In this post, I would like to breakdown 5 of the top excuses, myths and roadblocks that I hear all-too-often from clients and colleagues.

But first, I would like to begin with a success story. Two years ago, we were hired by Mellinda Abbott, President of Abbott & Company, a stellar accounting firm in Lexington, Massachusetts, to make a short video about Mellinda. The goal was to introduce potential clients to Mellinda and to humanize the firm. Of course, this meant that Mellinda would have to go on-camera for the first time {yikes}. Along the way, she shared that she was nervous about having to be in the video and concerned about how it might turn out. Understandable, right?

In the kick-off meeting, we just talked. It was clear that she cared deeply about her business, employees and clients. We talked about her journey: why she formed Abbott & Company, what inspires her, and built some trust along the way. The lightbulb moment came near the end of our meeting when Mellinda shared what gets her out of bed in the morning. She was beaming as she explained it. What really happened was that Mellinda connected to the heart of what she wanted to say and that completely changed the dynamic. See for yourself:

After twenty-five years as a producer and director, including eleven at the helm of our Boston video production company, I’ve heard and seen it all. All the excuses, myths and roadblocks that stop businesses from succeeding with video before they even get started.

Some of my favorites include: video doesn’t deliver ROI; it’s too expensive; our clients won’t watch a video (they’re too busy to watch anyway); and video is just a trend. I’ll just come right out and say, marketing with video is not a trend. It’s here to stay and it’s time to stop making excuses.

The Top 5:

1. I’m not good on-camera. I can’t be in our marketing video.

Most people say this before even trying. They will even go as far as to consider every soul in their company only to arrive at the conclusion that no one can do it. How can that be?

We get here because people get stuck on “I’ll never be as good as the person who did that video for Google.” Seriously. Those people are almost always well-paid, actors, employees with experience, or they worked with a great director and a team who took painstaking steps to make everything perfect. We also get here because of how we view ourselves or stage fright. Being on-camera can feel really uncomfortable.

It’s time to get over it. Real people who are genuinely passionate about their product or business in their own way are exactly the people who should be on-camera. Getting good requires practice, the right approach and working with someone you trust who can help get you there. And, when I say practice, I’m talking about table reads– practicing your lines or answers out loud days before the shoot. This will not kill the magic or spontaneity. It will get you a better marketing video.

Finally, if I can do it, anyone can do it. I dodged going on-camera for years. But, I sucked it up, practiced, and went for it.

2. No one wants to watch a marketing video with talking heads.

Correction. People don’t like to watch talking head videos that are poorly executed. This includes people speaking too long on-camera without other visuals, a message focused on their business and interests instead of their audience’s, and videos that are just poorly filmed and/or edited.

We are hard-wired to respond to people and faces. Real people and faces help to build trust and authenticity. Videos with talking heads work and get results.

3. Animated explainer videos are the best type of marketing videos.

Animated videos are the darling of the video marketing ball, and one of the most successful forms of video. They are a great tool but they are not the best type of marketing video. They are great for explaining complex ideas simply and creating interest. I feel people often request them for the wrong reasons, like not wanting to go on camera. Animation is also costly. I would recommend a careful assessment of your needs before going down that road.

Here’s a short list of several other types of top-performing marketing videos:

-Product Videos

-About Us/Culture Videos

-Testimonial Videos

-How To & Tip Videos

-Video Case Studies

-Training Videos

-Repurposed Webinars

-Video Voicemails

 4. Video Production values don’t matter all that much today.

YouTube and camera-tech factor into this one. As everyday people started creating and posting volumes of content, they did it with Flip cameras, DSLRs, and webcams. Videos went viral using cameras under $50.00. To many, this meant that the days of spending money on video production with expensive crews and equipment were over.

I will be the first to say that there is a place for lower video-production values. For example, User Generated Content has a significant role in marketing today, and shooting video at events on your phone for use on social media makes perfect sense.

This myth is about hope. People have hoped it to be true because cost can be a barrier to entry. The idea of lower quality as the new norm gained traction for a while. Fortunately, the pendulum swung back. The way a video looks and sounds reflects directly on a brand, and it matters.

5. Videos don’t lead to sales.

Tell this to Zappos (pick a shoe any shoe and watch). A marketing video, when well-crafted and used strategically can drive sales in both the B2B and B2C worlds. It’s more than just the video, however. It’s the data from video that can help you better determine how and where to engage with your audience, what content to send them and when. With platforms like Wistia, you can use powerful video specific analytics and lead generation tools to get valuable data that can focus your sales and marketing efforts. Go a step further and link your video tracking data to a CRM like Hubspot, Pardot or Salesforce. Vidyard and Brightcove also offer outstanding products at different price points.

Success depends on tying your marketing video(s) to a goal and having a plan that includes follow-up, reviewing your data and adjusting your video content and plan accordingly.

As you can tell, we’re passionate about both video production and video marketing. If you’d like to learn more about how to achieve your goals with video, we’d love to have a conversation with you. Contact Us.