Don Tracy has been creating visual content and solving visual communication problems for the advertising, corporate, and editorial markets for over 35 years. In both photography and video production, he gets to the heart of his client’s communications needs and hands back finished content that tells their story and gets results.
Using Digital Video Marketing for a Small Business in PA
The reality today is that if you’re not using video to market your business you’re falling behind your competitors. Video is perhaps the most valuable content in your marketing efforts. If your business is located in Pennsylvania, there are numerous opportunities to use video to showcase the amazing things the state has to offer. Understanding video production is key in using digital video marketing for a small business in PA. It is a powerful tool for growing your customer base.
High production value video is good, but what is most important is to publish video content that is relevant for your customers and leads. While it’s a blessing to have professional video equipment or even hire a video production company, you can, in fact, produce this content with a smartphone.
Regardless, video needs to be part of your digital marketing strategy.
Google Posts now lets you post videos as well as photos.
This is a great opportunity to promote your product or service and get a leg up on your competitors. Best of all, it’s free!
Video on Facebook
Facebook is one of the most important social media channels. It’s key to helping with your business’s brand awareness and social media marketing. Here are some tips for using video to market your business on Facebook.
Upload the video directly to Facebook. While you could post a link to your video from Youtube or Vimeo, you’ll probably get more reach if you upload directly to Facebook. Reach is the metric for how many people will see your video in their feed. Also, you can autostart the video if it’s directly uploaded.
Keep your video short. In general, viewers don’t want to watch a long video. Some 80% of all video posted online is clicked away within the first twenty seconds. So keep it short Make sure your viewers know the point of the video within the first five seconds or so.
Use subtitles. If your video is autostarting, you should use subtitles. Let your viewers watch the entire video without sound and still get your message.
Live Stream Video
Live stream video is exploding in popularity. 80% of users would rather watch a company’s live stream video than read a text-based marketing blog post.
Quality matters to these viewers. 67% say that quality is the most important factor for them in watching a live stream video.
There are a number of solutions for distributing high-quality live stream videos, such as DaCast and Livestream. Production solutions include hardware switchers and encoders such as those from Black Magic Design. One of the best software encoders is OBS. It’s a software encoder you run from your computer. It’s open source software and it’s free!
So what type of content should you live stream? Make it relevant to your business. Make it interesting. Most importantly, make it real. Be yourself on camera. People relate to people. Don’t use a radio voice or protect a TV personality. Be yourself.
Also, make sure to caption and tag your live stream content with relevant keywords. This will help with search engine optimization.
YouTube is the second largest search platform. That creates an opportunity for the small business owner to connect with their target audience. YouTube video will help you rank higher in search results.
The most successful YouTube channels are the ones that keep pushing out fresh content. It’s important to commit to a schedule. Once the early excitement of publishing video to YouTube wears off, you’ll need to keep pushing out fresh content on a regular basis. This content can be tied to your live stream video. Once the live stream is over the stream can be archived as a YouTube video.
Every YouTube video should end with a CTA, a Call to Action. Ask your viewers to do something. Make it simple and concrete. A CTA could be asking your viewer to like your video, subscribe to your channel, or visit your website. If your viewer has watched your video to the end they are primed to take some action. So ask them!
Afterword, you can repurpose your video in your email marketing and social media posts.
Start Creating Video
So get started!
Start creating video for your small business. Whether you hire a production company, have your own professional video equipment, or use a smartphone, you have the tools you need to share video content.
Be yourself. Share your knowledge. And most of all, have fun!
Drone Video Adds Another Level to Small Business Marketing
The use of video as part of a small business marketing strategy continues to grow by leaps and bounds. An astounding 54% of customers want to see more video content from businesses. Savvy small business marketers are working hard to meet that growing demand. More and more they’re finding that using drone video in small business marketing improves that new content.
With the increased video content available to consumers comes the challenge of how to make that video content engaging. A video isn’t worth much if a viewer doesn’t want to watch it. As a small business marketer your job is to tell the story of your business or your client’s business and spread their message. It doesn’t help tell that story or spread that message if the viewers click away early in the viewing. At least it doesn’t help much.
The latest trend to help with that viewer engagement is drone videography. Aerial footage is a powerful tool that businesses can use to help increase viewer engagement. Drone videography can add an elegance and bring a fresh perspective to video content.
The days of needing to book time in a helicopter in order to get good aerial footage are long gone. Helicopters are fun. They’re also very expensive to operate.
Today’s drone technology offers videographers high quality and sophisticated platforms to capture aerial footage and create videos that are engaging. The technology is amazing, and the footage drones capture can be stunning.
Drones used in commercial videography for small business marketing usually:
Have four or more rotors that provide lift
Weigh less than 55 pounds.
Are flown by one Pilot in Command who also operates the video camera
Have a camera that can record High Definition video for use in online marketing
Transmits an aerial view in real time to the Pilot in Command while flying
Types of Businesses That Stand out From the Crowd by Using Drones
Any business can use drone aerial footage to help reach potential customers. The possibilities are almost endless and range from aerial footage of properties to highly choreographed sequences woven into a film narrative.
Some businesses particularly benefit from the unmanned aerial technology, including:
One thing to avoid is to seem like you’re doing drone marketing. You should have the aerial footage add to your video and to your messaging but not be about the aerial footage. You’ve probably seen drone videos that go on and on for minutes on end. The video usually gets boring pretty quickly. Instead, use the video footage to just add a little extra movement and perspective here and there. Focus on the story you’re telling in your video, and not on the techniques you used to tell your story. That way your audience will be more likely to engage longer with your content.
Certification Required for Commercial Drone Flying
Operating a drone for any type of commercial use in the United States requires certification by the FAA, the Federal Aviation Administration. The FAA is the same agency that regulates the commercial airline industry. Any use in which you trade money, goods, or services in exchange for drone operation, is commercial use. That includes if you’re filming aerial footage yourself and using it in your marketing. For example, if you’re a real estate agent using a drone to help with property listings you will need FAA certification.
So for example if you operate a golf course and you trade some rounds of golf with someone who films drone footage, you are engaging in a commercial drone operation. In that case, the person needs to have FAA certification to operate the drone.
In addition to FAA certification for commercial drone operation within US airspace, insurance underwriters also require the FAA certification. Drone technology is very safe, however things can go wrong. Drones can weigh up to 55 pounds according to FAA regulations. Should something go wrong, an object of that size can cause serious property damage, personal injury, or even death. Obviously in such cases, the liability issues can be significant.
You probably know the statistic. Viewers click away from more than 80% of videos in less than 20 seconds. No matter how long the video is.
Technology keeps moving at a rapid pace. Customers and clients, or potential customers and clients, expect businesses to keep up with the changes in technology. That includes changes in content they consume.
To keep them engaged you need to keep your videos fresh. Aerial footage using drones can help you do that.
Used in the right way, drone videography adds that extra sparkle that viewers love.
Here’s a video we produced for Encore Fine Food and Spirits, located in Jim Thorpe, PA. It’s a good example of a “call to action” video for a restaurant. We ask at the end to take a concrete action. It runs a bit longer than one minute, but it will serve the purpose of laying out the steps and time involved for producing a minute of video.
Pre-Produce and Film the Video
The time estimate here is for a one person location shoot. The equipment is a 3 point interview lighting setup, as well as a lav mic on the subject, and a HD camera on a tripod for the interview, with a mix of camera on tripod and hand held for the b-roll.
Research the client and their business to understand their product and service – 1 hour
Download the files and setup project on Premiere Pro– 15 minutes
Edit the interview track – 1 hours
Choose and add music track – 30 minutes
Add b-roll clips – 1 hour
Add graphics and lower thirds – 1 hour
Color correct, adjust framing, add motion to clips, add transitions – 1 hour
Export and upload the file – 30 minutes
So the total time for editing the one minute video is: 5 hours.
Of course you have to budget time for editing changes. Examples of typical changes include misspelled names and switching out b-roll clips.
Fix typos, change out b-roll clips – 1 hour
Export and upload the file – 30 minutes
The total time for editing round changes is: 1 hours and 30 minutes.
It Takes a While to Produce a Minute of Video
So in total it takes about 12 hours to produce a restaurant “call to action” video similar to the one posted above. And that 12 hours doesn’t include the travel time to and from the location. Therefore counting travel time, it’s about two work days to produce one minute of video as shown above.
Have we produced a minute of video faster? Indeed. Can it take longer? Certainly!
Again, there are many variables on estimating time for a film production. In the case of restaurant “call to action” videos, we find that budgeting two days for a minute of finished video usually works out well.