Strategy

3 Times When (Not) to Produce a Video

By April 26, 2013 No Comments

Video is a very effective way to communicate in many cases and as a video production company, it might sound odd that we would even suggest that you may want to reconsider having a video produced. The reality is, however, that there are times when video is simply not the most effective way to get information across.

While bandwidth for online video is increasingly becoming less of an issue, video production can be costly, even if producing it internally (in terms of time and resources) and in some cases can actually be counter-productive to your goals.

Here are a few cases when you should stop and reconsider producing a video.

1. When nothing is being added by creating a video.

Video is an integration of some amount of imagery (live action footage or photography), text (motion graphics or static), and audio or music. But for a video to be effective it must be greater than the sum of its parts.

If you are finding yourself trying to ‘convert’ existing content (such as a Power Point presentation) into a video, as opposed to developing a concept naturally, then it’s a strong indication that you might be headed in the wrong direction.

It’s important to ask yourself “is anything being added by creating a video instead of simply text and images? Would anything be lost without it?”

2. When the audience will want to skim or go at their own pace.

When watching lengthy product demonstrations and tutorials, you may find yourself repeatedly having to pause and repeat sections of a video. Even worse is when explanations are moving too slowly, forcing you to begin fast forwarding, at the risk of missing important information.

This is a great example of when video can actually do more harm than good and when your audience may thank you for keeping it simple by sticking to text and images.

3. When you’re unsure what it is you are trying to achieve.

Video can be a great tool to promote, to educate, to brand and to engage. But a single video should ideally have a single purpose and a single target audience.

If you do have more than one goal, you may have better success by splitting the project up into a series of videos or by creating another version with a different call-to-action. Since this would affect the scope of work and potentially the timeline, you should determine the number of videos and the goal for each prior to beginning the creative development process.

When should you produce a video?

Video works best when it is viewed as a completely separate form of media from blog posts or infographics. It is best for times when an idea would be better communicated using a visual and audio element or perhaps animation to be interesting or understood. It also works great for establishing transparency and trust by featuring real people on camera.

For example, you might include a short video to explain only a portion of your message that may be confusing or as a personal introduction to your website, instead of trying to summarize the entire document or webpage in a single video.

Still not sure if you should produce a video? Contact us for a consultation!

Jeff Pelletier

Jeff Pelletier

Jeff is CEO and Chief Strategist of Basetwo Media, a video production company that helps businesses get results with video.