Don’t Make These Rookie Online Video Mistakes!

It isn’t always what someone tells you to do that is most important- sometimes it’s what we tell you NOT to do that can make or break your online video strategy!

Here are four tips NOT TO DO that will keep you from looking like a Rookie in the online video world- yet still get your message out there in an efficient manner:

1. Don’t post videos longer than about 2 minutes- PLEASE!

It can certainly be tempting to make your videos completely comprehensive- after all, there are no time restrictions online. But remember, the AVERAGE YouTube video right now is Two Minutes- that means many are shorter, too! The current trend is for people to tell you that thirty seconds is ideal- I guess that depends on what you have to say, and how well the audience knows what you are talking about. Think about this in terms of radio and TV advertising: on radio you need more time to set a picture and tell a story, so your INITIAL ads can be sixty-seconds of sound, and emotion; on TV you get the added benefit of sight, motion and color, so you can do more in thirty-seconds or even less for a well-established brand. If you have more to say, break your productions into chapters… that will also give you more unique content to post – and that’s a good thing! Think about it- how long do YOU sit in front of a video on your computer? Be Kind- your audience will appreciate it!

2. Don’t wait until it is PERFECT before you post

Is your competition already online? Are you falling behind because you can’t afford broadcast spots? Is your message URGENT? These are important questions to ask before you produce your videos,, but also before you release them. Remember, there are a lot MORE cheesy videos from cell-phone cameras up there than high-quality productions. Some people even feel like less polished is better- more real and authentic. I’m not saying you HAVE to hire a production company to make your videos (though I would love the business!) only that you DON”T have to be PERFECT, just well- done.

3. Don’t PLAN on your video “going viral”

We’ve all heard about “going viral” right? That is the ultimate compliment, bu tit rarely happens by design – unless you have several talented cats at home! Stay focused on your message, practice before you shot and give your audience a message you can be proud of, and that will resonate with your intended targets. Are your really talking to cat-lovers on cellphones? Probably not!

4. Don’t post a tired old TV spot just to make a post

Why are you not running your TV spot anymore- on TV? There must be a reason- old, tired, inaccurate, need a new message? Then WHY would you run it online? People are looking for VALUE online- not just rehashed TV spots- we already KNOW what you said on TV- give us something new, or of more value! It just doesn’t cost all that much to make fresh engaging content for the web…

Sure, the web is like the wild west as far as video goes- and there are a lot of people doing a fine job- but more and more are doing a crappy job just to get video posted. Pay attention to these ideas, and you will look more like a veteran online marketer with every post you make (sorry Sting!)


Thanks to Neil Perry of Poptent, for an article with similar concerns, that helped generate this list. I am sure he likes the shout-out!

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