How do you influence people remotely? How can you win people around where you’re not in the room? Join communication expert Jon Hammond, learn HOW to SUCCEED REMOTELY during COVID – with video content marketing tips and ‘how to’s’ from Jeremy Mason.
How to make good content in terms of video?
Table of contents:
- Know your audience
- The where
- Running time
- Batch Record your content
- Understanding Social Media platforms
- Video content marketing ideas
- Lighting Guide
Know your audience
It all starts with planning and actually a large part of it.
The main bit of it is to really understand and know your audience so that you know who you’re talking to. And obviously that then leads on to you being able to tailor your message specifically to that group of people. There’s some really good talk to enable you to really drill down and understand who your audience are with this whole new brand kind of digital world.
With things like Facebook ads and all those kinds of digital ads, you can really be super nation and really kind of drill down to very specific sets of people. But obviously you need to know who those people are and be able to target and message them in the right way so that whatever you want them to do, they end up doing; whether it’s selling, whether it’s just giving information, whether it’s warming them up as a prospect.
So, using a thing like a custom avatar basically, it takes you through the process and ask you loads and loads of questions. It’s not the easiest piece of work to do and it’s quite very comprehensive. But once you’ve done it, it’s absolutely brilliant and it really gives you a handle on exactly who your target audience for particular service or product or whatever. And importantly it allows you to work out where they are online? Where do they exist? What platforms do they frequent?
If you know, for example, that your target market is on LinkedIn or LinkedIn contents going to be different. For example, if you’re willing to find those people on Facebook, it has huge knock-on effects in terms of how you go about producing that content. It doesn’t mean that it will take you longer to do it. It just means that you need to go in with the end in mind. So, you need to understand who you’re talking to but also really critically what do you want them to do off the back of your content or your video.
Once you’ve gone through the customer avatar process, it just takes you through and builds a real character of the type of people that you’re targeting. In your business, you might actually target sort of four or five even maybe more groups of people that you offer your products or services to all you interact with equally there may be just one or two. But it’s really critical and it’s really the foundations to creating some really good and effective content.
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Like I said before once you know who you’re talking to and you really know them, you need know where they live online. Why is that important? Because like I said before each platform has different rules.
For example, on Facebook, you might want to do a video on a phone and film in landscape tele mode except that when you’re doing stories. Now, if you planned about it, you need to make sure that the important element of whatever you’re filming is in that central little square. Because for Facebook stories and also for Instagram and stuff like, its portrait mode, square one by one. You need to know all of that kind of thing and you need to have made those decisions before you go out or you jump in front of a camera. Obviously, it has huge implications in terms of how you produce that video content.
Also, the other thing as well which is massively handy obviously is each of the hate of the platforms have completely different rules. In this rule, there are sort of guidelines, but what you’ll find is when you start producing video content, what you’ll be finding is that if you’re doing an Insta thing, they are super short and it’s a bit like tick-tock, it’s 15 seconds maximum. For YouTube, you can run things longer the optimum kind of running time. For YouTube is about seven-and-a-half minutes. But then every now and again, do a longer version. It basically allows you to dig in a bit more detail for whatever sort of subject you’re talking about. And Facebook again when you actually look at all the guidance on Facebook they say 30 seconds is what they recommend although, personally I’ve done stuff where I would never go more than a minute, half two minutes.
People’s attention spans are like goldfish literally at the moment. So, keep it properly snappy and the other thing to say what we’re talking about these things is that you really need to hook people in and you need to be doing that within the first 20 seconds. There are some brilliant resources actually online that if you just google for things like YouTube, there are definite structures that these things take. But what all of the platforms have in common is the need to really hook your audience very quickly. You’ve got to stop that scroll. Yeah, we’re all kind of scrolling through things and it’s about arresting that scroll and then people tapping on it and then within seconds you need to get to the meat and bones of what you’re talking about so they can make a decision, “Oh, this is interesting” or “No, it’s no.”
So, I mean I would really steer away from me, very expansive, exotic kind of intro sequences and stuff like that. Equally all these kinds of big woefully intros about who you are and how great you are, no one cares. They want the content, they want the good stuff. The quicker you get to that, the better. And fundamentally, it all comes down to respecting the audience’s time. They’ve chosen to invest their time in in listening and watching you. They’ve chosen to be there with you so don’t sort of abuse that trust they put in you, that you know and waste their time by just kind of waffling around.
The point having said all that, I don’t want you to be in a pit of despondency. The way to really kind of quickly and efficiently create content comes back to the whole planning piece. The more planned you are, the better organized you are.
Batch record your content
It’s the idea that you in your very busy diary will set up one or two days to just create content. Now, if you’re doing stuff like this, like in a webcam situation, what you’ll do is you’ll have scripted maybe or done some bullet points or whatever. But you fundamentally know I’m going to talk about this then, I’m going to talk about this and then, I’m going to do a video about this. Maybe change it up. Have a couple of shirts or whatever so that people don’t think you’ve just sat there and when they watch, the next three weeks of your content, they’ve had that shirt one for three weeks. So, do a little bit of that sort of thing works well. But effectively, the idea is that you want to allot some time that is just devoted to you creating content so that you’re not then kind of halfway through your week and thinking, ‘Oh my gosh, I haven’t done something for LinkedIn’ or ‘I need to do this.’ As I say, all comes back to planning a lot time in your diary —to create this content and then batch record it. It just becomes so much easier.
Let’s say and out of that big long chunk of content, what you want to be doing is structuring it in a way that you can cut down into little chunks and those the little chunks that you then will go and put on LinkedIn. So, 1 min and 30 secs goes onto LinkedIn and then you know maybe a sort of 1 min and 20 secs can go onto Facebook. Or you could use the same. The fundamental thing is start with your big piece of content that you then put on something like YouTube and then subdivide it down. That will make it so much easier to produce for you.
Understanding social media platforms
Now in terms of running times, it’s about 7 and a half minutes to about sort of fifteen to twenty. On YouTube you get stuff that goes on for an hour or so. But it really depends on what your niche is, what the subject matter is, and how engaged your audience is on that as to whether people will stick around for that amount of time.
Facebook, big thing to remember, Facebook is not for selling. Do not sell on Facebook. It is about warming the audience up. It’s information and especially now. It’s incredible how the whole kind of digital marketing thing is shifted and the tone of conversation. Frankly at the moment is about helping people really because and even if you’re kind of doing it with an ulterior motive, even that seems to come across as being really disingenuous. So personally, I’d go be very careful if that’s kind of what you’re doing, I think you just got to be pretty straightforward and genuinely want to help people on Facebook. And again, Facebook and while all of these platforms, they’re a long game. They’re not a magical kind of traffic tap. When you’re producing content, it takes probably three six months before you start to get real traction. But when you do start to get traction, it’s one of those really delicious upward curves, the more people that get involved the more people that enjoy what you do and the more feedback you get. Obviously, you can it’s a two-way conversation, you understand more about what your audience is after and then you can deliver it.
As I say LinkedIn is about one to two minutes. LinkedIn have now started to do LinkedIn lives but relatively recently it’s still kind of, from my point of view, it’s really hard to work out kind of the optimum length for stuff because if you look at the kind of stuff on Google about it, they claim that they are kind of old. But my instinct would say, with the audience that you’ve got, they’re the type of people that are on that platform. Actually, there is more of an appetite and this has been borne out by my stuff that I’ve put up there so far. I think you can run it slightly longer. Not as long as YouTube, but it’s certainly a couple of minutes. Again, as long as it’s really relevant and gets to the point, doesn’t wait people, waste people’s time.
Like I said, 15 seconds. If you’re on Instagram, it’s very kind of almost quite throw away right.
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Video Content Marketing Ideas
How do you come up with the ideas? This is something that comes up a lot when you start talking to people about. Well, you should be posting once a day on LinkedIn and twice a week or whatever it is on the other platforms. You’ve got to come up with the ideas right for what people want to hear.
- Have a look at your niche
Now the first thing is, have a look at your niche, have a look what your competitors are doing it. And also note what platforms they’re using because if they are good competitors, they’re not complete nutter jokers. They will be having a strategy. Have a look at their posts. What are they posting? What sort of topics are they talking about? Are they posting videos? Are they doing static posts? Are they doing infographics? Just have a look, do not copy it. But just let’s say be influenced by and put your own spin on it. The trouble is with just sort of doing a cut and paste job, is that it’s not in your voice and it’s so easy to see that you’ve just basically lifted it from somewhere else. And also, the other thing which is the main reason, ethically it stings a bit. But I would definitely not do it because Google and the search engines are very good as blotting plagiarism.
- Google search box suggestions
The other thing to do as well is, Google. Literally type in what your clients would type in a search terms and you’ll get a lot of allied search terms. Now, those are things that people genuinely have actually clicked on. So, they might be questions or they might be long keywords or whatever. Those that’s absolutely gold and information that you can then package your content around. In other words, you know what people are looking for.
- Google suggestions
The other thing to do is at the top and then at the bottom of Google, after you’ve got all the listings, there’s the kind of ‘People also search for’ that is also fantastic because again that’s a great source of content ideas. What are the questions people are actually asking Google for and the thing with all of these things with Google, if you’re answering the question exactly how it’s been typed into Google, then guess what happens to your post when you put that form of words in. Your ranking shoots up eventually. Again, it’s a longer-term game. It’s not going to happen overnight but over a period of weeks. Google is all about relevance. It wants people to use Google obviously and provide really relevant information.
- Answer the public
The other thing which got a little gold cheeky, little gold nugget, answerthepublic.com. Go there, type in your niche or whatever you do or service or whatever that then comes up. This website does scrapes all the search data from Google, from all the different search engines and collects it in a really very nice graphical way so you will get a graphical representation of the questions people are asking to do with your niche. It’s an absolutely brilliant way of coming up with ideas.
Basically, just keep it simple, not get too bogged down in the lighting side of thing. Just use natural light where you can. It’s often very diffused and it’s very complimentary.
If you’re doing things on DSLRs and all that thing, you’re a bit more in control of the depth of field and you can throw the background out. But the idea being, you don’t want people to be distracted by the background. It’s all about you in this instance. Make sure you’re the focus. Ideally the background should be should be darker than the subject of the frame.
In this lovely little graphic just face yourself towards the daylight. In terms of background if you can, try and make some distance between you and the background because with these cameras on webcams they’re what’s called ‘depth of field’. So, at the point at which they’re in focus is actually quite a big distance. They’ve got quite a big depth of field which is a deliberate thing on.
Now, if you wanted to get posh and do some lighting stuff, you can use ring light. They can get them for about I think 80 quid on Amazon. Obviously, you need to stand. Imagine, if you’re just shooting on your phone literally what you do is you’d have the light in front of you and you would poke your phone through the ring light. It’s very complementary light and very flattering and it basically was used for portrait photography for ages and it will make your eyes look very nice with kind of little rings around the eyes. It’s very flattering light. so, if you want to do the lighting thing, with one light is a great way to start all lots of vloggers on YouTube and everyone uses that that sort of setup right.
Here, what you want to do is try and frame according to the Rule of Thirds.
The Rule of Thirds is a thing that it’s just the way that your eye perceives pictures. And what your brain thinks is an aesthetic pleasing frame. What you want to do is have your eyes two-thirds of the way up the frame. You kind of need to be in the middle. What you want to try and avoid is 75 feet of headroom.
Think about what’s in the background. If you’re doing something for B2B kind of stuff, you need to pay attention to these elements. It makes much nicer viewing experience and you don’t give anyone any reason for being distracted.
The other thing is all about the sound. You really need to get this right because ultimately you can get away with slightly dodgy visuals but if people can’t hear you, it’s game over, you’ll literally lose the audience in seconds. So, invest in good microphones. If you’ve got a little inline mic, that will be absolutely better than using your smartphone microphone. If you’re walking around and also that comes with a little wind gag that you can pop on the top. So, you literally clip that on and it will transmit directly to your phone. So, when it comes to the sound just don’t compromise because it does have a direct effect and you know bad sound will lose your audience within seconds and they won’t come back either.
But with all of this tech, don’t let the tech and all of that be a barrier to you to get started. But you know you’ve got to start somewhere and the key thing is that you start, there’s so much opportunity.
Now is a brilliant time to start doing that. And like I say, as long your kind of messaging in your tone is right and you’re doing appropriate things for the appropriate platform, which comes back to the planning thing, as long as you’ve done all of that legwork, do it. So, with all of this though, don’t forget it isn’t about you or us, it’s about your audience. Never forget that always. Anytime you’re making any content, that has to be front and center all the time. I hope you’ve got some kind of sense