How Video Can Extend Your Marketing Communications Budget

When it comes to extending marketing budgets in these challenging financial times, the use of video is a smart business decision. Whether you re-purpose existing video that’s been sitting on the shelf, shoot new images, or conduct your annual meeting this year as a video conference – the adage is still true: A picture is worth a thousand words.

These days, we are all looking for ways to stretch our budgets. Business and industry experts agree that video has become a “must have” marketing and communications tool. One of the reasons this is true is because video is affordable; very affordable. And simply put, video has legs. It can be shot, used and reused. Then re-edited, used and used again.

With a 30-second video, you can deliver compelling interactive product demonstrations or infomercials that motivate your prospects to take immediate action. Creative broadcast and cable television commercials, shot on a shoestring budget, can generate prospects and increase sales dramatically. “Some of the most effective commercials in recent history are the Mac vs. PC series,” notes DVideo Productions’ Arie Marek. “It’s basically just two actors talking in front of a white background, but in the message it conveys, it feels like a lot more. As always, creativity is the key.”

The same Apple commercial that was shot for broadcast enjoys second and third lives as streaming commercials embedded into Apple’s web site. If they can do it, why shouldn’t you?

Here are some additional creative ways that using video can enhance your message and help extend your marketing budget:

Show how you are different. – A company overview or “image piece” on video can include a message from your CEO, a summary of your products and services, company background, etc. Businesses are increasingly interested in producing company overviews, because digital media technology allows for easy editing and periodic updates to keep the brand message fresh and current. The use of customer testimonials and case studies add credibility and trust.

Segments from a company overview can be reused in everything from a trade show loop, to a clip embedded in your web site, to a video conference. Instantly communicate how your business differentiates itself from the competition by launching a “video welcome” or a company overview from your Web site.

Catch the eye of potential customers. – How about adding fast-moving introductory videos in the lobby or reception area of your office? These are often good locations for those customer testimonials. Your existing customers are the best advocates you have.

Live video is engaging. A video conference allows two or more locations to interact via two-way video and audio transmissions simultaneously. Colleagues can share best practices, acknowledge successful employees and sales people, and engage in Q&A. This material can then be re-purposed into other forms. For example, it can be turned streaming video posted to your company’s Web site or intranet.

Sales DVDs that feature your products in action make your prospect’s life easier. Imagine a potential customer with a hectic schedule who can visit your office, meet your staff, see your showroom, and see details about your products without leaving the comfort of their home or office. A sales DVD can integrate video from many sources.

Attract customers in live venues. – Freelance Creative Director, Barbara Martin, describes how a video clip affects traffic on a trade show floor. “An eye-catching video loop in your booth can literally stop people in their tracks,” she says. “And this often leads to a meaningful conversation.” Those conversations measure the bottom line success in a trade show environment.

Get your announcement the attention it deserves. – There’s nothing like a video press release, also called a video news release, to “sell” the media on your story. Distribute them to industry trade reporters and customers. There are several web sites that feature video news releases, so you can see how other companies are taking advantage of this straightforward communications tool.

Finally, keep customers, partners, investors and employees informed with a periodic video email announcement or newsletter. We all need a morale boost these days, and a personalized touch can go a long way.