How To Use Video Marketing to Generate Business Leads

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Today more than ever having a web presence is essential to building a strong brand, qualifying prospects, and generating more leads. One of the most effective ways to promote your business on the internet is through videos. Visual media is shared more often than traditional text, using the power of video you can deliver a more contagious and effective message that spreads through social networks.
Video marketing is one of the most underrated methods for lead generation; if used correctly, however, videos can be the most significant part of any online marketing campaign. Here are a few tips that will help increase your lead generation with video marketing:

Create engaging videos that educate or inform

A lot of the time when you see videos for service providers, product owners, and other companies you see self-promotion videos. While these videos have their uses, simply talking about your business is not always the best way to approach lead generation.
The type of video content most people are searching for and sharing are videos that show how to do something. By having a series of educational, informative videos you are more likely to attract more qualified prospects, that you can easily convert into leads.

Include irresistible calls to actions in your videos

One of the most crucial elements to any video is to have a call to action. Even if your video is a tutorial guide, linking that information to your business and asking your viewers to make an action is vital to your video marketing strategy. Calls to action can be asking a user to sign up to an email newsletter, call in to your business, visit your website, or any other action that has the viewer actively joining your lead generation funnel.

Promote your videos across all of your online platforms.

Another mistake that many business owners make is to not promote their own videos. Simply having a video is going to help but if you do not actively promote your video marketing campaigns you are not getting the most benefit. Sharing all of your videos across your social media platforms will increase lead generation while initiating shares, likes, and re-tweets.
Videos are also excellent from an SEO standpoint as well. Taking the time to properly optimize your videos’ descriptions and even building back links to your video can cause videos to quickly rise in search engines. This keeps your company more visible, increases the reach of your video marketing campaign, and ultimately works to generate more leads.

Unconventional Warfare in Corporate Video Shooting

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Video Recording Equipment and Specialty Tools We Use

As technology forges on, new tools and techniques are being created that have made a recent dramatic impact on the corporate video landscape.  In the army, you have a soldier and a rifle.  In special forces, you have all sorts of different weapons and ways to get the job done.

At Serendipitous, we feel that in addition to a strong “standing army” to cover your corporate story, that a “special forces” group is imperative to give the video an edge in this highly competitive battle field for the attention of the viewers.  This means thinking outside of the box– and in video production, the box is a static camera, about five feet high (where the cameraman’s eyes are).  Many video production companies tell the majority of the story from this point of view.

We don’t throw that away– it’s a very important tool, like the standard carbine for the foot soldier.  But we add to that with a bunch of “unconventional” weapons for getting those dramatic and critical shots for your video.

Video is movement– we believe video cameras need to move.

Our unconvetional equipment includes:

Dollies and Sliders– Just less than ten years ago, to get the camera to move left or right, in or out from the subject, you needed a rail system with a very heavy dolly to handle the large high quality cameras.  Today, the cameras have gotten much smaller and the quality has gotten better.  This means you can use smaller, lighter tools to move the camera left/right, in/out.  In addition to the large dolly, now there are small sliders, “rails” that go on a standard tripod to get two, three, four feet of movement.  It’s been very effective.

GoPros– with the smaller cameras, GoPro captured the industry with a line of high quality, extremely small cameras that could be mounted and placed just about anywhere.  Three days ago, I mounted a GoPro on the side of a block for an extremely large crane.  We have it on RC helicopters, sides of vehicles, on a long stick we can hand hold into a dangerous area.  These are versatile cameras that can get HD video and time-lapse as well.

Aerials– While we do have clients that we go up in real helicopters, with gyro mounts and remote camera controls, a burgeoning area is the RC helicopter industry.  With the cameras coming down in size, now you can put them on small helicopters and fly them around to get extremely unique shots.  We have a large 8-bladed “octocopter” as well as the small quad copter that’s become more common.

Jibs and Cranes– A jib gives you the up down movement as opposed to the dolly’s left/right and in/out movement.  Put the jib on a dolly and you’ve got quite a flexible tool.  The jib consists of a large boom, with the camera mounted at the end, with counter weights on the operator side.  Smaller jibs can be operated at the camera.  Larger ones need to be remotely controlled from the back of the boom.

Steadicam– There are now all sorts of handheld suspension rigs out there, contraptions designed to give you minimal shakes and bobbles as you move the camera around.  This tool can get some very dramatic shots.

These are just a few of the unconventional tools we have to best tell your story and capture the moment no matter how fast it’s moving. Contact us for questions on equipment we use and how we can assist you in creating the perfect corporate video.

Tips for Being Interviewed On Camera For The First Time

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Telling your story for your company’s video

Congratulations (or condolences) on you being selected to be in front of the camera for that corporate video. Here are some tips and things to keep in mind to help you out.

Most interviews are conducted “documentary” style—you’re being asked questions by an off-camera interviewer, so you’ll look at them and not the camera. When you look directly at the camera and talk, it’s usually a “spokesperson” role, and is very different to the interview we’re talking about here.

Many people desire to have the questions beforehand. There are pros and cons to this. Most likely, you’re being interviewed because you’re an expert in the subject matter—speaking off the cuff will have a more natural feel. However, you can be more prepared if you were given the questions before the interview.

Also, many people are going to feel nervous—that’s natural, so don’t fight it. By worrying about being nervous, you will only become more nervous, and it will be a cycle you’ll want to avoid.interviewNTE

What to say, what to wear, and more tips for a corporate video interview

• What to wear—avoid tight patterns (close lines, etc.) Avoid bright colors, especially white and red.
• Avoid other companies trademarked logos (for instance, if you’re doing a less formal interview and you’ve got a Nike tee shirt on, with the big swoosh).
• Depending on how you want to present your company, you can choose, business, business casual, or casual.
• Repeat the question back in your answer. Most of the time, we won’t be using the audio from the person asking the question, so we need the context for your answer. If you answered “30,” we would have no frame of reference. Makes a lot more sense if you say “my age is 30.”
• Talk to the interviewer—ignore the cameras.
• Try to not say “as I mentioned before” or “again…” When we edit, we’re looking for a sound bite—a two to five sentence answer. We might ask related questions, trying to get a variation on the answer. So in the final edit, we won’t hear your earlier response.
• Your audio is super important—try not to talk when the interviewer is talking. Likewise, the interviewer shouldn’t talk when you are talking.

Take your time, try to relax. When people are nervous, they tend to speed up. Take a deep breath and you’ll do fine. At S-Films.com, we do everything we can to set you at ease when shooting your corporate video production.

The Hero’s Journey Storytelling Part II

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Continuing the Story with Part II of the Journey

This is part II of the journey, a continuing story that allows us to break down the pieces of a story to craft a message that people will remember for the way it made them feel. The power of a story comes from people being able to relate to it and share it with others for generations to come.

6 Last Steps of the hero’s journey

Approach for the Inmost Cave

The Hero must make preparations required to Approach the Inmost Cave that leads for the Journey’s heart, or perhaps central Ordeal. Maps may be reviewed, attacks planned, and maybe the Enemy’s enforces whittled down, before the Hero could face his greatest fear or perhaps the high danger lurking within the Special World. The confident Hero could bypass these preparations making a bold move into action.

The Ordeal

The Hero engages within the Ordeal where he faces his highest fear, confronts this hardest challenge, and as well experiences “death”. His Journey teeters on the brink of failure. Indy as well as Marion are sealed inside the Well with the Souls; Annie and Alvy have separated. And the target audience watches in suspense wondering if the Hero will survive. The Ordeal will be the central, vital, and even magical Stage associated with a Journey. Only by means of “death” could the Hero be reborn, having an experience of resurrection which grants greater powers or even insight to determine the Journey to the end.

Reward

The Hero has really survived death, overcome his fear, or even weathered the Crisis with the Heart, and today earns the Reward that they sought. The Hero’s Reward will come in many forms: an enchanting sword, higher knowledge or even insight, reconciliation which has a lover.

The Road Back

The Hero need to finally be recommitted to finishing the Journey and then accept the Road Back on the Ordinary World. A Hero’s success in the Special World might make it difficult to go back.

The Resurrection

The Hero confronts the Resurrection, his most dangerous meeting with death. This final life as well as death Ordeal implies that the Hero has maintained which enable it to apply all that he has brought back for the Ordinary World. Ordeal and even Resurrection could represent a “cleansing” or purification that has to occur seeing that the Hero has emerged through the land in the dead. The Hero is reborn or changes with the feature of his Ordinary self in addition on the lessons and insights from the characters that they have met along the road.

Return using the Elixir

The Return using the Elixir could be the final Reward earned about the Hero’s Journey. The true Hero returns having an Elixir to share or even heal a wounded land. The Elixir can be a great treasure. It can be love or simply the experience of surviving the Special World. Also the tragic end of a Hero’s Journey could yield the most effective Elixir of most, granting the target audience greater knowing of us and the world.

How this applies to you

Although this could seem a long and drawn out process, usually basic elements of the hero’s journey could be condensed to craft a story to deliver your message to your audience. This is a framework that lies beneath most stories, contact us to find out how to create a memorable and compelling story for your brand or company.

 

Better Storytelling Through The Hero’s Journey

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 Using The Hero’s Journey As A Guide

This is a 2 part post about using the Hero’s Journey as a guide to become a better storytelling. The Hero’s Journey is a model for creating a stories that is often used to create compelling story lines. It can be a pattern as well as many myths from different cultures throughout history. It isn’t the only method to tell a narrative but, as it has a very ancient lineage; stories based on this model seem to be especially satisfying.

Let’s check out the first 6 Steps in the hero’s journey:

The Ordinary World

Since the target audience usually experiences the Journey over the Hero’s eyes, we have to be able to relate with him. The Ordinary World offers us the chance to identify with the Hero’s urges, drives, as well as problems, and also showing unique features and even flaws that will make him 3-dimensional. The Hero’s Inner and as well Outer Problems can be established, though these could actually change and this depends on the demands from the Journey.

The Call to Adventure

The Call to Adventure sets the story plot moving by interfering with the comfort in the Hero’s Ordinary World, Presenting an issue or quest that need be undertaken. The Call actually throws the Ordinary World off balance, and then sets in the stakes involved incase your challenge is not accepted. Always delivered through the Herald archetype, the Call to Adventure often takes a multitude of forms, including: a note or even announcement (The African Queen), the arrival with the villain (High Noon),  an unexpected storm (Home Alone), a death (Jaws, Some Like it Hot), a man’s dying words (Citizen Kane) and an abduction (Star Wars).

Resistance to the Call

A Hero rejects or refuses the Journey as a result of fears and insecurities which have surfaced from your Call to Adventure. The Hero is just unwilling to make some changes however, prefer the safe haven in the Ordinary World. The Refusal with the Call becomes an important Stage that communicates the hazards involved in the Journey that lies ahead. Without risks and danger or perhaps the likelihood of failure, the target audience will not be compelled becoming a part of the Hero’s Journey.

Meeting the Mentor

A Hero might not actually wish to rush into a Special World blindly and, therefore, seeks the experience and wisdom of somebody who has already been through it before. This Mentor has survived to offer the important lessons as well as the training to better face the Journey’s Tests and Ordeals. The Mentor could be a physical person, or perhaps an object says for instance a map, a logbook, or hieroglyphics. Detective stories and also Westerns, the Hero may hold an Inner Mentor, a large code of honor or even justice which helps to guide him throughout the Journey.

Crossing the Threshold

This signifies that the Hero lastly become committed to the Journey. He is ready to cross the gateway which serves as a separation between the Ordinary World and the Special World.  The Crossing might need more than accepting one’s fears, a map, or possibly a swift activate the rear from your Mentor. The Hero need to confront a conference which forces him to accept entering the Special World, from where there is no reversal or turning back.

Tests, Allies, Enemies

Having crossed the Threshold, the Hero encounters Allies, faces Tests, confronts Enemies, as well as learns the rules of the Special World. This step is vital for Hero and Audience alike. Whether entering the imaginary arena of a future society or emotional in an entire world of romantic love, the Test Stage is our first look with the Special World and just how its conditions and inhabitants contrast while using Hero’s Ordinary World.

As you can already see, this process is somewhat lengthy, but it takes us through a journey we can all identify with and are very familiar with. Famous films like Start Wars, The Matrix, and many more rely on this formula to capture audiences and evoke emotion. Stay tuned for part 2 of the journey.

Find a Niche Market to Make Your Videos Stand Out

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Break Through The Clutter With A Specific Target Market

A big drawback to the myriad information available on the Internet these days is that the majority of markets are saturated to the point where the competition is so high it’s difficult to break in unless your marketing very clearly stands apart. This is why we recommend the use of video, and more specifically videos that target a very specific niche or target market.

While one solution that is always crucial in any type of marketing is to develop unique and creative content, another way to get around the crush of marketers out there is to find a little-known yet high-demand niche and cater to it.

Don’t limit your marketing, raise the bar

Often when marketers hear the word ‘niche’ they get a bit antsy; indeed, a ‘niche’ is often comprised of a small, specifically targeted demographic and new marketers often seeing themselves as ‘limiting’ their marketing by not focusing on the general market.

The advantages of a niche, however, are that while the target audience is normally much smaller, the demand is far higher as any profitable niche is one in which consumers who can’t find effective service elsewhere are making their demands.

A real estate example of this

For example if you sell homes and are in the real estate market, try to focus on a particular area or type of person. Selling homes is not specific. On the other hand if you specialize in finding comfortable homes for people who are looking to retire in the Garland area, you have a niche. You can also do another video of finding homes for affluent single moms in the Richardson area. And on and on.

This principle can be attached to other industries such as home insurance, selling products, or services. Make it clear who you are selling to and know their pain points and their language. Don’t keep it too general, make the message hit home and they are much more likely to take action.A further advantage of finding an effective niche is that competition is relatively low, in fact the lower the competition the better your chances of being successful.

Focus on a specific audience for better results

So while there are a variety of things to consider when making your video marketing a success, focusing on reaching a specific audience will go a long way toward ensuring that you reach your buyers effectively and convince them to take a look at what you have to say; video marketing is an enormous segment of the marketing profession these days and it can be a wonderful way to sell products as long as you understand the nuts and bolts of reaching consumers.

Two Tips for Stellar Results Through Video Marketing

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Video Marketing is no longer an option

Over the past several years, consumers have become more and more inclined to watch videos online and as a result, video marketing has become both an effective and popular way of marketing to consumers. Many companies are finding that video marketing is no longer an option for them, rather it is an essential marketing tool that customers expect them to use; if you’re just beginning with video marketing, here are a few quick tips to help you reach out to your market with more effective communication and a higher possibility for success.

Use powerful hooks to attract and retain your audience 

The titles you use, as well as the first bit of copy in your video or sales letter are called ‘hooks.” Hooks should be specifically designed to entice potential clients into obtaining further information on your product or service based on how well you draw them into watching your video.

One of the most difficult challenges facing marketers today, particularly on the internet, is the fact that there is such a wealth of material on almost any subject that buyers often find themselves completely overwhelmed by information.  This invariably leads to consumers blocking out an enormous amount of promotional material with barely more than a quick glance, so earning and keeping people’s attention is getting more difficult.

Powerful hooks are needed to attract and retain your audience’s attention.  Timing and targeting is of the essence, especially given that you probably only have 2-3 seconds at most to draw their interest before they discard your material and move on.

Know your market and where they congregate online 

When it comes to any type of marketing the most important factor that will determine how well you connect with your audience is how well you know your market; understand your target demographics and know without question the problems they are trying to solve and the ways your products will help them solve it. Tie this in with a great story where they are the hero and they will feel like you know them and understand them.

As a marketer it’s up to you to get close to your target audience and offer quick, efficient solutions to the issues they’re facing; research your demographic very carefully to determine not only basic information like age, gender, location and the like, but learn about their buying behaviour as well as the wants and needs they are truly trying to have filled. Know what communities they are a part of, where they congregate online, and what social media networks they are active on.

The more your video marketing can address your target market’s specific wants and needs, the more successful your campaigns will be.

So while there are a variety of things to consider when making your video marketing a success, following these two tips will go a long way toward ensuring that you reach your buyers effectively and convince them to take a look at what you have to say; video marketing is an enormous segment of the marketing profession these days and it can be a highly profitable way to brand your company and break through the clutter.

The art and science of creating engaging storytelling videos

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Storytelling videos evoke emotion and encourage engagement

Video content is quickly becoming one of the most popular new ways to market products and brands online. There are many companies that are jumping onto this bandwagon and producing advertising and marketing content that showcases and demonstrates some of the products that they have available in their inventory. However, some of the most popular and engaging videos that have had success on platforms like YouTube, Vimeo and other video sharing platforms involve the use of detailed storytelling to generate interest and evoke emotion.

Make it more likely to remember your message

Storytelling in video content is one of the best ways that you can create a memorable experience for the user. When you create a memorable experience that’s engaging and that actually connects with someone who is watching your video, this increases the likelihood that they will share or pass along your content to others. It’s extremely easy to share videos across the Internet and across social networks. In some cases sharing of video that we enjoy could be as easy as sharing a link across social media or even just pushing one button to share that content on a different page. This is why there needs to be a focus on storytelling and quality content creation when it comes to video production.

You can rely on our quality equipment and expertise

Professionalism is another aspect of video production that needs to be done correctly in order to create engagement online. In order to really wow an audience and provide them with something that they will want to learn more about, it’s important to use professional quality equipment and expertise to create a video that you can be proud of as a company or individual. Not everyone has the expertise and background to do proper video editing, filming, story boarding or script writing. We all may have vision or an idea on the type of content that we want to produce, but we might not have the technical background to really let this idea come to life. This is where the help of an expert video production company can help to create quality video content for online use. Here at S-Films we can work with you to see your vision come to life and in a professional quality format that is bound to wow your audience.

By combining a story that reflects your brand or idea with professional quality equipment and expert skills we can create a video that’s engaging and entertaining for your audience. Contact us for information about our commercial / industrial or time lapse video productions services.

Acting: A Director’s POV

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“After the third time this actor approached me, I decided I would never cast him again.”

“I got a real inside peek into what this actor was really thinking.  She forgot she was still mic’d and I was wearing my headsets.”

“This actor was extremely talented.  But he hosed me in post with his performance.”

These are thoughts of a working film director.  You can learn to save time, money and heartache in post, while cementing your reputation as a seasoned, veteran actor.

Announcing a new workshop for Acting: A Director’s POV!  Join us Saturday April 12, 2014 for a 3 1/2 hours, hands-on workshop, from a director to an actor.  Register here.

Daniel Millican, writer/director for five feature films has worked with Adam Baldwin, Lou Diamond Phillips, Sean Patrick Flanery, Joey Lauren Adams, Mimi Rogers and more.  On casting his last film in NYC, he realized there is a huge bias against using local actors.  As he explored the reasons why, he discovered some acting industry keys that can help local actors land the bigger film roles and avoid the mistakes that would leave them on the cutting room floor, or worse.

In this workshop, Millican will take the actors through exercises to illustrate these performance keys, concentrating on what they mean from the director’s point of view.

Cost is $89 and you can register for a morning session (8:30 to noon) or the afternoon session (1pm to 4:30).  Class size is limited to 15.  Click here to register and save your spot.

Serendipitous Films reserves the right to cancel.  If the workshop is cancelled, you will receive full refund.

Are you leveraging social media for branding and traffic?

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Although it’s a fairly new technology, social media has quickly become one of the best places for people to share stories, life experiences, and pictures, and keep in touch with friends and family. Since most social media websites usually have thousands or even millions of people at the same time online, they are the perfect place for businesses to expand their client base and draw traffic to their website through the use of video.

Using video and having a solid video marketing strategy will help your company become an industry leader. Video usually encourages people to share and has a multiplying effect when their friends can also see it and find out about the product or service that is covered in the video.

Videos are much more likely to go viral through social media

While pictures and text also tend to go viral sometimes, videos are usually the ones that are the most likely to go viral due to their ability to clearly communicate emotion. People tend to connect to video a lot faster and it usually is much more memorable mainly because of the larger amount of information it provides to a user in a small period of time. Videos can also incorporate other types of media, making them a lot more visually interesting, and it appeals to more senses, so it’s more likely to reach a wider audience.

Facebook is a good popular avenue for video marketing

Videos on Facebook are extremely popular and are always being shared. When a person posts a fun or informative video to his/her audience, it won’t take much time until people start to view it, comment on it, and share it with their friends. And since Facebook has hundreds of millions of users, the possibilities of who could watch it are endless. Recently Facebook announced that companies will be able to run video ads on its website, which basically means that people will be able to view commercials directly on the site without the need to leave the already familiar community.

YouTube is owned by Google and  can send you a lot of traffic

Usually video can be easily incorporated in social media and various types of websites. It usually only involves integrate a link to your website where people can easily play it there directly or on YouTube. YouTube makes it where people can easily share video and embed it on their sites if they want to. Being the second most popular search engine, YouTube has the potential to send a flood of qualified people to your website ready to make a purchase.

Also studies suggest that having a video on your Facebook profile will give you a lot more attention than those profiles that don’t have one. This is mainly because a lot of people tend to take video more seriously and perceive it as higher value than images or text based content.

In conclusion, the best thing to do when looking to expand your customer base is to create a video that showcases services, shows the strengths and benefits through storytelling. Make it emotionally appealing and memorable and it will be more likely to captivate your audience and make them feel compelled to share it. Often we find that the video production process can be overwhelming with the right script, actors, setting, story, and other critical elements that go into it. Our job is to simplify that and help you craft the perfect video that make your brand look professional and sophisticated.