Camera viewfinder during video production

6 Benefits of Working with a Full-Service Production Company

Do your business's marketing efforts need revamping? Any business, especially one that’s been around for a while, needs to periodically freshen up outdated or inconsistent marketing efforts.

For example, if you have been just focusing on advertising techniques like print materials and radio advertisements, you could benefit from changing tactics. One increasingly popular digital marketing method is to put out high-quality videos, which can encapsulate your brand and mission, all while reaching new audiences.

Working with a full-service production company can significantly benefit your business. A full-service production company can help you craft high-quality content and stay at the forefront of consumers' minds—all while staying ahead of your competitors. 

Still not convinced? Let’s explore six specific benefits of working with a full-service production company.

1. A Fresh Perspective

No one knows your business better than you and your team. However, after years of working on building a company, some business owners develop tunnel vision. You and your team may be so close to the work you do that it may be challenging to take a step back and develop new insights.

So ask yourself: are you stuck in a rut when it comes to innovating your brand and reaching new people?

Instead of struggling to come up with ideas on your own, you could enlist the help of a full-service video production company to offer a fresh perspective. An agency can make old concepts feel new and find ways to make video content appealing to modern audiences.

So, instead of looking too far inward, take a step back and consider asking a full-service production company to help rework your business's image with fresh eyes. 

2. Reduced Time to Market

One of the biggest benefits of a full-service video production company is just how much faster they can work than businesses figuring things out for themselves.

Finding the right video production company may take some time at first. You should research your different options and determine which one will meet your business's needs.

But once you’ve settled on the right video production company, you’ll be amazed at the quick turnaround times. The company you recruit will handle every part of the video creation process, including pre-production, production, and post-production. 

You and your team can focus on the day-to-day of your business—and be rest assured that your video projects will be completed in a timely manner by professionals who know the process.

3. Increased Video Quality

When a business invests in video production, it is also investing in its reputation. Any videos that your business puts out will reflect its image, so it’s important to have high production values. This can help improve your brand image in the eyes of customers.

At Slice, we always take pride in the work we create so that our clients can, too. Our strategists, videographers, and sound engineers guarantee high-quality work through a combination of cutting edge technology, industry experience, and detail-focused editing and revision stage.

As more and more businesses focus on putting out video content, don’t fall into the trap of quantity over quality. Statista reported that 33% of consumers abandon low-quality videos immediately after beginning them. Even if your video's content and message are excellent, many of your consumers won't make it far in if the production quality is low. 

Customers may look elsewhere for what they need if all they see is awkward presentation, clunky creatives, or weak storylines. A full-service production company can help with everything from storytelling to the more technical aspects of production—and increase your chances of leaving a lasting impression on your audience.

Don't risk losing potential customers by compromising the quality of the content you put out. Get things right from the start by hiring a full-service video production company to create great videos for you.

4. Higher Overall Value

When you’re a smaller business, you need to get more bang for your buck when it comes to marketing. A full-service production agency may sound out of your range, but it can be a lot more affordable than you’d think.

That’s especially true of the ‘full-service’ part, where one company can do multiple jobs at once for you. With a full-service production agency, you won't need to seek out separate vendors to perform different tasks. That saves you money in the long run.

For example, our team at Splice performs every part of the video production process. We plan your video, make up the storyboard, record, edit, and mix the sound for you. We can also produce any kind of content you need, from commercials to training videos and product demonstrations. 

5. Reliability

Some business owners look for an easy way out for their marketing endeavors. They turn to family members, friends, or colleagues who dabble in video production to produce their content. 

While this can be a cheap alternative, you often sacrifice the element of reliability. An amateur producer can’t always make your content their top priority—or may lack key skills to make a project successful. 

But a full-service production company thrives on creating high-quality videos for clients, so you’ll never need to question if you’ll get your video on time or on budget.

Recruiting a video production company is especially critical if your video content is highly time-sensitive. Creators like us will follow industry guidelines and stick to your team's timeline. We can work around your schedule and ensure that you’re always satisfied with the end product.

Having a team dedicated to your video production tasks will guarantee that you don't fall behind on your content. You'll always have professionals dedicated to putting out high-quality work. 

6. Knowledge

Our team at Slice will work with clients of all sizes, but we really know small and mid-sized companies best—including their strengths, their struggles, and how they can thrive in a competitive market. This perspective really helps us connect with our clients and figure out what they need most.

A team like ours has members with years of experience and training. We know just what techniques to implement to produce a high-quality final product.

For example, we can:

  • Edit videos. In video, every second counts—and we know just what shots to include to have the biggest impact.
  • Incorporate calls-to-action. We want people to watch your video and feel compelled to contact you after.
  • Distribute your videos online. That includes on social media and your company website.
  • Walk the line between storytelling and selling. We make videos that people want to watch without forgetting what we’re doing: promoting your brand.

Don't settle for an amateur or company with limited service offerings. Instead, opt for a full-service production company that can do it all.

Market Your Business with a Full-Service Production Company

Our creators here at Slice perform every part of the video production process. We never leave any job unfinished and we don’t settle for mediocre, so you can rest assured your brand is in good hands. 

Get in touch with us here at Slice to learn more or get started on showing the world your brand.


Planning a corporate video

How to Make Your Corporate Videos More Engaging

A corporate video is any type of video communication that a business uses to engage, inform, or persuade a particular audience. Corporate videos may be directed at internal staff, potential stakeholders, or everyday consumers, but they all have one thing in common—they need to be engaging to have an impact.

But the golden question is… how? How do you make your corporate videos engaging and informative? Entertaining, but still on-brand? It sounds like a tall order—but it’s possible for even small companies looking to make a video.

To help you out, here are six tips to help you make your next corporate video more like an Apple keynote presentation and less like an ‘80s fast-food employee training tape.

Tip #1. Find your purpose

A lot of businesses know they should be doing video. But do you know why you’re doing it?

Before you even begin the planning process, you and your team have to ask yourselves: “What are we trying to accomplish by making this video?”

Are you trying to draw in new customers? Are you promoting a new product or service? Attract new talent to apply for your company? Impress stakeholders with an annual earnings report? Train new employees or educate them with an internal corporate mission statement?

Having a sense of purpose and goal to focus on will keep you on track during production, help you create a more cohesive video, and save you time and money. Don’t just film randomly around your office and fall prey to the “we’ll fix it in post” mentality; find your purpose first.

Tip #2. Keep it brief

The exact length of your video will depend on where you’re going to show it and what you’re trying to accomplish. But, in general, it’s best to keep your video as short as possible.

In this rapidly changing era of technology, our attention spans are getting shorter. You don’t want people to feel like their time is being wasted, so every moment needs to have a purpose. Every second, every shot, and every spoken line needs to count.

That may sound like a lot of pressure, but it’ll help you distill your message down and remove extraneous details that don’t contribute to the overall story.

Tip #3. Tell a story 

If you know us, you know how important we believe it is to tell a story. We emphasize storytelling so much because people understand and remember messages better when they’re told visually with a story.

Having a story in your corporate video doesn’t mean you have to make it feel like an episode of a TV show or include fictional elements. You already have a story to tell, whether that’s the history of your brand, a case study, or an interview with an employee sharing what motivates them to do a great job.

Finally, storytelling can help make your product or service more real to your audience. Technical specs are important, but people connect more when they understand how a brand can fit into their lives.

Tip #4. Use plain language

You know your industry—and maybe you want to show your expertise through complex market analyses, intricate technical descriptions, and lots of numbers and facts. Or maybe you want to disrupt the market by pivoting your corporate strategy and utilizing your value-add proposition to move the needle… or some other combination of fancy-sounding marketing buzzwords.

Unless your audience is as entrenched in the industry as you are, they probably won’t be able to parse a lot of technical speak or buzzword-y jargon. Instead, use plain language when possible.

Plain language and simple vocabulary terms are accessible to a lot more people. In fact, experts recommend writing at a level an 11-year-old can easily understand. Keeping things simple means you can instantly broaden your audience to include those who may not understand more complex or obscure language.

Tip #5. Encourage action

The most effective and engaging corporate videos include a call-to-action (CTA). Your specific CTA should tie into the purpose you identified in Tip #1.

If your viewers enjoy your video and want to learn more, you don’t want to put the onus on them to seek out next steps. Instead, you want to make it easy for them to engage more with your brand.

For example, if you’re announcing a new product, tell people where they can buy it. If you’re sharing an interview with a subject matter expert on your team, tell people how they can reach out to learn more. Encourage them to sign up for your newsletter, follow you on Instagram, or fill out a contact form. If you can get people to follow you on social media or subscribe to your emails, you can keep them engaged with your brand for longer than the length of a single video.

Don’t pile on the CTAs, though. One or two simple instructions will be plenty.

Tip #6. Don’t do it yourself

It can be a hard truth to swallow, but it’s important to face the facts: unless you’re a professional video production company or have dedicated videographers on staff, you probably shouldn’t make your own video.

There’s so much that goes into corporate videos. From storyboarding to scripting, lighting to audio equipment, editing to sound mixing—it’s a lot harder than it looks. That’s why, if you want to make a truly engaging corporate video, you need help from professionals.

Videos are our bread and butter here at Slice. We know video production inside and out and we know what it takes to make videos that have an impact, that get noticed, and that engages viewers on a deeper level. We’re happy to help you with your next corporate video, too. Just contact us to learn more.


Behind-the-scenes at a video production company filming session

What Does a Video Production Company Do?

A video production company creates high-quality, in-depth motion content for clients across industries. But what exactly does that mean—and what exactly do video production companies do?

Here at Slice, we do a little bit of everything when it comes to creating videos. If you’ve ever been curious about what a video production company does and what happens day-to-day, we’ve outlined the different parts of the production process to help you understand.

First, what is a video production company?

A video production company (VPC) creates video content for other companies’ marketing strategies. That video content includes commercials, online ads, product showcases, as well as corporate videos and employee training videos.

Video production companies differ from film production companies because film production companies mostly make movies or TV shows. On the other hand, VPCs typically make shorter content for a variety of outlets that are often part of a larger marketing strategy.

What’s the difference between a videographer and a video production company?

Many people think a videographer and a video production company are synonymous, but they actually perform very different jobs. Videographers take on projects like weddings, parties, conventions, and other live events. A videographer is frequently in the background of the event and doesn’t interfere too much or focus on staging shots—they’re just there to capture what’s happening.

On the other hand, a VPC is a lot more involved. They’ll often employ a team of highly skilled individuals that specialize in one or more aspects of the creative filming process. These staff members will be extremely hands-on throughout the video production process, including the planning and editing phases.

What does a video production company do?

In a broad sense, a video production company plans, films, and edits videos for other companies and organizations. Day to day, activities are actually a lot more complicated than you’d think. Here’s a short rundown what you’d see a VPC do in a day:

  • Meet and collaborate with clients
  • Conduct product and market research
  • Create storyboards
  • Write scripts
  • Scout filming locations
  • Audition actors, source props, and create wardrobe pieces
  • Film videos and record audio clips
  • Edit videos by piecing together footage
  • Mix audio and music tracks
  • Create animations, motion graphics, and SFX
  • Post videos online and contact TV stations for broadcasting

Not to understate it, but that’s a lot! Let’s further explain what some of those mean.

Pre-Production

Every VPC starts with a pre-production process that involves research, planning, storyboarding, and more. A strong pre-pro phase helps avoid roadblocks during the filming and editing stages—meaning it’s essential to the success of every project.

Let’s go over some of the pre-production steps we take here at Slice.

Meeting Clients

The first step of the pre-pro process is sitting down with clients to discuss their vision and expectations for the project. Some of the things we discuss during this conversation include budgets, timelines, filming locations, content/subject matter, intended audiences, where the video will be shown, and the overall goal of the project.

It’s important for us to be as detailed as possible in this stage so that everyone involved is on the same page—and there are no surprises down the line.

Research

A good video production company will really take the time to fully understand the work of clients and their audiences.

During the research phase, we learn about the products and services we’re filming, as well as analyze what videos competitors have put out. That helps us find the right angle for a video that helps you stand out from the competition.

Storyboarding

Once we know who we’re talking to and what our goals are, we create a storyboard.

Storyboarding involves planning out each shot before ever picking up a camera. A storyboard will guide us during the production phase as we plan out camera angles, flow, actor/prop staging, and more. The final product may change from the initial storyboard, but this pre-production phase is crucial for keeping the filming stage on track.

Scripting

While storyboarding involves planning the visual shots, scripting involves planning out dialogue or voiceovers heard in the video. We focus on blending the right tone with the right information to make a video that’s accurate while also matching your brand’s style.

Selecting Talent & Picking Out Props

If a project calls for actors, most video production companies will handle the casting process. Casting calls may take place at a casting agency or virtually over video chat.

If props or special wardrobe pieces are needed, a VPC will either use what it has on hand or rent/buy the right equipment. Clients will have final say over talent and set pieces used in a video.

Choosing a Filming Location

If a video can’t be filmed in our studio, then we’ll scout out locations. Some of the things we look for in a good location includes:

  • The distance the crew and actors will have to travel
  • Potential sources of background noise or other disruptions
  • Any permits required for filming
  • Insurance coverage requirements

Clients get final approval of the filming location—and we highly recommend an in-person visit before making a decision.

Production

Once the pre-production phase is finished, we move onto filming. Different video production companies use different equipment setups, techniques, and methods for shooting video. At Slice, we use state-of-the-art filming, lighting, and audio equipment to make sure each video is the best it can be.

Filming can take a single day or a few weeks depending on the complexity and length of the video. The team will capture primary footage, B-roll shots, voiceovers, and interviews. We don’t require clients to be present on set for filming, but it is encouraged.

It’s important for clients to communicate any ideas or visuals they want in the final video before production is complete. To avoid reshoots and to keep things on schedule, we try to capture as much as we can during this main filming phase.

Post-Production

The post-production phase involves reviewing footage and compiling it into the final product. From there, we send videos out into the world—either on social media, your website, or on TV.

Editing

Editors trim, splice, and combine pieces of footage to transform them into a cohesive video. Editors and designers will add on-screen graphics, subtitles, animations, and other visual effects.

Depending on what’s agreed upon during the initial planning stages, clients are allowed a certain number of revisions to the final edited piece. Additional revisions may be requested for an extra fee.

Sound Mixing

A great video needs great audio to complete it. The sound mixing process involves layering audio on top of a video, adjusting volume levels, dynamics, and more. This stage involves adding in sound effects/foley work, layering on voiceovers, and making sure a video sounds as good as it looks.

Distribution

Some video production companies hand over the final video file and call it a day. At Slice, we’ll help you with everything that comes after, including distributing your work to television broadcasters and posting it on social media.

In Summary

A video production company transforms your ideas into reality. There are a lot of steps that go into making even a simple video—but we’re passionate about doing everything we can for clients of all sizes and industries.

At Slice, we tailor each process according to each client, but one thing remains the same: our dedication for telling stories and sharing brands through the power of video.

To see examples of what a full-service video production company can do, check out some of our work. If you’re ready to create a video for your business or just want to learn more about what Slice can do, email William at william@slice.company or call (727) 267-0650. We’re excited to hear from you.


Real estate video marketing

5 Real Estate Video Marketing Tips That Sell

Video marketing is the art of using videos to engage potential clients, elevate your brand, and educate the world about your company. As the digital world grows and more people have an online presence, we’re increasingly seeing videos play a key part in any good marketing plan.

According to Techsn, video marketing alone generates over 120 billion views a month. In the real estate industry, realtors were able to pull in leads from 65% of the videos they posted. 

Real estate in particular is uniquely suited to video marketing – whether that’s recording listing tours or just showing realtors on camera to build a connection with future clients.

Real estate video marketing is a growing trend in the industry. Realtors are starting to see that they can reach new people through video in ways like never before. If you’re interested in making videos, we’ve put together these tips to help you impress.

1. Keep It Focused

Each video should have a guiding purpose or goal, which should be clear and easy to understand from the very beginning.

No one wants to watch a rambling video that constantly veers off-topic–that’s a quick way to lose interest. Your audience should understand what they’re getting into and the video should stick to that. Everything you show on-screen should be part of supporting that guiding purpose.

Of course, the best way to keep things on topic is to create a game plan before you ever start filming.

We’ve written a lot about what you need to consider before starting a video project, and it all starts with planning. Planning can be making a storyboard, writing a script, or just picking a set of questions to answer. Whatever you do beforehand to prepare will save you a lot of time and money in post-production, as well as create better content for people to watch.

Find your goal, find your message, and find your purpose before picking up a camera.

2. Have a Call to Action

Once your viewers finish the video, what should they do? Call a number, send an email,  sign up for a newsletter, or like, comment, and subscribe?

It’s vital to include some sort of call to action at the end of your video. After you’ve given potential clients information, you also need to provide some sort of way to act on that information. Make it easy for them to find you, rather than requiring them to hunt down your contact information.

Be careful, though – don’t overwhelm your audience with a to-do list. It’s okay to stick with one or two brief lines. A simple “contact us here today” or “click the link in the description to schedule an appointment” with all of the appropriate contact information is perfect.

3. Embrace Variety

Having a variety of video content keeps things from getting stale. Listing tours are one of the most common types of real estate video. And while they may be your digital bread and butter, there are tons of other types of videos you can pursue. 

  • Q&A sessions. Have a realtor sit down to answer and explain some commonly asked questions. Bonus points if you livestream the Q&A session to allow viewers to ask questions in real-time.
  • Interviews. Have realtors talk about their experience and background history or give their thoughts about a relevant industry topic. This is an excellent way to demonstrate your authority and expertise.
  • Testimonials. Bring some satisfied clients on-screen to share their story and satisfaction.
  • 360 listing tours. Your typical property walk-through but better. 360 videos require specialized equipment, but they allow for a much more detailed and immersive experience.

Think about what your clients really want to know. Think about the questions you hear from them most often. Answering those questions and fulfilling those needs are great sources of inspiration for your videos.

4. Put a Face to the Name

As a realtor, you know how important it is to make a personal connection with your clients because they put an enormous amount of trust in you. Letting them see your face and hear you speak before meeting you is a great way to build trust.

We know this is true because of the psychological concept of parasocial relationships. When people see you on social media or in videos, they can grow to like and trust you, even before they ever meet you in real life. It’s the same reason we grow to love celebrities and social media influencers so much just by seeing them on TV or online. By watching you in videos, potential clients can come to feel as if they know you personally.

So, one of the biggest tips for success in real estate video marketing is to show your face. Treat the camera like it’s your most important client and be amazed at the response you receive.

5. Use Apps and Other Tools

Even if you’re just using a smartphone, there are apps and other pieces of software that can improve the audio and picture quality or allow you to share videos without having to have professional editing tools.

Some great resources available include:

  • Livestreaming software, like Periscope and Instagram Live. These let you share in the moment and allow for enhanced viewer interaction.
  • Editing tools, like Magisto and Animoto. These are great for making small enhancements with no video editing experience required.
  • Social media that supports video, like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. We’ve already talked about why you should be using IGTV, so take the time to familiarize yourself with the platforms available to you.

Your videos don’t necessarily need to be flashy or have Hollywood-level production quality. But the higher the production quality, the better.

You may discover that even with the help of useful software tools and apps, creating a polished video is more difficult and time-consuming than it seems.

That’s why Slice is here. We’re a video production company based in Tampa Bay and we’ll help you through the entire process of making a great video. From planning to filming, post-production and editing, we’ll help you reach potential clients through masterfully made videos.

Contact Us

If you’re interested in hearing more about the power of real estate video marketing, just contact us! We work with companies of all industries and sizes – and we’re excited to hear from you next.


video projects questions to ask

10 Questions to Ask Before You Start a Video Project

video projects questions to ask

Creating a branded video for your company is a highly rewarding project. Videos boast higher engagement and conversion rates than written content, but they also boast higher budgets. For this reason, video projects should be planned carefully to ensure their success. 

In this blog, our Tampa video production team shares some of the most important questions to ask before starting your next video project. 

1. What’s the purpose of the video?

Start with the big picture thinking - why are you making this video? You have to know the why before you can start planning the content of your video. 

Are you trying to raise awareness for a brand? Engage with your social media following? Or is the video intended to be educational? 

Pick one main purpose, stick to it, and don’t overcomplicate it.

2. What’s your budget?

Actors, equipment, and location rentals all cost money. Know your budget and try to stick to it throughout the execution of your project. 

If you’re creating content to embed on your website, it’s better to spend more on one high-quality video than to spend less on several lower-quality videos. 

Not sure if your idea fits into your budget? Write a clear, detailed project brief to get an accurate quote from a video production agency. Unfortunately, you might find that some agencies only work with big budgets - not us. Our Tampa video production company is willing to work with any size budget because we’re all about finding the best solutions, not landing the biggest clients.

3. Who is the target audience?

Who do you want to watch your video? Are you creating content that will be understood and well-received by this group? Whether it’s 25 to 35-year-old men from Tampa, FL, or women who recently changed their Facebook status to “engaged”, having a specific audience in mind will help you develop a tone and a message that they can relate to.

4. What is your core message?

Do you have a message that’s strong and clear? It may be tempting to cram as much information in your video as possible, especially if it’s your company’s first one. However, it’s more effective to keep your message specific. You can always make more videos down the road that explore other topics.

It’s also important to remember that people have pretty short attention spans nowadays. Make sure your message is clear within the first 8 seconds of your video, or else viewers may grow impatient and lose interest. 

5. Do you have/need a call to action?

Do you want your project to motivate someone to do something, like making a purchase, participating in an event, or following you on social media? That’s a call to action (CTA). 

Certain types of videos, such as employee training videos and other internal corporate videos, may not need a call to action. But if your video is being shown to potential customers, it’s a good idea to include one (even if it’s as simple as “visit my website” or “like this video”). Typically, CTAs are most effective at the end of a video.

6. What are your competitors doing?

If your business is fairly new to video, it’s a good idea to take a look at what your competitors are doing. This will give you a good idea of what types of videos are popular within your industry, such as how-to videos, product reviews, or educational videos.

Competitor research is not an opportunity to copy, but rather to learn. Take inspiration from what they’re doing right, and more importantly, don’t recreate their mistakes.

7. Where will the video be distributed?

Will your video be shared on social media, YouTube, television, or all of the above? Think about how your video will translate across different platforms. For example, did you know that 85% of Facebook videos are viewed without sound? Cinema ads, on the other hand, rely heavily on sound to catch the attention of movie-goers. 

8. Where will the video be filmed?

This is crucial to the budget, especially if it has to be traveled to. Also, it’s important to keep in mind weather patterns and potential background noise and distractions when picking a location. 

9. What will the review process be like?

Some video projects may require approval at various stages by clients or higher-ups. Share pre-production materials like the script and budget as early as possible, and allow extra time in your schedule for any revision requests. 

10. How will you measure the success of the project?

Your goals should be well-defined before you start your video project. Will the video’s success be determined by clicks, views, watch time, conversions, sales, or something else?

Ideally, you’ll want to measure multiple metrics, but some can be tricky to measure. It may seem easy to count views, but you’ll find that some platforms define “views” differently from others. For example, someone only has to watch your video on Facebook for 3 seconds for it to count as a complete view, but if they watched the same video on YouTube, they’d need to watch for at least 30 seconds. 

Familiarize yourself with the different platforms and tools you’ll be using to analyze your video beforehand so that you can accurately measure your success. 

Take Your Video Project to the Next Level

Looking for more ways to elevate your company’s video content? Check out our YouTube marketing strategies for small businesses or our guide to making the perfect corporate video. 

Slice Creates is a video production company in Tampa, Florida, specializing in corporate video content, web design, photography, and whatever else you need to thrive creatively. Call 727-267-0650 to learn more, or email william@slicecreates.com -  We look forward to hearing from you! 


youtube marketing

YouTube Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses

youtube marketing

YouTube is the place to be for businesses. Whether you’re creating your own channel or simply using YouTube to advertise, it’s a valuable addition to any marketer’s toolkit in today’s highly visual world. Unfortunately, many small businesses tend to shy away from spending on video, deeming it too expensive - but with the right small business YouTube marketing strategy, it’s a worthwhile investment.

There’s plenty of data to back up that claim, too. According to Hubspot, mobile ads on YouTube are 84% more likely to hold a viewer’s attention than TV ads, and 68% of YouTube users watch videos to help them make purchase decisions.

First Things First: Do Your Homework

Is there already a YouTube channel out there creating similar content? Build off of what they do well and change what they don’t. Find videos that have the most views and interactions to see what your audience will be interested in.

It would also be wise to look at their video descriptions to see what keywords they’re using. There are also free browser extensions like VidIQ that allow you to see helpful information about another channel’s videos, such as demographics and which videos drove the most subscriptions.

Creating a YouTube Profile & Writing a Channel Description

Your YouTube profile page is often the deciding factor for subscribers, so you’ll want to make a good impression. Including a large banner image (2560 x 1440 pixels) at the top of your page and uploading a profile picture (ideally an 800 x 800-pixel image to ensure clarity) will make you appear more credible to channel lurkers.

Your channel description is located under the “About” tab on your profile. It should include:

  • A keyword-rich bio
  • Links to your website and social media profiles
  • Location and contact information

It’s important to remember that YouTube is a community. Networking with similar channels is highly beneficial to both parties - you can endorse each other’s channels by adding them to your Featured Channels box on your profile, and vice versa.

The way you organize the videos on your profile is important, too. Arranging your videos into playlists is an easy way to keep your channel neat and tidy. And when someone clicks on one video in a playlist, the next will autoplay, keeping that person on your channel longer and giving you more views.

YouTube SEO for Small Businesses

YouTube, like Google, is a search engine. That means SEO, or search engine optimization, is going to be part of your small business YouTube marketing strategy.

YouTube SEO includes things like titles, thumbnails, and descriptions. The best practices for each ranking factor are listed below.

Titles

Video titles can be up to 70 characters long, although no more than 60 is recommended to prevent it from being cut off on search engines. When creating a title, you want to use words that are commonly searched. Put yourself in someone’s shoes who may know nothing about a topic when searching for it.

Avoid “clickbait” titles that aren’t related to your content, as these will only hurt your channel in the long run. YouTube monitors how long your videos are watched, and if people are initially drawn in by your title but click away quickly, YouTube may penalize you for it.

Thumbnails

A thumbnail is a photo that represents your video, appearing in search results or the recommended sidebar. The thumbnail photo you choose should be clear, eye-catching, and hint to what the video is about. Research shows people respond well when a human face (often a very expressive one) is included in the thumbnail.

Descriptions

The descriptions you write for your video help YouTube’s AI better understand your content. For this reason, vivid descriptions of what the video is about will help your videos rank higher. Place key search terms toward the beginning of your description, don’t resort to unnatural-sounding keyword stuffing.

If your video is particularly long, use your description to link to important timestamps so that viewers can skip to the parts they want. This space can also be used to link to similar videos, add hashtags, and link to your brand’s other social media channels.

Tags

Tags are a major factor in YouTube SEO. Choose tags that include the keywords you used in your title and description, and be sure to only include tags that are relevant to your video. Tags are not visible on videos by default, so you’ll need to use an extension like the previously mentioned VidIQ to mine your competitors for tags.

Call to action

If you watch a lot of YouTube videos, you’re probably tired of hearing the words “like, comment, and subscribe” over and over again. That’s because the reminder works! You can also place custom subscribe buttons visible only to non-subscribers on your videos.

Cards

A card is a small, clickable button that appears in the top right corner of a video at the time you choose. You can use cards to link to your other videos, giving your viewers somewhere to go next.

Pro Tip: YouTube also highly favors videos that have closed captions available. While YouTube auto-captions videos, these captions typically aren’t very accurate, so it’s better to do them yourself or hire someone else to do them for you.

Content is King, but Consistency is Queen

YouTube favors channels that post frequently over channels that post sporadically. Uploading regularly also gives you more opportunities to learn YouTube’s algorithm and perfect your marketing strategy.

Consistency builds credibility. Even if you can only manage one video per month, letting viewers know that it will always go up on the first Wednesday of each month helps to create a more loyal following.

Consider Influencer Marketing

Along the same lines of networking, it may be in your business’s best interest to work with an influencer in your niche. They already have a following, which means you have the potential to easily reach more potential customers. Research has shown 60% of YouTube viewers trust the opinions of those they subscribe to.

Advertising on YouTube

Creating content isn’t the only way to promote your brand on YouTube. You can also pay to place ads on other people’s videos. You’ll need to do some research to determine which of the following types of ads best fit your brand’s voice and budget:

  • Skippable video ads
  • Non-skippable video ads
  • Bumper ads
  • Overlay ads
  • Display ads
  • Sponsored cards

The key to YouTube advertising is to make the viewer forget that they’re watching an ad. The better your ads blend into the publisher’s content, the more likely they’ll pay attention.

Measuring and Reporting

Your YouTube channel is set up, your titles and descriptions are optimized, and you’re posting regularly, so that’s all there is to it, right? Not exactly.

You should be monitoring different aspects of your channel to see what’s working and what’s not Here are some important metrics you’ll want to keep a close eye on:

  • Subscribers gained/lost
  • Shifting audience demographics
  • Traffic sources (are people finding you organically, or through referral channels?)
  • Device type (mobile, desktop, smart TVs, etc.)

While you probably won’t make a big splash right away, the small business YouTube marketing tips laid out in this guide will put you on an accelerated track to success.

But knowing how to optimize your content for YouTube is only half the battle - the other half is, of course, making great content. If you’re a business owner in the Tampa Bay area, you can turn to Slice for all of your video production and post-production needs. We work with companies large and small to bring their brands to life - contact us today for more information.


video production close up

Corporate Video Production: Tips & Best Practices

video production close up

There’s no doubting the value of corporate video production - for decades, companies have been making videos to recruit and train employees, promote new products, and share their brand story with the world.

But corporate videos have come a long way from the hilarious and bizarre training videos of the 1990s’, and they aren’t just for employees or other businesses to watch behind the scenes, either. The rise of YouTube and social media has thrust B2B video marketing in the spotlight, so there’s no better time to brush up on your knowledge and learn the best practices in the industry.

By following these simple tips, you’ll never shoot a dull explainer video, soulless interview, or boring brand story ever again.

Pre-Production Tips

Before the camera even starts rolling, there are important steps you can take to help make your video a success.

  • What’s the message? You may know what kind of video you want to make, but why do you want to make it? Keep your “why” audience-focused. For example, if you’re making an explainer video, focus on showing the audience how your product can benefit them.
  • Storyboard your video. You may be familiar with storyboarding in animation, but did you know that it can be a useful tool in creating live-action videos, too? In addition to a written script, planning out your video visually can help you spot awkward transitions and make adjustments before you enter the production phase.
  • Hire a professional. Anyone can hold a video camera and press record, right? Sure, but unless you hire a professional, the final product is going to be noticeably amateurish. A corporate video production company will help you with every part of the process, from the first script to the final edits. Plus, it’s nice to have someone else worry about things like lighting, location, actors, and all of the logistics associated with planning a shoot.

Real Employees or Paid Actors?

If you need actors to be in your corporate video, should you spend the money on professional talent, or save by making your employees the stars?

The short answer? It depends.

What’s the goal of your video?

Paid actors and real employees each have their pros and cons, so it really boils down to what you want your video to convey.

Real employees are going to convey a quality of authenticity. That’s exactly what people want to see in a recruitment video - people that they can identify with. Real employees work well for brand story videos, too, for the same reasons. Viewers will see your company as more down to earth and relatable.

You might assume that your audience will always want to hear that authentic brand voice, but there are plenty of situations where the polish of a professional actor is a better fit. If you’re trying to convey information on your website in a way that’s easy to digest, they’ll be able to get the message across more clearly. The same goes for explainer videos or any video where you’re trying to sell a product or service.

Best Practices for Video Interviews

Few corporate video production strategies are as simple and effective as interviews. The goal of any video interview, whether it’s with your company’s CEO, employees, or customers, should be to capture a genuine conversation that your audience believes and connects with.

Here are some quick tips to help your interviews go as smoothly as possible.

corporate video productionFor starters, make sure the interviewee is a willing and enthusiastic participant. That may sound obvious, but you’d be surprised by how often companies choose someone based on nothing more than their title. And unsurprisingly, their lack of enthusiasm shows in the final result.

If you can help it, don’t give participants their questions before the actual interview. If they can’t prep their responses beforehand, their answers will feel more natural. You can give them an idea of the subjects they’ll be talking about, but avoid giving out anything exact.

Remember, video interviews are about telling a story, not putting people in front of a camera to sing the praises of your company. Audiences can tell the difference between sincerity and robotic corporate speak, so it’s important to create an environment where your participants can feel relaxed. Smiling is contagious, so if you smile when you ask them questions, they’ll be more likely to smile back!

Lastly, make sure you conduct the interviews in a location with little to no background noise. The sound of traffic outside or even something as subtle as the hum of a breakroom refrigerator can be distracting.

Post-Production Tips

In a perfect world, everything could be filmed in one take. But corporate video production is a human endeavor, and there are bound to be mistakes - that’s where post-production comes in.

Unless you’re familiar with industry-standard editing software like Adobe Premiere Pro or Vegas Pro, you’ll want to hire a post-production company for this step. A professional editor will clean up and trim your footage until you have a final product made up of only the best clips.

Here are a few other post-production tips to consider:

  • Background audio is your friend. Odds are, most people aren’t going to remember the music that you use in your corporate videos, but they will remember how it made them feel. Music helps establish the mood, whether it’s light and uplifting or deep and powerful. If your video contains any kind of audio, stick with purely instrumental background audio to avoid confusion.
  • Be mindful of copyright laws. While adding music to your corporate video is a great way to make your video feel more professional, it can also be an easy way to get into legal trouble. Using music that’s unlicensed will result in sites like YouTube and Vimeo taking down your video, or worse - an expensive lawsuit. Either obtain the proper license for the song you want, use a recording that’s in the public domain or available under a Creative Commons license.

Marketing Your Video

video production behind the scenesWhat’s the point of spending time and effort on a video if no one sees it?

You’ll need to develop a marketing strategy that gets your video out in front of your target audience. That strategy can include:

  • Creating a video ad campaign on Facebook
  • Adding your video to a landing page to boost conversions
  • Incorporating the video into an email campaign
  • Playing your video at events
  • Posting the video on all of your company’s social channels
  • Sharing your content with colleagues and friends

Lastly, you’ll need a way to measure your video’s performance. Most social platforms have built-in analytics tools that you can use to see how many views, shares, comments, and clicks your videos are receiving from your target audience.

Use these metrics to make improvements to your next corporate video production. For example, if you notice that a lot of viewers are dropping off around the 1-minute mark, work on ways you can keep their attention.

Final Thoughts

The corporate video production process is one tough decision after another. Which actors convey your brand message authentically? What location has the least background noise? What clips should the editor cut?

Making all of these decisions can feel like a daunting task - that’s why most companies choose to work with a professional video production agency.

Slice is a video production company in Tampa, Florida, with a love for collaboration. We work closely with our corporate clients to create something truly unique to their brand. Contact us today to learn how we can put your ideas in motion.


facebook video marketing

SEO Video Marketing Tips for Better Engagement on Facebook

facebook video marketing

If you’ve been paying attention to the digital marketing scene, you know just how important video marketing has become.

But just in case you didn’t know, here are some facts you should be aware of:

  • Adding a video to a social post increases views by 48%
  • As of 2019, 87% of businesses use video as a marketing tool - that’s up from 63% in 2017
  • 83% of businesses reported a good ROI from video marketing in 2017
  • According to Nielsen, 74% of a video marketing campaign’s impact (including ad recall, brand awareness, and purchase intent) can be achieved within the first 10 seconds

These statistics tell us two things:

  1. Most people would rather watch something than read something.
  2. If video isn’t part of your marketing strategy, it should be.

But last year, Facebook announced some major changes to its algorithm that have made it more difficult for video content from businesses to stand out.

That’s where SEO video marketing comes in.

SEO, or search engine optimization, is all about making sure your content gets seen by your target audience. Facebook’s News Feed may not be a search engine, but just like how understanding Google’s algorithm can help you rank higher in the SERPs, understanding how to optimize your video content for Facebook’s algorithm can help you improve your brand’s visibility.

How the Facebook Video Algorithm Works (And How It’s Changed)

 

Facebook has come a long way from the early days of 500-character limits and playing Farmville from friends. And the social media platform hasn’t just changed for users - it’s changed for marketers, too.

Like Youtube, Twitter, and Instagram, Facebook uses an algorithm to show users content that is the most relevant to them closer to the top of the News Feed.

In 2018, Facebook announced a major algorithm update that would change the way businesses think about content. In an effort to reduce spam, the new algorithm boosts posts from friends and family and shows fewer posts from businesses. The goal, according to Facebook, is to foster more meaningful conversations.

For marketers and small businesses, these changes mean that text and static images alone aren’t going to cut it any more. To get the reach that they need to grow, more and more businesses are adding SEO video marketing to their strategy.

 

4 SEO Video Marketing Strategies for Better Facebook Engagement

 

Yes, getting your videos seen on Facebook is going to be harder than it was before the algorithm update. But the value of video hasn’t diminished - in fact, it’s more valuable than ever before.

So instead of throwing in the towel, check out these SEO video marketing strategies to help you stand out and get ahead.

 

1. Supplement Your Organic Content with Paid Content

 

Here’s the sad truth for businesses on Facebook - organic reach is on the decline. As Facebook continues to prioritize content from people over content from Pages, your business is going to struggle to reach your audience with organic efforts alone.

That’s why it’s a good idea to supplement your organic video content with paid video ads. That’s because even if your Page has a ton of followers, Facebook’s new algorithm is not always going to put your content on their News Feeds.

If you have room in your marketing budget, it’s well worth it to put some money behind your Facebook videos, especially since organic reach on brand Pages is expected to plummet even further in the coming years.

 

2. Encourage Active Engagement

 

Since last year’s algorithm update, Facebook has repeatedly stressed that its goal is to prioritize “meaningful interactions” between its users.

But what counts as a “meaningful interaction”?

For the Facebook algorithm, that means prioritizing active engagement (sharing and commenting) over passive engagement (likes and clicks).

So how can you get people talking about your videos? Here are a few ideas you can use to get the ball rolling:

Ask questions. It’s human nature to like talking about ourselves, so pass the mic to your audience by asking them a question in your copy. You could ask them to share a story, tag a friend, or ask a “would you rather” question to start a conversation.

Go live. Live videos receive 10x more comments than pre-recorded videos, so it would be crazy not to make them part of your audience engagement strategy. Plus, if you don’t have the budget or the time to create and edit consistent video content for your Page, going Live is an easy solution. You could do a Q&A session, give a tour of your company, or livestream an event.

Get personal. People like ads that don’t look like ads. Instead of promoting your brand 24/7, try to incorporate personal stories into your video marketing strategy. People are more likely to engage with content that they can relate to or feel inspired by.

 

3. Focus on Mobile

 

If you remember anything from this list, it should be this.

You need to optimize your videos for mobile.

96% of Facebook users access the site on a mobile device (smartphone or tablet). So how do you make your videos phone-friendly?

First things first, make sure you’re adding captions to your videos. Facebook videos don’t play audio automatically, and most mobile users (who are often using their phones in a public place) aren’t going to unmute your ad.

For that reason, it’s important to make sure your video gets the same message across with or without sound. You’ll also be making your videos accessible to deaf and hard of hearing viewers in the process, so there’s really no good reason not to caption your video content.

Another way to make your SEO video marketing strategy more effective on mobile is to use square or vertical videos when you’re posting on social. On Facebook, vertical videos consistently outperform horizontal videos. A horizontal video may provide higher visual quality, but most mobile users aren’t going to flip their phones sideways to watch it.

 

4. Keep it Short and Sweet

 

The average human attention span is down to just eight seconds, so it’s not surprising that shorter videos tend to perform better on social media.

However, Facebook users are willing to stick around and watch longer videos than Instagram or Twitter users. According to HubSpot, the ideal video length for engagement on Facebook is somewhere between 1 and 2 minutes.

No matter how long your video is, remember that you only have a few seconds to catch someone’s attention before they decide to keep scrolling. Make sure your message is clear from the start, and supplement it with copy that previews your video.

 

Partner with a Tampa Video Production Company That Understands Social

 

Want to take your social video content to the next level?

Slice Creates in Tampa, Florida, is a production and post-production that work with businesses to create polished, professional, and highly engaging content for the web. We understand that the social media landscape is constantly changing and help our partners stay ahead of the curve.

Contact us today to get started on your video marketing campaign!