As we’ve discussed previously on the WebDetail blog, there are lots of signs that go to prove that video marketing is the future of online marketing. Many brands are moving their messaging away from blogs and articles to video.
The same bullet points and stories that are typically told through text are much more efficiently told through video, where viewers can not only get a more personal presentation, but also a more lively look at a brand that virtually puts them on location.
However, videos are not something that can simply be thrown together in the space of an afternoon. There are lots of key points to keep in mind when planning, shooting, and editing a video for the web.
With that in mind, we’ve highlighted three key points for optimizing your web video below.
Length and Editing
It may be tempted to cram as much as you can into your video, using as much length as you can to describe your product and services. The trick is, attention spans online are notoriously short. If someone is scrolling through a social media feed, you may only a have precious few seconds to garner attention.
The time of your viewer is valuable, so you don’t want to take up too much of it. Generally speaking, somewhere between two and three minutes is ideal. If you’re asking your viewer to spend much more time on a video, you might as well be asking them to watch all three Lord of the Rings movies in a row.
Two to three minutes is more than enough time to get across the vibe of your brand, tell a story, and present a call to action. One of our favorite recent projects at WebDetail was editing down a full triathlon to a short video. Making the cuts to present the story of We Run Huntsville was a fun challenge in which edits were key.
Speaking of telling stories, an important question to ask yourself when editing a video together is what’s the message that you’re trying to get across in your video?
Perhaps it’s just giving the viewer a basic elevator pitch for your service. Maybe it’s telling the story of a project you’ve been working on. It might be giving your customers a backstage exclusive look at what happens behind the scenes.
Knowing the story and messaging that you want to present is key, both during editing and before shooting. You need to have a basic storyboard in mind, either on paper or in your head. This way, you’ll know the shots that you’ll have to get, and will be able to improvise on the fly during the shoot.
Having a specific look and message was a big part of what we had in mind for Yoshi Sushi Fusion, our favorite sushi restaurant in Madison County. Irwanto Fnu owns and runs the restaurant, and is a fun guy that really knows his stuff. We let him tell the story of how he prepares his dishes, cut with shots that support his messaging.
Call to Action
What is it that you want your video to accomplish? What type of action would you like viewers to take after viewing it? These are key questions to ask as you make edits and cuts to your video.
If you’re selling a product or service, give the viewer a way to quickly follow up and order or contact for more information. An embed of your video on Facebook can have a URL in the text accompanying it. If your video is on YouTube, you can embed a link directly within the video that takes the viewer to a landing page on your site.
If the purpose is just for branding and there is no specific product to buy or action to be taken, you still want to give the viewer a place to follow up and learn more. Insert a lower third graphic into the end of your video that displays your URL or Facebook page. The way that a viewer gathers information shouldn’t end when your video does.
A call to action was key in a recent video that we produced for the local non-profit innovation center New Leaf Digital. The video presented a recap of a charity hackathon, but also funneled viewers into learning more about the organization through an explanation and URL displayed at the end of the clip.
Video marketing can be a lot of work, but the workflow becomes much more natural and efficient with practice. Web video production has become one of our popular services at WebDetail, with many shoots being planned well in advance. If video marketing is on your horizon, we’d love to get you on our schedule as well.