I’ve been seeing a lot of bad video lately. Unintentionally bad video that either is unwatchable for technical reasons and/or is embarrassingly bad in its content and execution.
Marketers say Content is King and will overcome other deficits but they are talking about quality content . Not any old content you can slap up on the Internet fits the bill.
Even if your content rocks, online video is becoming more competitive in terms of production quality. (I’ve written about “production value” in the past) Big brands have come into the online video marketing arena in a bigger way and they are producing more Madison Avenue-Hollywood-TV-style content. That doesn’t mean smaller businesses and brands can’t compete creatively, but as the Internet becomes increasingly visual, the competition for viewers is heating up.
It kills me when well-meaning small business owners ask for my opinion of their latest video creation and it is so much less than it could have been.
Some of the fix-able problems:
- Poorly lit, poorly framed shots with too much camera movement – panning and zooming with no purpose.
- Presenters with low energy, a monotone voice, deer-in-the-headlines discomfort on-camera and what we call “prompter stare,” which means they never blink!
- Silly skits badly done by non-actors that insiders may love but that make the participants look foolish.
How are any of these video missteps, circulated widely and perhaps forever online, going to enhance your positioning as an expert?
Let’s face it, quality video production is not fast, easy or cheap. It takes time, effort and care to do it right. If you are doing a large project, producing an ongoing video series like a Web TV show or want to create complex and high-concept videos for training, etc., please work with professionals.
If professional production isn’t in your budget, you can still create good video for your business, but DIY is not push-button easy. Again you will want to invest time, effort and care. You can use affordable handy tools like smart phones and tablets to shoot effective videos. Look for simple software or online video services to get them edited and posted. Check fiverr.com to find people who will do short animated, sketch and other promotional videos for you.
- Keep your production simple requiring a minimum of editing
- Write a script or at least bullet points to focus your message – one idea each video
- Make short videos rather than an epic video (goes back to the editing costs)
- Get an inexpensive intro and outro done on fiverr or elsewhere to “brand” all your videos
My friend Jill Addison offers a Do It Yourself Video Package that will get you producing your own polished videos like a champ. Check it out here!
No question, video is a powerful tool for making a personal connection with viewers and online video marketing is an excellent way for small business owners to stand out from the crowd. It is possible to make engaging videos that don’t break the bank and speak to your target audience when you learn some tricks of the trade.
Don't let unwatchable video hurt your credibility.
What do you think? Please leave a comment.