The following is a guest post by Camille McClane.
Putting short videos and the limited attention span of Internet users together provides a lot of potential.
You’ve got potential for a ton of exposure, for attention from big-time media outlets and the opportunity to reach a large number of people, many of whom would be willing to buy a product based on their interest in your video alone. That’s the world that the Internet has helped produce. A fast, fickle, yet highly interactive place where marketing means you get someone’s attention quickly and then subtly make your sales pitch.
Marketing a client through video production requires an understanding of this world and the knowledge to create something that’s short, shareable and at the same time is able to make some form of a call to action without sounding like conscription. It’s a lot to accomplish in such a short video clip, but knowing the process increases your chances of getting your client’s name out there to a higher number of people.
Here’s a practical template to follow.
1. Come up with a detailed budget
Budgeting for video production is tough, because once you get into the process of making a video and dealing with the delays and unexpected issues that come about, things can get more expensive. While you should do your best to plan for those delays, make sure you come up with a detailed budget ahead of time with contingency plans for both your hourly rate and extra expenses that might come up.
There are several source available to budding video producers, such as Movie Magic, Gorilla and Showbiz that provide detailed, step-by-step formatting for budgeting and scheduling.
2. Know your Client’s Niche
Before you sit down to write your script or do any shooting, it benefits everyone involved if you as the producer can do some studying of the client’s niche and general needs. It doesn’t require anything terribly intensive; just know who their audience is and what type of person you’re trying to get the attention of. Once you have an idea, base the rest of your production off of that. The blog at HostPapa further demonstrates several marketing strategies to best determine your client’s media needs.
3. Write an Outline and a Script
It’s a simple step, but in a lot of situations, videos are shot without any real plan. That can work, but it can often cause a lot of problems and leave you with an unfinished or low-quality product. You owe it to your client to come prepared and be able to hand them an actual script of what you’re going to be filming during the pre-production phase, at least a week before actually shooting anything. It’s more professional and it’ll give the client the opportunity to critique or make changes; as painful as that might be.
4. Have Alternative Ideas Ready
Once you have a script in place, alternative ideas can come from your client’s feedback or from your own best guess as to what might work or not work. While it doesn’t have to be exhaustive, you should have a few different ideas and directions that you could go with a single idea.
5. Come up with a Release Plan Unique to your Client’s Audience
At the point where you have a video in hand and ready to go, you need to come up with a release plan that’s uniquely tailored to your client. Going back to number two, you’re looking to target a specific audience, so this means that you’re going to base your release of the video off of that audience and where they are most likely to congregate. Online, this generally means focusing on certain social media accounts, forums or Internet communities. It all just depends on who your client is trying to reach.
Every Client is Different
You need to have a marketing system in place, but at the same time, that system needs room to change and accommodate various clients, since every one of them will be different. They’ll bring different, needs, ideas and audiences to the table, which means it pays for you to have a production strategy in place that can adhere to those variables.
Camille McClane is a tech and social media enthusiast with a passion for writing and video production. She thanks Willie Peña and his blog for hosting her!