What is “Content Marketing” and How Does it Relate to Video?

The impact of ever-changing technology on the way people interact with the world is undeniable. Tech-savvy Internet users and lovers of on-demand television don’t want to be harassed by commercials and, thus, frequently ignore advertising on websites. Most initial visits to your website come as a result of a search,  when consumers are seeking information, not waiting to be sold on an idea.  What they see and how they find you is what content marketing is all about; It is not selling, but engaging with consumers in new creative ways like blogs, podcasts, event hosting and videos–all with the aim of informing people rather than blaring out “Buy us, use us”.

With content marketing, what a company sells or provides isn’t half as important as who that company is. Consumers are drawn to companies willing to share much more than simply their products or services, but rather companies that consistently providing them with interesting, well-produced and perhaps entertaining content.  By doing so, companies present themselves as a thought leader in a specific vertical, and the useful, non-salesy information they provide lead to people finding them in a variety of ways, most importantly web searches and referrals from friends.

So, how does this relate to video? Well, put it this way: YouTube receives more than a billion viewers a month. That’s a lot of people watching (and sharing) videos! As a content marketing strategy, videos are perfect: a company can inform about a product or service  in a visually appealing, memorable and easily digested way to even people with the shortest of attention spans. Well produced video provides a great opportunity to showcase not only a company’s creativity, but everything it has to offer in one dynamic package.  Again, successful videos are not at all sales oriented—you are merely providing good information.

Using video isn’t just for huge corporations, but is something any size business (and any level of creative talent) can take advantage of. There are some experienced production companies out there, that are ready, willing and able to help make highly effective videos that can give your company that necessary edge in today’s market.   Start looking!

Video Testimonials—worth their weight in gold!

There is a great variety of ways to reach an audience these days. How can you decide which route to take with communicating an idea to people with the options of print, radio, television and online platforms? Even when the medium has been chosen, the options are still vast considering how many ways there are to deliver the message. One of the best ways to get your  message out is with video testimonials from your customers. In fact, I think they are worth their weight in gold!

All visitors to your website are looking for the product or service you offer.   You can have an actor tell them how great you are, you can have text versions of customer testimonials, or you can have real people speak in their own words about you.   Of course the last is by far the most credible and convincing—you can see and hear their sincerity about what they’re saying.

Whenever I’m shooting testimonials for a business or individual, the first thing I ask the client is, “What are the subtle reasons why potential customers wouldn’t buy your product or service.   They say things like “it’ll be too expensive”, that “they’ll be forgotten once the sale is made”, “that the product wasn’t as advertised”—and a host of other barriers to the sale.   But if you have real customers giving real testimony about how these barriers were not a problem for them, then you have very convincingly overcome those barriers.   Visitors can see and hear people saying things like “….their price was just right…’ or “their customer service is the best I’ve ever experienced” or “they went above and beyond….”     They are worth their weight in gold because the viewers have subconsciously seen every one one of their objections, known or unknown, addressed by a regular person—just like them.

Why Web Video Works For You (Part 2)

If you’re anything like the majority of internet users, you thrive on videos. Whether it’s important news, politics, ads, or even the latest adorable cat, statistics show that most people would rather watch than read or look at. It’s no secret: web videos have taken over the internet, and it’s time you learned why web video worksfor you.

According to Video Brewery, 100 million internet users per day watch online video. That’s an impressive number, but the numbers don’t stop there. When it comes to online shopping, video is one of the most effective sales tools; 90% of online shoppers would find videos helpful in determining which items to buy, and those same shoppers are 64% more likely to buy a product after watching a video.

Video is the most productive method of connecting with everyday customers, there’s no denying that. But it’s also the best way to connect with big-wig business executives. In 2015, 75% of senior executives watched work-related videos weekly, and 59% concurred that if text and videos were both available, they would prefer the videos.

Even emails are becoming more and more video-centric, as simply using the word “video” in an email’s subject line boosts open rates by 19%.

It’s clear that, out of all the mediums floating around the internet, video is the way to go. And the best part about it? It’s not difficult to get started. Even a novice can create brilliant video content with the help of a production studio like Greenworks, where we take your video idea from concept to completion. If you aren’t sure where to start in video production, please contact us to learn more about creating videos that will work for you.

What is Greenscreen and Why is it SO Cool

Greenscreen is a word that we’ve likely all heard by now, and a word that some of the younger generation may have even grown up hearing. A lot of people get the concept of greenscreen, but not many understand why it works. So, what is greenscreen and why is it cool?

What is it?

The technology behind Greenscreen is known more widely as Chroma key. Chroma key is the process of layering pictures and video on top of each other. It is most often used to remove the background of the reality and replace it with something virtual. This is done by standing in front of a  — you guessed it — green screen. Systems that use chroma key can differentiate between human skin and eye color and the color green better than most other colors, which is why green is the most used color for these types of video applications.

Why is it so cool?

Well, greenscreen technology is really unique because it lets you appear to be pretty much anywhere.    You can edit a video so that it looks like you’re on the top of an icy mountain when in reality you’re in a temperature controlled studio.  One can also appear to be a floating torso by wearing green pants that match the color of the greenscreen background.  The possibilities are almost endless!

It’s possible to layer just about any background onto the greenscreen  and use it for many different functions. In its most simple application, many people use a shot of themselves or an actor in front of a gradient solid color background with their logo displayed beside them.   There are many examples on our website, so take a look around.

Perhaps what’s most cool about it is that it’s so practical and can save a lot on production costs.  Say you have 6 clients around Colorado that you’d like to get video testimonials from.   You could hire a crew, and travel to all of their locations to capture their video—-or you could bring them to the green screen studio and shoot them all in one hour.   You can imagine the cost of a crew traveling all over the state.   Most importantly, greenscreen can make almost any idea in your head a reality. Your options are practically limitless due to this incredible technology.

That’s where we come in to help. We want to guide you through the process of making your vision a reality with the help of greenscreen. If you would like to jump on this unique opportunity, contact us. Our experience and expertise can make this awesome technology work for you.

Why Web Video Works for You (Part 1)

You want people to find and use your website, right? You want customers to come to your site and stay and purchase, right? Take a look at these five reasons why web video works not only at driving traffic to your site, but to help you gain and retain customers.

  1. Google: Video encourages your prospective customers to linger or “dwell” time, which is one of the factors used in Google’s algorithm to determine how your site is ranked. Andrew Brown at Bluehost explains how this works, saying a “great way to capture — and hold — visitors’ attention is to provide a short, compelling video.”
  2. Buyers: Quality content in a video is likely to help you turn website visitors into customers.Forrester Research says that viewers are 64% more likely “to buy a product on an online retail site after watching a video.”
  3. Demonstrate: “Show, don’t tell,” is an old adage for writers of content. What better way to show than to use video on your site that demonstrates how your product works? Video is the best way to show your potential clients that your product is easy to use or to provide ideas for different ways it can be used.
  4. Diversity: People retain information in different ways. While many people using your website will be able to take information in through the text you provide, there are people who are visual or auditory learners who will be drawn in more quickly with a video that engages their learning styles.
  5. Testimony: There is no question that personal testimony helps drive business. Think of the word of mouth and the early days of television. Using video on your website of a customer speaking directly to their experience with your business is the next best thing to neighbors talking over the backyard fence.

Have we piqued your interest about video and how it will enhance your web presence? Contact us; we’ll help you create the content that will drive new customers to your door.

The concept of video scares me–how do I get started doing a video production

You’ve heard how using video in your marketing efforts powerfully builds engagement, increases SEO, and helps drive conversions. You have a lot to say, but you don’t know where to start or what to do. Bottom line, you end up saying, video scares me! and you’re not even sure why. So another month, another year passes as your competitors incorporate video in their websites and marketing campaigns and you’re still doing what you’ve always done.

You’re in really good company! Although over 90% of businesses use video as their single most effective form of marketing, many continue to have an almost phobic relationship with that record button. Whether you dislike how you look or how you sound, or fear you’ll freeze and forget what to say under the eye of a camera, you can be certain that many other have felt exactly the same and found ways to get past it.

Because, let’s admit it, video isn’t going away any time soon. According to Cisco, by the end of 2016, video will make up more than 2/3 of all internet traffic. Unless you find a way to incorporate video into your marketing efforts you run the risk of being left in the dust of those who do.

Here are a few things that just might help you overcome your video fears.

You are your own worst critic, but your audience will respond to your message anyway. We humans are a funny bunch – we self-criticize endlessly, while assuming others don’t feel the same way about themselves. Think of the videos you’ve watched on competitor’s sites, or even on YouTube. Unless you’re watching a professional actor (a tiny portion of business video creators), you’re watching someone else who is just sure their hair is too messy or their voice sounds funny. They struggle with too many and’s and um’s, and worry that the camera adds back the pounds they worked to take off.

Give yourself permission to be imperfect.  This is a little psych-speak, but it’s powerfully true that your mindset can work for or against you. Repeat how afraid you are of video enough times, and your brain will believe you. Conversely, when you give yourself permission to make a video even with your um’s, and’s, and imperfect voice, your brain will begin believing that too. Stanford’s BJ Fogg talks about the Psychology of fear and how it’s the #1 issue that holds businesses back from using video marketing. Understanding a bit more about human nature and how your fear of video is based on an unreasonable expectation of perfection can go a long way toward helping you work past it.

Rely on the experts. When you’re ready to move forward with creating a video for your company, but you have no idea how to get started, call a well respected video production company and ask them how they go about creating a video for clients without any video experience. You don’t need to be a movie star to get started – in fact, this is where a great video coach or studio can be invaluable. You’ll be able to focus on what you want to say, while letting someone else worry about the ‘how’ who is able to walk you through the steps required. Most reputable production companies will give you a free consultation to brainstorm ideas and let you know how they can help.

Since the number of digital video consumers stands at nearly 200 million and continues to rise, it is essential for your business’s success for you to get past your fear of video. Remember that you are your own worst critic (but your audience will respond to your message anyway), and that it’s okay to be imperfect (and it’s actually preferable). Even if you have no experience at all, Contact us today. We can take you from concept to completion and help you every step of the way.

5 Tips for Video production Day!

If you are new to shooting or are just looking for some quick and easy tips to add to your back pocket, this article provides five helpful practices to start including into your everyday filming process. We can’t promise you will become Speilberg after reading this but this article should help you get into good habits that will one day hopefully lead to you producing a five star quality film.

 

  1. Over pack– Bring things you might not use, extra cords, extra battery’s, power adapters, etc. As you might encounter the place your shooting at may only have two prong outlets or very limited number of outlets. This can save you from having to rush home to grab gear and also will make you seem more professional in the eyes of your client. Like they say better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it.
  2. Double check footage on site– The biggest reason for this is so that you can correct your mistakes when they happen and prevent major headaches in post production. Nothing is more frustrating than uploading footage after a long day of filming only to find you were slightly out of focus, a file is corrupted, or you forgot to hit record on a scene you need. Catch the problem before it becomes unfixable. Not only can these kinds of mistakes make you look unprofessional but it can also hinder your profit and chance of repeat business.
  3. Show up Early– Make sure to show up to your shoot a few hours early. Even if you find yourself twiddling your thumbs for an hour, you never know what kind of problems you will run into. Nothing worst than showing up and having to rush setup and hoping it works instead of being able to test and be 100% sure you are ready to film. If possible, try and get in a day before the shoot to scout what the room or venue looks like your are filming. That can help you visualize what you’ll need to bring or if there’s any sort of special equipment such as two prong power cords you’ll need.
  4. B-Role– This is especially true for interviews. Take as much film as possible, NO SHORTCUTS. There is nothing wrong with taking the time to get extra footage, you never know what may work and not work when it comes to editing all this film together.
  5. Audio is just as important as Film- Don’t put all your emphasis just your footage. Bad audio can ruin a video just as much as poor focus. Here are a few tips to minimize risk for bad audio.

-When using a clip on mic, place it as close to center as possible to account for head movements. This keeps audio as neutral as possible. As well be sure to find a happy median on the persons chest, too close to the mouth is no good, just as too far from the mouth is no good, keep this rule in mind when miking your talent up.

-Be very cautious of jewelry and accessories, as clip on mic’s are very sensitive and can pick up the rattling of necklaces or large earrings.

-Always remember your windscreen. You never know when Mother Nature is going to bless the set with a nice gust of wind.

-If your camera has the ability to adjust left and right volume individually, USE IT, make one side of audio lower than the other. This will give you a back up in case one of your volume levels decides to clip. (This is best applied to mono audio.)

So next time you are out filming keep these tips in the back of your head and see if they don’t help improve the quality of your shoot. Feel free to call Greenworks at 303-728-9574 or leave comments for more tips and pointers that can help your shoot be the best it can be.

What is Green Screen and How Does it Work?

Most people think green screen and what comes to mind is just a backdrop that is green. If you were to ask people outside of the production industry how a green screen works most people would be stumped. In this entry I will be discussing what exactly is a green screen and furthermore how green screen technology works.

For starters, it is obvious that we need a background that is green. Most people would then ask, “why bright green?” Well for starters the green used for green screen is a color that can be isolated out from the rest of the picture. By isolated out I mean the green is going to be used as the “background” from the computer, making anything that is that color of green on set resemble that background. A classic example of this is in Anchorman 2, where Brick wears a pair of green pants and is convinced he has no legs. See the clip at the end of the page.

This process of removing a color from the spectrum in order to film is often referred to as “color keying.” This is just a fancy way of saying “we are picking a specific color to replace and use it as the backdrop.” Here’s where it gets interesting, for the most part everyone is fixed on the idea that the green screen has to be green, but in reality it can be any color. As a matter of fact in Hollywood more often times than not a blue screen is used. This is because majority of the time in Hollywood blue is often the least used color on set so it makes the most sense to color key blue out as opposed to green. However, in news media and regular TV a green screen is used because that bright green we all know and love wins out over blue because the talent on screen rarely, if ever would wear that color of green. Unless of course it’s St. Patrick’s Day, then we might have consider a blue screen.

Importance of Video

Video has been around for a long time; we have all been using sites like YouTube or Vimeo for various reasons. However, more and more recently there has been increased importance placed on video for businesses, whether its for marketing purposes or training incoming employees the use of video can be a powerful tool that can be used by any business large or small.

Let’s face it, in 2015 majority of people have the attention span of a dog. In order to capture these customers attention businesses are figuring out that the use of creative video is one way to help increase awareness about company products or special deals.

According to Douglas Karr of marketing tech blog videos on retail sites kept visitors an average of 2 minutes longer, converted 30% more and increased average ticket sale by 13%. Those extra 2 minutes really do mean something in a world that is so fast paced as far as conducting business online.

There’s no secret to video or anything that should surprise anyone. Its just plain and simple, people would rather see cool graphics flashing in and out of a video to hear about a product instead of having to read a page long post about this new product.

What makes this movement to video so great is that with the technology in today’s world producing video costs less than most people think. Not only does it cost less, but the time it takes to produce video content for marketing is considerably less than most people would think too.

For example, it is possible, through the use of green screen it is possible to do a full script edit, film session, and editing in 1 day, something most people think would take weeks or months depending on who you ask.

Video has become a very affordable and achievable method for businesses and can be used across various areas such as marketing, training, company newsletters, etc. Below is a graphic courtesy of Video Explainers.

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