How to Produce an Effective Customer Testimonial Video

Testimonial Video

Customer testimonials are an important way to communicate with prospective customers. They prove what you’ve known all along: that your company provides an excellent product or service.

Written testimonials are great, and certainly better than nothing, but a well-crafted testimonial video can be an even more engaging way to share your favorite customer stories with your prospects. Here are some tips on creating an effective customer testimonial video:

Prepare

The first rule of thumb for any form of customer testimonial is: don’t waste your customers time. It’s important to maintain your customers relationships, so make the process as smooth and easy for them as possible. This is why it’s a good idea to do some planning. Select a few specific examples of the work you’ve done together. What do you think they like about your product or service? Prepare a list of questions for the interview so that you make the most of the time you have. And instead of planning open ended questions, target specific areas where you know they’ve had a positive experience.

Make Your Customer Comfortable

Not many people are naturally comfortable in front of the camera and under production lights. That’s why it’s important to put them at ease right off the bat. Welcome them, and engage in light conversation before sitting down for the interview. Then briefly explain the process – that you’ll ask them a few questions, and that they can stop and redo anything. Editing is a wonderful tool. Assure them that they’ll have final say on whether or not the video will be used.

Authentic Interview

The goal is not to put words in your customers mouth. No testimonial should appear scripted, or credibility will immediately be lost. The interview should feel like a conversation: your customer speaking directly to a producer or person off camera, not looking into the camera lens. Avoid interrupting them, provide positive feedback, and let the authentic story emerge.

Keep it Short

After the interview is done, it’s time for editing. While the interview may have been filled with an hour of praise, your prospects definitely don’t want to watch a long winded video. It’s best to keep testimonial videos short to-the-point. Multi customer videos should be no longer than 2-3 minutes, and a single customer testimonial should be no longer than about 1 minute.

Grab Viewers Attention

There’s rule in the industry called the “3 second rule,” and this doesn’t have anything to do with how long food has been on the floor. On the web or mobile, you only have 3 seconds to grab a viewer’s attention. There are literally billions of other things they could navigate to, and your video needs to compel them to stay. This is why you start with the most engaging moment, a unique detail, shocking result or even humor. You can’t get those 3 seconds back, so use them wisely.

Focus on Results

Stick to specific results. Vague exclamations of praise, such as “XYZ Company was great to work with!” do not have nearly as much impact as result-oriented details. How exactly did your company benefit the customer. Did they increase their sales? Did they improve efficiency? Quality?

Stunning Visuals

A minute is a very long time when you are watching a simple talking-head video. Even the most captivating subject can be difficult to watch uninterrupted for that long. This will lead to viewers clicking away at a higher frequency. Include other engaging visuals throughout the customer story – it could be beautiful visuals of your product itself, visuals of the customer using your service, etc. If the customer works in a unique office, you could feature elements from the space. Variety goes a long way in keeping viewer interest.

Increase Sales with Product Videos

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Whether our clients are selling a service, an app or a physical product, a product video can serve to really break through to their potential customers. An effective product video will not only outline a products features and advantages, but it should serve to inspire and empower viewers to give their attention (and money).

So why video? Who is going to watch it anyway? As it turns out, everyone.

High Visibility

Videos increase a site’s visibility on the web. Simply put, Google loves videos. When potential customers perform a search, Google gives preference to sites with videos.

Adds Credibility

Unlike simple photographs or text copy, videos have a high perceived value. When your customers see a professionally created video about a product, they automatically assume a level of quality and credibility.

Adds Clarity

It’s no surprise that video increases a customers understanding of the product in question. The chance that your customers is going to delve into large bodies of text is unlikely. But, by watching a well-crafted 60-second video, they can get all the info they need in a pleasant, engaging little package.

Increases Sales

And to top if off, according to iMedia, viewers who watch product videos are 85% more likely to buy. This is an astounding advantage.

But, not all videos are created equal. A poorly produced video can be counter productive, and the internet is full of poorly produced video. In fact, according to Marketing Pilgrim, 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube each minute. How can you make a video that will stand out?

Here at One Glass Video, we’ve been making effective product videos for almost a decade. Each client has a unique set of goals, and we’ve developed and refined the following process for creating the best product videos every time.

Setting Goals

First, it’s important to determine what you want to accomplish with a product video. Of course, everyone wants sales, but this is a good time to really break it down. How is this product better than other products on the market? Is there a common misconception about the product that you want to clarify? Are you trying to increase credibility? Clarity? Trying to reach a specific market or demographic? Setting at least 2-3 goals on the onset will ensure that the final video achieves them.

Script Writing

Write the script for what will be read in voice-over. Keep in mind that people will be viewing this video on their phone or laptop, with the distraction of the rest internet just a click away. It’s important to hook your audience early on and to keep thing brief and to-the-point. Generally, we suggest a product video be no longer than 60-90 seconds. That may not seem like much time to explain all the great things about your product, but a well crafted script will capture many details without feeling rushed. Even though this is a product explainer video, it’s important to think of the script process as story

Here’s an example storyline that we like to use:

  1. Establish Problem
  2. Explain existing solutions and why they’re lacking
  3. Introduce your superior solution
  4. Highlight product features
  5. Show examples of how it works for others
  6. Call-to-Action

The call-to-action is in a way the most important part of the video. What do you want your prospective customers to do after they watch? Sign up for a free trial? Call for more info? Go to a direct purchase link? Specifically direct your viewers to desired action.

Storyboarding

Once we have the general through-line of the video, now is a good time to establish the tone and visual approach. If the product is a web-based product or app, often an animated explainer video will be the best-suited format. However, if it’s a physical product, sometimes a live-action video can be the most relatable to prospective customers, and also offer the opportunity to show off the real life product in-use.

Regardless of the format chosen, draw up a storyboard. A storyboard is a series of illustrations or images, displayed in a sequence for the purpose of pre-visualizing a video or animation. Basically we create a panel for each line or sentence of the script, and sketch out the best visual to represent what’s being said.

Here is where creativity is important. Clarity is always top priority, but a lot of people get stuck being too literal with their imagery. Think outside the box, and create a cohesive visual storyline that compliments the scripted voice over.

This is also a good time to get some visual guidelines in place. If it’s an animated product video, establish a color palette. If it’s a live-action video, select a location, actors and cinematic style.

Production Value

It’s important for you product demo video to have high production value, which essentially defines the professional quality of the video. Don’t skimp on production value. There’s nothing like an amateur video to tell your prospective customers right away that your company lacks legitimacy. The professionalism of a video is as important, if not more important, than the professionalism of the website it plays within. Video continues to spread your brands message even when it’s posed on external platforms, and embedded in other sites. So the look and feel of the video needs to represent your brand perfectly and independently. Aim for well designed & well composed visuals, and crisp clean audio and a soundtrack that captivates your audience.

So after your video is done and posted, we recommend working with your web developers to track the ROI (Return of Investment). Video marketing ROI exceeds results from text-based content – at a rate that has been accelerating greatly over the the past decade.

Make the most of your product video. Not only should the video live on your site, post to your social media accounts, use in social media marketing campaigns, send in email marketing, send to the press. And then, just sit back and enjoy the results.