LinkedIn Native Video: What Works, What Doesn’t, What Marketers Need to Know

Video content is eating the internet. It started with video-specific platforms like YouTube and Vimeo. Then Twitter and Facebook added support for live and pre-recorded video. Now these insatiable moving pictures are becoming serious business: LinkedIn now supports native video.

What would compel a buttoned-down, professional networking site like LinkedIn to embrace video? Simply put, people—even businesspeople—want to watch. Fifty-nine percent of executives say that if text and video are available on the same topic, they’re more likely to choose video.

There’s no denying that marketers should embrace video content as a general rule. If your audience wants video, it’s wise for your brand to be the one supplying it. But why publish natively on LinkedIn?

Here are the upsides, downsides, and what-you-need-to-know-sides.

How to Create a LinkedIn Video

LinkedIn has been slowly rolling out its video capabilities, starting with a few influencers and expanding out from there. Most members who have the most recent version of the mobile app should have the capability now.

If your account has video enabled, you will see a camera icon available where you normally post to your feed. On mobile, you can create a video (not a live stream…yet) or upload from your photo gallery. On desktop, you can only upload a pre-recorded video. Nearly every common form of video file is supported.

To record a video, just tap the camera icon, give the app permission to access your camera, and go. To upload video, just navigate to the file you want to add and select it—there’s no learning curve there.

Your file must be at least three seconds long and no longer than 10 minutes, but LinkedIn suggests between 30 seconds and 5 minutes for better engagement. The maximum file size is five gigabytes, which should be plenty of space.

Your post will look…well, a lot like a post with an embedded video, just without the link out at the bottom:

Why Marketers Should Care about LinkedIn Video

You can already embed YouTube video in your LinkedIn feed posts, of course. But posting native video may get you more engagement. On Facebook, native videos typically get 10x more shares than embedded videos. If that trend holds for LinkedIn, you could be missing out on a substantial chunk of potential audience by linking to a YouTube video.

So native video matters—and for virtually all B2B marketers, LinkedIn matters. While Facebook videos can be dominated by memes and entertainment, the LinkedIn audience is specifically there for business. They’re browsing their feeds looking for something that can help advance their career, give them a competitive edge, or just do their jobs better. Useful, professional video content is likely to fare better on LinkedIn than on Twitter or Facebook.

The other reason to go native on LinkedIn video is LinkedIn’s analytical capability. Their demographic data is likely to be more useful to B2B marketers than Facebook’s data is. You can zero in on job function, job title, and seniority of the people who view your video. That data will help you adjust your strategy to hit and engage the right audience.

As native video is more widely adopted by its userbase, LinkedIn is likely to give it preferential treatment over embedded video. LinkedIn has already switched from a pure timeline feed to an algorithm-based feed. Just as Facebook currently gives pride of place to native videos, LinkedIn is likely to prioritize it in their feeds, too.

Downsides to LinkedIn Video

Since this is a new feature, there are some still some quirks to be ironed out, and a few features that are missing. These negatives won’t keep your video from being seen and appreciated, but they’re worth noting:

  1. No playback speed or picture quality settings. Users can’t customize the viewing experience the way they can on YouTube.
  2. It’s hard to link out. the URLs for a video-embedded post are unwieldy: https://www.linkedin.com/feed/update/urn:li:activity:6316276929771245568/, for example.
  3. The video isn’t embeddable on other sites. It’s definitely intended for consumption on LinkedIn.
  4. Only members can post, not companies.
  5. There’s no dedicated video tab, which can make video content hard to find. I’m willing to bet some kind of tab or filter is in the works, but we don’t have it yet.

What to Use LinkedIn Video For:

Given the limitations of the format, it’s best to think of video on LinkedIn as an add-on to your current marketing strategy. Use it to build your personal brand, or go behind-the-scenes at your company, or interview co-workers and executives.

Many users are already using the format to do quick tips, like this video from Viveka Von Rosen. That kind of informal, live-shot video is an easy way to get started.

There are a few people attempting to create series on the platform, too. Building an audience for a series could be tricky without a dedicated video tab, but Mike Morgan’s Humans of LinkedIn series is making a go of it. If more people start serializing their videos, LinkedIn is likely to add tools that support the practice.

LinkedIn to the Future

If you’re marketing to a B2B audience, native video on LinkedIn is well worth a try. Instead of linking out to YouTube, upload the video natively to LinkedIn and keep an eye on how it performs. Make sure to include keywords and relevant hashtags in the post so your video is easier to find, keep an eye on your analytics, and let the data guide your next steps.

Need more help? Check out these easy ways to get started with video content marketing.

Disclosure: LinkedIn Marketing is a TopRank Marketing client.


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How to Use Facebook Video Ads to Move People Through Your Sales Funnel

Are you using video in your Facebook ad campaigns? Wondering how video can best move people through your sales funnel? In this article, you’ll learn how to move prospects through three stages of the decision-making process by serving the right video at the right time. Why Use Video Ads in a Sales Funnel? Before you […]

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– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

12 Questions You Need to Answer if You Want to Launch a Video Content Strategy

There’s no question that video is an increasingly important digital marketing tactic. Humans are visual creatures by nature and, when done right, video allows brands to tell their story and create meaningful, emotional connections with their audience. For California-based Jordan Vineyard and Winery, video content has become a central piece of their marketing strategy. Lisa Mattson, Director of Marketing & Communications, shared how they’re winning at video during her Content Marketing World session “How Jordan Winery Crushed Content Marketing With a Video-Centered Strategy.” For a little background, Jordan Vineyard and Winery has been around since the early 1970s, and until Mattson came on board, they’re marketing strategy hadn’t changed in more than 40 years. “Even the finest wine has a shelf life,” Mattson said in reference to a brand’s image and personality. “You have to innovate.” But before you get started with video content, Mattson said you need to answer some critical questions if you want your venture to be successful. Below I outline some of the key questions you need to consider.

#1 – Do you have the upper management support?

This one’s pretty simple. The success of any of your marketing initiatives, especially if you’re looking to add a new tactic like video to the mix, depends on getting buy-in from the top. When the leaders at the top support what you do and are excited about it, that trickles down.

#2 – Are you willing to embed yourself in other departments?

In order to create dynamic video content, you’re going to need to lean on folks in multiple departments. Not only are your colleagues going to be a source of inspiration for the type of content you create, but they may need to actually participate in the filming.

#3 – Are your spokespersons comfortable on camera?

Quite obviously, anyone you put on camera needs to feel comfortable there. If they aren’t, that discomfort will be obvious to your audience and turn them off.

#4 – Are you prepared for resistance from co-workers?

As mentioned above, you’re going to have to work with several people from several departments to create awesome video content. But video is time consuming. And your colleagues are busy and this will add more to their already full plate. As a result, you need to be prepared to be met with some resistance, and have a plan to help you work around it.

#5 – What are the best video stories to tell?

At the end of the day, you’re creating video to help tell your brand’s story. So you need to think critically about what types of stories are a good fit for the medium.

#6 – Can you run lean and mean?

If you’re just starting out with video, you likely don’t have a huge team of resources just yet — and maybe you never will. So, you have to be able to commit to running your video strategy “lean and mean.”

#7 – Do you have IT infrastructure?

Video content can take up a lot of bandwidth, so it’s essential to consider your IT needs from the beginning. Mattson recalled an instance where the retail sales department couldn’t process online customer orders because marketing was using so much juice to upload videos to YouTube. So, it’s absolutely critical to make sure you have the right IT infrastructure.

#8 – How big and thorough is your budget?

While it’s widely known that video costs more to produce, Mattson said you don’t need to have a huge budget. You just need to know what your budget is and make a thorough list of what needs to be included. “Little things add up,” Mattson said. “You might need a little bit of stock footage, or maybe you need to buy some props, and that all costs money.” She went on to share some of the specific items you’ll need to budget for upfront, including: lenses, camera body, external drives, iMac, lighting, tripod, audio, editing software, and miscellaneous. She estimated the investment to be about $ 14,000, which seems high. However, hiring a production company to create just one three-minute video, she said, could cost anywhere from $ 3,000 to $ 10,000.

#9 – What are the right skill sets and job responsibilities?

Of course, in order to produce high-quality video content, you need capable people to actually do it. Mattson suggested in embracing multi-talented positions, and hiring candidates with core skills and be willing to cross-train them. In addition, she noted that it’s important to know what skills simply can’t be taught, and that it’s important to set job expectations early and clearly.

#10 – Do you have an editorial plan?

For Mattson, consistency is the key to video success. As a result, you need to have a strategy content plan that helps you keep a cadence that will keep your audience coming back and make an impact. As an extra tip, she also suggested leaving a little wiggle room in there to take advantage of what’s trending. For example, the song “Despacito” is going gangbusters on the radio, and they created a parody video about bottling their wine. You can watch it below.

#11 – Do you have distribution?

According to Mattson, content might be king, but distribution is queen. Once you create an amazing video, you need to set it free to your audience and go beyond social media. Some of the distribution considerations mentioned included: where you’re hosting your video content (i.e. YouTube, Vimeo, etc.), paid placement, influencers, and search.

#12 – Do you have an audience?

This is the big one. At the end of the day, if you’re going to do video you have to make sure that you have an audience for it. Depending on your industry, product, service and type of customer, video may not resonate.

One Final Thought

When it comes to creating and executing on a video strategy — or your overall marketing strategy for that matter — there’s one big thing that Mattson said that really resonated with me: [bctt tweet=”People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it. – @lisamattsonwines #video #CMWorld” username=”toprank”] For me, this comes down to storytelling. You need a compelling narrative that’s hyperfocused on why your organization does what it does. Stay tuned for more #CMWorld coverage and insights on the TopRank Marketing Blog. In addition, follow myself and the rest of our on-the-ground team members on Twitter at: @CaitlinMBurgess, @Tiffani_Allen, @leeodden, @knutesands, @NiteWrites, @amywhiggins and @azeckman.

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Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®

Stop the Marketing Killjoy: 5 Ways You’re Turning off Audiences with Bad Video

It might only be 1pm in the afternoon, but it’s five o’clock somewhere – a perfect time for a great dry martini.

Research “how to make the perfect dry martini”, and you’ll get over 1,560,000 results. Ask a content marketer “how to tell a good story”, and you’ll get about the same quality of results — except when you ask the fabulous Tim Washer. Like the perfect dry martini, Tim’s strategy for how to tell a good story is simple, neat, and well…perfect.

In his session at Content Marketing World, Tim not only shared how improv can help your B2B marketing, but he shared the five ways you can kill the joy in your videos.

What are his simple rules of how to stop the marketing killjoy?

5 Ways to Kill the Joy in Your Videos

#1 – Death by the Committee

Everytime I think about asking a committee for agree on a single answer, all I envision is that scene from Monty Python of the Knights Who Say “Ni!”. With every question you ask that the they don’t like, the committee responds with an answer you can’t understand – “Ni!”.

In order to find the joy again, keep your committee small. Also, make sure to not set an expectation that they are approving the entire video script. Instead, give them a short list of concepts to approve.

For example, imagine if the entire script for Van Damme’s ‘Epic Split’ Volvo Ad would have been asked for committee approval. We wouldn’t have this:

#2 – Death by the Explanation

As marketers, we sometimes forget to trust our audience. This causes us to feel the need to explain everything. We add in a lot of transitions or talk about items than our audience can easily figure out for themselves based on the imagery shared in the video.

Once you start explaining, you lose your audience.

#3 – Death by Talking About Yourself

We forget that we have customers or clients and talk all about our products or services. This is a sure fire way to kill the joy in your videos. And it must be stopped.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s a place to talk about the product. However, when you look outside the product and look directly at the customer’s pain of why they need the product or service, you hit their emotional center. This is a great place to find empathy, which creates understanding and a common bond.

Meaning > messaging.  Don’t change how people talk; change how they think.

#4 – Death by the Entire Story

We all have that one friend who tells the story of their latest vacation from beginning to very end. And somewhere between the story of their flight being delayed and them returning home to a dirty house, we miss the part about them meeting the love of their life at the hole-in-the-wall restaurant they happened to walk into on a rainy day in Paris.

When telling a story, share one point at a time and move forward. You can always expand on that point in other videos.

#5 – Death by Superlatives

When we use amazing words over and over again, they have the amazing ability to lose their amazing meaning. What’s the amazing-freaking point?

Stop telling people that your company is amazing. Instead, start telling them stories and let them reach their own conclusion.

For example, Tim used to work at Accenture. They thought they were unique until Deloitte came out with very similar messaging.

As videos become more of your marketing repertoire, don’t forget to help your audience find the joy in your story.

Bring Joy with Video Marketing

In the end, video is a means of which many people consume content but a bad video doesn’t make for a great experience. Focus your efforts on creating a great story that helps to solve the problems of your audience (in the same way you would with any other piece of content) and connects them to the content in a meaningful way.

What types of videos have you found to be most successful for your B2B marketing efforts?


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© Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®, 2017. | Stop the Marketing Killjoy: 5 Ways You’re Turning off Audiences with Bad Video | http://www.toprankblog.com

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Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®

Creator Monetization Report 2017: How Bloggers, Video Creators, and Podcasters Make Money

Are you a blogger, video creator, or podcaster? Are you wondering how creators are making money? Look no further. In the first study of its kind, Social Media Examiner commissioned a comprehensive study of more than 4,300 creators. In this report, you’ll discover: The most common ways creators monetize their work. What produces the most […]

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– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

Tips for Making Video Content that Earns Attention from Andrew Davis #CMWorld

The inimitable Andrew Davis is the best-selling author of Town, Inc. and an in-demand marketing speaker. After his presentation at Content Marketing World 2017, I can see why.

He made me feel stupid. And I’m incredibly grateful.

The best presentations make you feel stupid in retrospect. Of course! It’s so obvious that this is the way to do it! Why haven’t we been doing it this way the whole time? Feeling stupid after-the-fact means you just got smarter.

You see, video content marketing has gone from the next big thing to the current big thing. Brands that pump out a ton of text-based content are now flooding the attention marketplace with video. And just as we had to learn how to make content work for marketing, we’re all still figuring out how to make effective marketing video.

Over the course of 45 minutes–which included exploding watermelons, Ice Road Truckers, and impromptu dance breaks–Andrew laid out exactly what is wrong with how most marketers are approaching video. And, more importantly, how to fix it. Here are some key takeaways. I hope they make you feel stupid in the best possible way.

Creating Video Marketing that Holds Attention

As Andrew explained it, video is a linear medium. We want viewers to hit the play button and barrel down the tracks to the end, where our CTA lives. But people rarely take that straight journey. They can skip forward or backward, or even bail entirely.

When people bail on a video, conventional wisdom holds that the video’s too long for a short attention span. It’s not the lack of attention span, though: It’s the lack of content designed to hold attention. As Roger Ebert said, “No good movie is too long and no bad movie is short enough.”

Our goal, then, is to occupy our audience’s interest – their desire to know – over time. How can we do that?

#1: Raise questions to drive content.  What keeps a person watching is the desire to have a question answered. As Andrew put it, “Eliminate our audience’s desire to answer a question, and we eliminate interest in our content.”  Is your content giving it all away up front? If you answer the audience’s burning question in the first fifteen seconds, without promise of further answers to come, what’s their motivation to watch the next three minutes? Or six minutes? “When someone says your video is ‘too long,’” Andrew says, “they’re really saying, ‘I have no more questions.’”

#2 Create suspense. The primary method to keep the audience asking questions–thereby keeping them watching–is to create suspense. Show your audience something the character desires, then threaten it. Raise obstacles to the character’s goal. Leave the outcome in doubt. Raise the stakes over time and you keep the questions going – what’s going to happen next? How will this problem be solved?

#3 Put your CTA before the payoff. The suspense you’re building will lead to a moment of catharsis, when the questions are answered and all is revealed. But don’t put your CTA after that moment–see the previous comment about “I have no more questions.” Rather, put it right at that peak of interest. Think of it like the commercial break before the big reveal on a reality show. Just make sure your payoff is worth your viewer’s invested time and emotion.

Think Like a Reality TV Editor to Tell Compelling Stories

To build suspense and keep the audience guessing, we need to draw from the masters of suspense. Yes, reality TV shows, especially makeover and talent shows. The editing tricks of the TV trade can help make your content compelling, even if it’s not about toddler beauty pageants or salmon fishing in Alaska.

Consider these key elements as you edit:

  • Music. Too many corporate marketing videos use the same generic jaunty tune all the way through. Use music to set the mood and change that mood throughout the video.
  • Beats. No, not drumbeats or overpriced headphones. Beats are little moments of pause, a breath or two to let the audience process what you’re telling them. Don’t be afraid to pause and let things sink in–if you’ve earned the audience’s attention, that will build tension rather than dissipate it.
  • Pacing. You control the rate at which you give information to your audience. Withholding information builds suspense, balanced with the need to keep moving forward.
  • Narrative structure. Too many testimonial-type videos start with “This product is great and solved my problems, which were….” and the viewer says, “I have no more questions. You told me the product was great and solved your problems.” Instead, work toward the solution in a way that builds suspense and raises stakes:
    • Start with the problem
    • Intensify the problem
    • Show the struggle for a solution
    • Hint at the solution
    • Reveal the solution

Your Best Asset: A Critical Eye

Being aware of these elements and tactics is the first step. However, you can only truly master the form through conscious studying. Andrew said, “You will become a better video producer when you learn how to watch videos better.” The next time a video captivates your attention, study it. How is it continually raising questions? How is it building suspense? What editing, beats, and music choices make it compelling? Start watching video with a critical eye, see what works, and don’t hesitate to steal it.

In other words, what makes video marketing effective is exactly what makes any video effective: It tells a compelling story with tension, stakes, and a moment of catharsis when the tension is resolved.

Feel smarter? I know I do.

Ready to get going? Here are some easy ways to get started with video content marketing.


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© Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®, 2017. | Tips for Making Video Content that Earns Attention from Andrew Davis #CMWorld | http://www.toprankblog.com

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Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®

Relive MozCon with the 2017 Video Bundle

Posted by Danielle_Launders

MozCon may be over, but we just can’t get enough of it — and that’s why our team has worked hard to bring the magic back to you with our MozCon 2017 Video Bundle. You’ll have 26 sessions at your fingertips to watch over and over again — that’s over 14 hours of future-focused sessions aiming to level up your SEO and online marketing skills. Get ahead of Google and its biggest changes to organic search with Dr. Pete Meyers, prepare for the future of mobile-first indexing with Cindy Krum, and increase leads through strategic data-driven design with Oli Gardner.

Ready to dive into all of the excitement? Feel free to jump ahead:

Buy the MozCon 2017 Video Bundle

For our friends that attended MozCon 2017, check your inbox: You should find an email from us that will navigate you to your videos. The same perk applies for next year — your ticket to MozCon 2018 includes the full video bundle. We do have a limited number of super early bird tickets (our best deal!) still available.

This year’s MozCon was truly special. We are honored to host some of the brightest minds in the industry and the passion and insights they bring to the stage. We know you’ll enjoy all the new tactics and innovative topics just as much as we did.

But don’t just take our word for it…

Here’s a recap of one attendee’s experience:

“Attending MozCon is like a master’s course in digital marketing. With so many knowledgeable speakers sharing their insights, their methods, and their tools all in the hopes of making me a better digital marketer, it seems like a waste not to take advantage of it.”
– Sean D. Francis, Director of SEO at Blue Magnet Interactive

The video bundle

You’ll have access to 26 full video presentations from MozCon.

For $ 299, the MozCon 2017 video bundle gives you instant access to:

  • 26 videos (that’s over 14 hours of content)
  • Stream or download the videos to your computer, tablet, or phone. The videos are iOS, Windows, and Android-compatible
  • Downloadable slide decks for presentations

Buy the MozCon 2017 Video Bundle

Want a free preview?

If you haven’t been to a MozCon before, you might be a little confused by all of the buzz and excitement. To convince you that we’re seriously excited, we’re sharing one of our highly-rated sessions with you for free! Check out “How to Get Big Links” with Lisa Myers in the full session straight from MozCon 2017. Lisa shares how her and her team were able to earn links and coverage from big sites such as New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and BBC.

I want to thank the team behind the videos and for all the hours of editing, designing, coding, processing, and more. We love being able to share this knowledge and couldn’t do it without the crew’s efforts. And to the community, we wish you happy learning and hope to see you at MozCon 2018 in July!

Sign up for The Moz Top 10, a semimonthly mailer updating you on the top ten hottest pieces of SEO news, tips, and rad links uncovered by the Moz team. Think of it as your exclusive digest of stuff you don’t have time to hunt down but want to read!


Moz Blog

Selling With Video: YouTube and Facebook Video Marketing

Want to create a sales video that converts? Looking for expert tips about building rapport with your prospects? To explore how to sell with video on YouTube and Facebook, I interview Jeremy Vest. More About This Show The Social Media Marketing podcast is an on-demand talk radio show from Social Media Examiner. It’s designed to […]

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– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

How to Get Started with Video Content Marketing (Without a Blockbuster Budget)

Back in my day, all online content was text-based. If you had two animated .GIFs on a website, you had to wait 30 seconds for the site to load. Four .jpgs on a site would crash your browser. We were grateful when posts were just words! We didn’t whine about “visual stimulation” or “content variety” back then, let me tell you.

Of course, we also dressed like this:

So maybe we didn’t get everything right. For better or for worse, the early days of the Internet are long gone, and modern consumers want video content. Over half of all people online watch videos daily. And they’re not just watching cat videos and Jimmy Fallon clips: 59% of executives say if text and video are available on the same topic, they prefer the video. And 54% of senior executives share work-related videos with colleagues weekly.

It’s extremely likely that your target audience wants video content. Brands that create useful, engaging video will quickly surpass their competitors who don’t. So whether your brand sells baby strollers or enterprise-level cloud-based SaaS solutions, it makes sense to get into video.

Granted, video can be complicated and expensive. You could spend thousands of dollars on equipment, hire someone to shoot and edit the final product, or turn your conference room into a fully-functioning television studio. But there’s no need to go that far to see if video fits your content strategy.

Here are four cheap ways to get started with video content marketing. But first:

Make Video Part of Your Content Marketing Strategy

Don’t practice random acts of video. As with all your content, your video should fit within your content marketing strategy. That means each video should have a clear objective in mind, a plan for amplification, and a way to measure success. Keep the basic questions of any content creation in mind:

  • Who is this for?
  • Why should they watch it (what’s in it for them)?
  • How will they find it?
  • What do I want them to do after they watch it?

Make sure you answer all four questions before you start planning your video content. Once you have your strategy nailed down, you can use these techniques to start creating video without busting your budget.

Slideshow Videos

The easiest way to create video content requires no camera setup, no acting talent, and minimal upfront investment. Slideshow videos combine still images with transition effects and overlaid text. They’re simple to make, but surprisingly versatile and compelling. The simplest way to start is with Facebook’s slideshow creator – it’s a good way to experiment with the form and also create some compelling Facebook ads.

Once you know the basics, there are plenty of inexpensive tools that can create some surprisingly versatile videos. Options like Moovly and Animoto offer everything from stock images to licensed background music for a nominal monthly fee. Here’s a sample of how an infographic can become a compelling animated slideshow with Animoto:

Live Streaming Video

Once you’re ready to get more dynamic with your video content, you can dip a toe into streaming video live. The barriers to entry are lower for live video versus pre-recorded video; people expect streams to be informal, low-fi, and off-the-cuff.

All you need for live streaming is a smartphone and a good internet connection. And, of course, a compelling idea for what you’re going to stream. Here are a few types of content that are well-suited for the platform:

  • Behind-the-scenes tours of your facility
  • Product demonstrations
  • Live interviews at events
  • Q&A sessions where you take questions from the audience

Just remember to announce your live streams in advance, so you have time to build an audience. And it’s a good idea to have a partner working behind the scenes to stay on top of comments and monitor audience response.

If you use Facebook to stream, you will get a saved version of the video that you can further promote to those who missed it live.

Vlog

The next level of video creation is to create polished, edited video, which may or may not be scripted. A “vlog” is the most informal example of this type of content. Vlogs usually consist of one or two people addressing a single camera, with some editing and effects added in after the fact. Think of a vlog as a video blog post, content that might cover the same topics as your written content, but in a more visually compelling way.

You can create a vlog with nothing but a smartphone camera or laptop webcam. But it’s worth investing a little in lighting, camera, and microphone setup for a more professional-looking end product. For example, here is one of the first vlogs that we did for TopRank Marketing, using a webcam and natural lighting:

And here’s a more recent one, using a tripod-mounted camera, a few lights, and lapel microphones:

There’s a marked difference in the quality of the video, with a minimal investment in equipment.

 Demo/Explainer Videos

This type of video can be made with the same setup you might use for a vlog – a decent quality camera and a few lights are all you need. But instead of focusing on people reading content, a demo or explainer video focuses on demonstrating a process or giving a how-to. If your product offering lends itself to demonstration, it’s easy to create compelling video that gets watched.

For example, here’s a video made with practically no budget and a smidge of post-production that currently has nearly 40 million views on YouTube:

Tasty’s YouTube channel has great examples of this type of video, too. They use time-lapse and clever editing for lightning-fast recipe videos, and have earned over 3 million subscribers:

Less demonstration-friendly solutions (like, say, cloud-based SaaS) can still use a similar format, with an explanation instead of a demo.  Just make sure your video has these basic fundamentals:

  • Make it brief (less than five minutes)
  • Keep it practical and useful
  • Make sure it’s comprehensible without sound (85% of Facebook video is watched on mute)

Lights (optional), Camera (optional), Action (required)!

Video is rapidly eating the internet. As mobile connections get faster and data caps phase out, it will only get more popular. Your target audience is likely already looking for video content about your industry.

You don’t need a substantial investment to try video. Start slow, with slideshows that don’t require any special skills or equipment. Test out live video for a low-stakes next step. Once you have honed your skills and are ready to make minor investments, you can move on to scripted, edited content like vlogs and demo videos.

Learn more about creating compelling video content in our interview with Cisco Creative Director of Marketing Tim Washer.


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