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How to Utilize Video in Your Social Media Marketing Efforts: Tips for Content Creation, Platforms and Sales Conversion

Video is a powerful tool for businesses to use in their social media marketing efforts.

It can be used on many different platforms and has the potential to convert viewers into customers.

In this article, we will discuss how you can take advantage of video in your marketing strategies, including some tips for content creation and usage.

How To Create Your Videos

You don’t have to be a professional video producer to get started in video.

In fact, most people have grown accustomed to viewing amateur clips alongside professional clips, and sometimes even prefer them.

That said, you do want to try and make them look somewhat professional and positively represent your organization.

Have a Plan

Have a plan for what you’re going to shoot.

Draft out a quick script and decide what kind of shots you are looking for.

Consider using a storyboard.

A storyboard is a visual representation of what images will be included in your video and the order they are meant to appear on screen so that everything flows together nicely.

It doesn’t have to be a complicated storyboard, but just enough to help you think about your shots, location, and subject(s).

This can help reduce your on-site shooting time and expedite the process.

Use A Camera That Provides Depth-of-Field

Depth of field is what makes the subject sharp and the background blurry.

If you have a large depth-of-field, the majority of what is in the view frame will be in focus.

If you have a narrow depth of field, the subject will be in focus but much of the foreground and/or background will be blurry.

Most cameras default to a large depth of field so that everything in the view frame is in focus, so being able to blur your background is an easy way to give it a more professional look.

It doesn’t have to be an expensive, professional camera.

Your average iOS or Android device can provide some depth of field natively or via an app.

Stabilize Your Camera

Your decision on stabilization will depend upon what type of video you are producing.

If it’s an on-the-move vlog, maybe handheld is ok.

If it’s a standup with a talking head, you will want to use a tripod.

If the subject is moving, you may want to try a handheld stabilizer to make your video more smooth.

Most cameras and cellphones have a built-in image stabilizer, but you will see a big difference if you switch to using a handheld stabilizer for your videos with movement.

Plus, they don’t cost that much.

A typical entry-level stabilizer might start at $100.

Lighting

Lighting is an important aspect of video content.

It can help brighten up a dark scene or emphasize the features on your face as you are speaking to the camera.

It is good to try and use soft, natural light for outdoor scenes.

Avoid the middle of the day when the sun is highest and the shadows fall below the subject’s face.

If you are seeing deep shadows, try using a reflector board.

A reflector board is a large, white piece of cardboard that is off-camera and reflects light into the shadows of the subject’s face.

If you are going to be doing shooting videos indoors and will require a consistent look no matter what time of the day you are shooting, you may want to invest in a good lighting kit.

Background Music

Be sure to use royalty-free music if you decide to use background music.

Royalty-free music is music that can be legally used in video content and it is also not copyrighted.

A lot of royalty-free music websites have “music packs” which are collections of different tracks with similar genres or moods, so you don’t need to spend hours looking through individual pieces when you just want a song for your background track.

Text and Subtitles

There are lots of mobile and desktop apps that allow you to add titles, subtitles, and other text overlays.

This can help give your video a more professional look.

Be sure to account for any lower third titles when shooting your video.

For example, if you have a subject that is talking to the camera on a tripod, and you want to have his or her name and title appear towards the bottom of the screen, back the camera up and provide some additional space on the camera to add that in after the shoot is complete.

Motion Graphics

If you want to get real fancy, you can look into adding motion graphics.

Motion graphics are graphics that use animation to create a more interesting video.

For example, you can add text or graphics in motion on top of your subject’s head and make the words bounce up and down as if they were coming out of their mouth.

Motion graphics can be a more expensive option but if it is something that interests you, then be sure to take some time researching the options.

You can purchase Motion Graphics templates, but will need the correct software such as Adobe After Effects or Apple’s Motion to make any changes prior to including it in your video.

Where To Use Your Videos

YouTube used to be the primary platform for video content, but video content is on all the major social platforms.

Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, Linked In, Twitter, and Snapchat all have video content options.

With so many options, you will want to know where your video is ultimately going so that you create a video that is appropriate for the platform and the audience.

As an example, the recommended video size for YouTube is 1920×1080 pixels, its player is in the widescreen format (16:9), and the maximum video length is 15 minutes.

TikTok only has vertical video, the recommended size is 1080×1920 pixels in a 9:16 aspect ratio, and its maximum length is 15 seconds.

You not only need to understand the specifications of each platform but have a good idea of the audience for each platform.

YouTube is established, well known, and has a variety of content while TikTok is the relative newcomer and its content is more humorous, lip-sync or dance moves, micro sketches, memes, or other challenges that may or may not fit with the video you are looking to produce.

The bottom line is to know your audience and shoot your video for them and distribute it on the platform that will best reach that audience.

How to Integrate Them Into The Sales Process

Going from viewing a video to getting that viewer into your sales process requires a call to action.

CTAs on videos come in different formats.

They are usually a button or link that is embedded into the video player.

You can also use annotations, which are text links that appear over the top of your video when it loads on another website.

After you have shot your video for your target audience and identified the best platform to reach that audience, do some research on each platform’s CTA options.

Why do so many YouTube personalities ask you to subscribe?

It is a call to action for the viewer to do something.

Your CTA can be for the viewer to subscribe, win a prize, or watch another video.

Regardless, the goal is still the same and that is to get them to a landing page, store, or website to enter your sales funnel.

Get Shooting

Using video can be a great tool for your social media marketing efforts.

Utilizing video can help you create more engaging content and increase sales opportunities by providing multiple CTA options to get the viewer into your sales funnel.

 

This post may contain affiliate links. Click here for my disclaimer.

Mike Nicholson

I've spent my career working in a variety of Strategic Communications, Public Relations, Public Affairs, Information Operations, and Executive Outreach positions. With a history of planning, preparing, executing, and assessing communication strategies in the U.S. and abroad, I use this site to write, think and share lessons learned on organizational communications.

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