Throughout Season 1 of Marketing Rocketfuel, we have been digging deep into all of the hidden costs that are associated with marketing. This episode is no exception! On the 6th episode of Marketing Rocketfuel, Drew and Michael take a closer look at short-form videos. What are they and how do they help your business?

Empower the Buyer By Letting Them In

Short form videos are videos that are 60 seconds or less. Short form videos can be a great catalyst for boosting the visibility of your business. With a short form video, you must be able to tell the story of your business in a very, for lack of a better word, short, amount of time. Short form videos can be inexpensive to make. You can make them on your phone and edit them within a short form video app. However, it can cost precious time to craft a short form video. For every 15 second video Drew shoots, it can cost him up to 30 minutes of time by the time he shoots, preps it, picks the music to go with the video, and puts everything in sequence. Some videos can even take up to an hour or more from start to finish depending on the complexity of your video.

Keep It Simple

With short form videos, it is best to keep it simple for both you and your end user. You can do this by shooting a video in one single cut. If you have to make multiple cuts, it can really become time consuming. The videos that get the most hits on the short form platforms are ones that are made in a single shot.

3 Short Form Video Platforms

Short form video apps are extremely popular. These are 3 apps that are both popular and tend to be easy to use.

1. TikTok: TIkTok is a short form video platform that allows the user to create 15 second videos aboutanything. This short form video platform has become popular for its trendy special effects features. If you are a business that likes to be on the cutting edge of trends, you may prefer this platform. TikTok video trends tend to be short lived. You don’t necessarily need to try, as a business owner, to stay ahead of the trends.

2. Instagram Reels: Drew finds that this is his favorite platform. In his opinion, Instagram Reels is incredibly user friendly. It’s a lot of fun to play around with. Like TikTok, Instagram Reels makes it easy for you to share your videos as you can create 15 second, multi-clip videos.

3. Youtube Shorts: Ran by the video giant Youtube, Youtube Shorts are minute long videos that have accumulated over 5 trillion views at the time of this writing.

Short Form Video Recording Basics

Furthermore, there are some helpful, practical tips to use when you take the leap and start recording short form videos. For starters, Drew and Michael recommend that when you shoot a video, you hold your phone in a vertical position, not a horizontal one. This is because most people are watching your videos while holding their phone in that position. And shoot something that is interesting. If you don’t have something visual to pair with your words, people will pass you buy. In addition, make sure to add some captions so that people can know what you are talking about in your video. When you do add captions, check them! Beware: automatic captioning is not always your friend. As a small business owner, you don’t want to detract from your message with incorrect or vulgar captions that don’t fit your video at all.

Product vs. Brand

When recording a short form video. It is important to remember that your video is promoting both your product and your brand. There is, however, a clear distinction between your product versus your brand. Your product is the “thing” that people buy from you. The product is the thing you customers can hold and touch. Your brand is the experience that you provide to your customer. Is your brand more of a “t-shirt and jeans” kind of brand? Or are you a higher end, boutique type brand? As the owner of your small business, your personality really needs to shine through as you plan out your short form videos.

Is Short Form Video a Trend?

Truthfully, short form videos aren’t going anywhere. The sooner that you can lean into short form videos, the better off your business will be. Rather than shying away, your business needs to begin to take advantage of using short form videos as a tool for marketing. But don’t be led astray! These common myths and misconceptions can dampen your quality and cost you valuable time when it comes to creating a short form video.

Myths and Misconceptions

1. You Can Make Short Form Videos On a Whim

This is simply a no. You need to create a shooting schedule. If you aren’t prepared to have all of your footage shot at once, be prepared to pay up. Your videographer will not film multiple sessions for free. Get all the shots you want at one time. While it may be true that you can record at any time you want, it is not the wisest marketing move. It is extremely important to maximize you time when it comes to content creation. Drews advice: pack some extra clothes in your bag before you head to work and batch your content. Designate a day as “video day” and knock out several videos all at once. This will help carry out your video plan, making you ready to post your content in a timely manner. At Escape Plan Marketing, you can purchase a plan in which a videographer will come out periodically at scheduled times to create batched video content. As a result, your videos will then be posted on the platforms on a systematic schedule. Someone else can be in charge of posting content at just the right time.

2. You Must Have a Professional Videographer

A professional videographer isn’t necessary to get really good shots. It may even be hard to see if hiring a professional videographer is worth the return on investment for your business. On the flip side, if you don’t have a staff member who can dedicate time recording video content, it may be worth your time to hire a videographer. Or it may even be worth making a greater investment and hiring a marketing firm to hire a videographer for you.

For example, Drew hired a professional photographer to take pictures of his home when he put it up for sale. Now, Drew was fully capable to take his own photos. Drew decided that, although he could do this, It would have taken too much time for him to get the images he needed while trying to run his business. Drew decided that it was worth the investment to have great pictures produced by a professional to sell his home in the current market.

3. Your Product Has to Be In Every Shot

In the 30-60 seconds you have in your video, you can sell your product and your brand. You are crafting a story. The story is what makes your customer want to buy your product. It’s totally ok to tell the story and not always have the product in the shot.

Tips For “Getting Found” With Your Short Form Video

It is vital that you take key steps in order to separate yourself from the competition on the various short form video platforms. These are few tips that Drew and Michael have compiled to help customers find you.

Be Honest

Whether it is an amateur or professional video, make sure your customer sees you. Whether you fly solo or use a pro, you want your videos to be an honest view of who you are and what you are about. You can look good and be authentic. If you decide to hire a videographer, that videographer can give your customers a high quality view of your authentic self without sacrificing an honest look at you and your company.

Be Brave

Don’t be afraid to go out and do something unusual. Show your audience something they haven’t seen before. Don’t use the same old trite, overplayed videos that everyone else is using. Be original. For instance, make behind the scenes video about a cool process that you use in your business. It makes you relatable. Better still, it draws the customer in, making them want to learn more. Be fearless when it comes to your products and your brand. No one can promote it like you because no one loves it like you do!

Don’t Over-Hashtag

Finally, so many people are using hashtags. They are everywhere. Contrary to the past, the algorithm has changed for hashtags. Now, Instagram is favoring fewer, more targeted hashtags. It’s really hard to get found when you use a hashtag that has been used over a million times. Try to use a hashtag that has been used thousands or tens of thousands times. More than likely, your business will be located by these hashtags rather than ones that have been used over and over. Use about 5 hashtags when posting. Then, tag another person or product that you are featuring in your video. By doing this, It shows goodwill and that you are willing to support other businesses.

Action Tip: Shoot a Video AND Publish It

Take a plunge and just do it. Use the tips that Drew and Michael have mentioned and create your own short form video. To make things more interesting, Drew and Michael have committed to making their own short form video mashup. See how yours compares to theirs!

This series is sponsored by Escape Plan Marketing. Be sure to reach out for a free discovery call with Drew and receive a FREE Marketing Audit Checklist.

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