Updated: May 5, 2020
Potential customers online have a lot of choices when it comes to pet products and services, so it’s important to stand out. Often, they are searching for options online and comparing your services to your competitors. Creating a video allows you to quickly establish an emotional connection with your audience and is memorable, more than just pictures and text on a website.
1. Focus on Your Target Audience
Don’t worry about creating a video and trying to get millions of views. In fact, the likelihood of that is incredibly low and also doesn’t help your business. You don’t want to create a video getting millions of views by people around the world, you just want to aim for creating video content that will engage viewers who are likely to become your clients or customers. In the end, that’s how you bring in more business and make more money!
2. What’s Your Topic?
How you want to get your message to your viewer depends on what form of storytelling you choose to communicate your message. Here are some popular formats:
Company profile: A showcase of who you are and why you’re great. Simple, straightforward, and emotionally connects with your online audience more than just photos and words on a website. This is memorable and helps your business stand out from competitors.
Customer testimonial: Your customers describe their experience with your company in their own words. It’s the herd effect, a potential customer who watches this video feels like ‘well if everyone else loves this business, they must be pretty good.’ This can help combat a negative online review as one ugly message doesn’t compete against the power of a rave customer video. It’s especially effective if you can get multiple customers in the same video back-to-back. Ideally aim for three or more in a video sharing snippets of what they love about you.
Product Demonstration: Show how great a specific product is, how it works, and the features and benefits. It should answer common customer service questions and any assembly required. As an added benefit, research has shown that a video demonstrating how to use a product reduces the return rates of the product. This means happier customers and a happier bottom line!
3. Choose A Format: DIY or Pro
As technology has evolved in recent years, the barriers to creating online video have come down significantly. Anyone with a smartphone can create video content. But, that doesn’t always mean you should. A good rule of thumb is that informal videos that you create yourself on a smart phone or tablet are best for sharing on social media channels, like your Facebook page, and YouTube. Video posted to your website should be more professional and mirror the professionalism of your website.
4. Keep to a Budget
So even if you need a Pro, this doesn’t mean you need to spend lots of money on a whole video crew. Look around for a film student who’s home for the summer and is handy with a video camera and basic editing. A small budget of under $500 can likely incentivize a student looking to make some cash and get some practice in their field.
And if you’re going to tackle a video and film it yourself, set aside an amount of time that you determine makes sense. You can capture great video content on a smartphone in 30 seconds, but you should plan it out for at least 15 minutes ahead of time. Figure out what you want to film, the camera operator (recommend steady hands!), what’s the best angle, and what you want to feature. And don’t forget to pay attention to background noise, avoid ambulances and train noises that can interfere with the audio recording portion.
5. Length = Keep it short
Research has shown that most people start to tune out after just 30 seconds. You’re competing online with cute kitten videos, an attractive professional ad on the corner of the page for something they looked at earlier, and if they’re watching it on their phone, text messages popping up.
So aim to keep your video short and sweet, and no more than two minutes long (or shorter if you can!) Even the most engaged and interested potential customer will rarely watch anything longer. And you don’t want someone to leave your video and only getting half of your message. So focus on getting your message across quickly, avoid a lengthy introduction, and just dive right into the good stuff that they want to see.
6. Privacy Concerns
Remember that this video is going to be seen by anyone online so don’t forget common sense. Avoid filming anything personal like someone’s address, or people’s faces in the background who were filmed without permission.
Once you get started and create a video and it’s successful, this is the perfect time to create more. If your audience loved the first one, build upon that momentum! It’s easy to post a simple video that you made on your smartphone to your Facebook page, once a month or once a week if you’re really ambitious.
And the more you do it the better you will get. Happy filming!
Did you create a video that you’re especially proud of? Why did it stand out? What are problems you encountered and how did you resolve it? Or what questions came up that you’d like answered and need expert advice? Share your positive or negative experience with us or ask a question.
We’ll answer the top questions and get more expert advice to include in future articles.