Video killed the photo content. Ok, not as catchy as the The Buggles’ version, but you get my point: social media has officially entered its video era. For some small business owners, video offers an exciting new avenue to reach a broader audience for your brand, for others, it probably leaves you queasy with the thought of having to exert precious creative energy on yet ANOTHER technological and creative skillset. Whichever category you fall into, there’s no hiding it: video content is in demand, and I’m here to tell you you have two main options if you want to keep up with the trends.
The first, is the simplest and quickest way to get started: using your phone! Both Instagram and TikTok offer in-app shooting and editing capabilities, and despite some glitches now and then, you don’t need to go to film school to figure out how to use them. You’ll also find a ton of ideas for content with either video memes or easy educational facts. Utilizing those platforms to create easy, simple, fun, video content is a great option for when you want to quickly engage with your audience.
Though this option is the most accessible and quickest, it’s certainly not the highest quality. I do believe some brands can get away with utilizing mostly fun and engaging, low quality type reel content, but just like your business’s photography, you gotta know when it’s time to step it up.
This is where the second option for your video strategy comes in, lying on the opposite end of the spectrum, what I like to formally call, brand video content. This is the type of video content that is shot and edited professionally, and also has strategic brand planning behind it. This type of video can still be 60 seconds or less, but the time put into making that video is much longer than the 20 minutes it took to record yourself singing to Olivia Rodrigo’s “Good for You.”
Branded video content is great for formally and professionally educating, selling, or inspiring your target audience. Unlike the more laid back video clips you post on Reels and TikTok that are based around meme or music trends, this type of video has a long shelf life and can be recycled for years (as long as your messaging stays the same). The best part? It doesn’t have to stay on just Instagram or TikTok. Because they’re captured in high definition, these videos are also suitable for Youtube, your business website, client proposals, and more (TIP: make sure you talk to your videographer about the best aspect ratio before you begin filming to determine what platforms you can exhibit your video on)!
If you have no experience whatsoever with professional video, consider outsourcing for this type of video content. Just like all other areas of brand marketing (photography, design, copywriting, etc.), you’ll find that the investment is worth hiring someone who knows what they’re doing.
Once you find your dream videographer to collaborate with, next it’s time to decide what exactly you want these videos to capture. This is usually the trickiest part for my clients since the possibilities are really endless when it comes to video, so I created three basic packages that I’ve determined most small businesses/brands could benefit from:
1. Custom Stock Footage
You might already be familiar with stock footage thanks to Canva’s media library or other platforms like Shutterstock. Video stock footage usually consists of simple, single shot clips that are 15 seconds or less and feature no sound. They’re fantastic for including as cutaways in longer videos, or using as background videos for your website or announcements on Instagram.
If you’re a product-based business or a service provider wishing to show your face more, the custom stock footage package brings this same concept of short, high quality video clips, but includes your own products, or yourself, as the subject!
With this option, you’ll never need to worry about other businesses utilizing the same stock footage as you for marketing materials, since these would be created for and only available for you to utilize. This means you’ll have high quality video content that is authentic and on-brand for your business, rather than footage that might be a little vague in messaging.
2. Brand Trailer
A brand trailer video takes advantage of the IG Reels or TikTok model of video content with quick cuts and vibey music, but steps it up big time with strategic props, wardrobe, and location. I like to think of this type of brand video as a fun preview to your business or a new collection/service.
With a brand trailer, you’ll have a 60 second or less video that largely consists of B-roll type footage (think lifestyle or behind-the-scenes shots without sound) cut together in a stylized video edit. Brand trailer videos put emphasis on eliciting a mood or feeling that aligns with your brand voice, and can be a great way to introduce the face behind the brand or highlight any new products or collections.
3. Brand Story Video(s)
The brand story video option is a more traditional model of video content where you’ll have the chance to directly address your audience in an interview-style setup cut together with B-roll footage that helps to visualize the concepts you’re mentioning.
These videos are perfect for those looking to articulate specific messaging like their company’s mission, backstory, process, or to provide educational information related to your product or services. Due to the more informational tone of this type of video content, these videos are typically longer than the brand trailer or custom stock footage option, usually between 2-5 minutes, or can be released through a series of videos.
Because of the range and versatility offered by branded video content, I really recommend small business and brand owners consider this type of video in their arsenal of media marketing. Send me an inquiry if you’re interested in hearing more about how this type of video content could work for your business.