If your current video Marketing efforts are taking you deeper out to Sea (where many folks are said to have just “fallen off the face of the Earth”), the following 15 suggestions will help steer you right back on track. They will also help increase your subscribers, likes, viewers, comments, muscle tone, hair volume and the number of Birthday cards you receive next year.
1.Provide value – Video Marketing is less about selling and more about providing good information and value. A tiny dose of entertainment might not kill your audience either (unless they’re somehow allergic to “fun”).
Sure. Selling is required at some point, but it’s always polite to let your visitors sit down first, before going through their Wallets or Purses.
So, aim to make around 80-90% of your videos totally value driven (without a hint of a sales pitch in sight). And then carefully weave a sales pitch (that doesn’t sound too much like a sales pitch) for the rest.
2.Be yourself – In the world of Videos, the only commodity you’re selling is “you” and “your brand”. That’s not to say you show up with a price tag hanging around your neck.
But it does mean that you’re out there to create your own fan club using nothing but your personality, knowledge, way of communication and whatever else you have to offer (that’s 100% PG rated).
3. Be Friendly – Smile, Laugh, Wiggle, Moonwalk and have fun. People buy from people they like. It also helps to tie your information with your own life experiences, so that people get to know you at a personal level.
And by being “friendly” right off the bat, you’re letting everyone know that you’re not a human organ harvester, serial killer or worse still…a puppy hater.
4.Be concise – People respond well to rapid-fire information. So you should try and present as much of your information in bullet form as possible and have an easy to follow structure to your presentation.
Videos that are shorter than 15 minutes’ work best, as many folks start thinking about food after the 20th minute. And start snoring and slipping off their chairs usually after the 45th minute.
5.Be sincere – People can spot insincerity as easily as spotting a squirrel on a windshield. So, never endorse a product or service that you wouldn’t sell to your own Mom, Dad or Marmoset.
Besides, since more than 90% of our communication is non-verbal, we can’t just camouflage our feelings or shake it off our faces altogether.
When the video’s done, the Body Language and the length of our noses usually tell the story.
6.Be respectful – Some people love being the center of attention to the point that they can’t help but walk around with a flashlight pointed at their face.
But all that really does is make people wanna drop everything and run in the other direction.
Whilst it’s important to convey that you “know” what you’re talking about, take to heart that you’re really there to serve, add value, entertain and to be a lifeline to a Brother or a Sister who’s possibly undergone a tragic episode of “12 donuts, 5 hurricanes, and a midnight swim”.
And you can only be that beacon of hope by kicking off those 12-inch-high heels, letting down that 15-inch-tall hairstyle and by getting off that high Giraffe.
7.Use a Lapel Microphone – Don’t sound like you’re down with a Cold, a Sore Throat, Laryngitis, a Goiter and a severe case of Chain Smoking all rolled into one.
Get yourself a high definition microphone like a Lapel Microphone and make your Audience feel as though you’re standing right next to them. In fact, they could well be standing close enough to smell your perfume (which is why you should always wear something nice before hitting the record button).
8. Use an HD Video camcorder – HD Video is now almost as standard as Smart Running Shoes for Ostriches.
So, if you aren’t using one, then you’re pretty much trying to run a marathon with no running shoes on. However, in the World of Video Marketing, there are no clear winners as everyone’s out there promoting their “own brand”.
But it does help to be seen with the leader pack, as opposed to being at the very back of the line with a bandage roll.
For my videos I am currently using a Sony HDR-CX260V which has a built-in microphone slot (to compliment my Lapel Microphone), a generous hard drive (so that I don’t have to swap between numerous SD Cards, Thumb drives, and Toe drives) and a remote control (so that I don’t have to run back and forth between takes, adjustments, Zombie attacks and bloopers).
9.Go blue – If you accidentally stepped on your Cat’s tail and it decides to open up a can of whoop-ass on you, the first thing you would most likely reach for is a cold water tap marked in blue. Or an icepack tinted in blue.
Obviously, there’s also gonna be a few exceptions to that rule, where some folks just prefer to stand there, cry their hearts out and munch on an extra-large bar of Chocolate (whilst hoping that the pain would eventually subside).
But for the most part, we have accustomed ourselves to looking at solutions associated with the color blue as soothing, cooling, dependable, trustworthy and even faithful (depending on their “track record”).
That’s mainly because both the Sea and the Sky (that we can’t seem to get away from wherever we go) are considered blue. And thus far no one’s ever had a legitimate worry about the Sky falling on their heads at any point. Or being chased around on dry land by Ocean Waves (unless they had been first disturbed by an Earthquake or a couple of Party Octopuses).
And so, we now see many leading websites including Microsoft, Facebook, LinkedIn, IBM and Twitter using shades of blue (darker shades in particular) as their color scheme. We see Police Forces around the World using Blue as one of their primary colors both for their vehicles and for parts of their uniform. We see various institutions such as Spas, Resorts, Airlines, Cruises and Hotels also placing a greater emphasis on the color blue. We see blue shirts and tops being given a greater emphasis and recognition in most Professional work environments.
And as such, it would also work wonders with your Videos (provided that you also have something “useful” to say and don’t frown or yawn at the Camera).
10.Brighten up the stage – If you’ve ever had a conversation with a real Ghost (whilst wide awake), then chances are you didn’t feel as comfortable about it as you would’ve when talking to a real person.
That’s because you didn’t know who you were talking to, whether they were standing/sitting, what they were wearing (if they were wearing anything) or even whether you were facing them (as opposed to having them face your butt) throughout the conversation.
And yet, most videos on the web are about as well-lit as a Ghost’s birthday party, which is why they get the “back button treatment” within seconds.
So, in addition to wearing a brighter color and having a plain white backdrop (perhaps using a white screen), it’s just as important to inject a little 3-point lighting to your videos.
And you can do that by getting yourself a continuous lighting kit consisting of 3 Softboxes, whereby you would have the backlight pointing at you at an angle from behind whilst having the other two lights (which are the key lights and fill lights) aimed at you from the front (all placed at equal distances).
Obviously, you would have to do a few test shoots first in order to determine the distance (from the Softboxes) makes really makes you “pop”.
11.Have a “Call to action” – A call-to-action isn’t necessarily a call-to-buy. Initially, it’s all about getting people on board. If someone’s drowning out at Sea, you wouldn’t ask them to “buy” whatever you have to sell before pulling them onboard.
No! You would rescue them first, give them the medical assistance they need, make sure they’ve had a warm meal, provide them with enough warm blankets and make sure that they have enough cheeseballs to get them through the week. Then when they’re in a more in a reciprocating mood, you would tell them about your offer (without threatening to throw them back overboard if they don’t buy). And if they had their wallets, purses and other valuables stolen by a gang of Piranhas, you get them to subscribe to one of your social media channels or join your emailing list instead.
So, there are two types of calls to action that we use out at Sea and in the Cyber World.
The first type is the “non-threatening” and “non-traumatizing” call to action that we append to all of our videos as standard, whereby you can ask your viewers to subscribe to your channel, like your videos, say something nice about the videos, visit your website or just ask them to check out your other Social Media channels. And you make that possible by introducing a cool video outro or a 5-second splash page (that lists and hyperlinks all of the above) at the end of each video.
You can also inject a couple of annotations into the beginning and middle parts of the video, whereby you casually remind them to “like your video” or “subscribe”. But refrain from saying anything that would make them gulp, gasp or scream. Treat this part as the courtship phase in a relationship, where showing up with an engagement ring for the first date is usually considered a bad idea.
The objective here is to build a list (of channel subscribers, email subscribers, and social media followers) that you can potentially have around for years provided that you always keep their best interest at heart.
The second type of call to action is a call to check out your main offer (whatever that is). So, for that you would ideally need to set up a separate lead/sales page where you would share your personal experience, the benefits associated with the product and, more importantly, the “extra benefits” your customers receive as a result of buying from you.
You can also cover these details in a YouTube/Vimeo video. And then steer them to a lead/sales page, where they’re presented with a “continuation video” of that discussion. Lastly, you would seal the deal by making them an irresistible offer (which includes several useful and high-value products/services) that’s only valid for the next 72 hours. And feel free to throw in a Seahorse or two in with the deal if it helps.
By the way, if you have them in some kind of a sales funnel, this is the part where you start following up with daily reminders until they buy, reply back with a Virus or the offer just expires.
12.Add a description – The descriptions tab is one of the more silent (and effective) call to action + traffic attraction magnets available to you. And it becomes especially useful with those more prominent calls to action that we cannot just throw into our videos, without the risk of being hit back with series of “slap” emoji texts.
Now the best way to utilize this invaluable space is to always start each video description with your website (written in the proper https:// format) followed up with direct links to all your favorite Social Media channels. Properly formatted links bring in clicks, leads, and sales, whereas the rest just sit there looking pretty all day (remind you of anyone at work?).
The remainder of the “Description Section” is where you briefly mention what the video is about. This (descriptive but concise) text should also mention one or two of the tags (or keywords) you’re looking to promote to bring in a little extra search engine love your way.
However, avoid the temptation to dump all your favorite affiliate links here as that not only looks awful, icky, ridiculous, irritating, horrible, unprofessional (and a whole bunch of other things I can’t say here), but it also increases the likelihood of your Video account ending up on the Dinner Plate of one of your Site Admins.
13.Tag it and tag it good – All the quality content, preparation, fancy intros, special effects, production costs, annotations, hair spray, temper tantrums and makeup won’t mean a thing if nobody ever sees your video.
So, start getting the word out to the World by making your keywords (or tags as they say in the “World of YouTube”) more visible to the Search Engine Spiders.
Now, if you’re not already familiar with the term “Keywords”, think of them like Peanut Butter for Mice or Donuts for a Homer Simpson. In other words, it gets the Search Engine Spiders attention in a big way.
But in order for your keywords to have the much-needed traction, they’ll need to be the right terms (i.e. terms that haven’t gotten saturated since the Dinosaur era).
And you can find these terms using the Google Keyword Planner, SECockpit or a similar tool of your choosing. Google Keyword Planner is completely free of charge, but it only spits out some of the terms worth considering. And they confuse the heck out of you with their “Competition” tab which refers to the Adwords competition (as opposed to the actual Search Engine competition). I’m guessing that they came up with that just to confuse us.
Now SECockpit does the same fundamentally. But it scours the web for several thousand terms (as opposed to just 800), finds the ones that are the easiest ones to rank for and then rates them by their value and difficulty so that you won’t waste any time digging for Gold in a Potato field. And the coolest part is that it does all this within seconds.
Another thing to watch out for is the relativity of the keyword terms you choose to plug into your videos. For instance, a “nail remover” could just be referring to a nail polish remover as opposed to a hammer with hairy claws.
14.Syndicate (no relation to the Crime Syndicate) – Plugging in the right keywords to the video is only half the battle. The next step is to give your Search Engines (Google, YouTube, Bing, Yahoo, Woohoo etc.) a gentle tap on their front doors and remind them to push you up the ranks.
And that’s something you can achieve by manually building a handful of “high-quality backlinks” such as Social Bookmarks, EDU backlinks, and High PR Profile links. And by syndicating your videos through numerous Web 2.0 sites such as Vimeo, WordPress, Blogger, Daily Motion, Scribed, Tumbler, Issuu etc.
For my syndications, I’m currently using a software called Syndwire. There’s also Onlywire, HootSuite, IFTT and Word of mouth (which might take a while longer the other routes).
But keep the Syndication process graceful, clean and spam free so as to avoid getting any phone calls from the Mob.
15. Rewrite the transcription – Every YouTube video transcribes your recording (on the fly) as and when it’s uploaded. But if you have an accent (like me) or just sound drunk all the time, you might wanna edit it manually, so that you won’t have any Search Engine Spiders scratching their heads trying to figure out what you’re saying.