Is your business currently closed to help support social distancing efforts? If so, now is the ideal time to create a robust digital presence and harness the power of video content!

Consumers have a lot more time to spend online these days, which presents an opportunity to build awareness. Video marketing offers a massive opportunity for small business owners (SBO) to do just that.

If you feel you don’t have the internal resources, don’t have the chops, or don’t have the means to produce high-quality video, we’re here to tell you: SBOs can create a high-quality video with little expense.

If you’re new to video marketing, you may also have questions such as:

  1. What can video marketing do for my small business?
  2. How do I apply video to my business goals?
  3. What equipment do I need?
  4. How do I create the right messaging?
  5. What guidelines should I keep in mind for video marketing?
  6. How can I prepare to be on camera?
  7. Can video editing tools help?

What can video marketing do for my small business?

We thought we might have to convince you, so we rounded up a few eye-opening statistics.

  • The average person will watch 84 minutes of online video per day this year. (Marketing Charts)
  • Video is the medium most consumers prefer when it comes to seeing marketing from brands they like. (Animoto Blog)
  • Viewers retain 95% of a message when they see it in video format. (Social Media Today)
  • Video traffic will make up 81% of all internet traffic by 2021. (Cisco)

Video marketing is an effective way to reach your target audience, and they prefer it. If there’s a way to reach more of your fans without having to convince them to visit your storefront, wouldn’t you give it a try?

How to apply video to my business goals?

We get it. Trying your hand at video marketing for the first time is intimidating. But the data above proves it can be useful to a business.

The first thing you should do is determine how video can supplement your business.

  • Do you need help with brand awareness?
  • Do you want greater reach on social media?
  • Do you want to build credibility in your industry?
  • Do you need an explainer video for your product or services?

Analyze your business and determine pain points that could use a boost. More likely than not, video content can help.

What equipment do I need?

There are a few fundamental pieces of equipment that can help you create a quality video content on a budget. Note that consumers react well to authentic video content, so you don’t need a fancy studio or expensive hardware to get the job done. Here are a few key pieces.

If you want to be more cost-effective, turn to your iPhone and use a shelf or a makeshift stand to hold the camera steady.

Product Tip: If you’re looking for a creative way to showcase a product other than a static photo, give the Boomerang app a try!

How do I create the right messaging for my video content? 

There are a few ways you can approach video marketing. The way you handle it all stems from your business goals like we mentioned above, as well as your brand’s personality and current environment.

For example, to increase awareness, it may make sense to center the video around you. This practice lets your personality shine and allows viewers to relate to your product or service on a personal level.

Pro Tip: Don’t hide. It’s okay to record in motion with different angles. However, if you’re in the video, be in the video. Face the viewer. Talk to the viewer. Your finished product should appear as if you are in the same room as the viewer.

Now, what about this external environment factor? We mean pay attention to what’s happening with the consumer world and your community—the outside environment matters in your messaging strategy.

Right now, the entire world is experiencing a new normal filled with uncertainty and social distancing because of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a business in a time of crisis, you need to pay attention to how people are reacting and offer your support. That doesn’t necessarily mean offering free things. But it does mean being sensitive, relevant, and making an extra effort to connect with your community in need.

What guidelines should I keep in mind for video marketing?

Before you hit record, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Remember to produce the video content, plan out your shots and create a rough script.

Social Media Examiner shared these helpful tips if you plan to go the iPhone route to make your video:

  •  Look at the camera lens while you’re recording. If you look at yourself on-screen, your eyes won’t be directed at viewers.
  •  Hold your camera in landscape orientation, not portrait.
  •  Place the camera slightly above eye level. Don’t hold it too low, or viewers will be looking up at your chin. Similarly, don’t hold it too high or they’ll be looking down from a great height

Understanding how you plan to use your video content is essential to establish before you start the recording session. SproutSocial regularly updates this article with dimensions and specs needed to promote your video on all social media platforms.

Pro Tip: Be helpful to consumers. Don’t just tell viewers to buy your stuff. Add value by addressing buyer pain points.

How can I prepare to be on camera?

You have a plan, you purchased equipment, you have your angles ready, and now it’s time to hit record. There’s just one thing; you’re incredibly nervous. Here are some tips if you need to ease those video qualms.

  •  Admit you have the jitters. Attempting to hold it in, while frantically telling yourself you’re not nervous will only make it worse. Trust us. Take a deep breath and say the words, “I’m nervous. And it’s fine.”
  •  Amp yourself up. Do jumping jacks, dance around to your hype song, or give yourself a pep talk in the mirror.
  •  Forget the camera. You’re talking to your buddy about the cool things you sell.

Once you feel good, hit that record button and go.

What video editing and graphic tools can I use on a budget?

You created a video, congrats! Your next move is taking the raw recording and cleaning it up with editing tools. Luckily, there are free options.

Both iMovie on Mac and Windows Movie Maker are excellent choices for the newbie needing something affordable and easy to use. Promo is another great tool with several packages to get you started in the video editing world. Lastly, Canva is a top option to create appealing graphics if you aren’t savvy with photoshop.

Pro Tip: Add captions to your video using Kapwing Caption Maker, a free tool that lets you add subtitles to any video.

There you have it from start to finish; these steps will help you launch your video strategy and support your business goals. Once you record your first video, it gets more natural, and you will be a pro in no time. We promise!