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Become the Director

Feb 17, 2010 12:00 PM, By Don Kreski

Tips on making a great online video.

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If you create your own

Malik says that Sanyo is probably more careful about production values than a Sanyo dealer might need to be. "For a company like ours, we just can't go out and shoot some raw footage and then post it on the 'net. It's just not going to reflect the kind of image we're trying to create. But there are a lot of folks out there who can produce good inhouse video, possibly edit it themselves, and get it online to help them promote their businesses," Malik says.

If you want to shoot your own video or use a low-cost local producer, he says there are several important things to keep in mind:

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Be sure to shoot plenty of footage. Both Malik and Noyd agree that you'll need to shoot at least five times as much video as you're actually going to use. "Once you take it into editing," Malik says, "you're just using snippets and clips. It's amazing how much you end up throwing away."

Good lighting is crucial, as is good sound. Pay attention to what's going on outside of the main part of the image. "You need to make sure you don't have any crazy shadows, that you can see everything clearly, and that there's nothing distracting in the background," Malik says. "When you finally get the video posted on the Net, these things are really important."

Be sure to shoot in high definition. "Even YouTube is showing 1080p now," he says. "It's got to be digital, and it's got to be high resolution."

Be sure there's a clear call to action and that your contact information is prominent both within the video and on the webpage where it's posted.

Consider using professional talent, but look around within your own organization for people who might do well on camera. "Almost every AV integrator has one or two sales people who are really well-spoken and really good at explaining concepts to customers," Noyd says. These people not only can be great on camera, but they can be a big help in suggesting concepts for a video and the points you need to get across to potential customers.

Ultimately, your video will succeed or fail based on the usefulness of the information you present. "Because people are searching for specific information online," Malik says, "they definitely have the potential to become repeat customers or at least repeat prospects. If your video is helpful, if it is reliable, if it answered their questions and gave them the information they needed, they will come back again and again and send your video to other people. And that can do a lot to drive your business forward."

Don Kreski is the president of Kreski Marketing Consultants, which offers marketing services to the AV industry. You can reach him at

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