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Once upon a time…

Creating a business video can seem a lot like a fairy tale from the outside the creation process. You want to make the greatest thing ever – you’ll introduce your amazing company, your amazing people, and your amazing ideas, all with Spielberg-quality visuals, and probably a soundtrack by Coldplay or maybe U2. And special effects. Can’t forget the special effects. It’ll be a magical lightning rod that will cause your customers to beam and your prospects to swoon. Your competitors may weep openly as they gaze upon your video’s glory.

Except that’s not how it works. The level of expectation that a lot of people, and a lot of organizations, set for their video is so high that 1) they could never afford it and 2) it would never offer a positive return on investment even if they could. In fact, that super-high level of expectation? It can have a crippling effect on marketers and organizations that could benefit TREMENDOUSLY from introducing video into their marketing mix. So how do you, as a marketer, overcome the objection of out-sized expectations? By thinking like a journalist, and breaking the problem down into easily digestible bites.

Journalists approach a story by telling some combination of WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE, and WHY. Before you begin to approach stakeholders, determine which of those questions your video or videos will be answering, and offer a crystallized strategy for accomplishing that. Making a corporate profile video? Tell us WHO you are, WHAT you do, and WHY customers should choose you. And then stop. Customer tesitmonials? WHAT did you do for the customer and WHY does that make them recommend you? And then stop. Small, clear, discrete ideas.

Communicate the goals for each video clearly and repeatedly to your stakeholders, and then make exactly the video you said you were going to make. What you’ll find with video as a medium is that it’s humanizing, it enhances the perception of almost any brand, and assists your salespeople by accelerating and lubricating the selling process. As you start to produce videos, expectations are corrected and excitement builds, and you’ll often see it expand into all sorts of areas in your online presence.