Have you been running away from video marketing because you think it can be intimidating and overwhelming? Worry no more, it doesn’t have to be as intimidating and overwhelming as you think. We’re going to cover the ins and outs of video marketing and all the basics you need to know.
Shayna Lloyd lives in Montana, right outside Glacier National Park. That is the area that she serves for adventurous elopements and couples sessions and she still does some traditional weddings. One day she was hiking in Montana with her friends and her then-boyfriend, now-husband. They created some content and she put it out there and started getting inquiries for weddings.
She had no idea about doing weddings at that time but they learned through having that hybrid photo-video edge that helped them stand out in their market. She started through mostly vendor referrals and then referrals from her clients who started booking her out every single summer.
From there, she learned how to do business and then learned how to serve her clients well, maybe later than she should have. But she enjoyed herself the whole time and now she’s here!
Photography and Videography
Shayna did a lot of content for fishing guides and lodges, anything that would get her and Brandon outside to shoot, they would do it. It was really attractive for people that they were willing to tackle both photography and videography.
Now, most of their weddings are hybrid. They only shoot one and it’s usually video, with so many photography friends it became easier. If you want to do a video, she’s a wedding photographer who can do it all.
Starting video marketing
The first thing is to let go of over-researching and procrastinating and just doing it. Just get started with something actionable that will move the needle forward in your business and help you long-term with a video that might not even include any moving video. You can create a slideshow with your favorite gallery or favorite piece of work and slap it on YouTube with a searchable title.
For Shayna, it would be Montana Glacier National Park, elopement, videography, and photography, and slapping that on her website because YouTube is the number two search engine. It’s owned by Google which is the number one search engine that helps so much with SEO. Having her video content on YouTube and her website has helped her business over the years in terms of traffic and referrals on HoneyBook.
Take that same strategy and keep it simple on reels and TikTok. Think about social media as your storefront, your number one goal with it should be to show you’re active. For instance, if you look up a local coffee shop and their last post is from two months ago, and there are no stories saying there are any specials or anything, you might wonder if they’re still open.
You are not looking at the number of likes this coffee shop has or the number of followers or if they’re viral. You’re worried about whether they can provide the service you’re looking for. And that’s something you can think about in the photography business as well.
Process-oriented over product-oriented
With product-oriented, that means you’re worried about the result of what you’re posting. Like thinking about the number of views a reel or TikTok has, or the number of shares, or the number of followers you get if it goes viral and that’s very stressful.
Just do it, don’t be caught up with it being perfect and then not posting. Done is better than perfect, don’t beat yourself up until it’s perfect or it just never will be. One important thing is that when creating reels for Instagram, the reels that perform the lowest are the ones that give the biggest impact sometimes.
The second point is remembering what the point of the call to action is and what are you doing to drive action to in your business? It is about just doing consistent work and treating people well and never quitting.
Recommended form of video marketing
It’s always good to know what your goals are with any type of marketing and that includes video marketing. Understanding who you’re talking to and what the result you want it to be. So clearly defined offers, knowing what you’re wanting people to buy.
For Shayna, for the part of her audience, would be elopement, videography, and photography. So every piece of content should be geared toward people that might want to buy that service.
She doesn’t need to blab at people about videography and photography, she can talk about tips for planning, and elopement. She can talk about lodging at their destination location, stuff like that.
When it comes to bite-sized pieces for video marketing, the number one tip is to do it to put out videos. All social media platforms are favoring video because video keeps people’s eyes on content longer. Slideshows are a great place to start for photographers who already have still photos to use.
The next place to go is to connect you to your final product and some ways to do that is using selfie videos to combine with those slideshows. There are tons of trends on Tiktok and reels and YouTube shorts where there’s like a beginning of a song and then the beat drops and that’s where most people go photo to photo.
At the beginning of the beat, you can put your selfie or a video of you smiling with your camera, it doesn’t have to be crazy. That’s a good way to start. If you’re scared about getting on a video you don’t even have to talk.
The next thing is utilizing behind the scenes on your socials and your website. The reason for this is when you just have your final product on your socials and your website, all your potential clients can do is imagine themselves in your final product which is beautiful but it can be intimidating.
To see your personality, your style, but also the people you’re shooting or just regular people helps so they’re able to imagine themselves working with you, rather than just being in the final product. It connects the experience with the result they’ll be getting.
Not every photographer can stand the idea of having to talk to their camera but imagine you are looking for a photographer for yourself and you’re comparing a photographer that just posts static images and slideshows. You don’t even know what their face looks like because they might even have a logo as their profile picture. Compare that to somebody who’s using their face and voice to connect with you and give you tips and make you comfortable. You feel like you know them before you even have to shoot for them.
There’s something vulnerable and anxiety-inducing about trusting somebody to capture you with a camera and you can’t ignore the fact that this is also a financially loaded decision for people. So not only are they getting their pictures taken but they’re doing something uncomfortable for them. They’re paying a lot of money to do it, as a service provider your responsibility is to figure out how to make people comfortable, and talking to them face to face with the camera is a great way to do it.
Creating video marketing content
If you’re nervous about creating content, sit down with a pen and paper or an empty Google Doc, and set a timer for five to ten minutes and put down your thoughts. You’re not allowed to erase, you’re not allowed to overthink it. Just brain dump. Anything that might be a concern or a pain point for your potential client. Think of how you can make that comfortable for them from your perspective.
Also, understand that you’re not a content machine, you’re human so you can just speak to your clients exactly how you would speak to them in person, be comfortable, and add captions, and that’s good enough.
What makes up a good marketing video?
Good video marketing is a video that’s done and posted. You might have to try a bunch of different things before you figure out what moves the needle forward in your business. And there are multiple ways you can track that and maybe you can look at your analytics on Instagram and see your messaging insights like who’s messaging you from these reels or TikTok videos.
It’s just about making sure on the inquiry form on your website that there’s a space where people can tell you where they found you. And if those answers are a video on Facebook or a TikTok or Instagram, then that can help you track if your video marketing plan is working. So it’s just being consistent, experimenting, figuring out what’s going to work for you, and worrying about needle-moving results rather than vitality and likes.
Ways to leverage video content
Shayna is an advocate of messy action. She loves doing all of this stuff with just an iPhone and building up the content library with behind-the-scenes and talking head stuff, even just iPhone shots of your couples sessions. But at the same time as you get more confident with video you get more intentional. You could push further and try to experiment with the camera you’re using for photos and try to get some more high-quality content.
So even you could just push yourself to do one or two, five-second video clips of your clients at the sessions so you can build up that content library in the area that you’re in. Providing a ton of value, having a video with those keywords that you’re trying to rank and search for integrated into your blog post is going to help you so much in search ranking.
When you create longer-form videos on YouTube, figure out how to utilize that video in as many places as possible. If you’re able to resize it and cut it up to make it, maybe a week’s worth of vertical video for TikTok, YouTube shorts, and reels. That’s something you should be doing.
Other social media platforms
Also think about other places on the internet, where it will live longer than the life of one social media post, such as Pinterest. Pinterest supports videos and it lasts a long time. Also consider keeping your Facebook fairly active because if you do decide to run Instagram or Facebook ads, those ads become a lot cheaper if Facebook understands who you are and who you’re talking to because you’re constantly posting on it. Just repurposing content in every way you can.
It’s okay to sound and feel like a broken record because that’s when you’re going to be more identifiable about what you have to offer and why you’re the expert at what you do. Because you are drilling that call to action and people know that okay, this is what you do, and that helps you create some authority too.
The best advice for video marketing
Maybe you have some sort of fear that the work you can produce would be adequate or feel misaligned, like what you have to do doesn’t align with your personality or your brand. If you’re feeling some apprehension or fear, then this is a good opportunity to do a little journaling.
Even though you hate journaling, just set a timer of five minutes, that’s all you have to do. Pull open a Google Doc or the notes app on your iPhone and write down all the negative things you’re feeling about implementing a video-based strategy. Then you can start attacking those fears. That’s the permission slip that you can do this in a way that’s going to feel good to you and align with your business.
Shauna’s biggest advice is to just come up with a plan. It doesn’t have to be her plan or anything fancy. But it should be something you can schedule into your calendar to implement. Done is better than perfect, which is my motto!
And for Shayna who loves messy action, that helps. Know that the videos that you make and never post aren’t going to help your business. So if you can sketch out the calendar time to not only figure out a strategy but implement it and no more procrastination then that’s what’s going to help you.
Marketing should be a small facet of your business that helps the other parts of your business. So it should enable you to be creative. It should enable you to connect with clients. It should enable you to bring in more money so that you can continue running your business and your life.
So it’s figuring out the strategy that’s going to enable all those things. Have fun words, just enjoy yourself and the process. Shayna Lloyd can be found at montanadiaries.com and shayna_lloyd on Instagram. You can DM her anytime about anything photo, video business, or video making in general.
She also has a free class for all photographers who want to integrate video into their business. Whether that’s from the marketing perspective or if you want to start integrating video offers into your business to upsell your existing photo clients. It’s all about using the equipment you already have. It’s at montanandiaries.com you can check it out, it’s going to be amazing!
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