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August 23, 2022

How your business can create a video strategy — and tackle TikTok

If you’re looking for a simple yet effective way to connect to your customers and reach new audiences, I have three words for you: Lights. Camera. Action. 

With over 1 billion users, it's no surprise that TikTok has taken on companies creating videos to build brand awareness and capture conversions. The success of video hasn't gone unnoticed by other social channels — Facebook and Instagram have started putting reels at the forefront of their timelines to keep up with TikTok. 

Courtesy / Dream Local Digital
Shannon Kinney is the founder of Dream Local Digital, a Rockland-based digital marketing firm.

If you've tried to use social media to promote your business in the last five years, you're likely familiar with the ebb and flow of trends for making the most out of the algorithms. One reason video has grown in popularity is because the human brain can process videos and photographs 60,000 times faster than text. 

However, creating videos can pose unique challenges for some business owners. There's a bit of a learning curve with creating reels, and speaking in front of a camera can leave you feeling pretty vulnerable. Hello, flashbacks to high school book reports! Add to that the time it takes to create, edit and post a video — whereas writing a post simply entails some creative copy and adding a photo. 

Best practices for creating videos

Fortunately, once you have an understanding of how to make video content, it's easy to incorporate it into your company's digital marketing strategy. Here are some helpful tips to help you use videos for social media channels.

Finding time to create videos. Videos can be created right on your smartphone, meaning that you can record content anywhere, at any time. Simple everyday tasks like packaging orders, or recording a short explanation of daily processes can be turned into a video to give your customers a behind-the-scenes view of how the magic happens. While this requires a little extra planning than just using a regular image, the posting and caption-creation process is the same. I recommend setting aside a small block of time once or twice a week to create video content. Don't overthink it, just start creating, and you will get better over time.

While videos are a versatile way to promote your business, there are some qualities the best ones have in common. Keep these tips in mind when creating your video content:

You don't have to reinvent the "reel." If you notice one of your blogs trending, or can't seem to restock a certain item fast enough, creating videos about these subjects is sure to create some buzz. 

Keep it short and sweet, most of the time. While channels have varied lengths for video time limits, you want to cater for people's shorter attention spans. In most cases, 47% of value in a video is delivered in the first three seconds, so make sure you keep that in mind.

The length of your video should depend on what you're posting. If it's behind-the-scenes of creating a product, a 15-second time-lapse with a trending audio clip could be more effective than a three-minute video at regular speed. On the flip side, if you're sharing important information about your business, or addressing a question one of your followers asked, it would be beneficial to take your time to provide a concise answer. 

Be open to closed captions. While audio can play an important role in social media videos, as many as 80% of people say they're more likely to watch an entire video if there are captions available. This also allows people with hearing impairments to enjoy your content as well. Worried about spending too much time typing your words verbatim? Most channels have auto-caption options available.  

Production tips. Stabilize your video with a tripod -— no one wants to see shaking hands. You'll want good audio, so make sure there isn't a ton of background noise. You can also use headphones, earbuds, or a mic. Invest in a light ring (they can be found as cheap as $12.99 on Amazon) and/or use sunlight to make sure you have good lighting. There are several apps online to help you edit and add branding as well. 

Where to distribute videos

Just like most marketing strategies, the best channels for you to share your videos depend on a variety of different factors like business type and target audience. Overall, the top social channels for sharing videos are: 

  • YouTube 
  • Facebook 
  • TikTok
  • Instagram 
  • And don't forget your own website!

It's important to remember that posting a single video may not bring hundreds of new followers to your page, but putting this trend to work for you can help grow your business over time. 

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