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Where do you get e-commerce video content from?

There are many ways to source videos for your online brand: in-house production, user-generated content, and agency production. In this article, we will focus on the first two: in-house and UGC.

Three video sourcing methods for your online brand

1. In-house video production

In-house video production is a highly effective tool. What does this mean, and why is it effective? An in-house production means you have all the necessary internal resources to produce the videos in your company. In order to navigate you through this method, we can start by stating the importance of producing captivating videos. Creating compelling video content is a great way to enhance your customers' experience while simultaneously increasing conversions and building brand awareness. With an in-house video production, you will easily create more authentic and engaging product videos, since your team is more familiar with the brand’s mission and goal. Approximately 37% of companies create video content in-house and 14% hire an agency. However, the majority, or specifically 49% of companies, use a mix of in-house and agency video production.  

To better understand the effectiveness of in-house video production when creating content, we will explore its advantages, explain the process, and suggest the best practices for in-house video production. Although outsourcing video production has been the more traditional approach so far, companies have recently begun to recognize the advantages of in-house video production. This type of approach grants organizations full control and gives them the most cost-effective solution for the video creation process. Below is a list of reasons this could be an excellent tool for your company:

  • Cost-effective: As we know the cost per video will most likely be higher should a company hire external sources, therefore, in-house is a great way to decrease costs. By producing in-house, budget allocation will be more efficient and videos will be produced at a larger and faster rate for the company's e-commerce websites.
  • Boosting brand awareness: The internal team will be able to demonstrate their in-depth knowledge of the brand which includes its target audience, as well as the brand's goals and values, far better than an external source. This ensures the videos will accurately portray the brand's identity and message for its consumers by providing brand consistency and authenticity.
  • Flexible timelines: Full control over production allows a more adjustable timeline for the company, which in return enables the team to act fast. To add to that, having your own dedicated personnel helps speed up turn-around time and allows for more last-minute changes, updates, or projects.
  • Complete creative control: Having direct access to the personnel working on your video production, allows you to leverage their creative expertise and knowledge of current trends that will greatly benefit your video content and video marketing.
  • Greater Volume: Now that you are equipped with the personnel and facilities for video production, you are able to increase traffic by effectively producing and promoting videos across social media. Furthermore, visibility and brand exposure can now be generated by the integration of keywords and optimization of the search engine.

Now that you are familiar with its advantages, we can dive into the process of creating in-house video production.

A. Pre-Production

At the start of the process, we'll brainstorm ideas and define objectives. By clearly defining the objective and purpose of this project, you're creating a more structured approach for generating and organizing your ideas. To guide your creative thinking, you can ask yourself: What type of content would I like to create? For example, if you notice your customers struggling to understand how to use your product, you can offer them a video tutorial with an explanation and demonstration. To expand on that, you can consider the creative path you want to take in video marketing to elicit the desired response from your audience.

Once you have a clearly defined goal or idea for your video, you have successfully narrowed down your options and given yourself a more concise direction for the design of the video. Should you feel stuck during this brainstorming stage, it can be quite helpful to boost your ideas for your eCommerce product videos by getting a second opinion from a trustworthy source such as your boss, colleagues, friends, and family.

B. Write a captivating Script

Creating a great script requires creativity, talent, dedication, careful planning, and experience. It is important that the language used in the script matches the marketing goal of the company and conveys the message of the brand clearly. You can also, consider telling a story in order to captivate your consumers. Once you have taken note of some of your main ideas, you can develop them further to get your points across better. However, it is essential to note that the script should be brief, therefore, it is crucial to get the point across in a concise and informative manner. Otherwise, viewers will be intimidated by run-on sentences and easily lose interest.

The next move is to try memorizing what you've written in order to be more confident in reciting the script in an almost effortless manner. You want to keep your users engaged and focused by using a conversational tone and breaking up your sentences. These breaks between your sentences will make the information you are sharing flow better and easier. Lastly, an introduction is always in order at the start of the video as a way of making it a more reliable and authentic experience. Attached is an example of an interview script with an introduction and some questions that will encourage the participation of your consumers.

Example of a script to record in-house videos

C. Record it

To ensure you create a high-quality video, you need to concentrate on audio quality, lighting, background/angles, and composition. Although having high-quality recording equipment is useful, by producing in-house you are able to create a valuable video production with technology such as smartphones rather than expensive camera sets. This cost-saving concept applies to every equipment needed for the creation of the videos.

Photo by Steve Gale on Unsplash
Photo by Steve Gale on Unsplash

As we know, smartphones have video stabilization features that allow you to record even when in movement, especially when you're only supporting your phone with your hand. Nevertheless, should you require the camera to remain in a steady position, there is affordable equipment such as phone stands or selfie sticks and tripods that you can use. Our laptops and computers are also useful and affordable ways to create professional videos. Laptops often have integrated cameras, while computer monitors sometimes require you to purchase a camera separately. However, to ensure that you are producing your high-quality content, other elements have to be taken into account, such as having good lighting and clear audio. Good lighting largely depends on the area where you are recording, for example, if you're in a poorly lit room with no natural light you will most likely need artificial light. Lastly, to make sure your voice is audible, you will need to create a quiet setting for your video.

Once you have recorded your video, it is of outmost importance that you go over it to make sure all equipment functioned correctly and everything is as it should be.

D. Edit it

Now that you have completed recording, you are able to refine, trim, add subtitles if necessary, and enhance audio or visual quality with editing software. Editing videos is quite easy nowadays since our smartphones have a lot of integrated editing software as well as apps such as iMovie, VEED, Kapwing, or CapCut. Viewers often look for authentic content today, therefore, there isn't a high demand for highly professional video editing. Some best performing videos are quite short and have a limited amount of editing or filtering. As a fact, short-form videos have the highest return on investment (ROI) and around 90% of marketers using this format will increase their investment in 2023. This is a result of the statistic showing that 73% of consumers favour watching short videos about your products. 

However, in the case that you do want to use more professional software on your iPhone or laptop, there are plenty of great software such as Adobe Premier Pro and a more affordable version such as iMovie.

Photo by Libby Penner on Unsplash
Photo by Libby Penner on Unsplash

E. Publish It

Finally, you have reached the final step in the in-house video production process! Now, you will be able to convey your enthusiasm for your product to your viewers by sharing your videos on all pertinent platforms. Some options for the promotion and distribution of your video include video-hosting sites such as YouTube and Vimeo or well-known social media channels like Instagram and TikTok. On top of that, you have your own ecommerce website where you will publish your work. However, we will go further in depth on this topic later on in the article.

All the media channels listed above have different video requirements, thus it is important that you make the necessary adjustment to ensure your video performs at an optimal level on all of them. If you have already acquired data on your consumers from each of these media channels, try to utilize the information you've obtained. You can do this by making an educated video model based off what you now know your customers like. If you haven't acquired any kind of data on your viewers yet, do not worry! This is your time to learn through trial and error. By experimenting with different video styles such as reels, stories, video-hosting and GIFs, you will be able to view the metrics of what type of video publication format works best for your customers.

2. Creating the best User Generated Content for your brand

Let's have a look at the 2nd effective way to source videos for your brand! 

User generated content (UGC) is any form of content such as text, testimonials, images, audio, and videos. It is content created by consumers or a non-official representative of your brand, who then shares it online with their viewers. Social media plays a large role in user-generated content, along with discussion forums and wikis. This type of marketing is quite authentic, in that it directly reflects the consumers' experience with the product or service your brand offers.

Due to the authenticity associated with this method, your brand benefits from successfully building trust with its consumers through the application of more UGC. As a matter of fact, 93% of marketers state that consumers trust user-generated content more than content created by brands. This statistic supports the claim that UGC is a great method for building trust between brand and consumer. A survey conducted in 2018 found that almost 30,000 consumers from 35 countries rated 

Furthermore, it is a great marketing tool that can be used to increase the engagement, sales, and reach by offering a demonstrative video and in return producing brand awareness. About 80% of people claim that UGS plays a significant role in influencing their purchasing decisions. Hence, combining UGC and social ecommerce is a highly effective sales strategy. In addition, UGC also eliminates the cost of having to invest in production equipment and hiring a team that overlooks and edits the production of the videos. 

To venture deeper into the world of UGC, we will propose a few different versions you can try for your video marketing.

Examples of UGC videos brands should use

Unboxing videos

Unboxing videos have become increasingly popular over the past decade. Buyers experience a sense of excitement just by encountering a beautiful and distinctive packaging that raises anticipation for what's to come next. Receiving a gift box evokes the same feeling a consumer gets when opening a present! Unboxing creates a unique customer experience. How so? Well,  viewers of the unboxing video are experiencing the same form of excitement vicariously through the person making the video. You get to see someone else visually demonstrate the usage of the product as well as provide personal insight. Watching an individual independent of the brand reviewing their products and giving a genuine reaction creates an image of authenticity and transparency.

For example, a tech reviewer received the latest smartphone from an e-commerce retailer in his new unboxing video. They showcased the phone's design, features, and performance, giving their initial impressions and recommending it to their audience. As a result, unboxing creates trust, influences buyer decisions, and generates social media engagement. This is all done by combining elements such as trust, excitement, demonstration, reviews, and entertainment.

Customer Testimonial

Customer testimonials are a great way of receiving endorsements from customers that are happy with the product or service you have provided. This gives your brand enhanced engagement as well as versatility in positive attributes. Moreover, these evaluations serve as social proof, demonstrating trust, credibility, authenticity, and relatability. Most importantly, positive testimonials can influence potential customers to acquire an interest in your brand's product or service

Product Tutorials

Creating a product demo video is a perfect way to offer practical guidance and teach an online audience how to perform a specific skill or task. They usually include a step-by-step process on how to execute a task and help a potential customer better understand the features of the product. Through expertise-sharing, the person making the tutorial is able to educate and interest a large audience in the benefits of said product or service. The tutorial instils user confidence in the brand and its ability to deliver the promised product functionalities.

Product Reviews

Product reviews offer a highly transparent perspective of your product or service, given that consumers are free to share their personal beliefs on the benefits or downsides of your brand. The purpose of this is to once again influence the purchasing decision of potential buyers by providing insights into the product's quality, advantages or disadvantages, features, performance, and personal experience with the product or service. This is a fantastic method for building trust in your brand's ability to deliver a great product or service and its credibility.

Social content

Social content in UGC is a way for buyers to create and share content on social media. Some ways this is done is through likes, comments, shares, photos, hashtags, videos, and posts. This covers a variety of different content communicated by users that want to express their opinions, experiences, and interactions with brands, products, or services. It's an excellent way to help brands enhance their brand perception while reaching a larger audience and producing meaningful connections with existing or potential customers.

Now that we’ve provided you with a few UGC video examples, we can explore the different marketing channels where you can display your ecommerce videos.

Where should we Post our Ecommerce videos?

Embed eCommerce Videos Product Pages vs. Homepage vs. Landing Page

When deciding to implement an ecommerce marketing video on your website, you have to consider its placement on your website. You have to carefully weigh the advantages of embedding the video on the product page, homepage, or landing page. Once you have considered each page, you will be able to determine the most strategic way to place the video.

Examples of various videos formats on different pages

Together, we will explore the advantages of each three and help you make the most profitable decision for your own ecommerce business.

  • Product pages: On this page you are provided all the products details as you are on the way to check out. Some of these details include; images, pricing, description, item specification, and so on. Embedding an ecommerce video at the page on which a potential customer is becoming an actual customer is an effective way to assure them of their decision. As a result, this enhances a customer's shopping experience and creates trust in the brand. By showcasing product demonstrations, customer testimonials, and tutorials, they help customers make an informed decision. 
    On top of that, they can have videos showing complementary products or comparable, higher-end products than the one the viewer originally sought out. This type of video content can generate cross-selling and upselling that will then increase the average order value (AOV).
  • Homepage: The homepage is the introductory page that typically customers encounter first when they visit your website. It is a centre point that provides an overview of the website's content, navigation options, features, and information about the brand or organization. This area on your ecommerce website has high-visibility, therefore it is important that it sets the tone, presents the brand's image clearly, and provides key information. In doing so, it successfully captures viewers' attention and creates a pleasant experience for them. The features on the homepage are designed to engage all visitors and direct them to more relevant sections pertaining to their needs. Embedding a video on the homepage is the perfect way to grasp a visitors' attention at the very start and encourage them to explore the web page and its products further.
    For example, these videos can cover product promotions, show your brand's current best-selling products/services, introduce your brand in a more intimate way, or highlight important product categories and best-selling items.
    Having a compelling video to introduce your brand at the very start of a viewer's experience on your site is an efficient way to communicate your brand's value and leave a good first impression.

  • Landing Page: This is a standalone page that anyone can land on after clicking a CTA via a video. Unlike a homepage, that generally introduces visitors to a website, a landing page is solely designed to capture the attention of visitors and transform them into customers. To better understand it, a landing page prompts actions like making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, marketing campaigns, downloading a resource, requesting a demo or free trial, and registering for an event. All of which can be done by embedding the right videos with the appropriate CTA, depending on the goal of the ecommerce brand. This is an effective method to increase engagement.

Use Your Social Media Channels

To make an informed decision on what social media channels to use for the publication of your ecommerce videos, there are a few factors to take into account. Some of which are:

  • Your target audience
  • The essence of your video content
  • The strengths and weaknesses of each platform

Using social media channels is an effective way to build brand awareness, sell products and services at a higher rate, generate more user engagement and reach a vast audience.

Popular social media channels like TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn all have unique characteristics. Each website has benefits that set it apart from the rest. As a result, you will need to experiment to see which platforms' operational approach best aligns with your company's goals and objectives.

Social media platform e-commerce brands should consider using

TikTok: To elaborate, I'm sure you noticed TikTok's rapid increase in popularity during the pandemic. The fast-growing channel of TikTok was a key indicator that short term videos are the future of the social media industry. Its ‘For You’ page algorithm accurately curates a stream of videos directly related to your interests. This highly reliable media channel, powered by a recommendation system, will deliver content that specifically caters to each consumers' personal interests through gathered data. TikTok, also offer stories and lives that encourage real-time interactions. Much like Instagram, it allows users to like, comment, and share each other's posts. It is a perfect media channel for a trend-conscious audience and quite effective for viral marketing or brand awareness.

Instagram: Instagram offers different approaches to distributing and marketing your video content. Some of these options include Instagram stories, reels, and posts. All of which encourage users to engage the brand by attaching a CTA link. Other than this being a great way to exhibit the brand's image, it is also perfect for building a community or otherwise, a following. You can then engage in conversation with said following through comments, messages, or posts addressing common customer inquiries. As a visually-focused media site, it showcases visually-appealing products in visually appealing video ads.

Facebook: This social network supports all kinds of video formats. It has a large and versatile user base. For this reason, it is a great choice for reaching numerous people and attracting a specific target. Should you want to share product promotions, behind the scenes footage, or customer testimonials, definitely consider creating video content for Facebook users. It is also, less focused on visually appealing posts, therefore, you may not necessarily need to put in as much effort depending on your target.

LinkedIn: LinkedIn is a popular networking site for professionals that want to connect, share and learn. In a sense, it's like Facebook, except it's specifically career related. If you want to build professional relationships and have direct contact with other business, start looking at videos in ecommerce for LinkedIn. Here you share ecommerce videos related to product launches, career success stories, smart business decisions, industry insights, leadership skills and so on...

Twitter: Last but not least, we have Twitter. As you may know, Twitter is a social networking website focused on real-time status updates. Here, users engage with content through retweeting, liking, sharing, and saving. Therefore, it is great for generating traffic for your ecommerce story by sharing teasers, short videos, or GIFs that easily captivate viewers and encourage their engagement.

These social media websites are all useful if you'd like to create a more interactive environment for your viewers. Now with some of these useful characteristics we've mentioned, you can decide the best for your ecommerce videos! However, if this list still doesn't describe what you are looking for, then perhaps we can have a look at more video oriented platforms.

Embed eCommerce Videos on a Video sharing Platform

If you feel that your brand requires a slightly longer and more in depth ecommerce explainer video of your products and services, then perhaps YouTube or Dailymotion would be the better options.

YouTube is one of the most well known video sharing platforms. It is notable for posting longer videos, tutorials, brand storytelling, and product demos. It has powerful search engine optimization (SEO) by association with Google. Your potential customer reach can increase by a lot due to its user-friendly interface. You can apply keywords in the video title, video file, video description, and with hashtags. You can also, contextualize your video with categories, and use eye-catching thumbnails to gain more attraction. Although it is a site more well-known for videos longer than 5 minutes, they have recently introduced YouTube shorts. YouTube shorts is a new marketing technique for shorter videos on YouTube that will effectively increase your sales and boost your ecommerce business.

Dailymotion has a large user-base with a diverse audience from different regions. This provides your ecommerce videos with a large potential audience. Furthermore, It supports high-definition video uploads, which allow you to display your products and services in a professional and visually appealing manner. Lastly, it offers you lots of customization options and monetization opportunities With this you can embed your ecommerce videos on social media platforms, a blog, or your website and expand brand visibility by driving traffic. Much like YouTube, Dailymotion now has launched a new feature that allows it to conquer new consumers. Unlike many of the other sites, it pushes exploration. This new algorithm exposes viewers to the latest topics of interest instead of having an algorithm of recommendation. It's purpose it to discard overconsumption of similar content and introduce new subjects of interest. 

Images from Dailymotion app

Both Dailymotion and YouTube have power features and user engagement that are highly useful for sharing ecommerce videos. When you are selecting a video sharing platform, consider everything we listed above regarding your ecommerce video sharing on your website, social media channels, or on video sharing platforms. Make sure what you choose aligns with the goals of your marketing strategy.

Now that we have reached the end, I hope the information we have provided you with will aid you in deciding the best way to source videos for your brand. Whether it's by having an in-house video production or through creating user generated content. Keep in mind that 91% of businesses today use video marketing as a tool. It’s about time for you to begin, too!

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Main image by bruce mars on Unsplash