How Do I Get Started in Video Marketing?

How Do I Get Started in Video Marketing?

By Carly Mangus

Quick Tips for Video Preproduction Part 1

You’ve made the decision to start making videos, and now comes the scary part: where do you start?

Right now, the world looks like your oyster. You could go so many ways and do so many things in your new medium. The sheer number of possibilities can make beginning this process seem very daunting. Done properly, video marketing can add personality to your marketing strategy and grow a valuable connection to your audience, as you read in our previous post on video marketing. Before you begin, it’s necessary to narrow your focus by answering a few questions.

What is the purpose of your video?
Are you using video to persuade? Educate? Entertain? The purpose of the video is the most important step in preproduction, because it sets you up to make all of the plans. If you’re using a video to promote a new product, the tone and script of that video is going to differ wildly from an educational or entertaining video. If you’re trying to persuade your audience to buy a product or donate to a foundation or fund, your tone may appeal to your viewer’s emotions or sense of duty. If you’re creating an educational piece about a topic of interest to your members, you may have to establish credibility and take a more formal tone. However, an educational video for the general public may have a lighter tone in an effort to connect to viewers outside of your membership. If your video is meant to entertain and connect to an audience, it will likely have an informal tone and light subject matter. When you decide on the purpose, you can move on to the next step.

What is the goal of your video?
While this seems similar to the previous step, the goal of the video tends to be a little more specific and measureable. If your purpose is to inform, your goal might be to drive traffic to a specific page on your website, or to increase sales for a specific product. If your purpose is to entertain, your goal might be to drum up more follows or subscriptions and more content shares. The goal is the measureable outcome you would like your video to facilitate.

What do you want to say?
The information you’re trying to share with your audience is the linchpin of your whole operation. Every part of the video should serve your message. Think of a single-sentence point that you want to get across and fashion a script around that point. If your point is “come to conference,” then every part of your video should be directly relevant to that purpose.

What are your resources?
Once you’ve figured out the purpose, goal, and message of your video, you have to determine what resources you have before you can start scripting its content. This factor will have the most impact on what you can do. Resources that affect video production are as follows:

  • Availability of personnel with video knowledge
    • Videographer
    • Director
    • Video editor
    • An outside videography vendor
  • Available video equipment
    • Camera
    • Lights
    • Microphones
  • Money, to pay current employees and vendors, or buy missing equipment
  • Time (yours, the volunteers’, your employees’, and any external vendors’)
  • Actors or interviewees
  • Stock footage or music

Once you determine which of the aforementioned resources you have or can get, you can determine how elaborate your video will be. You don’t need all of what is listed above to make a good video, but the more you do have the easier it will be to make a high-quality production. Videos can be made easily on a small budget with an iPhone or good webcam, member volunteers, and someone who can edit video.

Your purpose, goals, message, and resources are only half of the puzzle. Once you have all that figured out, it’s time to move into scripting, setting a timeline, and creating a distribution plan. Stay tuned to the AMC blog later this month for more on preproduction planning.

Previous AMC video series topics:
Why Video Content is Important for Your Association

Carly Mangus is an Assistant Editor in AMC’s Creative Media Services department, and the resident video editor. You can connect with her on Twitter or LinkedIn for more information and conversation about video marketing.