Videos are an effective way to market your content and your business. They’re fun, engaging, accessible, and easy to understand. Combined with a good strategy and other marketing efforts, they can make a massive difference for your business. There’s just one problem: quality video content can be costly to produce. You’d need professional equipment, writers, actors, props, production tools and staff, and more.
Even though video marketing tends to have a high ROI, it has traditionally been out of reach for small businesses that would benefit most from it. But, not anymore! With affordable modern technology and some creativity, producing effective marketing videos on a budget is possible. It’s an avenue that you should consider as a part of your marketing strategy. Here are some tips for producing effective marketing videos on a budget:
Compelling Marketing Videos are a Good Investment
You can’t make quality marketing videos entirely for free. You will at least need to pay for some equipment, if not for professional help. But, that shouldn’t stop you from including videos in your marketing strategy because anything you invest in marketing videos is likely to be returned multifold as your videos give you more exposure and attract more customers. So, don’t think of videos as purely an expense – they’re an investment.
The Key to Producing Effective Marketing Videos on a Budget is to Focus on the Story
When people watch a video, what do they focus on the most? While some may be impressed by special effects and quality editing, most of us are drawn in by the content.
Just look at some of the social media marketing strategies employed by big companies: they’re all about branding and what the brand stands for. So, don’t worry too much about producing a Hollywood-worthy picture and focus on the story.
1. Know Your Audience and Your Goals
You’re not making promotional videos for yourself: you’re making them for an audience – past, current, and future customers. So, when you’re planning your video, you’ll need to know who they are and what they want.
Who are you speaking to with this video? How old are they, and where do they come from? Why do they need your products or services? Are you even selling your products and services?
You could make a video that introduces what your brand stands for instead or share a personal experience that inspires loyalty in customers. However, you need to make that decision in advance because it will affect the content you’re producing.
2. Be Current, Relevant, and Relatable – Don’t Bother With Boring Promotional Videos
There are millions of videos available online today, so you need to be as original as possible if you want to stand out. Present something new that people haven’t seen a hundred times before.
Or, if you’re going to repurpose old videos, do so in a novel and interesting way. Stay on top of the trends and keep up with current events – incorporating these into your videos ensures you’re not tedious and outdated.
3. Try to be Interactive
Since a video is a one-way message from you to your viewers, it can be somewhat difficult to engage with your audience. But, you should still speak to the viewers as if they were in the room with you.
Ask questions and encourage them to interact with the video by commenting on it, sharing their own content, or subscribing to your channel. This shows that you care about them and encourages engagement.
Asking questions like this and driving conversations are some of the simple and easy ways to improve social media engagement. Plus, it helps add a personal, human element to your brand and allows you to connect with potential customers in a relatable way.
4. Tell a Story With a Good Opening and a Strong Closing
With so much content available these days, a creative trend that we’re seeing is opening on a high note. You need to draw your viewer in immediately; otherwise, they’ll turn to someone else.
But, that’s not the only part to which you need to pay attention. The video’s ending is what remains fresh in the viewers’ minds, so make sure you end on a high note as well. This is the perfect time to remind your users to visit your website or offer them a discount on your products.
Producing Effective Marketing Videos on a Budget is Easier When You Know Where to Focus Your Resources
While content is king, production isn’t irrelevant. After all, you are trying to present yourself in the best possible light. A low-quality video won’t make you look very professional or successful. Instead, you need to make a good video without spending too much.
5. Planning Ahead Helps You Stay on Budget
Putting videos together haphazardly as inspiration strikes is not a good idea. Think back to how you developed a sales strategy that works – did you do whatever you felt might work, or did you sit down and create a plan that will drive the most sales? It’s the same with videos.
As fun as they can be to make, they are still an aspect of marketing like any other, so you need to plan out how many videos you’re making, what about, and how. Then, you need to allocate funds to the different aspects of video making. That way, you can plan your budget and stay on track with your spending.
6. Focusing on Optimization Will Make Your Videos More Effective
The wider an audience your videos reach, the more they pay off. So, you want as many people as possible to find these videos. SEO can help you with that.
Like any content online, videos can be optimized so that they are easier to index and locate through search engines. Here’s what you want to do:
- Choose an enticing title
- Keep your description brief and to the point
- Use relevant keywords in your video title and description
- Make an engaging thumbnail
- Optimize the content surrounding the video
7. Good Equipment is Worth the Investment
These days, it’s not too hard to get a decent camera and microphone at a relatively affordable price. These tools are essential for producing quality content in video form.
So, don’t just rely on your phone – get an actual camera and microphone. Your videos will look so much better and more professional with the help of this small and affordable change.
8. Look for Low-Cost Video Creation Opportunities and Minimize Post-Production Work
A lot of the cost of making videos comes from paying for the setup and the post-production. You need to rent space where you’ll film, rent the equipment, hire people to film you, hire actors if you need more people in the video; then, all that needs to be edited in post-production with images, graphs, and writing.
You can save a lot of money by cutting out some of the costs. For example, you can film in your own space or in public. You can hire student videographers instead of professionals. And, you don’t need actors if you have volunteers: you can ask your customers to participate in your content in exchange for exclusive access, discounts, or other perks. You can also use a simple video editor on your own to give your videos a more professional look and feel without feeling overproduced.
Finally, sometimes you don’t even have to film at all. The Facebook and Instagram Live features are an excellent opportunity for low-cost videos! They require little to no preparation and no post-production, yet they improve social media engagement and serve as great marketing tools. It’s all about getting creative with what you’ve got!
After Producing Quality Videos, You Still Need to Market Them
Producing effective marketing videos on a budget is just the first step. You still need to promote your content once it’s out there. Luckily, you can do this on a budget too. If you were paying attention to SEO when naming and uploading your video, then you’re already halfway there.
Another thing you can do is to post about your videos on social media. If you get extremely lucky, you might even go viral. But, don’t count on this. You’re better off setting aside a small budget to pay to boost/promote these posts on your most important social platforms.
Finally, you can include your video (or a link to it) in email newsletters. This way, you ensure that it gets out to as many of your customers as possible.