Web video for beginners

How to Create Web Video Ads

Ten Tips to Create the Most Compelling Video Sales Ads

Anyone can create compelling web video ads (or web commercials) for your website, product or service that really work i.e. Drive traffic to your website, make people buy your product or use your service, but you do need to follow a few golden rules.

Searching for a professionally made video ad? Then play this bone jarring video and see what happens. If you want to make your own ad, skip the video and keep reading.

Here are my Top Ten Tips for creating web video ads that will drive a stampede of traffic to your website, and make customers queue up to buy your products or use your services;

[1] K.I.S.S. - No, I'm not telling you to keep it simple (That's for later!), my number one golden rule for producing a great web video ad is to Keep It Short Stupid! :-)

The BIGGEST mistake people make when creating a web video ad is they make them way too long. A web video ad should NEVER be longer than two minutes maximum. I actually recommend 30-60 seconds.

TV commercials are 30 seconds long, and this is the length of time most people will watch before they start losing interest.

[2] Promote Your Benefits, Not Your Features - This is as important to my first golden rule, and the thing most people have trouble understanding, but the next biggest mistake people make when creating video ads is they promote the FEATURES of their website, product or service and not the BENEFITS.

So what's the difference between a BENEFIT and a FEATURE?

Well, human beings are essentially a selfish bunch, and it is in our nature to look at any proposal and think, "What's in it for me?" or WIIFM as I like to call it.

For example, a web video ad promoting how the computer you sell has 3GB Ram Memory, 500GB Hard Disc Drive, Blu-Ray drive, 21" LCD monitor, 250MB Graphics memory and a 500mhz Dual Core processor is listing the products 'FEATURES' and it is very, very boring and unlikely to hold anyone's attention.

However, tell your customers they will be able to "Render a 10 minute HD video in less than five minutes!", or "Watch their favorite movies in High Definition and 3D Surround Sound", or "Download a movie from the Internet in less than five minutes" and these BENEFITS will capture their their attention.

[3] Focus On 2 or 3 Major Benefits - Now that you know that you should be promoting your 'benefits', and not your 'features', the next thing to do is make a list of all the benefits of your website, product or service and place them in order of importance to the CUSTOMER (Not You!).

Then promote ONLY the top 2 or 3 major benefits in your web video ad. If you try to stuff all your benefits in, the message will become diluted and lose it's effectiveness.

And as your video ad should only be 30-60 seconds long, you won't have time for all of them any way. It's always better to create another web video ad using new benefits than try and pack them all into one.

[4] Always Start With A Problem - Generally speaking, the most effective web video ads start off by highlighting a problem the viewer may have e.g. Overweight? Losing your hair? Back problems?

This will always catch your viewers attention and allows them to instantly relate to the ad by recognizing and acknowledging the problem.

[5] Then Follow With A Solution (Benefits) -As Autumn follows Summer, so it is with a problem and the solution. When you have your viewers undivided attention (by highlighting his problem), you must immediately take advantage of the situation by providing the solution (or solutions!) by hitting them with the benefits of your website, product or service.

Keep the message short to drive it home, and never use more than eight words or your message will get lost (The less words the better).


Video Ad created by WeVids

[6] Always End With A 'Call To Action' - It's no good having a great web video ad offering viewers great solutions to all their problems if you don't tell them what to do or where to go to find you.

It may sound obvious, but there are thousands of promotional videos on YouTube that do exactly that. The video ends, and you have no idea what to do or where to go.

Always end with a 'Call To Action!'. People like to be told what to do, so make sure you tell them by having your website URL on the video and in the 'description' section on the video share site you have uploaded to.

If you want someone to enter their name and email address to get your newsletter, then tell them. Actually point to the opt-in form on your website from the video and tell them. Don't be shy!

[7] Always Offer A 'FREE' Incentive - If you really want your viewer to rush on over to your website, the offer a free gift as an incentive. This is a very powerful tool and can be anything from a free report or ebook to a free video or a consultation.

Having a free anything can make all the difference for some viewers in deciding to proceed or not. A free gift will always help convince the indecisive ones.

[8] Keep Each Scene 3-5 Seconds - Just as it is important to keep your web video ad short (30-60 seconds), it is equally important to keep each clip short (3-5 seconds).

By changing the image every 3-5 seconds, you keep the ad rolling along, driving your viewer to it's conclusion and 'call to action' (Which is the whole point of the ad in the first place).

Staying on one image for 10-15 seconds can feel like forever in a video commercial. It doesn't sound long, but stare at something right now and count to 15...one elephant...two elephant...three elephant...four elephant...five elephant...six elephant...seven elephant...eight elephant...nine elephant...ten elephant........see what I mean? ;-)

Keep your clips short to maintain viewer interest.

[9] Use Music & Images To Full Effect - Using the right music and images can make all the difference between success and failure for your web commercials.

You need to spend a lot of time finding the right images and the right music for your videos, as they are so important. Having the right image and music that emphasises the problems and your solutions in the video is crucial to an effective ad.

You can buy Royalty-Free music on Ebay (Do not ever be tempted to use popular music tracks from your CD collection on your videos, as it is illegal and you could face heavy fines or even jail).

You can purchase Royalty-Free images from www.iStock.com from $1 each. They have millions of images, so you will be spoilt for choice. For web video ads, you can get away with purchasing the 'small' size images.

[10] Make Sure Your Text Stands Out - Last, but by no means least, make sure the text you use in your video stands out, as it only has a few seconds to do it's job and you don't want it getting lost in the background.

It needs to STAND OUT!

I have found using white text (with a black outline and 'shadow') against a darker background gives the best effect (See videos), but always use a contrasting color to the background.


If you have any video related questions, please click HERE to ask Mr Video!

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