How to create a great product video: 5 best practices
Videos play a very important role in the digital landscape. Discover in this article the 5 best practices for creating a great product video!
Table of contents
Video as a means of communication
Video is the king of digital content. It is unrivaled in terms of its communicative effectiveness, its ability to attract attention and stimulate engagement, and its ability to make the content and messages it conveys understandable and memorable. Of course, all of the digital marketers out there know this very well.
Here on our blog, we’re devoting an entire series of posts to the topic of product videos. We started with the basics, and in this first post , “How to create a great product launch video” we talked about how to create a product launch video, highlighting six types of launch videos that are useful and valuable for all marketers.
Later, we went even further upstream to carve out the best tips for writing a script, which is the starting point for any effective video.
In the third post, “Can video help increase your brand awareness?“, then, we delved into a really decisive aspect of marketing, starting with a question: can video help build brand awareness? The answer is: yes, definitely. And we explained the reasons why.
With this new post, we are coming full circle. Here, we want to look at product video best practices. We will collect them around 5 basic core themes. Let’s get started.
1. First: Always think omnichannel
Let’s kick off our list of product video best practices with a point that, to be honest, reads more like an unavoidable premise. And not just a “technical” premise. We’re referring to the need for each product video to be designed and produced from an omnichannel perspective.
In other words, optimized for every type of device. Let’s ask right away: where should we start?
We should start from mobile, because today it is the smartphone, by far, that is the main tool through which we access the online world and where we watch videos. But – beware! – it’s not just about devices. Above all, in fact, it’s a matter of optimizing your videos according to the platforms on which they are distributed. It’s one thing to produce a product video that you will host on the company’s website and it’s quite another thing to create a video that you will use in email marketing campaigns. Videos that you will host on YouTube or another app is its own area as well.
The playing field of social networks is fundamental, and the ecosystem is very diverse. What works for TikTok, for example, may not work for LinkedIn. And, on Instagram alone, you have to optimize your videos differently whether it’s a Reel, a post in the feed, or a story.
Be careful, however, not to fall into the opposite mistake: while you absolutely must adapt the format, style, and tone of your message according to the channel, maintaining the unity and consistency of the brand voice is also crucial. In short: it’s a matter of balance.
2. Not just the product – The importance of widening the gaze
The ultimate, unquestionable goal of any effective product video is to facilitate purchase. However, to reach this goal, you must first design a path that is made up of several approach stages. To use another metaphor: it’s a matter of drawing circles that increasingly tighten around the goal, the call to action (a crucial aspect, which we will return to in section 5).
So, from where do you start? Start from a wide (but not too wide) “circle.” In concrete terms: start from the context where your product fits. This context can be very concrete and informative: before selling a new drug, for example, it’s good practice to offer some information about the type of health issue that it addresses, perhaps even providing tips for prevention tips. It is essential, however, to also insert yourself in a context that we could define as more psychological or ideal; this concerns the emotions of the viewer, the value system that revolves around your product (for example, think about sustainability, which is now at the center of many consumers’ interests).
In short, it’s a matter of starting with a broad look, being attentive to the needs and preferences of the target audience, and gradually tightening the focus. Therein lies the importance of storytelling, which we will touch on in the next item on the list.
3. Calibrate storytelling to the best of your ability
Any list of product video best practices must include a critical aspect: storytelling. Let’s be very clear: there is no universal recipe for perfect storytelling. However, we can certainly identify some basic and essential ingredients.
The first can be wrapped up in one word: data (which will also be critical to our next point). Data refers to contextual knowledge through sentiment analysis; a preliminary operation that must be conducted before any video marketing campaign. Data also refers to the knowledge of the target audience (and this is what we will return to in the next section). Finally, data refers to the ability to accurately evaluate the performance of each video, in order to continually recalibrate and fix what is not working.
The second ingredient is empathy: it’s about telling people about your product, sure, but you must know how to put yourself in the shoes of your viewers. The people watching your video may not know anything about your brand and what it offers, nor about your company’s mission and vision, nor about the usefulness of what you are proposing. All of this needs to be conveyed, clearly, without self-aggrandizing and while never forgetting the entertainment aspects of storytelling.
The third ingredient is differentiation. The question that needs to be answered (explicitly or implicitly) is this: what does your product offer that is better than a competitor’s products? How does it differentiate itself? Mind you, these same questions also apply to your brand identity further upstream. We can translate this in another way: the storytelling of your video must offer added value to the viewer. This added value comes mainly from the proper balance between two different objectives: one that aims to inform and one that aims to entertain. Finding the right mix will naturally lead the viewer toward the call to action. We will return to this in the fifth and final point.
Next however, we come to the most important question to ask: who is watching?
4. Know your target audience
There is no such thing as a message that works perfectly for everyone. It all depends on the recipients: their likes and dislikes, their habits and past behaviors, their needs and wants. This has always been true. And, of course, it also applies to video marketing.
The good news on this front, however, is twofold:
- you can to know your audience, even a very large audience, thanks to Big Data analytics;
- and you can make videos that adapt to the characteristics of the individual viewer. These are the so-called personalized videos that a Forbes article referred to as “the marketing breakthrough that brands need”.
But what are we talking about?
Personalized videos are videos that are automatically built based on the characteristics of each person viewing them. In short, companies make a single video marketing campaign that simultaneously becomes multifaceted, tailored to each individual recipient. And that’s not all.
Personalized videos adapt in real time to users’ browsing choices, and interactivity can be easily implemented in them. In this way, product videos are no longer a one-way “showcase,” but also become an opportunity for one-to-one dialog between a brand and each of its individual customers. All of this translates into soaring engagement and conversion rates. A dramatic decrease in the rate of interruption of views. The possibility of tailored upselling and cross-selling operations. In a nutshell, this explains the personalized video revolution.
So, how can you make and distribute them through a wide variety of channels? By relying on specialized platforms such as the one offered by Babelee.
5. A solid call to action
The last of our product video best practices concerns the most delicate moment: the moment when you go from storytelling to conversion. This is about the call to action.
In product videos, this moment typically occurs at the end and aims to send viewers to the company’s site, directly to an e-commerce page or to a page where users can leave their contact information (and there can be many types of calls to action). There are two main challenges with the call to action, representing the two extremes:
- making this moment seem abrupt and forced, disconnected from everything that came before;
- keeping the call to action too sidelined and muted that the user does not notice it at all.
Therefore, it’s a matter of taking the right path, the one that avoids these two extremes. Of course, it all depends on the context, the type of brand, the goal of the campaign, and the target audience of your video campaign. These two tips apply to all:
- Consistency: the call to action should always tie in with the storytelling part, perceived as a natural consequence, a consistent ending and not something that appears out of nowhere.
- Be direct, but not too direct: vague calls to actions don’t work. But a “find out more” or “visit our shop” button is often better than a “buy now” button.
Again, it’s a matter of balance. Generally, the best product video campaigns always are the result of finding the right mix between the different ingredients made possible by Digital Transformation.
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