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We all know product photography is important, but a video can help bring online shoppers even closer to the in-person experience. A video helps in communicating details about a product and sets the proper expectations of your product or service so that you may never disappoint. Video can also help increase brand awareness, conversion rates, and even customer satisfaction.
To help get you and your store ready for your big screen debut, we recently assembled a panel of client experts to share their tips, tricks and experience for creating product videos and making sure they help you convert customers. Henry Maia from Mineral Tiles, Trevor Theismann from KBands Training and Adam Teague from Two Guys Bow Ties have been through the video rodeo, so listen up to save yourself time and money!
How do I figure out what kind of video I want to make?
Define your goals
One of the toughest steps in starting a video project is deciding what kind of video to make. For Adam from Two Guys Bow Ties, it was some good old fashioned strategy. He likes to sit down and figure out what message they want to portray.
When it comes time for you to make your video, ask yourself the following questions for potential goals behind the videos:
- Are trying to introducing yourself, your business, your products?
- Are you making a video to communicate a news announcement about your business?
- Are you trying to show the process behind making your product?
- Are you creating a tutorial or “how-to” video or video series?
- Are you answering your client’s common questions about a product or service?
- Are you getting your clients more information about the product or service?
- Or just answer the question, “Why the heck are you making this video?” in your own words
Listen to your customers
Henry from Mineral Tiles took full advantage of of the fact that his customers were literally telling him exactly what they wanted and needed. Henry sells mosaic tiles for things like backsplashes and pools. Since his customers are making decisions for things that will be around for a long time, they have a lot of questions like, “What is the texture?”; “What does the finish look like under a lot of light?”; or “What is the thickness?” In fact, his first video sprang serendipitously out of a customer conversation:
“One day I just grabbed my iPhone and shot a little video just moving the tile in natural light to show them what it would look like and the customer was wowed’ and purchased!”
Henry simply gave his customers the in-person experience they were seeking. It’s a great reminder that all online shoppers are looking for the exact same level of confidence when shopping online.
When making your own videos, you may want to try just listening to your customers. They will help in leading towards success.
WATCH: Henry Maia from Mineral Tiles gives tips for online video
Educate your audience
Because they have a unique product, Trevor from KBand Training wanted to be sure his customers knew exactly how to use it properly. This not only helps his customers get the results they want, but it also keeps them from getting injured.
Creating demonstration videos is a great way to build loyalty and grow your fanbase. It makes your customer feel like you’ll take care of them. They’ll also want to share your educational resource naturally with those they care about.
How do I bring my vision to life?
After you’ve decided what you want your video to say, you have to determine how to say it. To figure out the right way to showcase their niche product and industry, Adam from Two Guys Bow Ties stressed the importance of research. Tapping into the Internet, Two Guys gathered examples of brands they loved that had similar messaging or products, examining the overall look and feel of the video. For Adam, that included anything with a handcrafted feel:
“We live in a day where everything is mass produced. Products are typically made overseas or made in a big factory and we really wanted to show that our products are hand-made. So, that old-school craftsmanship, that workman-ship, that was what our video is trying to portray.”
Adam also studied what was included in the frame and how the camera moved, particularly whether they pulled focus or seem to put the camera on a slide. He feels these things play a large role in in indicating mood, evoking an emotion and just making things that could be seen as boring look good.
WATCH: Adam Teague from Two Guys Bow Ties talks about shooting online video
How do I DIY my videos on a limited budget?
Making your own videos doesn’t always have to have a high price tag. Trevor from KBands Training films all of his videos—and his clients love them. His first films were shot on his iPhone and edited in iMovie, an easy-to-use and affordable app. As the videos became more popular, the Kbands team upgraded:
“Overtime it kind of got a little more sophisticated. We’ve gotten more camera and are learning how to edit but more or less it’s all about creating videos to showcase you products. It’s very important to give that visual aspect of things that move.”
As you are getting started, you don’t need to spend heaps of mulah. Get a feel for shooting and editing first. This will help you in uncovering your style which will in turn help you purchase the gear that you need down the road.
And if you have a goal like Trevor’s, to educate your audience, you can sacrifice quality a little. Your clients are going to appreciate that you’re looking out for them, even if it might not look as good as it could.
WATCH: Trevor Theismann discusses how KBands Training does online video
I want to hire a professional videographer. What do I do?
At some point, you may need to close your eyes and let your vidographer take the reins. Here are the steps you should be sure to take so that you can get what you want and need out of your videographer:
- Find someone you dig. It could be a student at your local college of friend, a Craigslist poster, or a professional you seek out based in your area.
- Review their portfolio. The very first thing is to take a look at their portfolio. Is it high enough quality? Have they done a similar project? Have they done anything that is close to the branding you are looking for? If not, move on.
- Communicate your vision. Remember all that research and strategy you did? Show your videographer your inspiration and goals. Put together your own mood board and help them visualize that plan with examples (images, videos, color swatches, etc.).
- Let go…sometimes. The creation process includes a lot of give and take. It’s your vision, but you do want to be involved in the process of creating the video. And be OK with letting go sometimes.
- Cut corners (carefully). You hired someone, so discuss your options. For instance, Adam from Two Guys discovered that not having voiceover (a narrative track) saved him a ton of money. Watching the video, below, you can see that the video remains quite powerful and still communicates their initial goals. This may not work for your situation but ask questions and stay involved in the process.
For Adam, the video shooting process was totally collaborative:
“We knew our product and our vision but this is also what they do! So, that means it’s a give and take. We sat down and asked, ‘here are the things that we would like to show what are the things that we missed or we don’t see that you think wow that would be cool to see in a video?’ They understand looking through the lens.”
Don’t forget to market your video!
A lot of folks think that just putting the video up on their website is all it takes—but if you want your video to be seen, you have to market your video. After all that hard work be honored to share it via any and all social media avenues you have working for your business. Also, if you have not done so already, you should set up a youtube channel for yourself or your business. That will ensure all of your videos can be discovered in a central location.
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