One of the biggest opportunities for small local companies to engage with their potential customers is the rapid rise in quality and affordability of video for business.

Websites such as Youtube have lowered the barrier to viewing online video to such a level that it is almost expected to see a movie clip on a web page as you browse online. What surprises me most is that so few small businesses are taking advantage of this, especially when most of the traditional advertising streams such as the Yellow Pages, newspaper ads or TV have become far less effective and considerable more expensive.

So why are small businesses missing out? Perhaps it is because so many video creators have failed to move with the times and insist on pumping out the old fashioned traditional corporate video that costs a fortune yet never gets seen by anyone other than the company bos…and his mum!

The Traditional Corporate Video

It is my belief that the traditional (and boring) corporate ad is dead. You remember them…they witter on for what seems like forever, with the business owner rambling about how wonderful his business is. Like we care! They cost thousands to produce and very rarely make an impact on the bottom line of the business. No wonder they are dying out.

So if the old style corporate video is dying out, how can the small business cash in on the ease, low cost and popularity of web video?

I thought you’d never ask!

Short Intro Video

The answer is by using short 1-minute intro videos to showcase your products or services in a fast moving, visually exciting way that appeals to the short attention span of the modern consumer while giving them the information they need to take the next step along your marketing path.

Here’s an example I created to showcase the delights of taking a short break in Southport. While it is just under 2 minutes in length, it packs in a wealth of information to catch the eye of a wide range of potential visitors. This type of movie would be ideal for a hotel or B&B by simply replacing the second block of images with a short tour of their property and cutting out any blocks that would not appeal to their clientele. Take a look…

(For the best result view full screen and HD)

By removing the business owners voiceover the video clip can be used in a wide range of scenarios and locations, multiplying the promoting effect of this one short movie clip. And if you host the video on Youtube rather than your own web server, you open it up to a world of marketing opportunities:

  • Your Website
    Of course the most obvious place to show a small business video is on the website of the small business! Hosting on Youtube means that you never need to worry about the bandwidth hosting costs and the enbed code is created for you!
  • Google+ Listing
    A quick browse through Google+ reveals that very few small businesses are aware they can add movie clips to their profile page. So when people search Google for local products or services and choose your listing from the maps results, they can also view your promotional movie.
  • Youtube
    Youtube is the worlds second largest search engine as well as being the number one video hosting site. So the passing foot traffic alone will guarantee that your video clip will be seen.
  • Web 2.0 Sites (Hub Pages etc)
    The rise of so-called web 2.0 sites like Hub Pages allows anyone to create a multimedia web page on pretty much any topic under the sun. For you, it also makes it mindblowingly easy for people to add YOUR video clip to THEIR Hub page, giving your business extra exposure on relevant pages for zero cost. This really is the best form of free advertising.
  • Other peoples websites
    Just as Youtube makes it easy for you to embed your video clip on YOUR website, it is also just as easy for related websites and bloggers to embed the video on their websites or blog, giving you even more free publicity.

Conclusions

Hopefully you have seen the wide range of possibilities open to a company looking to use a short video for business promotion without boring their viewer into submission! I have trimmed the demo clip down to give you an idea of what is possible without forcing you to sit through the entire thing over and over. As a general rule, each segment should be no longer than 15 seconds or so, with an overall length of about a minute.

So would a short video help to showcase your small business? I’m sure it would! But what may surprise you is that a 1 minute movie similar to the one shown above would cost from only £197. That includes the shooting and editing of High Definition video clips, all the animation and background music, plus uploading to Youtube. What are you waiting for…grab yours now!