In recent years, video has emerged as a powerful marketing tool with a wide range of demonstrated benefits for product marketers. Product videos resonate with prospective customers because they are often easier to understand and are much more engaging than traditional marketing collateral. From crafting product training materials for employees and remote partner organizations to building promotional videos for new products and beyond, video helps businesses achieve an array of marketing communication goals.
Producing a high-quality, engaging and effective product video is often not as easy and it would seem on the surface. There are unique factors you should consider when producing a video in order to help it best assist your product management team in reaching its product marketing goals for the brand. Below, we'll step through several best practices which product marketers, regardless of industry, should consider when producing product videos.
Tailor Your Video Towards Specific Buyer Personas
Like all marketing communication strategies, product marketers must begin the video content creation process by understanding who their target buyers are, their current business challenges, and what motivates them in their purchasing decisions. With the exception of product support videos, when it comes to producing product marketing videos, you’ll first want to identify who the target viewer is for each of your videos. Is your audience even a consumer? Maybe it’s intended for the people that will be selling or reselling the product or solution.
Who the target viewer is for the video content you produce and the action you want them to take are key questions you will need to answer. Do you intend to use the video to educate an internal sales team or pursue a potential customer to contact you for a live demo? Maybe it’s to introduce a new product to your channel partners or to address a commonly encountered tech support issue. Answering these types of questions will help guide the rest of the video pre-production (planning) and production (filming) processes.
Below are some key questions to ask yourself to help you identify your target viewer:
- Is the viewer buying or selling the product or solution?
- What is the technical aptitude level of your target viewer?
- What’s the viewer’s level of familiarity with the product?
- Is the viewer an end-user of the product or the business manager?
- What challenges does your solution resolve for the viewer?
- Where does the viewer stand in your customer acquisition funnel?
These important factors help define your target viewer, refine script messaging or talking points, and can greatly enhance your ability to effectively communicate your value proposition or the message you’re trying to convey. Devoting sufficient time during this crucial phase of your video project will help guide the rest of the video production process and will most likely save a significant amount of time and resources in the long run.
Master Your Product Demonstration Technique
Beyond defining your target audience, it is also vital to have your on-screen talent or whoever will be performing the demonstration spend time perfecting the way they will deliver the demonstration for the camera. It’s one thing to deliver a live product demonstration to a prospect at a trade show or a channel partner at a training event, but when you’re demonstrating for the camera it’s a little more stressful. To be most effective, a product demonstration video needs to clearly and flawlessly demonstrate the value proposition of the product.
In most cases, especially with technology products, you’ll most likely end up taking multiple takes before your on-screen talent warms up. This is perfectly normal, however; having your on-screen talent practice before getting in front of the camera will definitely payoff when it’s time to film and edit. And it will ultimately help you deliver a better video.
Use Brand New Products When Demonstrating Physical Products
When it comes to video, cameras pick up everything, which is why it’s always best to use brand new products that have never been used or deployed. You’d think this is pretty obvious, but more often than not, this is overlooked. In some cases, using brand new products isn’t an option because in order to perform the demonstration, the product might require a bit of configuration once it’s out of the box. This is understandable, and depending on the type of video your producing, acceptable.
If you’re unable to use brand new products in your video, just be sure to clean it up as best as possible, and also be sure to have your video director frame your product in different ways to try and minimize any imperfections that the camera will pick up. Using brand new, and in some cases nearly new, products will help you deliver a more visually appealing video that will be perceived more positively by viewers.
Properly Prepare the Filming Area Before Hitting Record
In addition to using a new product and selecting an experienced demonstrator, it’s important to make sure that the area in which you’ve chosen to film is clean, organized and free from visual distractions or any items that may be controversial. This will help ensure that you capture the most visually, and audibly, appealing content possible. When preparing the area where you’ll be filming it’s important to:
- Make sure to turn off the heating and air conditioning systems in the room your filming in as well as any other electronics or electric powered items like a mini-fridge to help eliminate ambient noises you have control over.
- Ensure that the product being featured, the on-screen talent presenting the product and the entire filming area is appropriately and properly lit. This will help make sure that everything in frame can be captured as best as possible.
- Make sure that area you'll be filming in is spotless and that everything is clean, tidy and positioned perfectly for the camera. Even the smallest details and imperfections can be easily picked up by the camera.
- If you're filming in an office environment where day to day business is occurring, post “Please Be Quiet - Filming in Progress” signage outside of the filming area to eliminate any potential background noise that may naturally occur.
Taking the time to ensure everything is as perfect as it can possibly be before filming will help ensure your brand is perceived as best as possible and will also save time in post-production by minimizing the time and costs associated with re-shooting or applying advanced editing techniques to cover up mistakes.
Create A Distribution Plan for Your Video
Producing a high-quality video that effectively demonstrates or communicates your product’s value proposition is only half the battle. To gain maximum exposure and user engagement, you must craft a well-thought-out video marketing plan with a focused distribution strategy. This plan needs to take advantage of the extensive range of communication channels at your disposal to ensure the widest dissemination. We recommend promoting your product video via channels including:
- Your company’s corporate homepage
- The product’s specific landing page
- Public video platforms such as YouTube
- Social media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn
- Prospect and customer email campaigns
- Paid video search and PPC campaigns
- Employee promotion to prospects
By taking a multi-channel distribution approach, you’ll be able to maximize the full potential of all of your existing marketing channels, helping you generate greater ROI from your video marketing efforts.
When it comes to investing in video marketing and producing good product marketing video content, the key is to understand who your target viewers are and what motivates them in their purchasing decisions. Equally as important is making sure that your content is well-produced and has a distribution plan to support it once it’s produced. Following these simple best practices for producing good product marketing videos will help ensure the content you produce meets both your and the viewer’s expectations.