By now, it should be pretty clear that people love video marketing. And we're not just talking about marketers themselves, but consumers. Nearly 60% of executives say they'll choose video if given the choice between video and text on the same topic (Wordstream). And, according to HubSpot, 72% of consumers would rather learn about a product or service by watching a video. So, if you're not already using video marketing, now's the time to get started. With so many advances in technology, creating promotional videos isn't even hard or expensive to do—why not get started now?
A great jumping-off point for getting into video marketing is promotional videos. But, what is a promotional video? How do you create one? And, most importantly, why should you? In this article, we'll answer all of your questions about promotional videos and share a fool-proof plan you can use to start creating promotional videos of your own. After you've worked your way through this promo video guide, you'll have all the information you need to create and distribute awesome promotional videos that will help you meet your business goals.
What Is a Promotional Video + How to Create One:
What Is a Promotional Video and Why Use Them?
A promotional video is a marketing video intended to promote your products, services, events, and sales to consumers. Most video content is on some level a promotional video since you're trying to engage your target audience and get them to commit to you. The best promo videos aren't hard sells—you don't have to tell your viewers to "buy, buy, buy" at every turn. In fact, that can be a turn-off for them. It's more important to connect with your target audience on a deeper, personal level. This could mean sharing important news, events, and milestones or even telling heartwarming stories about the customers your brand has helped.
Promo videos are effective primarily because consumers are humans and humans are largely driven by emotion. Sure, we like to think that we make decisions based on logic, but in reality, our emotions are what happen to us first. If you can touch a consumer on an emotional level, you've hooked them. That's what promotional videos are great at doing: plucking heartstrings. Once they've been plucked, you can seal the deal with science (the benefits and features). First, you need to connect with them emotionally. There's really no better marketing channel to do that than video.
Promotional videos also drive sales. They offer an insight into your business and what you have to offer. And, the bottom line is this: videos increase conversion rates. Including a video on your landing page can boost your conversion rate by 86% (Wishpond). Not only that, but companies who use video marketing grew 49% faster in revenue than those that didn't (in 2019). It can even boost your click-through rates in email marketing with Wistia reporting that adding a thumbnail from a promotional video increases CTR by 21%.
Types of Promotional Videos
There are several different types of promotional videos that you can use for marketing your business. Let's take a closer look at the four most common types.
1. Product or Product Feature Promotional Videos
Promotional videos highlighting your products or services should be more about the experience of your product, not an exploration of its features and benefits (that's another type of promotional video, though). Use product promo videos to tell a story about your product—one that makes viewers feel something that they want (and can get, with your product). If you're launching a new product, you should absolutely create a product promo video for it to generate buzz.
Product feature videos are a bit more salesy than a standard product video. In these promotional videos, you want to highlight how your product or service benefits users using a more direct approach. You still want them to feel it first, but these are great videos to talk about how your product will change their life because of what it can do.
2. About Us Promotional Videos
Promotional videos are a great way to let customers and potential customers know more about your brand, who you are, and what you stand for. They can be a simple overview of your business or in-depth, behind-the-scenes videos with employee interviews, testimonials from happy customers, and more.
3. Event Promotional Videos
Event promo videos are a must if you want to drive interest in an upcoming event. These videos are usually 2–3 minutes long and motivate viewers to attend your event so they don't miss out on the really good stuff. If this is a recurring event, be sure to include clips of previous events and testimonials from your attendees.
4. Content Promotional Videos
Videos are excellent for retention. According to Social Media Week, video viewers claim to retain 95% of a message they get from video, compared with just 10% retention for text content. This doesn't mean that text and written content aren't valuable, but it does make a great argument for creating accompanying videos to promote your content, highlight key points, and motivate those who are interested in getting into the details to go read the full piece.
How Much Do Promotional Videos Cost to Create?
After "what are they?" the most common question people have about promotional videos is "how much?" To be frank, the cost of a promotional video falls within a broad range depending on tons of different factors like manpower, equipment, talent, and more. The cost of a promotional video could cost $40 for the video you shoot from your smartphone and edit with one of the free video editing tools available these days. Or, if you're hiring actors, bringing in a video production agency, shooting on location, and using the highest-end equipment that promo video might set you back $50,000. With an online video maker like Promo.com, you'll probably end up paying somewhere between $40 and $250.
How to Create a Promotional Video
Promotional videos have tons of value. Because of that, it can feel overwhelming to get started creating a promotional video that you know is going to either make a huge difference for your business or, well, flop. Fortunately, there's a method to creating great promotional videos. We're going to walk you through it right now.
Set Goals and Gather Materials
Like pretty much everything in life, creating a powerful promotional video starts with goal setting. What do you want to achieve with your promo? Focus on what you want your promo to do for your business and you'll have a roadmap you can use to gather the rest of the data, media, and other materials you'll need.
Once you've established a goal, there are three things you'll need to do before diving into video production:
- Identify your voice and personality. Consumers want to watch content from people and brands they like. This means that you can't just write a script and record. You need to explore your brand's personality. How do you want consumers to perceive your brand? How do you want them to describe you?
- Create a powerful message. While we call them "promotional" videos, nobody wants to be sold to all the time. Your videos should be a combination of storytelling and selling... and it has to be important to the consumer.
- Consider your budget. The length of your promotional video might play into how much it costs to create the video, so be sure to consider the duration you want when calculating your budget. If you don't have a big budget, don't stress about it. There are tons of stunning promotional videos out there that were recorded and edited on a smartphone.
Outline and Storyboard
Now that you've established goals and figured out important things like budget, brand voice, and the message you want to share, it's time to expand. Start by outlining the story you came up with in Step 1. This is just fleshing out your idea, you're not scripting yet. Right now, just focus on developing your message into a story. How can you share your message in a way that your audience will care?
Once you have the outline, you're ready to focus on your angle or how you're going to share the story. Will you focus on pain points, find an influencer to share your message, or educate your potential customers? Maybe you'll do something else entirely. If you're stuck, return to your goals and consider what your viewers need to know for you to achieve those goals. From there, you should have more than enough information to start scripting your video. Don't forget to include a call to action!
We highly recommend that you storyboard your video at this point. Storyboarding is a way to visualize the storyline of your promotional video. This is where you get into the minutiae of your video—sound effects, voiceovers, camera angles, special effects, etc. Storyboarding will help you identify gaps in your story, gives the rest of your team a guide for production, and helps you make sure that your promotional video is exactly what you want it to be.
Now it's time to produce the video. This is where your story and message start to become real. The production phase includes:
- Sound, lighting, and equipment set up
- Filming b-roll footage
During this step, you'll take the footage sound recordings from Step 3 and put them together into your promotional video. It may take a few rounds of editing to get it where you want it, but if you've followed these steps, you'll have everything in place to make the process easy. Post-production involves:
- Review and feedback
- Version comparison
- Final approval
Step 5. Promote
Congratulations, you have a promotional video! No, don't sit back and relax just yet. Now you have to promote it. Funny, right? Promoting a promotional video? Just trust us. You'll want to do everything you can to ensure that this video you poured your heart and soul into gets seen by as many people as possible. Here are a few ways you can promote your video:
- Add a thumbnail to your email marketing campaigns. You built your email list for exactly this reason. Don't be shy now. Send that promotional video to your email list. And speaking of thumbnails...
- Make sure your video thumbnail is eye-catching and engaging. The thumbnail is what sells the video and gets people to push play.
- Add share buttons to your video player. If your video is engaging and entertaining, people will share it. Make it easy for them.
- Link out to video landing pages in your email signature. Simple? Yes. Effective? Also yes.
- Share your video on your social media platforms. Create a teaser clip for Instagram that you can add as a post and a Story. Pin your video to your Twitter feed. Share your promotional video on YouTube. There's no end to what you can do with your video and social media.
Promotional Video Examples
We couldn't end this article without sharing a few of our favorite promotional video examples. These are videos that we return to time and again for inspiration (and sometimes just because).
Dollar Shave Club
Most of Dollar Shave Club's promotional videos aren't strictly safe for work. But, wow, are they entertaining. The company's CEO, Michael Dubin, studied improv with the Upright Citizens Brigade and used his skills to create a wonderfully entertaining video that sells their products in a unique way.
BambooHR is a cloud-based HR management company so it makes sense that they focus on company culture in this promotional video. The video shares testimonials from the company's own employees who talk about the wonderful work-life balance at BambooHR.
Blendtec shares all sorts of content on their YouTube channel, but the "Will It Blend?" series is by far the most popular. As the name suggests, the company's CEO, Tom Dickson, uses the Blendtec blender to blend up any number of things. The answer to the question is usually "yes," by the way.
So, what is a promotional video? Your promotional videos are the way you communicate with consumers and share your latest products, sales, and events. They help your brand stand out from the rest of the herd so you can grab the attention of your target audience and never let go.