Reputation-damaging web videos

Web video can be a great way to showcase yourself as an expert, market your business with video testimonials, showcase a product and increase SEO for your website.  But, before you embark on a web video, watch out for these common mistakes and learn how they can have a negative impact on someone deciding to use your product or service:

1. Poor lighting – lighting should never cause distracting shadows and is a dead giveaway the video was done by a friend as a favor, or a do-it-yourselfer using a tri-pod and home video camera.  Any kind of distraction is bad in video and can irritate the viewer…so much so they click off your website.

2. Poor sound quality –
recently I watched a video where the sound quality of the speaker was bad and the background music was so high that I could not hear the message from the speaker. The entire video quality was unprofessional and this person was claiming to be a professional expert on their subject matter.  Additionally, good sound quality means you do not hear air, or the traffic outside your office.  It should not sound like you are in a can.

3. No ability to stop, pause or mute – another video I watch for a supposed web expert company, had the video sitting on the website, not streaming from YouTube.  This caused two problems – 1) the page was slow to load and most people would not wait for it to load and 2) you could not mute, stop or pause the video through the website.  The speaker was no good, a compelling message was not there and the video production quality was bad. 

4. Poor/weird positioning of the object or person – off-center objects or persons with lots of wall space to either side is very distracting and looks like an unprofessional video.  Additionally, another video I watched had a person dressed in a black suit on a black leather chair.  She was almost turned completely sideways.  It looked like her head was sticking out of a black leather chair.  It was very distracting and unprofessional looking.

5. Not smiling and mono-tone – If you are doing a video, smile, look friendly, be conversational and never be mono-tone.  If you don’t look approachable, friendly and seem boring, your video is doing more harm than good.  In one video I recently watched, the business owner's position was with their head up and not smiling - almost as though they are looking down at you.  This looks as though they are completely unapproachable and prideful.

6. Talking too slow or too fast – again, anything that causes a distraction is bad on web video, as it can turn the viewer off and they may go somewhere else.

7. Poor message/Too long –
your web video needs to serve a purpose.  The ultimate goal is to either motivate someone to contact you, or educate someone (demonstrate a product or technique, or train).  If the video is not motivating, it could just turn people away.

8. Not feeling as though you are at the table with the speaker –
a friend of mine coined that phrase as we watched a video testimonial.  The video was taken too far out, the person was not engaging, did not seem happy or friendly, was not conversational and the video was breaking some of the video no-no’s above.  Not many viewers would want to sit through it, and it certainly was not motivating.

9. Not editing interviewer out of the video – if the video is not of the entire interview showing both people and both having microphones, edit the interviewer out!  It is okay to have an interviewer prompt you with questions to get good footage, but then a good videographer will edit it together to make it interesting and appealing.  When you answer these interview questions, re-phrase the question in the answer you provide.

10.  No branding, intro or exit frames, titles or captions – if you are going to invest in a web video, make sure it is well branded with at minimum your logo and website address.  Titles and captions at the bottom of the frame add understanding and credibility.  Without these things, videos can lack interest.  Additionally, making use of these can help sell your product or service.

Unprofessional, do-it-yourself (DIY) videos can be very damaging to the conversion numbers on your website. 
Many people get web videos done for cheap, have a friend do it for them, or worse yet they set a tripod up in a poorly lit area and produce a DIY video that only screams unprofessional.  If you are trying to use video to market yourself as an expert, invest the money in a professional videographer or don’t do one at all.

If you would like to leave comments on other video no-no’s or tips for producing a professional video on a low budget, we welcome your thoughts.  If you would like a recommendation to a professional video production company, please contact us 303.981.1541.


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