From YouTube ads & personalised video EMDs to Instagram reels and tiktok, no matter where you look, video marketing is everywhere and has grown well beyond a mere trend – it is a critical component of any business’s marketing strategy. As a video production company in Sydney, you might think we’re a little bais when we say that, and you’d be right. But we are not alone.
According to a recent report from HubSpot, video has become an essential aspect of the consumer’s relationship with brands, with an increasing expectation for brands to provide video content. Consumers rely on video content as a significant part of their decision-making process when researching and making purchases.
Given this insight, it’s not surprising that businesses across Australia, and especially in Sydney, are turning to video production companies to create high-quality video content. Whether it’s promotional videos, corporate videos, or web videos, businesses understand the importance of engaging their target audience with visually compelling content that tells their story.
However, we understand that some businesses opt to produce content themselves. As you will quickly discover, creating engaging and effective video content requires careful planning, creative storytelling, and technical expertise. If you’re new to video, there’s a handful of common mistakes that can undermine the effectiveness of your video content. But fear not, once you know what these mistakes are and how to avoid them, you’ll create high-quality video content that engages viewers, builds brand awareness, and drives conversions in no time!
Mistake #1: Not Having a Clear Strategy or Goal
We’ve all heard it, “If you want to score, you need to have a goal.” In the world of video marketing nothing could be more true. A clear goal and comprehensive strategy for targeting and communication with your audience are critical to the success of your campaign.
First, consider what you want to achieve with your video. We don’t want to make a video for video’s sake. No, we want to drive meaningful business outcomes. By understanding the specific problem you are trying to solve, you can develop a clear strategy and define the metrics for the success of your video campaign.
It could be that you want to increase awareness for a new product, inspire your customers to share their experience with the broader community or to simply increase click through rate and drive sales. Your strategy could be to send repeat customers a series of videos via email, create an about us video that will live on your website or even a product explainer that illustrates its features and benefits that can appear on a digital catalog – the options are endless.
Once a clear strategy and goals have been defined, businesses can tailor their video content to meet those objectives. This includes determining the style, tone, and messaging of the video, as well as selecting the appropriate channels and platforms for distribution.
Once you have a clear goal and a basic strategy, you can use this to craft the creative decisions and techniques used to create your video. Trying to reach a teen demographic for your sink-care brand? Try vertical video and TikTok? Looking to encourage business leaders to join your 3-day conference, a testimonial and hype reel on LinkedIn could be the way to go. Either way, without clear goals and a strategy, you will struggle to cut-through.
Mistake #2: Focusing too Much on Selling and not Enough on Storytelling
No one likes the feeling that they are being sold to. No matter how many benefits and features your product or service has to offer, unless your audience feels that the message being delivered is relevant to them, you’re in trouble. One of the best ways to connect with your audience is to tell a story.
The elements of a good story are easy to grasp. We need a main character – someone or something to relate to. That character needs to want something – an unmet desire. Then, we need to see that character undergo a journey to get that thing that they want – a hero’s journey. The character will either get the thing that they wanted or not. Either way, they will be changed for having undergone that journey. It’s easy to picture this in the context of a movie or television show, but for a business what would this look like?
Imagine an animal welfare organisation seeking to raise money to support their efforts to conserve native wildlife in the Amazon. Rather than a video that lists the facts and figures related to their cause, they could instead tell the story of their organization. For example, the video could begin by stating their desire to protect the amazon rainforest from illegal logging. The video can show the efforts that the organization has taken to prevent logging, from arranging protests and lobbying politicians to setting up rehabilitation programs and educational workshops with school children. Finally, the video can illustrate the tangible results of their efforts and close with a call to action, asking the viewers to support the cause.
Overall, by focusing on storytelling and incorporating its values, any business can create effective video content that engages on an emotional level and builds trust in their brand.
Mistake #3: Neglecting Audio Quality
A common pitfall that newcomers to video get stuck in, is forgetting to treat audio as an afterthought. It’s easy to get swept up in creating the perfect shot – framing, lighting, costumes and set-design are all essential elements of a great video. However, the reality is, it doesn’t matter how good your shot looks, if the audio is bad your audience will not forgive you.
To avoid this common mistake, we must pay careful attention to how audio is captured & presented to the audience. It begins with getting your microphone off your camera. Yes, your camera will likely have a built-in microphone, but just like the built-in speakers on your TV, these are not adequate for the next results. For most businesses, investing in a wireless microphone system will create excellent audio and ensure that your message is delivered clearly to the audience.
Further, not only should you consider what kind of microphone to use, but where you will be using it. You want to shoot your video in a quiet location. Where possible, move away from noisy traffic, office chatter, loud air conditioners and construction. While many of these sounds can be removed or reduced in post-production, it’s better to avoid the headache in the first place and record great audio from the start.
Mistake #4: Ignoring the Importance of Calls to Action
Calls to action (CTAs) are a crucial component of video content that can help businesses achieve their marketing goals. An effective CTA encourages viewers to take a specific action, such as visiting a website, filling out a form, or making a purchase. Neglecting the importance of CTAs can result in lower engagement rates, decreased conversions, and limited ROI.
Having a strong call to action is the key to a successful piece of video marketing to drive results for a business. Think about it, we don’t want to make video for video’s sake, we want to drive meaningful outcomes in our business. Now that you have the attention of your audience, it’s a good idea to consider what you’d like them to do after having watched your video.
A call to action is a specific ask or direction to your audience to do something. Ideally, that something, will be informed by your broader strategy. For example a business looking to increase conversions to their website might use a CTA directing the audience to “click the link below” to find out more. Another business might want to start a conversation within their community and suggest to the viewer “leave a comment”. Whereas a business leader communicating with dozens of staff via an internal video, might wish to improve culture and request that “if you see me in the hall, come say hello and share your ideas”.
To create effective CTAs, we must be specific, clear, and relevant to the content. The CTA should be concise and straightforward, making it easy for viewers to understand the desired action. Finally, to optimise the success of a CTA, businesses can also use the principles of urgency and scarcity to create a sense of FOMO (fear of missing out). This can include using time-sensitive language, such as “limited time offer” or “while supplies last,” to encourage viewers to take action immediately.
Mistake #5: Overlooking Video SEO
So you’ve completed your video – well done! Now it’s time to publish and unleash your creation to the world. This is an essential part of the process that requires as much attention and creativity as you gave in the video’s production.
A great place to start is by spending time to select the correct keywords for use in your video’s title, thumbnail and description. Appropriate keyword selection will ensure that your video appears in your audience’s search results. This involves researching and selecting keywords that are relevant to the video content and incorporating them into video descriptions, titles, and tags.
Another essential aspect of video SEO is optimizing video descriptions and titles. We want to devise creative and engaging titles that entice our audience and accurately reflect the content of the video. Best practice is to ensure that your video descriptions and titles are concise, informative, and easy to understand, making it easier for viewers to find and engage with the video content.
Finally, you should consider incorporating transcripts of your video to enhance its SEO performance. Video transcripts provide a written record of the video content, making it easier for search engines to understand and index the content. Transcripts can also provide viewers with an alternative way to consume the video content, making it more accessible to a wider audience.
So there you have it, 5 common mistakes video newcomers make and how to avoid them.
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