Video is an increasingly popular tool for communications and marketing, especially in the legal and ediscovery industries. We sat down with our own Irasema Jeffers and with Jeff Breuer, CEO of Melonball Collective, a full service video production company, to talk best practices for creating and leveraging video content to engage with customers.
You can view the full video or read a condensed version in the transcript below.
JEFF, YOU’RE OUR GO-TO PERSON FOR VIDEO PRODUCTION. WHY DO YOU LOVE VIDEO SO MUCH?
Well, I’ve been working in video for a long, long time – everything from TV commercials and marketing videos to training programs and animation. And I’ll tell you, my two favorite reasons to use video are number one, its storytelling abilities, and number two, its ability to create personal relationships. Video lets you connect with your audience in a way that’s very personal, which is really cool.
That said, it can be tough to get started – so if you’re feeling a little bit intimidated, bear in mind that it doesn’t matter whether you’re shooting with a $100,000 video rig or the cell phone in your pocket. At the end of the day, it all just comes down to the messaging. Forget about “doing it right.” Concentrate on being genuine and speaking to your core values, and everything else will just sort of come out of that.
IRASEMA, WHAT KINDS OF VIDEOS DO YOU SEE AUDIENCES ENGAGING WITH?
From my perspective, if you’re B2B and you’re going to dive into a video content strategy, there are three types of videos that you should produce. One, videos that highlight your products and services; two, customer testimonials; and three, video with unique content and educational value.
For the most part, B2B companies will see customer testimonials outperforming other topics for both reach and engagement, but it also happens to be one of the hardest types of video to do because of the time and effort it takes to get those customers together, get the video crew to go out and film them, and then handle all the editing and production work.
The second most engaging video is typically the one that offers educational value or features a unique topic. And the third most engaging is the piece that features your products and services. That can be hard to hear, because most companies really want to talk about their products, but you need to think about going after the ones that are going to create the engagement first.
WHAT ABOUT PERSONAL VIDEOS? THEY’RE ALL OVER THE PLACE ON LINKEDIN. HOW DO YOU THINK THEY FIT INTO THE OVERALL STRATEGY, JEFF?
The little videos that you see on LinkedIn are really great because it creates a unique connection between you and your audience. They have a lot of personality – your personality – in them. And that’s why really it’s good to practice a little bit so that your personality can really come through.
My two big suggestions are to dress the part – think about how you want to present yourself – and also to consider giving your production value a little bit of attention. Even if you’re shooting it on your phone, purchase a little light or a little microphone, like a lapel mic or a little shotgun mic. Minimal equipment can really go a long, long way for you. And if you don’t have those things, work with what you do have. Put the microphone somewhat close to you, position a lamp in front of you so you get nice exposure to your face, and make sure your background isn’t all messy. With a little prep, you can be sure you’re still presenting a polished, professional image.
DO VIDEOS REALLY HELP BUSINESSES GROW? IRASEMA, WHAT’S YOUR TAKE?
There’s this saying: “Content is king.” It comes from a statement Bill Gates made when he was at Microsoft. And I think that’s definitely relevant, especially today. But the spin I like to put on it is that if content is king, video is most definitely the queen.
You need a variety of digital content types to help grow your company: blogs, email campaigns, an active presence on social media. And then you have the slicks that you produce, the case studies and articles. And video is a great way to augment those things. So for example, if you have a wonderful case study, turn that into a video, or if you have an article that did really well, turn it into a vlog where somebody talks about it. Video can be a powerful lever to promote new content, for sure, but it’s also great for getting more traction from your existing content, and it’s really effective for growing your business because it’s going to generate traffic. Plus, it’s ridiculously great for SEO.
JEFF, WHAT TIPS CAN YOU GIVE US TO HELP PEOPLE GET GREAT VIDEO PRODUCTION ON A BUDGET?
The ROI for your video is going to be strongly tied to your plan for creating that content and then delivering it. I always encourage clients to map out a plan ahead of time, and really put a lot of thought into it. Set up a calendar to track when you’re going to make these videos, and how frequently you want to share them. Think about what you want the call to action to be – what are you trying to get viewers to do? Make sure that it’s clear, and that the viewer has an easy way of doing it.
And finally, I always encourage people to make informed decisions based on the data. As you finish the first wave of your videos, and you think about the second wave, take a look at the data that you’ve collected. Maybe you learn that people engaged more with some topics than with others, so in the second wave of videos, you’ll want to switch out the topics that didn’t as well.
GREAT TIPS AND INFO, GUYS. SEMA? FINAL THOUGHTS?
Well, clearly the world is going to continue to move forward with video. In fact, it wouldn’t surprise me if pretty soon, we find ourselves marketing with holograms. So I say embrace it. Know that you can do it and that it’s going to be good for your business. The second thing, which I think is sort of unique to the legal world, is the number of events that are held. Happy hours, regional meetups, conferences, trainings – you name it. Even though you’re distancing or working from home, you can still capture those discussions by recording your Zoom meeting. And those are great opportunities to grab a customer testimonial or connect with somebody from the company to discuss a topic.
Finally, I think it’s important to remember that if you’re going to do this, or if you’re going to ask your marketing or sales person to do this, don’t expect perfection overnight. Give them – or yourself – some help and some resources, whether that’s hiring a producer, buying a camera, or getting some lighting and microphones, as Jeff mentioned. Make sure that you do everything you can to set yourself up for success.
That’s a great note to end on. Thanks, guys.
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