While much of the online focus is on social media networks such as Twitter and Facebook, it’s just as important for SMEs to start thinking about YouTube. Here’s a look at the simple ways to get filming.
You might think that producing video for your business is beyond your budget or expertise, but it’s not nearly as difficult as it looks. For most of you, the capacity to make video is probably closer to your fingers than you think.
Most smartphones have video recording ability, and the quality is a lot better than it used to be, to the point that whole films have been shot on a phone.
The filming ability of tablets has also advanced greatly, with new releases from Apple, Asus and Toshiba.
So, more than likely, you have the ability to record HD quality video right now, sitting on your desk or in your pocket.
However, while smartphones and tablets are enough to get some quick footage from your office/showroom/service vehicle, they’re not going to offer the same quality of footage or, just as importantly, sound, as a professional camera can offer.
If you are going to invest in a camera for the office, a DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) that can also record video is your best bet. Canon’s EOS range of DSLRs are not only an affordable (starting at around $400 not including the lens) option, but also a professional one. The 5D Mark II (about $1,800 lens not included) is used by professional filmmakers the world over, and is responsible for filming many music videos and television episodes, while the feature film and 2011 Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner film Like Crazy was shot on a Canon 7D (about $1,400, lens not included).
Canon isn’t the only player on the market either. The Pansonic Lumix, while not being an SLR camera, shoots with SLR quality. Most importantly it does film full HD video. Nikon also have a range of high quality DSLR cameras that also shoot full HD video, including the D600 (around $2,400), the D3200 (around $800), the D7000 (around $1,300)
The best thing is these cameras are not hard to use, and produce far better quality images and video than your basic digital camera. If you regularly need product images or even just want some great photos for your website that aren’t from a stock image library, investing in a DSLR is worth it, for the added bonus that you’ll also be able to start filming content for YouTube.
Why should I film?
The statistic is bandied about a lot, but YouTube is the second most searched engine after Google, and so having a presence on the social media site makes sense.
Selina Power, social media advisor for Bluewire Media, says that YouTube is the next natural step for SMEs. “If a picture can tell a thousand words imagine what a video could say about your company? The benefits of having a YouTube Channel are endless and include SEO, a housing for video content that can be placed on your website and it is also another potential driver of traffic to your website.”
Power says that it also doesn’t matter if you think that your business doesn’t naturally lend itself to video. “Your company may not be visually exciting however to some your data, tips and hints or interviews may be. Financial advisors like Charles Badenach from the Shadforth Financial Group are using YouTube to discuss economic reports with a simple voice over power point slides of the graphs and data. Although the production cost is low, the value perceived by the client is much higher as this is far more informative and personable and much better than a white paper.”
So if you’re not yet convinced, have a look around at some of your competitor’s websites and see if they’ve started adding video content. Look at what it offers, and how much more dynamic a website looks with professional looking video. You’ll find yourself planning your first business video before too long.
Note: all prices for cameras are from Teds Cameras