We small business owners by now have come to realize the power of web video to promote their business and establish higher Google Page Rank (PR) and positioning. Yet we don’t want to carelessly put trashy videos on our websites, our social media profiles, or our video sites. Bad video won’t continue to rank high or help your site as much as it could if people are watching it and taking action on it. This article will cover two main categories of small business video– Promotional and Instructional, and the kinds of things you want to cover in your content creation for videos, or any other media you are using to communicate with the world. Get your small business videos up, get them watched, and get them producing results!
Promotional Small Business Video
Promotional small business video is where you are telling everyone who watches about you or your company. The trick is to tell them about you in a way that makes it about them. Tricky, tricky. During your entire creative preparation for the video content, keep asking yourself the question, “So why should prospects and customers care?”
The first thing small business owners may want to do with web video is to establish their USP, or Unique Selling Proposition. What can you do that others in your industry cannot? What makes you better? The viewer just Googled your industry and has hit your website. What can you tell her in this video that sends the absolute certain message that she look no further?
- Business FAQ – Competitive Advantage video messages can be done in the form of an expository Business FAQ, where the history of the business may briefly be related as it relates to the customer, and then answers a series of general questions (“Why should I do business with you?”) with specific answers that your competitors won’t provide (your patented technology, innovative story).
- Special Capabilities – If you can show something that others don’t have, like a patented software application, a factory process or anything else, video is a great way to get that message out.
- Video Press Release – Introduction of a new product or service can be done well using video if you have a tangible product to see in motion. For services it needs to be a talking head or Video Interview Press Release that enthusiastically conveys the emotion behind the new offering and how it impacts the lives of customers.
This comes only from other people recognizing you or relating information about the benefits others have achieved from using your service.
- Video Testimonials – Video testimonials are very powerful, especially if you have a customer who self-identifies that is representative of your target customer and who can carry himself reasonably well on video. These shouldn’t run more than 2 minutes and should cover the problem this customer had, what you did about it, the happy results, and a hearty endorsement.
- Case Studies – Similar to video testimonials except that they come from your perspective and outline the exact same things: problem, action, result. In general you can elaborate a bit more on the action and results, show data, charts or even layer in a video testimonial nested in the case study video. These can run a bit longer and I recommend 1 case study per video, but many companies put a series together. Your call.
- Recognition/Awards – If your company was recognized by local or national news media for business success or charitable giving, a video with a spokesperson introducing a clip from the public event works well in creating 3rd party credibility.
Top of Mind Brand
I am not a branding expert nor do I play one on TV, but brand awareness videos are essentially video commercials. These can overlap with competitive advantage and credibility videos, but what I mean here is more specialized that makes a much looser connection to actual goods and services. Think beer BudweiserLizards, Kia Hamsters or Geiko Geckos where a single message (save 15% on your car insurance) is tied to some humorous or memorable character. These type videos are for professional marketers and in most cases are designed to hit people where they live, work, and drive using conventional media. They’re ads. These get people to your website where you get into competitive advantage or credibility messages.
Instructional Small Business Video
It goes without saying that instructional small business video also establishes expertise and therefore, uniqueness and credibility. Full purpose instructional video has a much narrower focus designed to solve a specific challenge a viewer may have or raise his eyebrows with new information that may force a change or response in the way he does business.
These are you customer industry trends, not necessarily yours unless it impacts the customer. For instance, if you sell aviation fuel and the commodities market shows petroleum is poised to go through the roof, you relate that to customers who may want to hedge or change their buying patterns in anticipation of the shift.
New technology or world events that aren’t a trend but a breakthrough that will create a societal or business trend can be shared using video, capturing news clips, newspaper headlines or announcements from the paradigm shifter. As an example, Google + was recently released and got to the magic 25 million adopters faster than anything else in history. This is news, and social media mavens are rushing to develop service offerings to get people on Google + and benefit from it.
We’ve all seen how-to video from the millions there are on the internet. These are generally demonstrative and less talking head. They work well with online applications in the cloud where step by step, click on this and watch that processes are shown using screen capture software with a voice over. If you sell a product that needs instruction, these videos show people how to use your stuff and have taken the place of costly print instruction manuals. If you’re a consultant like me, you may be showing people a review of an application you have found that your customers can use, and these videos can be posted in your blog or in a downloadable or members only digital product that you sell. I’ve done this before for things like LinkedIn strategies and social media tools.
Whether your business purpose is promotional, instructional or a combination of both, the creation of solid, customer-focused video for your site will magnify your value in the marketplace and grow site visitors, engagement, and search engine rank.