nature! Text can’t make eye contact.
I think we can all admit that we feel warm and fuzzy inside when we receive positive feedback from our customers, and we should! With video, you can harness some of that contagious enthusiasm and transform it into engaging moving pictures that will usher in more business.
You could probably guess that this production process requires no scripting or “acting.” Here are a few video testimonial tips from a blog post we researched a while back:
Ask people to participate! It'll probably be easier than you think.
Before the interview, give them an idea of what you'll be covering, but not your specific questions.
Shoot your testimonial in the other person's workspace if possible. If not, don't worry - a generic testimonial is better than no testimonial.
During the interview, focus on having a conversation. You can always edit that conversation later!
Use your testimonials on your website to convey credibility to prospects, but also as an internal motivator or feedback mechanism.
Use the analytics from your testimonials to improve them, whether through a new shoot or a re-edit.
3. The employee onboarding video
Take a moment and think about the amount of time it takes to introduce a new employee to different aspects of your workplace. Obviously it is important to deliver some messages to new hires in person, but concise videos can help you wrap up other concepts and offer a conveniently accessible reference.
At Wistia, we’ve made videos about everything from the CEO’s background to where to find useful tools in the office kitchen. These videos save our current employees some time and serve as tangible pieces of the company’s history as it evolves.
With an internal project like this, there is no need to use a fancy camera or spend copious amounts of time editing and polishing. You can think of it as a dress rehearsal, a space to experiment and work out your kinks.
Did somebody say banana costumes?
4. The blog video
The marriage of video and text on a blog can be a beautiful thing. Videos break up streams of text and create visually dynamic content that attracts readers to the page and keeps them engaged. You can take that age-old mantra, “show not tell,” to the next level, convey your brand personality, or just form a more human connection with your audience, all with video!
You can spend less time poring over a blog video than one on your front page. Blog videos most often function as supplementary and complementary pieces—in conversation with the text on the page—so they don’t necessarily have to include all of the elements required in a more self-contained video.