Let’s make a video! What images immediately come to mind? Gotta get a camera, lights, green screen, Adobe Premiere or Final Cut Pro, etc.? What about skepticism? Is it worth it? Will it work? Will the useful life be longer than 4 months? What distractions and un-intended costs will you face? And, what are the true costs?
Traditional Video Thinking
I’d like to introduce you to a different way of thinking about video. Most people think:
- Duration — videos should be short, people’s attention is very limited
- Style — videos must be flashy, high impact, people want to be entertained
- Resources — video requires someone who knows how to do this, and is willing to do the “non-linear” (whatever that means) editing
- Website — we’ll put videos on our website
Video quality is always a factor in people’s thinking and expectations. We find it useful to think in three broad quality categories.
- Production Quality — high production values from video production professionals , typically short form videos
- Self-produced Quality — webinar archives started this category, recently low cost digital video cameras and smartphones are a primary source of this type
- Professional Quality — this is a new and evolving category that fills the large gap between production and self-produced quality levels. Voice-over animated graphics, images and even video elements are typical of this category. These are increasingly longer form videos used for e-learning, marketing, customer service and even sales.
This two minute video explains how this new category is important to your thinking. It sets up a new opportunity and approach for you to consider. Pay attention to the new criteria associated with the center, “professional” category. It is this new, professional quality category that our discussion will focus on.
Videos are Content and Must Meet New Criteria
Marketers know the key to content today is relevance. Digital video, delivery channels and audience demands for relevance have resulted in new criteria for video. As the video in this link shows, relevance inherently drives up the volume of content that must be produced. This means higher costs.
An organization’s video strategy and methodology must optimize ALL new criteria:
- Quality — content (message) quality and relevance from audience (buyers) perspective, as well as production values
- Time — time to market, lower creation times
- Cost — initial creation cost, lifetime cost, with metrics such as cost per view, cost per use
- Relevance — use for multiple purpose and different target versions
- Scale — ability to create the volume of video required
- Maintain — must be able to update video elements as assets over time, to extend useful life and value over time
- Foreign language support — even smaller companies are selling globally, we need to get video content into multiple languages
- Share and re-configure
With traditional video, buyer relevance, scale, and lower costs have been a significant challenge.
Consider what it costs to produce a video? Not just the dollars. What is the effort, time, resources and peripheral impact of core work not being done — the real costs? What would it cost to create 50 videos?
Rising demand for content in video format, regardless of the degree of relevance you embrace, is creating a scale issue. But some degree of relevance is inevitable as well.
We have recently added “share and re-configure” to our criteria list. We have many more ways to use video today than by simple deployment on websites: lead nurturing emails and landing pages, social media sites, sales people sharing with customers, even deployment for re-use throughout a sales channel.
To efficiently and cost effectively meet this demand source video assets must be leveraged into new programs, often for different purposes. Training, marketing, and third party creators must share source elements — video modules, animations, graphics, audio, even PowerPoint –that they use to create video and multimedia programs.
You face a dilemma. Use traditional methods to produce generic, one-size-fits-all video and suffer the consequences, or find a new process that enables higher volumes of buyer relevant video without dramatically escalating costs.
We need a different approach.
In the next article I’ll suggest a process that achieves these objectives in practical ways that meet a “professional” quality standard, at costs 28% of traditional production methods — and with marginal costs approaching zero.