Does my business need a video?

If you’re like most business owners, managers, or executives, you’ve probably heard about the power of video…

Palpatine: "Unlimited Power"

Sorry, couldn’t resist.

But how do you know if it’s right for your business?

As a creative director at a marketing agency, I often encounter companies looking to create a video. But when pressed as to why, they don’t really know.

So, I usually ask them three questions.

1. Do you have a goal for the video?

You’d be surprised how many people aren’t certain about what they want the video to accomplish.

Usually, we respond by guiding them through a series of discovery questions (stay tuned for more of these in a future blog post):

  • Who is your audience / target market?
  • What do you want them to do after seeing the video?
  • Where will they encounter the video?

Ultimately, you need to know what you want the video to actually do for you:

  • I want existing customers to see our newest offering, go to our site, and buy it.
  • I want employees to see the effect of their work on the world around them and to be proud to be a part of this company.
  • I want to reach new customers on social media and give them a taste of something we’re launching soon. We’d love to have them go to a landing page and leave their email with us.
  • I want a scaleable solution to train folks on how to use our system—that way we don’t get so many training calls.

Once you have this nailed down, it’s time to ask…

2. Is video the best way to accomplish that goal?

Video is incredibly powerful at arresting the attentions of viewers. In fact, just having a video on your homepage drops your bounce rate (the percentage of people who leave immediately after visiting your site) by an average of 34%!

It also has the ability to inspire and passionately communicate your company’s ethos better than most other media. In that respect, video is king.

But sometimes, you actually don’t need video to accomplish your goals. Sometimes a billboard ad is better. Or an email marketing campaign. Or even just a product demo party.

For example, say you want to win over upper management’s approval of an internal project you’re working on. You can certainly make a video. But perhaps just showing them the product and allowing them to use it will cast your vision just as well. But… if you want to host a hundred demo parties, perhaps video is your answer.

More often than not, video is the right approach, but it’s helpful to pause and think through why.

Once you have a goal and know that video is the best way to accomplish it, it’s time to ask…

3. Are you prepared to spend the money?

Quality video is expensive."I need video, take my money."

One commercial-length A-level cinematic live action video can range anywhere from $5k to $500k or more (if you’re in the league of Nike or Apple). And it’s similar for animation.

This is due in part to all of the processes and expenses involved. Discovery, concept, script, storyboard, producing, equipment, locations, talent, crew, edit, sound design, color, music, mix, master—the list goes on and on.

You can cut some corners, but usually at the expense of time and/or quality. And frankly, most ‘budget’ production companies usually do a poor job in both arenas. When it comes to video, it pays to find a quality partner that will do it right.

That said, that’s just the cost of producing a video, not the cost of distributing it. If you’re planning on doing an ad spend, you’ll need to set aside a good amount to make sure you’re actually getting the most out of your investment. Otherwise, what’s the point?

A nice video no one sees is as good as no video.

So, set aside a budget for the video production and leave enough room for your advertising spend.

If you’ve answered yes to all three items, it seems like your business is ready for a video! Stay tuned for future blog posts on how to select a good video partner.

And hey, if you’ve created a video for your business and have some pointers, leave them below! Would love to hear them.

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