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A Beginners Guide to Video for Associations

by | Oct 4, 2012 | Event Management, Industry News & Trends, Membership & Marketing

At a recent conference I attended a statistic was presented — 67% of marketers who use video outsource it. I assume part of that is due to the cost of equipment and partly due to lack of confidence in being able to do it themselves. But for membership organizations with tight budgets, outsourcing may not be an option. But how do you produce high-quality videos with limited resources and staff expertise?

1. Decide specifics of your project. Not every video has to be ad-agency quality. A video tour of your new office for board members has a very different tone than a promotional video for your annual golf outing. Some videos are very effective in the “Blair Witch” style, while other require a certain finesse. Think about the goal for your video and the audience before deciding the production quality necessary. 

2. Assess your strengths and resources. You may be surprised the secret lives of your staff and volunteers. You may have musicians, photographers and writers on staff. Ask them to contribute time, equipment and knowledge. This sort of collaboration is a lot of fun and allows them to shine and do something they enjoy.

3. Leverage connections. Now that you know what you have in-house figure out what additional resources you need and ask members to help. See if any of your member businesses would be willing to barter services for membership discounts,  free event tickets or publicity. If they simply can’t provide services maybe they would be willing to provide expertise and guide you in the process of what you need and how to go about doing it.

4. Be yourself. No matter what your subject or resources, be true to the personality of your organization. If you are an extremely serious group that never smiles at any meetings (excuse the exaggeration) but creating a funny recruitment video in the hopes that it will go viral is probably a little misleading. If you portray yourself as a bunch of jokers, recruits will expect that same personality to come through in your meetings. Make sure the video speaks to who you are.

5. Make it about others. Telling your audience how great you are only works in Hollywood. The rest of the world wants to know “what’s in it for me?”. Do everything you can in your videos to tell your story (briefly) and then move on to what amazing things are going on for members, stakeholders, the community, etc. Your audience wants to know what it would be like to be behind your velvet ropes; so open up and let them in but make it mainly about their experience.

Video doesn’t have to be long or involve crazy call-outs and animation. People identify with people. It’s the old idea of placing faces on your website. The human eye is attracted to them. We seek them out. Video is just an extension of that. You can start small with a hand-held on a tripod and introduce the people who have made you a success to the world.

What other beginning video tips do you have?

Looking for other ideas on video topics? This post gives some suggestions for conference videos.

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