Whether you’re still seeking investment or it’s time to promote your offering to some real target customers, you’re probably aware that video is the best way to communicate with your audience. You’ve honed your product to near perfection, you have your website all planned out, you’ve been blowing up Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest for months- now the next step is getting that explainer video perfected and produced! Part of the beauty of being a new, bright-eyed startup is that you’re not bogged down by old marketing and communications plans that just don’t have the budgeting or structure to be effective in the digital world.
You’re starting fresh, and you have all kinds of tools and technology to choose from in getting the word out there about who you are, what you do, and why your product, service or technology is AWESOME. So, when it comes to the perfect promotional or explainer video, what do you need to know in order to get it right the first time?
1) Make sure you have a well-written, concise and engaging script that your audience can connect with, even if it doesn’t communicate ALL of the details. That’s where your website and sales pitch come in!
Sometimes, the product we’re selling or the organization we’re representing is more difficult to explain than we would like. The solution is to simplify! With the endless distractions available on the world-wide-interwebs, we’re under a lot of pressure to make our communications meaningful, to-the-point, and interesting, and the right video production company will be able to help you do that.
Check out this video for Creative Commons, a not-for-profit organization, aimed at explaining the important (but complicated) concept of ‘open education’. They do a great job of simplifying!
2) The video should match your branding and brand personality, unless you’re boring. (Which I know you’re not!)
Let’s take a new software launch as an example. Your product and brand is fresh, innovative and slick. The software doesn’t necessarily always look perfectly clean because it’s so jam-packed with features, but as a company you’re all about simplicity and making life easier for your clients. So why is your video production company pitching you on a series of complicated-looking screencasts accompanied by one of your partners talking into a camera for 3 minutes?
Check out this video for an online-based scheduling software that uses motion graphic design to illustrate the basic functionalities of the software (without using screencasts), engage the viewer, and carry the company’s personality throughout without missing a beat.
3) The video should LOOK as slick as you FEEL, so budget accordingly!
It’s tough to come up with a marketing budget when you’re in the beginning stages, but you know better than anyone that you’re never going to get off the ground if no one’s paying attention. You’ve put a LOT of time and care into developing your product, and you owe it to yourself and your team to make sure your external communication is getting that across. Don’t skimp on your marketing!
Now, we can’t all afford SandwichVideo, but there are plenty of video production companies that offer professional, high-quality services for more startup-friendly prices; often times they’re startups just like you! Don’t give up and settle for a lower quality offering than what you’d hoped for before you’ve exhausted all of your options both locally and online.
Just for fun, here’s an awesome explainer video from SandwichVideo for one of my favorite iPad apps. Even if you can’t afford the best of the best, there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be inspired by them!