A few years ago, I was filming at a digital futures event for Digital Annexe, making the video below. I heard Will Sansom of Contagious magazine say businesses always want to jump on the latest band wagon and develop their strategy for it so they ask questions like: What’s our Pinterest strategy, what’s our Instagram strategy, what’s our YouTube strategy….
As I spend a lot of my time convincing people about how video would be good for their business, It should come as no surprise that I wholeheartedly agreed with businesses asking themselves the last of those three questions. Especially when I am close by with business cards at hand.
But then, Will said: "THAT IS THE WRONG QUESTION TO ASK."
"Instead of asking how can we jump on the latest social media platform/fad/ flash in the pan," He said, "businesses should ask ‘What is it that we do? What do we specifically offer? Who are we trying to reach? and which of these outlets are best poised to help us out."
I found myself agreeing with him even more.
In my travels spreading the “online video gospel”, I’ve run into a wide range of people, from those who have heard of this YouTube thing and want a piece of that action right now, all the way through to people who think it has nothing to offer them and its just what these kids waste their time with nowadays.
When I meet up with potential clients, my standard line is that "Video is how a lot of the world takes in information nowadays and the old maxim of 'I won’t read the book, I’ll watch the film' now extends to websites, and any message you might care to put out there."
Now this true. But still it might not be obvious where to begin, and the truth is that there is no one size fits all approach to video. Here are some questions and considerations that you can ask that will help you decide, as Will put it, how and whether video will best work for you.
FIRST THINGS FIRST ... WHAT IS YOUR MESSAGE?
Make sure you have something definite to say, even if it’s just BUY OUR PRODUCT. if you are already in business I’m hopeful that you’ve already got this down. I’d recommend you having a look at your Welcome and About Us pages on your website. That is probably the beginning of a video script right there and a healthy refresher for you. If you still find yourself going, 'Yes, that’s exactly why we do this’ you’re in good nick.