Video is quickly outpacing still imagery in online content.
Following on the heels of YouTube’s success, the exponential growth of companies like Vimeo, Camtasia, and Movavi demonstrates the public’s voracious appetite for an online multimedia experience.
Find out why video has surpassed all other media in the marketing world, how your business can benefit from its successes and which professionals you should hire to make it happen.
What Was Wrong With Still Images?
There’s nothing inherently wrong with using still images to help convey your company’s message, and they continue to be heavily used in online content for both personal and commercial use. There will always be a place for images that add to the user’s visual encounter with any website.
Photographic images can act as evocative and powerful vehicles to help carry your site visitors through the buying stages. Quality photographic images, as used in marketing, remain the foundation of visual enticement.
Trends Follow Technology
One reason still imagery became so prevalent online is because, through technology, more people acquired the ability to capture life moments spontaneously. As tablet and phone manufacturers enhanced image capture capabilities through design and apps, users were able to easily take and upload high-res photos that used to be under the sole domain of professional photographers; all at faster speeds than ever before.
With the ubiquitous availability of photo editing software that enabled such enhancements as filters and digital exposure adjustments, ordinary people with zero prior photography education or experience could wind up with decent-looking images. As a result, the plethora of mediocre still images has saturated the Internet with a kind of visual pollution, which diminishes the attention-getting power of images.
Video is a Natural Evolution
When YouTube came on the scene, the public was delighted to have a new venue to share the amateur videos they could now record on their own mobile devices. Everyone from bored teens to ambitious businesspeople to frustrated creatives are using YouTube to make money, share knowledge, show off, or get their homemade movies in front of the world.
As Bill Horneck, Executive Producer for SFL Productions in Boynton Beach, Florida, puts it, “If a picture paints a thousand words, how much more a video can communicate.” The desensitization that resulted from over exposure to still images can be eradicated with the transition to video.
Video as a Marketing Tool
Video is the most powerful marketing tool being utilized now. People respond to the encapsulated storytelling modality of video on news and entertainment sites, as well as e-commerce sites of all kinds. Video can be used to convey corporate culture, introduce a new product, and even as a reputation management tool. And it works.
For example, the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is still in the minds of most Americans. For a long while, drivers avoided filling up at BP stations to show their disdain for environmentally adverse corporations, and their gas stations fell vacant. If you go to the BP website today, front and center is a large, warm and fuzzy video displaying their ongoing commitment to the cleanup project. If you visit a BP gas station today, you’ll have to wait in line to fill up.
Video can communicate complex and positive ideas about your company in a fraction of the time it would take to create and publish a white paper that no one wants to plough through. Video marketing provides a voice for your company, using visual and auditory cues that stimulate human senses in the same way that a blockbuster movie does at the theatre. “At its essence,” Bill Horneck says, “all video is about storytelling.”
Video Marketing From a Producer’s Perspective
Horneck knows what he’s talking about. He’s been designing and producing commercial videos for companies and organizations for over 25 years. Some of his clients include the NBA, MTV, Sprint and the Miami Dolphins. “It takes a very talented producer to go into an office building filled with busy top level executives; you have to bring some sensibilities to the table.” Horneck adds, “An experienced video producer who has been there and done it can take control; corral the collective vision of the organization and dial it into something focused and meaningful for the target audience.” So what advice does this award-winning video producer have for marketers who want to incorporate a video strategy?
1. Choose an Experienced Video Producer
Your adorable nephew might have a brand spanking new video camera and a pocketful of enthusiasm, but experience trumps all. Invest in a video producer who has specific experience in your industry. “You want to hire someone who innately understands your product or service; who can align the project with your vision. That only comes organically from experience,” Horneck explains.
2. Check References Personally
“Unfortunately,” says Horneck, “it’s easier than ever to steal someone’s work off the Internet and claim it as your own. You first want to confirm that they did the work they claim they did. But you also want to ask about the process.” Horneck continues, “What was it like to work with this producer? Did they finish on time? On budget? You should be able to get straightforward answers in person or on the phone from previous clients.”
Related Article: How to Use Video Marketing to Promote Your Small Business
3. Be Sure They Have Access to Appropriate Studio Space
“Even some so-called professional video producers don’t have access to good studio space,” says Horneck. “You want to hire someone who will be able to work on your project in a proper studio to produce high-end product. This includes good acoustics, green screen capability, lack of distractions and good light quality. Otherwise, you’ll receive an inferior product that will scream amateur.
Everyone has certainly seen bad examples of video marketing efforts, either on television or a company website. The specific differences between quality video production and cheap, low-quality video may be hard to put your finger on, however. That’s where a professional video producer helps immensely. Don’t cut corners on your video marketing campaign. When it’s done correctly, you’ll have an effective marketing tool you’ll be able to use for years to come.