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3 Steps to Make Your Own Small Business Marketing Videos

As a small business person, are you making marketing videos yet? If not, does it feel too hard to pull off? Well, in this video, I want to change your mind about that. Do you send marketing emails? Write a blog? Post on social media? Add videos to any of them, and watch what happens.

Hi, I’m Perry Alexander, and today, I’m going to walk you through the process—end-to-end—of figuring out what videos to make, how to make and post them yourself, and how to get measurable results.

Before we dive in, consider subscribing to this channel—and hit the bell icon to be notified when I share more videos about digital marketing.

So, tell me: are you already using video in your marketing? If so, leave a comment that says “Yes.” If not, leave a comment that says “No” and mention what’s holding you back, so I can make future videos that address your needs.

In a moment, I’ll show you how, for under a hundred dollars, you can begin making your own online videos, and how to promote them—with virtually no other out-of-pocket costs.

Step 1: Video Marketing Best Practices

First, a little about the power of video. It can double your click-through rate from emails to your website or landing page. And, if you simply use the word, “video” in your email subject line, click-through rates can increase by 50%. Using video marketing can drive a 50% improvement in conversions leading to purchase. Include video in a tweet, and get up to a 6x boost in retweets. And, search engines favor web pages that include video. For more about the power of video, there are links to articles, in the Comments below, that have loads more video statistics.

What kind of videos should you make? We’ve all seen the animated explainer videos on website home pages with their happy, perky music and graphics—but no spoken words. They’re intended to give an overview of the product, service, or business. But, be careful. They often lack the depth to be of much help, so you feel like you’ve wasted your time watching them. With just graphics and music and no spoken words, video viewership drops off, and it’s harder to be found in a search on YouTube. Or, you might consider tutorials, interviews, testimonials, video logs—called vlogs, or live streams. But, best of all, for generating new leads and new business, make content marketing videos, where you share your expertise about subjects you know well. Post these on YouTube to help people who are looking to better understand a concept or solve a problem. And, use them in emails, social media posts, and on your general website or landing page.

Content marketing videos will rank higher in search than posting just text. Offer helpful tips and insights about your topic, but keep your sales message low key. This builds awareness, trust, and authority in you without fatiguing your viewers. At the end of each video, you should include a “call to action,” where you encourage people to check out your website for more information or offer something free in exchange for their email address. Limit your sales message, or call-to-action, to no more than about 5 percent of your video, at the very end. Your viewers won’t feel like they’re just watching a commercial, and will want to subscribe to hear about your next video. With an expanding audience, more will click through to your site, and some will buy. Grow your video audience—grow your sales. It’s that simple.

But, how do you come up with topic ideas? Let’s say you’re a home-builder, and you have tips that most people don’t know about the best questions to ask when they’re trying to choose a contractor. Well, there’s your video topic. Or, maybe you sell baby clothes. Explain how to make the best choices about sizing, fabric, or durability. New parents need lots of coaching—and why shouldn’t it come from you? Or, as a healthcare provider, say you’re an expert on the thyroid. Share your insights about thyroid health in a series of videos, build a following, and fill your appointment slots. Then, do another on heart health, and so on. If you know nutrition, offer your nutritional supplements for sale on your website.

The first 10 seconds of your video have to grab and hold the viewer. Make every word count. If not, they’ll move on, and the rest of your video will never be seen. And don’t feel like you have to keep your videos short. That’s a common misperception. The second it gets boring, it’s too long. That could happen at 30 seconds, 3 minutes, or half-an-hour. As long as it’s interesting and relevant, people with stay with it. But be brutal—scrap everything that’s not to the point and doesn’t keep your video moving forward.

Step 2:  You Can Make Your Own Videos

Even with all these ideas and tips, do you still cringe at the thought of trying to make your own videos? Well, start out just shooting them on your phone—as long as the audio is clear and you don’t sound like you’re in a barrel. Just get yourself a tabletop tripod and a booster mike. Pick up both for under a hundred bucks, and you’re in the video-making business. I’ve posted links to some good ones. Have this set-up handy in your office, so any time a video idea strikes you, just make it on the spot, or scratch out a sticky note, and record the video later that day. You know what you’re talking about. Very little prep—just turn formulate your main theme, figure out that crucial, first ten seconds, turn on your phone and start talking.

And a couple of other basics. Be careful about having too much harsh light from a bright window or lamp behind you, and make sure whatever is behind you isn’t distracting. Minimize extraneous sounds—traffic noise, office chatter, kids, pets–those sorts of things. This may seem like a lot to manage, but it’s just like when you first dive into cool lake. You thrash around for a few minutes, and pretty soon, the water’s fine.

For this clip, I'm using an iPhone mounted on a tripod, about 3 feet from me, and a booster mike that mentioned earlier, and you can see that it looks just fine. A you step up your game—add a few lights, a green screen, a floor-standing tripod, a better camera, a wired mike, and maybe even a teleprompter, it’ll come out even better—like this. And you can get into all that equipment for around a thousand dollars, total. Or less, if you've already got a decent camera that’ll shoot video. You can edit your video on your phone or tablet. There’s a little learning curve for that, but you can delete mistakes and off-topic comments to tighten everything up, add an open and close, and make it even more compelling.

To make the most impact, a video that explains a concept or helps solve the viewer’s problem in words they can understand—a content marketing video—has to come from a fresh perspective. And keep your language and jargon at the level of your audience, or you’ll lose them.

Step 3: Getting the Most Views

So, maybe, now you’re convinced that you need to do video marketing, and that you can actually make the videos, but how do you get noticed? Do what others don’t— stick to it, and keep making more and more videos over time. Be smart about how and where you post your videos. Invest a few hours each week to make, optimize, and post your videos on each social media account, encourage viewers to check out your website, your blog, and your other social media accounts, and spend time marketing your videos—don’t just wait and hope for viewers to show up. More about that in just a moment.

But first, don’t pass up posting on YouTube. The second most often searched word on Google is “YouTube,” and YouTube is the second most-visited website (after Facebook). People want to watch, more than they want to read.

Ask for comments and questions—and answer them right away, and encourage sharing. Engage with your commenters. More comments and shares gets you more authority in search rankings than “likes.”

Load your video description with key words, but be smart about it. Don’t just think up few, and hope they’re the right ones. Tap free online tools like UberSuggest to research what keywords people are actually using to find you and your competition, and use those.

Transcribe or subtitle your videos—that is, type out the spoken words and upload that file, along with your video. Most mobile videos on Facebook are viewed with the sound off. But, don’t depend on YouTube or Facebook to do a great job generating automatic transcriptions from your audio. Those are filled with errors, so they’re given very little weight for search results. It’s so important to upload your own transcriptions, so you’ll be found in search. But, who’s got the time or skills to do all that? Easy—at least one online resource, will do it for you just a dollar a minute.

And, be sure to upload your videos separately to each social media platform. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram will penalize your video’s authority if you simply link it over from YouTube. You have to upload your video and the transcription or subtitles to each platform separately.

Now, back to marketing your video. Master marketing guy, Neil Patel, has a couple of great suggestions.

The first is to use an online tool like BuzzSumo to find others who have blogged or written about your topic. Send a friendly email to each of them to say how you enjoyed their piece; that you’ve created a video on that topic; and ask if they’d be willing to take a look and possibly embed it on an upcoming blog. That builds exposure and credibility for you, while it helps strengthen their message—win/win.

The second is to spend four times as much time and effort marketing your videos as you do creating them. Just posting to YouTube and waiting for viewers is not going to make a quick, big impact. Really optimizing and marketing them will make the difference.

If you’re convinced you really need to do this, but feel overwhelmed or lost about even where to start, or you want help managing it all, it’s what I do. I’ve worked with small business clients across the country who shoot their raw footage and upload it to me. I polish it up, add opening and closing graphics, prepare subtitles for search, find and submit the best keywords, and post the finished videos to their website and social media—all that. Check out my digital marketing company website and let’s talk about how we might work together to get video marketing working for you.

Thanks for watching. And, if you liked this video, please subscribe, hit the bell, tell others about it, like it, and leave a comment below or even a quick question, and I’ll be sure to answer.

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