Plenty of people end up over-complicating marketing videos. Be it from an over-ambitious brief trying to cram too much into one video or completely over-engineering the production value and blowing a year's budget on a single video that gets only a dozen views... The overarching tip to achieve video marketing success is SIMPLIFY and remember these three golden rules...
- LIGHTING: Make sure your shot is well-lit and using as natural a looking light as possible. Know what's best for 1-1 videos sent by email or 1-many videos on a landing page? Setting up so a window is behind your camera.
- SOUND: This is fundamental. People will put up with patchy visuals if what you're saying is adding value. But they don't put up with crap audio. Using the headset you use for calls or even your free handsfree kit you got with your phone will be infinitely better than relying on your laptop mic.
- LENGTH: Keep it under 2 minutes. Always. Unless it's something like a demo or presentation run-through that has to be longer, a 1-1 or 1-many marketing video should ALWAYS be under 2 minutes.
To be sure, what we're talking about here is these kinds of marketing videos:
- 1-many email videos (like a 1-1 video actually recorded for the individual, similar sort of content, but it's generic enough to send to many people on an individual basis)
- Page conversion videos (like what you see on our landing pages, these are simple, one-take, one-person videos explaining an offer or what to do on a page)
- Blog and how-to videos (often using screen recordings, these are videos that put the valuable content being explained as more important than fancy cuts, bedding music, cutaway shots and all the other juicy stuff in more polished videos)
Watch the video to see this explained and sign up below to get tips and tricks like this straight to your inbox every 2 weeks.
The VIDEO FIRST Newsletter #04 transcript:
Hi, welcome to the Video First Newsletter, again. And, this week, we're looking at three basic things that will help you raise the quality of your videos, make them more engaging to watch and therefore bring forward the success that you're aiming for by using 1 to 1 video messages.
And these three things relate to lighting, mic and audio quality, and the length of the video.
So, the first one is the simplest thing to solve and makes a massive difference. And that is using natural light from a window and making sure it's behind the camera. So I've set my laptop up on the window sill. There's a nice big window behind the camera out of shot. And that means the light is coming this way and not from behind because when it comes from behind, I'll end up in shadow and it looks like I'm, uh, in some sort of witness protection program or something, which I'm not.
Also the next thing is, mics. Audio is important.
People will forgive dodgy visuals a bit more, but it'll be hard to listen to bad audio. It's as simple as plug in a headset like this that you use for calls or even one from your mobile phone. You're free Apple headphones, for example, will have a brilliant mic. You don't need (for 1 to 1 messages) a big fancy, expensive podcast mic, for example, which is good but overkill for a video like this.
The next one around the sound is - I'm in the best lit room we've got and come in here because I know the sound is actually quite bad but just out of shot, I've got a bunch of cushions helping absorb all the sound from echoing around. But again,
they're out of shot and if I hadn't told you, you wouldn't have know that, but it helps increase the audio quality.
And then LASTLY; the length for 1 to 1 video messages...
If it's going to be longer than two minutes, gives people some warning with a short video, so I'm going to keep this under two minutes. That's the whole point of this newsletter. It's two minutes of video tips. I've got 15 seconds left. If I was going any longer, I'd give you a heads up.
So if there was a demo or something like that, I'd let you know that this was going to follow, but only in a short under two minute video, which is what this is.
So, I'll be back next time with more tips. Keep doing video. Bye bye.