Inbound Success Playbook

Bring Video into Your Digital Sales & Marketing Program

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At this point, your team understands the what, how, and why of video, as well as why becoming a “media company” will be fundamental to your business going forward.

You also have a deep understanding of how important it is to be able to “show it” to your buyers through the creation of The Selling 7 videos -- the seven types of marketing and sales videos that will help you shorten your sales cycle and build trust with your buyers faster.

But you’re probably wondering:

“How on earth are we going to become that media company, producing all of The Selling 7 video content we need?”

Well, similar to how you need to approach creating content, your ability to generate remarkable results from video will directly correlate to your commitment to investing in the right resources (people and equipment) and learning how to be the best visual educators in your space.

Step 1: Hire a Videographer

Much like your content, someone in-house must “own” your video production -- that person will be your videographer.

“Why would a business like mine ever have the need to hire a full-time videographer? Will they actually have 40 hours worth of video production work per week to do given the specificity of our industry?”

Yes. The Selling 7 videos, when done well, are likely going to take a videographer months and months to produce.

Additionally, given how influential video already is as part of the decision-making process for modern buyers, investing in a videographer should be a no-brainer in your mind, because you now know the impact they’ll have on your marketing and sales numbers.

Moreover, in 10 years, we predict the videographer (as a role) will be just as critical to a company’s success as the sales manager is today.

Which means your next step is to hire the right person.

Essential Qualities of an In-House Videographer

  • Able to work independently or as part of a team.
  • Detail-oriented self-starter, with the drive to treat the brand as if it were their own.
  • Takes constructive criticism and receives feedback well.
  • Possesses fantastic communication skills.
  • Can interview people and make them feel comfortable.
  • Has infectious energy that excites others, but doesn’t turn them off.
  • Naturally looks at content from the perspective of the viewer.
  • Life-long learners, always hungry to improve themselves and expand their skills.

Skills & Qualifications for In-House Videographers

Fields of Study

  • Journalism
  • Education
  • Video production
  • Graphic design
  • Photography

This position is all about creativity, so you don’t need to limit yourself to considering candidates who have a video production-based degree.

Technical Skills

  • Demonstrated proficiency with video editing software; Adobe Premiere and Final Cut Pro are the most common.
  • Preferred experience with Adobe After Effects or Motion.
  • Experience with Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator is a plus.
  • Able to research and procure needed equipment.
  • Can operate and maintain proper levels and calibration of cameras, audio and video recorders, and other production equipment.
  • Willingly embraces new technology, such as augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), etc., as necessary.
  • Understands the importance of tracking video marketing metrics.

Creative Skills & Knowledge

  • Concepting, storyboarding, and scripting.
  • Basic and advanced composition techniques.
  • Branding fundamentals.
  • Audio and video quality issues and resolution techniques.
  • Social media, native social video, and content promotion.

They should also have a YouTube, Instagram, or Vimeo channel, as well as a personal website that features a portfolio of their work.

In-House Videographers Interview Questions

  • What are your favorite and least favorite parts of editing video?
  • What don’t you like about the video production process?
  • What are the most important steps in pre-production?
  • When was the last time you weren’t happy with how footage turned out? How did you fix it, and what did you learn?
  • Who are your favorite videographers and influencers?
  • What are you favorite video channels online?
  • What makes a perfect visual story?
  • What videos have you seen online that were poorly done?
  • How do you offer feedback or guidance to someone who is doing something wrong while on camera? Provide specific examples.
  • How, specifically, do you deal with someone who is not comfortable on camera?
  • What’s the toughest piece of feedback you’ve ever received for your work, and was it valid?
  • What makes a business video different from a short film?
  • What do you feel are the most important videos our company could produce right now?

In-House Videographers Interview Activity

Have your videographer candidates make a video that explains why they want the job, along with an accompanying script or storyboard. Encourage them to be creative and to tell that story how they see fit. Give them between two and five days to complete it.

Step 2: Purchase Video Equipment

As we noted in the skills and proficiencies you should be looking for in an in-house videographer, that person will be responsible for researching and purchasing the equipment you need. That being said, we want to give you an idea of some of the basic equipment you should expect your videographer to source on behalf of your company across three categories -- camera, sound, and lighting.

Camera

In addition to the camera found on your smartphone, your videographer should be prepared to bring in professional-grade camera equipment for shooting video, based on whatever budget you have allocated.

Our video team prefers the Canon and Sony brands for our cameras and lenses. You’ll also want to purchase a tripod. Additionally, a slider is a nice-to-have piece of equipment. (A slider is how you capture smooth, moving video shots that seem to rotate around your subject, which you can see in action in our video for THE LATEST.)

However, don’t let a conversation about finding the absolute best camera -- and camera accessories -- for your company distract you from the fact that giving your videos a professional look with great equipment will not take the place of great content.

The quality of your content should always come first.

Audio

Whether you’re using your smartphone or a professional-grade video camera, your videographer should never rely on the native audio recording hardware in those devices. You will need independent audio equipment.

There are two types of microphones you will want to purchase:

  • Shotgun microphones are shaped like a cone and are traditionally mounted onto the video camera or held above the subject on a boom. These are great for capturing general sound, but not so great at isolating sound from a single subject in a busy environment. 
  • Lavalier (lapel) microphones are small and usually clipped to a video subject’s lapel. Their small size means you can get really close to your subject to capture the audio of what they’re saying without picking up a lot of surrounding noise. The only challenge is that they can be a pain to set up, and not everyone wears lapels while filming.

Lighting

Even with the best camera in the hands of your videographer, if they don’t have the right lighting equipment, your video may not look right. Of course, we’re not suggesting that you need to become Spielberg-ian in your approach to lighting in your videos. But lighting is important.

Purchasing simple camera top light to start is a simple and cost-effective way to eliminate the shadows on a video subject’s face as they’re being filmed -- which is handy if you’re filming on the go. We also recommend purchasing one or two reflectors (which can be found on Amazon for around $20), which will help you control the lighting while you’re filming.

Step 3: Get Your People Comfortable in Front of the Camera

“I’m just not good on camera.”

Be prepared to hear this from a few people on your team -- we’ve heard it before ourselves while helping our clients get started with video, even when everyone is on-board with why their company needs to be creating video.

When someone says this to us, we usually ask them, “Are you good with people?”

Nine times out of 10, their answer is yes -- without hesitation. Well, if they’re great with people, it’s nearly impossible for them not to be good on camera.

And with a little training and practice, you’d be surprised how quickly those folks not only become comfortable on camera, they also become extremely effective. To do so, however, your people need to follow the three rules of being on camera.

Rule No. 1: Don’t Stop!

With live television, you can’t stop -- no matter what. The same holds true when you shoot video with your team. Your people need to understand that, regardless of what they say or how they say it, to simply “keep going” -- no matter what.

We enforce this rule with our clients for a few reasons.

First, once someone realizes they can stop, they’ll stop a lot more. Second, most of the mistakes you make can be fixed in post-production. Finally, by moving forward, you “work out the kinks” in what you’re attempting to say, and you’ll likely have a much better second take.

Rule No. 2: But You Can Do It Again

You can’t stop in the middle of a take, but it’s absolutely fine to do another take right afterward. However, if you need more than three or four takes to get it right, you may want to move onto another video where you (or the subject) feels more comfortable with the material.  

Rule No. 3: The 3-Second Smile

Yes, you likely know that you should smile while talking on video. But what we’re telling you to do here with this rule is to start smiling three seconds before someone hits record.

You don’t want to just be going into a smile when the camera starts rolling -- the viewer will see you "flip the switch" to become friendly and “sincere.” By starting with a smile on your face before the camera starts rolling, you’ll easily project an authentic, warm, and trustworthy posture to the viewer immediately, with no awkward gaps.

Another benefit is that you’ll calm your nerves with a genuine smile on your face. (If you don’t believe us, try it. You’ll see what we mean!)

“I’m Still Worried About Going in Front of the Camera...”

IMPACT Director of Web and Interactive Content Liz Murphy used to feel the exact same way, so know you’re not alone. But after a year of really committing herself to creating video, Liz changed her tune. To help others, she then documented her top five tips for becoming more comfortable (and likable) on video, from the perspective of someone who used to do everything in her power to avoid going on camera.

Get your whole team on-board with creating video with an on-site video marketing training for your company.

Step 4: Prepare Your Video Graphical Assets (The Video 6)

The most successful marketing and sales videos incorporate six specific video graphical assets, which we refer to as "The Video 6." These assets are:

  • Teaser
  • Logo bumper
  • Intro
  • Segments
  • Call-to-action
  • Outro

IMPACT Director of Video Training and Strategy Zach Basner described each of The Video 6 elements in his 2018 IMPACT Live talk, The Formula to Great Marketing and Sales Videos:  

 

Why are The Video 6 so important the success of your videos?

Because often creating great videos that are visually exciting can feel much more difficult than it actually is. By embracing our simple formula of The Video 6, your video messaging will be more cohesive, you’ll better educate your buyers, and you’ll see the results you want from video every single time.

Step 5: Adopt a Video Hosting Technology

“Why do we need to invest in a long-term video hosting solution? Can’t we just use YouTube?”

If you want to convert website visitors into leads, nurture those leads through the sales process, and close more deals with video, you need more than just a simple embedded video player (like YouTube) on your website.

Why You Need Robust Video Hosting Technology

Director of Video Training and Strategy Zach Basner explains the three reasons why you need to invest in a long-term video hosting solution in this video:

 

Now, ask yourself:

Do you simply want a video player, or do you want a video hosting solution that will empower you to generate more traffic, leads, and sales? I think we all know the answer to that question.

Which means your next move is to choose your video hosting technology.

Should You Choose Vidyard or Wistia for Video Hosting?

Vidyard and Wistia are two of the most popular video hosting solutions for businesses -- but which one is right for you? Over the years, we’ve had the pleasure of using Vidyard and Wistia for ourselves and with clients, and we know first-hand the differences between the two platforms.

To help you make the right choice for your company, here is another great video from Zach that compares the plans, pricing, customization options, and features of Vidyard and Wistia:

"Should We Not Use YouTube at All?"

This is one of the most common questions Zach gets about video hosting technology -- because the move from free to paid is a big one:

Learn how we can help you get started with Vidyard

Step 6: Use 1-on-1 Video in Your Sales Process

One of the most powerful and effective ways to embrace sales video is also the easiest -- adopting one-on-one (sometimes) personalized videos in your sales process. (We say “sometimes” because, when done well, even those one-on-one videos that are technically one-to-many will feel personal to the buyer who receives it.)

What Technology You’ll Need

In order to get started, we recommend installing Vidyard GoVideo, a free Google Chrome extension which will allow anyone on your sales team to make these one-on-one videos without the assistance of a video production team or someone in marketing.

Why Vidyard GoVideo?

We’ll turn it back over to IMPACT Director of Video Training and Strategy Zach Basner one more time to explain:

 

Wistia Soapbox is another option you can consider, but is it better than Vidyard GoVideo? Here’s our Vidyard GoVideo vs. Wistia Soapbox comparison to help you answer that question.

How to Integrate 1-on-1 Video into Your Sales Process

Once you have the right technology, now it’s time for your sales team to use these one-on-one videos in the sales process. Of course, we know from our experience with our clients that every company’s sales process is different.

With that in mind, we’re going to walk you through the five phases most commonly found in sales processes -- prospecting, connect (managing inbound leads), discovery, proposal submission, and sales-to-service handoff -- and how you can implement one-on-one video at each stage.  

Prospecting

Out of all stages in the sales process, video can have the most impact with your prospecting. Why?

Well, imagine this. Instead of sending a blind email to someone you found while researching prospects on LinkedIn, how do you think a prospect might feel if they received a personalized video, and the thumbnail for that video in the email shows their website or LinkedIn profile pulled up, and you’re holding a whiteboard with their name on it?

Here is a screen capture of a personalized prospecting video thumbnail to show you what we mean:

prospecting-sales-videos

(Not a playable video, just an example of a thumbnail.)

They would probably be very interested to see what you had to say, which means you’ve increased the likelihood dramatically that someone watches your message.

To replicate this, you’ll need a whiteboard, and you’ll want to create a thumbnail with their LinkedIn profile or website pulled up. (Keep in mind, Vidyard GoVideo is the only solution that will give you the ability to have their screen up with you still displayed in the corner.) 

Remember to be concise and to the point with your messaging at this stage -- they don’t know who you are yet.

So, quickly explain who you are, why you’re reaching out, share a quick-win opportunity or piece of advice for them that isn’t focused on you, and ask them a question or prompt them to respond -- again, making it about them.

Connect (Managing Inbound Leads)

At this stage, you’re managing responses to inbound leads who have converted on your website or indicated a desire to speak with someone in sales. We recommend using video to make an introduction after the first contact and to confirm any meetings that arise out of these contacts.

Here is an example from IMPACT Client Success Specialist Myriah Anderson:

We also use video at this stage to send personalized day-of meeting reminders, and to facilitate a smooth handoff between Myriah (the initial point of contact for all IMPACT leads) and another member of our sales team, if they are ready to move to the discovery phase.

We recommend each member of your sales team create an introduction video you can send to prospects when you’re making that handoff.

If they say, “Hello!” and act personable in that introduction video without saying the name of the person you’re sending it to, you can use that introduction video over and over again, while still creating a seemingly personalized experience for that prospect.

Discovery

During discovery, you have an opportunity to discuss your prospect’s goals and challenges more deeply, and for you to share information on how your company may be able to help them.

Typically, we integrate video in the discovery phase after the discovery call has taken place in the form of a personalized follow-up video sent immediately after the call has concluded. In this video, you should express excitement about the prospect of working together, as well as a recap of what you discussed -- including a confirmation of the goals and challenges they told you during the call.

You can also include links to videos (from The Selling 7) that may be relevant to your discussion.

Proposal Submission & Follow-Up

When you’re ready to send a proposal to a prospective buyer, we recommend including a video that walks through the proposal itself. In this personalized video, you should cover:

  • What’s included in the proposal.
  • Why each item is included.
  • How your proposed action plan is going to help them reach their goals and solve their problems.
  • Again, how excited you are to help them.

Also, if there are certain sections of the proposal that, without fail, create more questions, address those upfront in the video.

Finally, instead of sending the usual, “Hey, just checking in on that proposal!” email, send a personalized follow-up video that addresses any common questions you think they might have. It’s a great way to stand out with those prospects who require a little extra TLC.

Sales-to-Service Handoff

Again, going back to the handoff between the connect and the discovery phase, have your client-facing folks create one-to-many (seemingly personalized) introduction videos. In it, they should:

  • Share who they are and what they do.
  • Review the next steps they can expect, as well as anything owed from your new client to your team.
  • Reveal fun fact that humanizes them and gives a glimpse into their personality.
  • Ask your new client to introduce themselves, so they can get to know them better.

You can also create a more “produced” one-to-many marketing video that welcomes new clients to your “family.”

For more in-depth guidance on integrating one-on-one video in your sales process, please read our Ultimate Guide to Video for Sales.