Anyone who sells complex products or services benefits from a demo video. It explains in barely one minute what your product or service can mean for the customer or prospect.
Demo videos are an extremely powerful marketing tool, provided they aim straight for the heart of the customer. They are the opposite of a sales pitch, which can be adjusted at a moment's notice according to the spirit of the sales pitch. If the prospect tends to the left, the seller steers the talk to the left. If the solution appears to be to the right, the seller changes the stern to the right. Until a 100% match is found.
You can't use marketing language in videos. First, you have just one minute to get your story across. That isn't much when you know that the average sales story lasts an hour. Second, you must first choose precisely which marketing message you're going to use, or on which marketing need or what problem you're going to aim. Third, you need to talk experience language, as viewers of your video will have disappeared after a few seconds if your message is soporific.
When designing the Husky demo video we started working with these challenges weeks ago. The choice of the marketing message in the video was perhaps the easiest choice. We know that marketing departments in companies struggle with a multitude of Excel, Word or PowerPoint documents with marketing data, that marketers are looking for digital tools to work faster and more efficiently and the communication between colleagues or management does not always go smoothly. Three messages that all fit under the umbrella 'Optimize your marketing organization'.
Packaging and translating this story in one minute, and then also doing it in a compelling and entertaining way: that was a much harder task. For this, we needed help from professionals. And we found them quite a long way from home. After an extensive Google search process and a stack of recommendations from befriended entrepreneurs and marketers, Grumo Media from Vancouver (Canada), with a branch office in Philadelphia (USA), caught our eye. Their videos convinced us on both of the above criteria: they told an often complex story in a clear and straightforward way, and they integrated humor in their videos so that you had no problem watching the whole demo video.
One Skype meeting later, the decision was final, and we got to work. I'll briefly outline the successive steps of the production process.
The first step was a briefing meeting to outline the story about Husky (the 3 customer problems and how Husky offers an answer to them) for the art director. A few days later he came back with a script that consisted of just 14 lines (see opposite). That script was immediately in the right direction, thanks to our good preparatory work in advance and the strict choices we had made around the product story.
The second step was the development of a storyboard that had to visualize the 14 lines above in imagery. Here we relied completely on the skill and experience of the Grumo specialists. She proposed a story in cartoon language, built around the figure of a female marketing manager. After about two weeks and some back-and-forth emailing, the storyboard was ready in a PowerPoint document.
The third step was to determine the final look and feel of the storyboard. Were we going for pure and simple black and white? And how would we bring our own logo (the logo with the Husky head) to life? Opposite you can see the style exercise.
The fourth step was to determine the voice-over style. Was a male voice better than a female one? A bold American one more logical than a neat English one? And at what moments did the voice-over have to place the necessary accents?
In these four steps, good cooperation between the client and the video producer is crucial. The first must make strict choices in advance, and clarify the content of the project. The second must have the talent to translate the briefing into a strong visual and auditory production.
Two weeks later the Grumo people presented the Husky video, taking into account all the above decisions and processes.