social media how toHave you been considering taking on video marketing in a larger way this year? If you’re looking to add video to your content offerings, this article is for you.

The following tips will help you understand how to get started with video.

#1: Select Your Video Marketer

A successful web video is personality-driven. Find someone who comes across as the most “social” on camera. Weigh in expertise, authenticity, personality and familiarity (with the audience). Look at his or her ability to be concise and clear, schedule and availability (to create and engage) and how well he or she can use social networking tools. The person should also be able to produce, publish and do social media optimization with video.

If you have the resources, hire more than one and you can assign different duties to different people and make up a new “video marketing team.”


For in-house or crowd-sourced feedback, I recommend Wistia.

#2: Create Your Own Media Center

A key objective with video marketing is to get out as much video as simply and easily as possible, and at the same time, making sure it’s quality content. It’s important to have a streamlined production, post-production and distribution system in place. Will you be shooting in an office, at home or on location (indoors and/or outdoors)? All this will affect the type of camcorder, microphone, lighting and any backdrop you choose.

#3: Have a Shoot Plan

To provide regular content, consistency and some degree of flexibility, I recommend a shoot plan you can commit to for at least 3 months.

What you need to decide:

  • How much you’ll commit to doing videos around recent events
  • How quick your responses will be
  • What events or projects will allow you to do batches of videos (as opposed to just single shoots)
  • Who else besides your regular participants you may need to schedule in advance
  • Especially important: If you’re going to be on location anywhere, check with the people and facilities to get their permission for doing any video shoot
  • In advance, figure out what hardware and software you’ll be using, along with what distribution channels you wish to use

What you should consider:

  • Will you be doing a YouTube channel or multiple video channels?
  • Do you want a technical solution that can automatically upload the video to your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and other social network and video distribution sites?
  • Do you want it to be easily available for mobile viewing or web TV?
  • Do you want to do any live video along with prerecorded?
  • Do you need a special online video platform service?
  • How simple might your solution need to be under common or worst-case circumstances?

When committing to any video program, you should allow yourself a few tests before any big project. You’ll likely find that some tweaks will need to be made on the technical side.


Create a shoot plan you can commit to for at least 3 months.

#4: Encourage Others to Participate

Video marketing works best when your fans, consumers and colleagues are involved. Ask your audience what they would like to see.


Get others to contribute to the video creation process.

#5: Take Advantage of Popular Social Media and Business Networks

Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn have increased their abilities to feature and share video with their audience. I recommend you start with:

  • LinkedIn: Take advantage of the Google Docs Presentations and SlideShare Presentations applications for embedding your video into your LinkedIn Profile page. Also, set up your most recent news to feature a link to one of your videos.

Example of a Google Docs presentation and Slide Share presentation on a LinkedIn profile, from LinkedIn Apps.

  • Twitter now allows you to embed videos right on your Twitter page, as well as share videos posted on Twitter.

Example: an embedded video on my own Twitter account, shared from Social Media Examiner's YouTube channel.

A Few Good Examples of Video Marketing

The Interview: Sounds like the most obvious one, right? Well, David Meerman Scott, author of The New Rules of Marketing and PR, along with Steve Garfield, author of Get Seen: Online Video Secrets to Building Your Business, say that video interviews are one of the simplest and fastest ways to put together a piece that elicits a social response.

Vlogging: As recently reported here at Social Media Examiner, blogs are the #1 social media tool for doing business today. Not only can your videos be easily embedded in your blog around related text content, but it’s accessible and affordable to generate text content right from your own video for the blog post. Even WordPress now has its own online video platform (called VideoPress), and blog design themes for business are increasingly incorporating video-centric content.

Social Experiments: Diet Coke + Mentos. This is one of the earliest records where a backyard experiment from an entertainment science show turned into a cultural phenomenon. Because social media was nary a blip at the time to major brands like Coke, they missed a good opportunity to capitalize when it was hot.

Reviews: is one of the better-known examples of how consumers can now respond to an Amazon video about a product and also share their own video review. Today there are business models built entirely around customer video reviews such as or

Staff as Presenters: Companies like Zappos have video presentations of their products featuring their own employees. Instead of having a scripted actor, you have someone who knows the product and comes across naturally.

Customer Feedback and Service: Some companies now have special YouTube channels for the purpose of allowing customers to submit their own questions, comments and suggestions. In turn, companies like the outlet store Crutchfield Electronics create videos that are more common and pertinent to customer conversations and addressing their needs.

Realtime Responsiveness: One of the big factors in social media marketing is the ability to act in real time. An increasing number of businesses are learning to respond to breaking news with real-time information and commentary, all in video. Videos are immediately posted on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, embedded right into the post and shareable with everyone (and with proper attribution).

Social media professionals already have a special advantage in working with video, for the very simple reason that video is naturally a “social technology” โ€“ probably more so than text. Video is going to continue to be easier to do; and whether you’re a social media marketer or a general marketing professional, it’s going to be more expected of you to do, so embrace it. Make video marketing an integral part of your social media marketing strategy.

What do you think about video marketing? What tips do you have to share? Leave your comments in the box below.

Photos from Shutterstock.
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  • These are some great ideas on how to incorporate video into your regular blogging routine. I think it’s especially important to have a dedicated person or two to manage the process, since they can concentrate more fully on getting the most out of the videos you create as a brand. This is also another way to let your fans dictate on the topics that interest them the most.

  • Grant video marketing has been a part of my life for over 5 years now and it easy to do. I encourage anyone to do video marketing because if it go viral then you can be getting lots of exposure.

    “Black Seo Guy “Signing Off”

  • I really like slideshare. It makes it so much easier. Thanks for the great video marketing tips, many I haven’t even considered yet.

  • Great article and the point above by David. Often I find clients staff are much more aware of the role video can play for their company, as well as being eager to participate in video creation.

    The best results on Facebook seem to be short clips with a bit of humour in them (which comes down to the personality of the presenter) that get the audience asking questions (how long did that take to make etc). A little bit of effort to answer their questions in a timely fashion results in very positive feedback, usually publicly shown on your Facebook business page or website.

    As a business case buying a decent 1080p camera (NEX-5 + ECM-SST1 microphone) for under $1,000 means you can pick up any product in your company, press record, talk, stop and then upload directly to youtube via a USB cable from the camera.

    Okay so that may not have high levels of production, but if you are talking about 0 videos vs 5 quick ones you did looking nice in your office, talking for 60 seconds each, you will be far ahead of most businesses.

    Compare this to organising a photography shoot, where if you have managed to find a decent photographer will cost you more than the camera, and takes hours of work and post processing to end up with ‘a good image’.

    From here you can add intro and outro animations to your video, use multiple cameras and do professional editing with a bit of music; the point is simply to start! ๐Ÿ™‚

    If you have a good ‘social media system’ (so when you put content on your website or facebook page, it can be shared by your visitors at the press of a button) you can focus on content creation and let the customers do your distribution.

    From here by focusing on the people who give you the most response, you can target the ‘Golden Monkeys’ (term used by Mailchimp, a newsletter / email management system that I would highly recommend) or by looking at who is commenting the most on you Facebook page and chatting to them, you can give content and attention to your best customers, who will likely spread the word much faster than you could imagine using traditional marketing.

    Start today, make 1 short video a week or fortnight and then in 6 months roll your content into an iphone application (use one of the DIY app builders and it will cost between $500-$2k to get into the itunes store) and then give your customers the app each time they walk in the door.

    NB: Mailchimp has an ipad app if you feel like bolting one to your counter and collecting new subscriber emails each time someone wants to play with the ipad.

    The results you can get by doing a week of filming, making a Facebook and Youtube channel linked to a wordpress website and rolling the content into an iphone app on the way are staggering when you think for the same price you could run a half page advert in a newspaper once. Not to say it should replace your traditional advertising, but seriously, how many companies are missing the boat? Let’s get to it people! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Great tips for Video Marketing. Having a good team and quality work is ever so important. Using your social media channels and being informed of when to work and how to market it’s important. Thanks for the guide. For more information about effective marketing techniques check out

  • That reminds me…I have to go shoot a new video ๐Ÿ™‚ thnx Grant, great article ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Morgan

    Zappos is an excellent example of a company that uses video marketing extremely effectively.

    I’m glad that you mentioned fellow colleagues getting involved in commenting on the video and viewing it. That is one thing that really needs to happen more often. If colleagues (whether they’re known as employees or not) are active, then it not only represents the company well, but it encourages others to jump in on the conversation.

    Fantastic tips and great examples!

  • Grant!! Nice to see you on SMExaminer ๐Ÿ™‚ Fantastic article! I especially love the point about companies who have staff as presenters (instead of paid actors). Coming across naturally is critical to online video success. Customer like to know that they are dealing with real people. At the end of the day, it’s NOT about how fancy the video is, but more about how much value you are offering to the viewer.


  • Amanda Genther

    I would love to start “vlogging”, but I am stuck on what people want to hear. I am interested in slideshare, prezi presentations, and regular video blogging. Also, I need to set aside some time to do this “vlogging”.

    What do you recommend as a starting point?

  • A great post and amusingly just a day or two behind my own post extolling the power of video. Video is fun and easy, I think that’s a major point and a video breaks up a lot of copy and adds a little Social Media flavor. I can see Vlogging becoming much bigger as the less introverted consider it a stage for their style.

  • Great article! Our company recently started vlogging and have had many employees present topics around their expertise. It’s a wonderful marketing tool…check it out!

  • Video marketing is very effective. I find Animoto useful for creating videos

  • Gracieandannie

    We used to use TubeMogul (when it was free) for video distribution. Is there another tool that is free that does what they do?

  • Great article! I just re-tweeted on our web site. We accommodate the all-in-one video booth marketing tool. User generated video has being rapidly growing since 2006 and real-time responsiveness requests has tripled in the last 3 months.

    Thank you

  • Great information. I have read a lot about social media and I love this post.

  • I believe tubemogul still does offer a free video syndication and analytics version of their tool, which is what they have advertised at (There’s a “Join Now (Free)” button you’ll find on that page.)

    If you’re looking for free indexing of your videos into Google, I highly recommend you check out our webinar we did with Google, “Google Video Sitemaps Best Practices โ€“ Video SEO”

    Also, if you go to and enter “google video sitemaps” in the search box, you’ll get a number of other articles that explain the importance of this for distribution and video seo, and some tips for how yyou can put together your own Google Video Sitemap and upload it to Google’s Webtools (which is the same place they accept regular site maps, for websites.)

    Hope that’s helpful!

    Also, if you have a

  • Thanks for the compliment, and your interactive video recording booth is an interesting marketing concept. I’m familiar with other companies that doe their own self-serve style of client-enabled video recording, although they usually involve mailing their clients handheld Flip camcorders for shooting the video, and then mail them back with their footage for the company to do some professional post-production. Your solution seems to be much more suitable for events (like expos). I noticed you have one example at featured in Chicago, which is where I’m located. Judging from your samples, you guys seem to do a pretty good job with the technical quality when you have a controlled environment to work with.

  • Thanks for sharing. I watched a few of the videos and I would like to make a couple of suggestions that I’ve found has worked really well with my own videos that are easy to do with a 2-person interview, and you only have one camera:

    1) Do the same interview 3 times, from 3 different angles โ€“ 1 on both speakers, and 1 focused on each speaker

    2) Create your own b-roll footage: Show graphics of what you’re talking about

    3) Have text graphics of your main points and questions.

    You can see an example of this I did myself here. (It was a spur of the moment thing so we had some lighting issues and audio issues to work with, but the format follows those points):

    You want to be more than just talking heads!

  • Hi Amanda – I have seen prezi in action at a WordPress Summit I attended last year and I thought it was great. Although I don’t believe you can use it in Slideshare, it is possible do a video screen capture while you’re using it in real-time, and have that made into a web video.

    For a starting point with vlogging, the #1 and #2 things I recommend are: Plan and Practice. I have a lot of info on that including next steps you can read about (and watch my video interview on) at

  • Me!!!! I mean, “Hani!” (Sorry, I get carried away with myself sometimes. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    The challenge is finding real people in a company who come off naturally on camera, are easy to follow, speak clearly, and have their own distinct personality (something that’s engaging but not distracting from the topic, an interviewee, or an event). That can be a tough to manage when you don’t have practice being in front of a camera or without a script, as my old example here at an event will show. (But hey, if you can at least come across like you’re having fun, then passion can trump the best expertise.)

  • Thanks, Morgan. I think you may also like this interview I did with Zappos Video Product manager:

  • Thanks, Dino. With a name like yours, a background in martial arts and music, and a cool motorcycle โ€“ I expect to see you starring in a show on SPIKE TV in the near future.

  • Thanks for the insight and your advice on the recording equipment! There’s a lot of great demo videos on Sony’s NEX-5 DSLR model, which shows how great it can be to switch multiple lens for an ultra-portable camera/camcorder. The on camera mic is a great asset, although I would have liked to see one with shotgun capabilities and a small radius than the 90/120 degree range the stereo mic comes with. (I’m still partial to sound control even with DLSR’s, so I always want to have a mic input jack on them.) But the on-camera flash is a great feature at least for some much-needed additional lighting.

    For this type of shooting that’s great for vloggers, I would recommend investing in a basic tripod, a monopod, and a frame you can attach that lets you include an LED light, plus some color gels for diffusing the light. Here’s one such example I did with just a Kodak Zi8 pocket camcorder, which also had the benefit of attaching a handheld mic.

    All of your points are just what vloggers need to do โ€“ focus on doing video around “real time marketing.” The more you do it, the more practice you’ll get and the better you’ll be at it. It’s important to have a calendar and a social media system, but I find you should always be flexible and take the opportunity for important news you can cover quickly. Save the special setups for the paid client gigs or big events, and just go at it.

    Thanks for the recomendation on MailChimp! That also integrates with the Web Project Management and Hosting service,

  • Thanks everyone for the feedback! I’ve added some comments to some of your own comments and questions below. I’ll try to be diligent with answering any new questions posted in the comments section here for the next few days.

  • Thanks, David. One other thing I’d recommend to your point: If you don’t have fans to give you suggestions, brainstorm with your colleagues. What are the questions that their own clients ask them, or anything else that gets raised as an issue that could stand for an answer or solution? There’s ideas for content all around us, and the more we socialize the more ideas we have for putting to video. If you can have a dedicated person, fantastic. If you can’t, then plan a part of your day to organizing your video production and marketing plan, and give it a weekly review. Start smaller than what you think you can accomplish, so you have more time to assess mistakes and make tweaks.

    Another tip: Get together a group of your colleagues also interested in blogging, and pool your funds towards hiring a professional videographer to shoot high-quality promo pieces of each of you, along with some starter topic pieces that you all can talk about โ€“ both individually and with each other. It’s a great way to save on money while getting quality content since it’s done at a batch rate, and it shows your social side as well as your expertise.

  • Akhil Dua

    Grant, this is really useful information – thanks! What recommendations do you have when you are not interviewing people face-to-face. What tools and innovative ideas do you suggest to use for interviewing people online?

  • Storch Kirill

    Very cool, I found this tremendously valuable. Quick question, I have a proposal on my desk for an fbml iframed branding app. Basically I want to be able to offer small business branding solutions via this fb app, and have video components to it. Is this beter or worse than a standard video campaign? The app is supposed to look something like this

    It should have video outputs intead of text outputs. Is this worth the money they need us to shell out for it? will it get us real leads?

  • Great tips! I find that using employees/volunteers in the video really lends itself to authenticity, rather than an actor reading from a script. When we did “I Volunteer” to promote volunteering at our facility, the “actors” did their part to share their moment of fame, too!

  • Thanks for all the tips. I consider shooting videos in order to promote the start-up I’m working for. But there’s a huge issue that is slowing the things down. I’m working in a French company and every team members do speak English with a strong french accent. I wonder if this accent is a bad thing for making videos.

    Looking for you answer ๐Ÿ™‚

  • do you mean the ‘slidecasts’? i wonder how those are made

  • is there an example of a good zappos video?

  • good article! i particularly liked the point of real-time information.

  • Thanks for your comments and your question, Michael. Personally I do believe heavy accents are a problem (assuming your audience isn’t primarily people who are from the same nationality and English is a 2nd language for them). I even consider it a problem with local dialects, such as thick southern accents, Boston accents, and Chicago accents. (I work in Chicago, myself.) My professional opinion is it’s just too distracting to have the accent if you’re trying to keep the attention off the speaker and on the subject โ€“ which could be your interview guest or whatever it is you’re covering.

    An exception I see to this is if you’re intentionally trying to build a personality around someone where their thick accent is a part of their personality, which people may remember them from. But you still need to be sure that they can be understood clearly. You have to be careful also with people with thick accents make come across as unexpectedly comical to general English-speaking audiences, too.

    Here’s an example of my own publisher at ReelSEO being interviewed by a French video agency back in 2008.

  • Good job, Linda. Having a theme where every individual starts off saying in the video is great for an audience to remember. If you haven’t already done so, I would suggest doing individual videos on willing volunteers, so people can get to hear their stories. That’s what I did for an optical company, where I would get employees, patrons, and a combination of both to just share their stories on camera. Sometimes I used a pocket flip, and sometimes I did it more stylish. Interestingly enough, our surveyed audience found the pieces we did with the least amount of equipment and post-production to resonate best with them, because it appeared to them to be the most authentic.

  • That’s very difficult to answer without seeing an actual demo, and knowing more about the target audience, your own business model and goals, and what kind of money you’re being expected to shell out. (I can’t go into all of that here, sorry!) You’re probably best off working with a marketing consultant with a background in both web video and Facebook.

    From what I do know, FBML is being phased out by Facebook (i.e., it would have continued developer support), so other programming languages may make more sense to develop it in.

    Perhaps if there any existing examples of this vendor offering the solution, that would be a good place to start a review (and have your consultant do it for you).

  • Great tips. Video is becoming more popular today especially for e-commerce. Video marketing is growing so fast that people are now introduce to buying and selling used things by videos. I think video is a great way to showcase used unwanted things lying around your house. I use to sell my things via video. Video made it so fun and cool.

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  • Oliver Pradetto

    We take our blog to share our videos. Every video can be used in multiple wys. So we use the same videos in our supportarea and of course we promite the videos by youtube-channel, facebook-page and twitter.
    So i think your blog is a perfect description. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Cheryl Lenamon

    I would add one more idea. There is new technology out this year that takes raw video footage, edits, makes interactive, and embeds. Super simple, and affordable. We’ve begun using it for customer testimonials, email introductions for our sales team, webinar invites. Click through rates are out of sight. I only know of one company that sells it right now because it’s so new – Nteractive Events & Video. I’m not a highly technical person, and my company doesn’t have a huge video budget, so it works for us. Just F.Y.I.

  • Thanks for the tip, Cheryl. Do you or they have any samples or a URL that showcases this solution we can see for ourselves?

  • eventualmillionaire

    Thanks for including my friends the Coke and Mentos guys in the post! (and you should check out their latest work,a 3D Coke and Mentos Rocket Car with Coke as a sponsor)

    Amazing things have happened in the past few years with video.

  • I’m so glad I read this article. This information was useful and well presented. I just re-tweeted it.

    I think video marketing is not only extremely popular, but it’s essential to incorporate it into our blogging routine.

    Thanks, Grant.

  • Great article Grant, i just want to add that content is key here as well, as everywhere pretty much as well as consistency. It is important to put in place analytics so you know the actual return on your video marketing strategy, nevertheless, it tends to pay off in the long term.

    Great job

  • What about Digital Animation? There’s a fairly large number of individuals/corporations who can build these. Epipheo and Common Craft come to mind as industry leaders. There are cheaper alternative up and comers though! (Redwoods Media for one!)

  • Videos definitely do take time to put together. If you want to do any editing, it can take even longer! You sure can get a lot of bang for your buck, though. Videos are some of the ultimate in “evergreen” content. Thanks for the useful article.

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  • Julie Weishaar

    Awesome article on the importance of video in brand promotion. I have a passion for creating videos and love to learn about new ways to do so. I currently use animated videos I create in PowerPoint quite a bit. There are so many options out there to choose from. If you have a sense of humor, there are sites like Xtranormal and JibJab (I do all my holiday videos here). Watch out – I will be following you ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thanks so much for sharing your insights, knowledge, and experience,

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