Using the Dynamite Power of Testimonial Videos for Marketing
By Greg Ball, President of BMI
Want to know an easy way to create desire for your product, service or company? On-camera testimonials are powerfully persuasive when delivered by the viewers’ peers, and especially when delivered by a credible and well-respected expert in the field.
We all naturally seek the recommendations of others we know and/or trust when making important decisions. That partially explains why websites like Angie’s List or the “user reviews” on Amazon have become so popular and influential. When it comes to making a decision on a purchase, these sites show that consumers will trust what they think to be unsolicited, and unendorsed reviews of a product or service, even from total strangers!
As you create a marketing strategy, consider having real users of your services or products deliver your branding message. This can help boost your business’ credibility exponentially. Video testimonials can greatly influence potential customers to buy, and existing customers to keep coming back.
Here are a few strategies to keep in mind when using video testimonials to help grow your business.
One is Not Enough
When it comes to video testimonials, the more the merrier. The more video endorsements you can provide, the more it indicates that you have a long list of satisfied clients who are willing to spread the word about your service or product. For most videos, you should ideally have at least 3 to 5 unique testimonials. They should be representative of the people you’d find in your target market.
We find that the more testimonials there are in a video, the less likely that your audience will think they are staged or paid endorsements. Trotting out what looks like a never ending line of satisfied clients leaves the viewer thinking you would have little trouble finding many more, if the video continued.
Choosing the Right Spokespeople
When it comes to choosing the people to give the testimonials, you’ll need to consider your target market, and how they relate to your product or service. To show you what I mean, let’s look at two product examples:
- A technically oriented product being sold to a technically capable crowd.
- A somewhat technically oriented product being sold to a diverse crowd that mainly includes non-tech people.
First, look at who they might trust to give them a recommendation. For the first example, it may be necessary to offer a testimonial from an expert in the field. Perhaps they’ll want to hear from an engineer, designer, or other “subject matter expert” before they would be willing to make the purchase. If so, then you’ll want to include at least one expert testimonial. If possible, you may want to use a testimonial given by someone who is well known or recognized as an authority in your industry. This could pack a double punch. However if it’s not feasible, it’s not always necessary.
For the second example, you’ll want to show the ease of use to your non-tech target market. To get that point across, you’ll want to use a parade of testimonials from a variety of “regular people” from within your target market.
Getting The Right Look & Feel On-Screen
Want to get high impact testimonials, while avoiding those fake, awkward sounding ones? You’ll want to avoid pointing the camera at the person giving the testimonial, and telling them to start talking right into the camera lense. This usually results in a “deer caught in the headlights” kind of stare.
The better way to go is to have someone off-camera ask the person delivering the testimonial specific questions about his or her experiences with your company, product or services. If they feel they’re speaking one-on-one with another person, as if the camera isn’t even in the room, they’re much more at ease.
To get a more natural, comfortable appearance, we often have the interviewer sit next to the camera, just to the right or the left of it. They should be prepared with some interview questions, which they should ask in a conversational way in order to help the interviewee relax. Prior to shooting, they should say something to the interviewee like “Just look at me, and we’ll talk. We’ll just have a conversation. In fact don’t even look at the camera.”
By doing this, you’re much more likely to get a great looking shot, and some sincere, natural and usable sound bites.
Take a look at an example of a video that uses testimonials as described above.
If you use these techniques before you say when recording video testimonials you’ll get some very believable on-camera endorsements that will help to take your marketing videos to a whole new level.
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