Monday, 23 May 2011

What role does video play for the modern startup?

In the not too distant past, as a start up business the use of video as a promotional tool would have been way down the list for the fledgling business. Most start ups today though, would probably list 'getting the right online video presence as being right near the top of their priority list.

But as an owner or director of a start up, how can you be sure you're maximising your potential when it comes to video? How much of your initial start up budget should be allocated to video production? And how can you be sure of getting it right?

Viral video production can be an expensive business, a decent well shot and well scripted viral could set you back around £2500 which could represent a fair percentage of your startup costs. If you do go down the viral route how can you be sure that the video does indeed 'go viral' and get shared around. And an even bigger consideration, if it does get shared around, will enough of your potential customers see it and visit your site and enquire and or buy your products or services?

The main thing to remember is that youtube, as popular as it is, is not the be all and end all of video sharing websites. There are a plethora of sites out there that the new business startup can place their videos on and get seen by if not millions of people at first then at least the Googlebots.

Though Google try and keep secret their exact criteria for relevancy, it is clear that video helps push a site up the rankings, especially popular videos. Popularity isn't always about simple hits on the video, but also about how many different blogs and sites that a particular video is linked to and shared on.

Complete views play a big part in video popularity, so someone coming to a video and not completing their viewing is not seen by Google as a hit, thus the case for snappy and engaging video is strengthened.

Whilst it might seem counter intuitive to the start up business to give away anything for free, imparting knowledge via video tutorials either on sites like or specific interest forums, greatly increases the chance of being linked to and shared.

A simple promotional video can is better than no video at all and can often be the most effect type, the 'does what it says on the tin' type promotion targets information hungry potential customers, who are irritated by glossy, frilly promotions. However making a no frills video, should not be confused with making a poorly shot and badly edited video, this often problem often arises when the startup tries to save money by not spending enough or even making the video themselves.

The negative impact of a poorly produced and poorly thought out video is as bad as a well thought, well made one is good, but much, much harder to measure and asses. Ultimately there's nothing wrong with making your own video, or even paying a small amount for your video, but the new start up has to make sure that the results are as good as they can be for the particular production decision.

A start up that immediately starts employing people on a premises has other worries and commitments that the sole trader or small partnerships perhaps don't have. Health & safety and staff training are two such worries, health & safety being compulsory ans staff training at the very least prudent and at most absolutely crucial.

So does video have a role to play in these areas? Possibly not at first for a lot of businesses as health & safety requirements for say an office based business can be easy to comply with, without the use of video. However in certain industries, the case for video grows stronger, as it can enable the company to comply in a consistent manner, save time and thus money and protect the company from any litigation resulting from accidents in the work place.

The training videos benefits are obvious, techniques and regulations can be regularly reviewed and referred to, maximising time and resources.

Double R Productions website