Content marketing, as defined by Joe Pulizzi, lead strategist at the Content Marketing Institute, is the "practice of creating relevant and compelling content in a consistent fashion to a targeted buyer, focusing on all stages of the buying process, from brand awareness through to brand evangelism". It doesn't focus on “selling” per se, but rather communicating, educating, and evoking emotion from your audience of customers or potential customers via mediums such as print, web, audio, and video.
Being the video nerd that I am, I’ll focus on video because of a number of unique traits that it possesses over other forms:
- Video has the ability to explain complex subjects more quickly and more clearly.
- Video involves more senses and has a much better ability to evoke deep emotion.
- Video, as an asset, is more easily re-purposed into more forms of content. A video, can also become the subject of a blog post, or a magazine article.
- Video, can be very quick, easy and cost efficient to produce.
…..WAIT, WHAT? [insert sound of the needle scratching off the record] That can’t be right. Quick, easy and cheap have never been used to describe “video” for business…….
Video Can Be a Very Quick, Easy and Cost Effective
In the days of yore, that would be a correct assumption. Creating and producing video was very time consuming, largely due to the high cost of camera, lighting and editing equipment, and video tape. Fast forward to today where everyone carries a surprisingly high quality HD camcorder around in their pocket, and the game has definitely changed. If you also consider that you have hidden marketing assets (people – employees and customers) scattered around you that have valuable information and opinions that your other customers and prospects are interested in, video can be a very quick, easy and cost effective way to spread that knowledge and information.
Surely I am not advocating running up to someone with your camera, shoving it in their face, asking them a question, and then posting it on YouTube. But with some simple thought and care, and some very inexpensive equipment, you can make very high quality video to augment your content marketing strategies.
4 Tips For Quick & Simple Content Marketing Videos
Here are 4 very simple tips for creating quick and simple videos for your content marketing strategy without spending a lot of money.
#1 Care About Your Audio Quality
The number one priority in video production is audio quality. The quality of the audio in your video is the single most important aspect to your video being able to portray it’s message, and to have a higher perception of production value to it’s viewer. For this, two very simple pieces of equipment can go a long way towards making an iPhone video look much more polished. A lavalier mic (one that clips on the interviewee’s shirt), and an adaptor to plug that mic into your phone, are very inexpensive. In my example, I use an Audio Technica Audio-Technica ATR 3350 which retails under $20, and any 4-pin to two 3-pin adapters which retail for under $10. This allows you to plug the lav mic into your phone to record the audio for the video.
#2 Use a Tripod!
Put your camera phone on a tripod. Don’t hold it with your hands. The perceived production value of a video increases when the camera is stationary on a tripod. For this, I used a simple iPhone tripod adaptor which you can get online for well under $10.
#3 Take the Time to Edit
There is usually free editing software on your computer whether it be mac or pc where you can do very simple cuts, fades and a title. No need to have 3D flying graphics all over the place. The value in these videos is that they are clean, simple, short. And the power is in the knowledge and passion of the content shared by your interviewee.
#4 Plan, Plan, Plan
#3 leads into #4. Plan out your videos. A reminder that content marketing focuses on all stages of the buying process. Chart out you buying cycle and list points of concern people at each stage. After you have a list of concerns, connect them with a potential thought leader within your organization or a passionate dedicated customer you know and trust. Think of one simple question to ask them that would address the concern, and setup a time to get them on camera (sent them the question and the purpose of the video in advance). Their knowledge and passion will be portrayed in the video and be more powerful than a bullet point in the product manual. It is also much more shareable and spreadable by your customer advocates.
Here is a video clip that demonstrates the style of video to create and the difference in perceived production value between using and not using a tripod and clip on mic.
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