Enhancing Your Company Branding
By Picking the Right Video Spokesperson
By Greg Ball, President of BMI
Many businesses decide to produce a video or series of videos for their websites or YouTube channel that are designed to build or grow their brand identity. That’s a great idea! No matter the size of your business or organization, video can certainly play an instrumental role in how your company or brand is perceived.
Once you’ve decided to create a branding video, there are lots of choices you need to make. One of the key decisions involves a spokesperson.
First and foremost, you need to decide how you want your brand to be perceived. What is it that you want the viewing audience to know and feel? As you move forward with choosing a spokesperson, this must stay in the forefront.
Let’s discuss who should be your spokesperson. Here are some options:
- You can use the CEO or president of the company.
- If you have a small business or mid-size business, you can choose to be the spokesperson yourself.
- If you employ a product expert, they may be ideal to represent your products.
- You can hire a known expert in your field. This can give your product or service credibility.
- There’s also the option of hiring a professional actor or actress to be the spokesperson.
Here's a word of caution. Being a spokesperson is not for everyone. A spokesperson must be able to:
- Speak in a friendly, articulate, and credible way.
- Look into the camera and exude confidence.
- Be likable.
- Have charisma.
- Get people to see things their way.
Remember that you’re trying to get people to buy your products and support your brand. Think about the person you’re considering as spokesperson, especially if it’s yourself. Take a hard look and be honest. Does the above criterion fit? If not, they could negatively impact your brand identity. It’s best to look elsewhere.
Even if the spokesperson candidate does meet the above criteria, there’s more to it than that. They must be comfortable in front of the camera. If not, the discomfort will show and it could impact the branding message you’re video will be sending.
Should small business owners act as their own company spokesperson?
If your business is categorized as a small “mom & pop” type of business, you can certainly be your own spokesperson. No one knows your business better than you! The same is true for the owners of mid-size companies.
Of course all of the above criterion should be considered carefully. If you’re not sure if the criterion describes you, ask people close to you what they think. That may feel a little scary, but it’s better to get the truth now rather than to invest thousands into a video that does nothing to help your business.
Here's an interesting article on Entrepreneur.com called "Should You Be the Face of Your Business?". There's a helpful list of questions that you should ask yourself before choosing to be your own spokesperson.
Should a corporate executive act as their company’s spokesperson?
Since executives come and go on a regular basis, they may not be your best choice of spokesperson. Let’s say that you’ve decided that your CEO will be your spokesperson. You have his video scripted and recorded. He does a terrific job, and the video oozes with his great personality. He’s definitely a true representation of your brand.
Two weeks later, he decides to take a more appealing job with another company. Suddenly you lose a key part of your brand. You may even lose customers or clients who follow after him. So personally I’d advise against this.
As I mentioned before, a spokesperson must appear to have charisma, be likeable and credible. Honestly, in my experience I’ve found that it’s unusual that a CEO or business owner will have this natural talent, though I’ve worked with many charismatic CEOs!
Hiring a professional actor/actress as a video spokesperson.
You may wish to hire a professional actor for your video. If you decide to go this route, it’s important to have several actors to choose from. A video production company may hold auditions so you can see who can best represent you and your business. Keep in mind that this person will quickly become the face of your company or brand, and their personality will become your company’s personality.
You’ll want to consider your target market, and what might appeal to them when choosing your actor/actress.
You may also want to know if there are other products or services that this person has represented. Let’s say they were a spokesperson for a very racy organization or product, and now they are YOUR spokesperson. Video lasts a very long time, and their previous affiliations may come back to haunt you.
There are many companies out there who will provide you with a professional spokesperson/actor at a very low cost. While on the surface this may seem like a great idea, you should really consider that they will now become your brand, your single salesperson to the viewing audience. A bargain spokesperson may not be reliable, and may not have the experience you’re looking for.
To Sum it Up:
As I’m sure you’ve seen by now, there’s really no right or wrong answer for choosing a spokesperson for your video. It depends on your goals, your brand, your products or services, your target market, and what your message is.
Feel free to contact us. We’d be happy to discuss your options, and we’d love to help you grow your brand.
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