How to Get Started with Video Content Without Spending a Penny

— February 15, 2017

Video content is some of the most engaging, innovative, and results-driving marketing material an organization can create. American adults watch about 5.5 hours of video content every day. Brands that can capture a portion of that time can viscerally connect with their audience, earn consumer favor, and drive sales.

On-demand content, mobile viewing, and live streaming have already exploded. New video technology like VR and 360 degree video and will more offer innovative organizations even more ways to connect with current and potential customers.

Traditionally, technological and skill requirements created a high barrier to entry for video content. That drove up costs and turned many organizations off the medium.

But now video is more accessible than ever, and it’s worth any marketing department’s time to experiment with it. If you haven’t already, give it a shot–you may find that it’s a huge unexplored opportunity worth investing further into. And if you’ve previously been paying an agency huge fees for video content, you could find that you can trim them out and use those funds elsewhere.

If you want to adopt video content into your marketing strategy, here’s how you can get started—without committing to a huge budget.

The Camera

All the hardware you need to begin video marketing is probably sitting right in your pocket.

If you’ve purchased a smartphone at any point in the last few years, it almost inevitably has a camera of viable quality. It might not be amazing–but it’s good enough to get the job done if the contents of the video are good enough.

The quality of your content reflects the quality of your brand. So it’s understandable why some marketers would be hesitant to publish anything less than pristine audio and video. But as long as your video is entertaining, informative, or immediate valuable, then people will forgive you if you’re not able to serve a high definition stream. Once you identify a demand, you can make some economical investments into better microphones and cameras in the future.

Bonus Tip: Lighting alone can make the difference between mediocre looking video and a great visual component that stands out. This is true whether you’re wielding a lower-end Android that’s a few years old or a cutting edge recording device for professionals. Watch a tutorial or two on lighting for video. In general, more light is better than less–and natural sunlight rarely looks bad.

The Tech

If you’ve ever watched an expert edit video, they were use a top-of-the-line tool; for instance, one of Adobe’s staples like Final Cut or After Effects.

There are many incredibly powerful video editing programs available–but they tend to come with a hefty price tag. More importantly, they’re often so complex that a beginner would struggle to make use of them.

Fortunately, there’s no need. The majority of computers come with either Windows Movie Maker or Apple iMovie. These tools won’t get you far if you’re interested in sophisticated editing techniques. But they’re more than sufficient for clipping out errors, managing transitions, and rearranging scenes.

Bonus Tip: Check out the multitude of video editing mobile apps available for free or cheap. Great for optimizing smartphone-recorded clips on the go!

The Platform

Before you put someone or something in front of a camera, you should put some thought into where you want that video to end up.

The king host for recorded content for more than a decade now is, of course, YouTube. Vimeo is a viable alternative if you’d prefer another solution for any reason. Both offer premium options, but otherwise are free as a platform.

For live streaming, you also have several free platforms to choose from. But assuming you’re starting off with your smartphone camera, two options stand above the rest: Facebook Live and Meerkat.

Everything You Need to Start from Scratch

The potential of video for any business–B2B or B2C–is tremendous. And thanks to advancements in technology, you no longer have to rely on third parties to make it for you. MarketPro has created a complete guide of everything a business of any size needs to get started with video while on a tight budget. From affordable hardware options to the core talent for a video marketing team, download the complete guide here FREE!

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Author: Mark Miller

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