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How founders can utilise video to grow their startup

How founders can utilise video to grow their startup

Megan McLatchie

Marketing Executive

Updated 18 November 20

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In 2020, video is a crucial component of many brands' growth marketing strategy, with 85% of businesses using video across their social channels. 

 

So why are brands investing in this space so heavily? In a report from HubSpot, more than 50% of consumers said they’d prefer to see video content from brand's over any other format.

 

 

If you look at any social media platform, you’ll see it’s a battlefield of brands and influencers all using video to try and win your attention. So how do you stand out, and how as a startup founder can you use video to help grow your business? We asked 3 experts in this field for their opinions, tips and advice; 

 

Lee Wilcox, Co-Founder & CEO of Electric House

I believe that startups have the advantage over the more established brands from the get go with video. So many legacy brands approach social media with a right hook in the face, create a piece of content and sell the first time someone sees it. A startup can take a fresh approach to a video strategy that is completely based around building community. Social platforms don't care what brand you are, they care about the content you create, how you engage and how often you do it. Creating video to build community is the single most impactful thing a startup can do to get ahead of the competition. 

 

Lee’s Top tip:

An approach we take with video is to get as much out of one creative as possible. When planning your content, look at how many channels it can fit for and re-edit where appropriate for different placements like the feed or stories or adverts, it's a great way to create more content when you don't have a massive team. 

 

Tim Will Hyde, Founder & CEO of TWH Media

I definitely think there's a wide understanding in startups that conveying your message through video is extremely impactful. Our brains are able to retain information from visual content a lot better than written words on a page. Video on social media creates an opportunity for startups to share key messages and spread brand awareness concisely and effectively. However, the problem typically arises when startup teams expect hundreds of thousands of people to somehow discover whatever bit of video content they've created. The key is actually understanding how to leverage it. 

 

Before creating any content, it is very important to define your strategy and how video will play a part in this. Consider; 

  • - Where is it going to sit? 
  • - How can I optimise it for the different platforms? 
  • - What do I actually want to get out of this video?
  • - Is a brand / marketing piece, or a mixture of the two? 

Apply a little forward thinking. Don’t make the mistake of just turning up one day, shooting a video and then just hoping that it does what you hope it to do. Strategise your content and tailor the different edits and narrative to fit in with what your objectives really are.

 

It doesn't need to be big budget stuff either. For a couple hundred pounds you can create something that gets your message across clearly and succinctly instead of tasking someone with writing another blog article or another long form post. Investing in video is a great way to get the right sort of attention, which is key for startups. 

 

Tim’s Top tip:

For me, early impact within video is by far the most important thing. People can very much get caught up in the wrong things like the video dimensions, or even things like length. Obviously you don't want to put a 25 minute video on Facebook - or even YouTube for that matter - because the likelihood is (especially if it's a B2B video) people are going to drop off unless the content is amazing. Even the difference between 15 seconds and 30 seconds really is negligible. 

 

The real thing that wins the feed and get's people to stop scrolling on their phone and indulge in your content is that impactful, quick paced sharp editing, entry point to that video. If you don't capture in the first three or five seconds it is very unlikely they’ll continue watching any longer. Get across the value early. Do this, and you've got people captured. 

 

Dave Woods, Head of Videography at Nova

One of my favourite startup stories to do with video comes from Dropbox. They avoided the risk of building a highly technical prototype by creating a simple screen recorded demo of their idea. This video acted as their minimum viable product and once shared online, drove hundreds of thousands of people to their website and increased their waiting list from 5,000 people to 75,000 people. Before their video MVP, investors were largely uninterested in the already crowded cloud storage market. This video changed that overnight.

 

A video can be produced quickly and cheaply before the product technically exists, and is one of the most efficient ways to effectively gauge desire for your solution. Static slides and web pages can only do so much when conveying the nuances of a new product experience, video shows customers exactly what the product and brand is and why it’s different to competitors.

 

Dave’s Top Tip:

Really think about the core message you want to convey first, and then let that shape the content. Your product’s USP is speed? Try a 5 second video demonstrating that. Conveying your core message effectively is the whole point, and it doesn’t always require a lengthy script, detail on every feature, or even high production values. Experiment and iterate.

 

 

Hopefully this has provided some guidance and inspiration for your businesses use of video going forward. 

 

It would be great to get your thoughts and experiences of using video and how you plan to use it in your 2021 content strategy. Let us know in the comments. 👇

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