Companies are starting to come around to the idea that, in social media, they need to be content creators, but it continues to be a slow process. One reason for the hold up is that it is hard to know where to start. This is where educational videos, or “how to videos,” can plan a very important role.
Client or consumer education is most likely a part of what your company already does. This makes it easier to identify possible topics to use in your videos online. It’s even easier for companies that have a product. Educational videos are a great opportunity to show how your product works without it seeming ‘salesy.’
Content can be used to build trust. ‘How To’ video is a great way help your company be seen as the expert in your field. Who would you rather make a purchase from: the company that took time to answer all of your questions before the sale and was there to help you or the other company that doesn’t offer any support beyond the product description?
People want to do business with those they trust. When you create a video that educates, people feel like they have received something of value from your company and this increases brand loyalty. It also increases brand awareness without having to sell. The research continually shows that more and more purchases start online and social media is a big part of this. For example, when some one searches ‘how do I recharge the air conditioner in my car?’, the company who shows the customer how to do that with their product stands out above the rest and often becomes the chosen brand.
After the sale, education videos can decrease the stress on your technical support.
If you have a product that requires technical support, video can be the first line of tech support that people reach for. If that video has an on-camera expert, it can also help build rapport with the viewer. Because now your company has a face people can connect to.
There are many different styles of How To videos and most of them, if done properly, can get your message across. That being said, one of the only types that I have seen fail is the type that doesn’t take into consideration the way people learn. Education videos that use visuals combined with a voice are the most effective because most people learn visually and a voice helps drive the images on screen. However, there is little reason to watch an education video that has to be read. They could have gotten the same information from the product manual. This is even worse for software companies because trying to follow the cursor around the screen and read the words is nearly impossible and is a great way to get people to say unpleasant things about your brand. When making your video, another thing to take into consideration is that they may be watching your video on their smart phone.
I have seen a lot of companies that sell hardware place a QR code on the packaging of their product that links to a video on how to install the product. This is a wonderful idea and can make the difference between the customer going home with your product or with a competitor’s.
The following are some things to look out for. I was recently in a meeting where an executive felt that educational videos didn’t have to have any production value what so ever and should not cost them as much as other videos. I’m sorry Mr. Executive, but the fact is, no one wants to watch a bad video, no matter what the subject matter happens to be. Cell phone quality is OK for footage of your brother falling off the couch and landing in a way that makes him suddenly able to sing soprano, but it doesn’t represent your brand in a credible way. It doesn’t have to be a blockbuster but it should be something that could play on any of the Do It Yourself TV shows.
Now that you have all this great content, don’t hide it on your company’s website. Share it on every social network that your target audience is a part of.