4 min read  | Video

5 common mistakes companies make when commissioning video content

Video is the most powerful medium (beyond a live event) to get your message across. Because it combines words, pictures, sound and movement, it can convey emotion and sentiment in ways that static mediums cannot. Unfortunately, it is also one of the most difficult types of marketing to get right.

For many business-to-business (B2B) organisations, commissioning content that expresses the essence of your brand can be a real challenge. Here are some common mistakes that could sink your video marketing efforts—and how to avoid them.

1. Not knowing what you want.

What is the problem you are trying to solve? Is it to explain a complex concept? Is it to make a simple offer much more enticing? Or is it to demonstrate a use case? Ensuring you are clear about the marketing problem you are trying to solve is key to identifying the type of video you need and the style of video to make.

Before establishing your schedule and budget, you should take the time to seek out examples of videos that focus on the same type of product or service, convey a similar personality, or use the same method of storytelling as your brand. This will help guide you towards an end product that actually makes sense for your business.

2. Not telling a story.

Creating impactful video requires you to dig deep into understanding what you stand for, and what promise you are making to your audience. This understanding should inform what story you are trying to tell with your video.

Script writing and storyboarding are helpful tools for building a narrative that has a distinct beginning, middle, and ending. As simple as it sounds, you'll want to take viewers on a journey where tension is built and a change of perspective is achieved. These elements of storytelling are essential if your video is going to have an impact.

3. Expecting too much.

If you have a complex proposition to explain, don’t expect a videographer or editor to figure it out and be able to convey it. Their job is to bring your story to life.

Make sure you have invested upfront in honing your message and expectations. A good script writer and story boarder can help distill your idea into a concise plan that provides adequate direction for your videographer and editor.

Making great movies that hit the mark is a real artistic craft. As with any craft, you often get back what you are prepared to invest. Don’t expect a whiteboard-style video commissioned for a “fiver” to yield you a high impact result in a demand generation campaign.

4. Not considering stakeholder engagement and style.

Because video is as subjective as it gets, understanding and being able to articulate the essence of your brand is critical to hitting the mark when engaging stakeholders.

If your CEO, GM or other key stakeholders are not crystal clear on your brand story, the engagement and approval process is likely to be fraught with difficulty. Maybe you're dying to tell your story with a shark-themed script, not knowing that your boss positively hated Sharknado. We have seen misaligned ideas go into production many times, and having to ask for more money to get rid of the sharks is always an ugly conversation. Make sure all decision-makers are on board well before anyone shouts "Action!"

5. Reworking something that you should be reshooting.

Ever heard the phrase ”just fix it in post”? This refers to post-production, which normally means correcting bad lighting or adding an effect to compensate for something that should have been re-filmed or rerecorded. Needless to say, this is not a best practice or economical approach to video.

Make sure you have a clear plan upfront with a script, storyboard, talent and style examples. That includes a shot list and defined lighting, music, mood, theme, and filming locations. And have these signed-off prior to commissioning your recording. It is very expensive to reshoot scenes, rerecord a voice over, or rescript something that doesn't fit when you have already begun editing. As they say, measure twice, cut once, and get it right the first time.

Aamplify has helped companies across New Zealand and Australia, both big and small, with telling their brand story through video marketing. Contact our team, to find out how our team can help make a creative video that grabs attention.