The Elements of a Great Small Business Video

There are so many things you can do to make your business and non-profit videos excellent, but if you make sure to do these top three things, you’ll have the greatest chance of being the most effective.

Film with a Purpose

In just about every marketing article I’ve ever read, they talk about “knowing your audience,” so I’ll assume you already know that fact and take it a step further. When creating a video, you want to think about what your purpose is for creating it and what your audience needs to see and hear.

Courtesy: The Greater BCC Chamber of Commerce

Ask yourself the following before filming:

  • Who is my audience and what do they need to know?
  • How do I want them to feel when watching this video?
  • What do I want them to do after they watch it?

When you can crystallize your motivation for creating a video, you will be well on your way to excellence.

My favorite viewer comment from a recent video we created for Cozywoggle, the inventors of the car seat friendly coat, came from a pregnant colleague, due with her third child. “I loved that video!” she said. “I had no idea about the issue of winter coats and car seats!”

We knew a key factor in getting target prospects to sit up and take notice of this coat was bringing out the danger of what happens when children wear regular winter coats in the car. We wanted them to feel concerned with what they were currently using for their children. So we put this information right at the beginning of the video – and it worked. Thus, filming with a purpose.

Create Memorable Content

You want your video content to be memorable. Notice I didn’t say “viral” – just memorable. You want to give someone a “Wow” or “A-ha” moment when they watch your video. Give them an “I never knew that” excitement or get them to feel something emotionally.

Try to use video for what it does best – showing something visually and sharing emotions. First-person narrative interviews are a great way to get at emotions. A third-person voice-over is usually not going to do that, but maybe the voiceover is paired with excellent motion graphics and music sharing new information.

Determine what’s going to be most memorable for your audience and create it.

Quality is Important

First impressions are everything. I recently had a conversation with a fellow business owner, who confessed that she had been considering working with a recommended company, but as soon as she saw their unprofessional-looking website, she stopped considering them. “I know I shouldn’t judge this way,” she said, “but I do.”

Just as you know your website should be of the highest quality, you want to do the same with video. You only have a few seconds to get your viewer hooked in, so make sure it looks and sounds good. You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars, but you do need to do the following:

  • Shoot with the highest quality video you can. Most cellphones shoot in HD (high-definition), so there’s no excuse for shooting web videos in standard definition. Even iphone videos can look great, as long as you have enough available light.
  • Make sure your audio is easily audible. Whether you use a lavaliere (lapel) microphone or the microphone on your camera close by your subject, test the audio ahead of time to make sure it can be heard.
  • Use proper compression rates for web video. It doesn’t matter if you have a motion graphics video or a documentary-style video, you must make sure you use the right compression rates so that your video plays smoothly on all types of devices. It should be able to load up quickly and play all the way through. It doesn’t matter if you have the greatest video ever. If it doesn’t play well on-line, no one will ever sit and watch it.

So remember, Great Content + Intentional Purpose + High Quality = A Great Business Video.

  1. May 15, 2013 at 10:51

    Great advice, avoiding the thoughts of 'making something viral' is important. Videos that attempt to be 'viral' can often come across looking unprofessional. It's always better to concentrate on showing your business in a good light and making a connection with the viewer.