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11 practical tips for creating effective video testimonials

Pieter Vereertbrugghen

11 practical tips for creating effective video testimonials

Are you convinced of the added value video testimonials can create to recommend your product or service to potential clients? These 11 tips will help you get started.

More and more, visual content in general – and videos in particular – is becoming a key factor in getting your target audience involved with your brand. Many companies see the benefit in recording customer testimonials but they are too easily deterred by the three most common misconceptions about video testimonials: the fear of a lack of cooperation, the conviction that the price tag will be (too) hefty and the notion that written testimonials are just as effective.

These misconceptions urgently need to be addressed, a fact illustrated by the following recent statistics on video consumption:

>  For some time, YouTube has been competing with Facebook for the title of most popular social network site. By 2017, video content will account for 74% of all internet traffic.

> In March 2014, the volume of videos played on smartphones and tablets had skyrocketed by 133% compared to twelve months earlier.

> 52% of the world’s marketing professionals point to video as the type of content with the highest ROI.

These figures speak for themselves. Including video testimonials in your content marketing strategy clearly pays dividends. Here are some tips that will prove useful when you decide to take the plunge:

1.    You’ll make a very positive first impression if you have an interesting video testimonial on your homepage.
2.    Put all your (video) testimonials together in one place on your website. If there are a lot, make it easy for your visitors to search your collection using keywords, product names and/or other criteria.
3.    Don’t just have your video testimonials on your own site. Post them on YouTube and Vimeo as well. If you put one on YouTube and then embed it on your own website, it will be immediately indexed by Google. Also share your videos on Twitter and Facebook and urge others to share them as well.
4.    Don’t forget search engine optimisation (SEO), to ensure that your target group can find your videos easily. Read Bert Stragier’s article for the why.
5.    Make sure each video testimonial is accompanied by an appealing caption that encourages users to actually play it. For example, use some strong quotes from the video itself.
6.    Conclude every video with a call to action. This should also be included in a link under the video, so that visitors can respond without having to watch your video, too.
7.    Don’t use a script. This will turn your customer into an actor and will jeopardise the authenticity you’re striving for. Do discuss in advance with your customer what the video will be about, how you’ll shoot it and what will happen to the material afterwards. Make a rough plan or ‘story board’ showing the main steps.
8.    Present a concrete story with specific benefits tailored to your target group.
9.    Try not to say everything in a single video. Focus on one subject. Sometimes 30 to 40 seconds are enough. For a more complex B2B story, your video can be 2 to 3 minutes long. If you have an even longer story to tell, you may want to divide it into several videos.
10.    Avoid filming your customer in a single position, talking incessantly without interruption – this can get quite boring. We always intersperse testimonials with other shots that keep the video energetic and surprising.
11.    Audio is often underestimated. While many viewers will tolerate videos with inferior picture quality, they won’t accept inferior sound quality. Strong background noise, inaudible testimony, interviewees who don’t speak loud enough, microphone noise… make most viewers lose interest. Preferably use a clip microphone for an interview (e.g. Sennheiser ew 100-ENG G3).

Feel like making a video testimonial? Cypres can help you with the right content and efficient production. Please contact Pieter Vereertbrugghen for more information.