Video has become the way that we communicate, the way that we create and the way that we connect. In fact, Cisco Systems reports that in the next few years, 90% of all web traffic will be video. So, if you’re still not using video to communicate and connect with your clients, you risk becoming out of touch and irrelevant.
Fortunately, online video has become more mainstream and accessible. In fact, I’d argue that video has been “dumbed down” so much that quality barely matters. It’s really the message that matters. People want relevant content. Bells and whistles are nice, but not necessary.
Look no further than the national news as an example. Lately, NBC Nightly News, CNN, and even the flashy, highly produced Entertainment Tonight have been “Skyping in” their commentators. Imagine, broadcast television using a webcam and Skype to interview guests! While this may be driven by economics and cost savings for TV, it does “lower the bar” for the rest of us and gives us permission to let go of perfection in our videos.
In other words, if a webcam and Skype are good enough for CNN, shouldn’t it be good enough for you? When the rubber meets the road, choose good content over good quality (unless, of course, you have the resources and experience to do both!).
The dumbing down of online video is actually a good thing, since the simpler the technology becomes, the easier it is for entrepreneurs to deliver their messages via video. It’s just too easy not to!
There are a few notable exceptions to the content over quality debate. For instance, if you’re creating a video to launch a major project or sell a high-end program, then your video better look good. Also, if you’re creating a video with some staying power and shelf life, then you want to make it professional. A “welcome” video for your home page, for example, is a first impression video, so it should reflect your brand and look great.
However, for the typical, more “disposable” videos, focus on your content first. Viewers will forgive a few rough edges, as long as the message is compelling. Don’t be afraid to dumb down your video quality if it helps you get your content delivered. Done is almost always better than perfect.
Here are a few quick tips to keep in mind:
Start where you’re at. You’re not going to become Martin Scorsese overnight.
Use what you’ve got. Just use your iPhone or smart phone to shoot your video.
Don’t get hung up on the technology. No one cares what camera you’re using.
Keep it simple. Short and sweet is better than long and complex.
Get it done and uploaded. Don’t let your video die on the vine on your hard drive.
Take a cue from the TV networks and keep your videos simple and direct. By dumbing down your video, you’ll have a much better chance of getting your content out there and getting your message delivered!
So, did that motivate you? Are you doing videos now? Are you going to start doing more? Please leave a comment below.
Lou Bortone is an Online Marketing Consultant and Video Marketing Strategist who helps entrepreneurs and small business owners build breakthrough brands on the Internet. Lou has over 25 years experience as a marketing executive in the TV and entertainment industries. He’s an author, speaker and online video expert. Learn more at www.LouBortone.com
I got started doing videos of daily tarot readings using nothing more than a Flip camera. And most days, I didn't even have makeup on. My audience didn't care...they just wanted to be able to see the cards and hear my voice clearly... hundreds of videos later...
And yes, for things like home page videos and such, quality does matter...but even then, don't let that keep you from putting something up.