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Christmas is only 25 sleeps away. So what can small business owners do to make their brand stand out against big budget companies in terms of creating a Christmas themed video. Let's face it, it is doubtful that small businesses will have big marketing budgets to make a professional video to compete with the likes of John Lewis or Sainsburys.
But there is a way. You honestly don't need to be Steven Spielberg to make a good quality ad. In the news this week a homemade video costing about £50 has gone viral. We stand back and applaud the under dog. The video works why? Well because it does what every other Christmas video does, it tugs at heart strings. And there's not even a puppy or penguin in sight.
Here’s how to make a video
It’s actually pretty easy to put together a video, if you know what you are doing. Here are 8 steps to help you get started.
1. To make a video all you need is a video camera, the one on your phone will do just fine.
2. Add a little sprinkle of Christmas creativity and come up with a storyline or script.
3. Use props or set up a scene in your home, office or store and start shooting the footage. As it’s for Christmas be sure to feature a tree or something related to this time of year.
4. Put your masterpiece together using online video software. You can get cheap online subscriptions to a host of video editing software. Add a little patience and you can learn how to use it in no time.
5. Apply festive music or overlay text with word copy. Use seasonal colours interspersed with your usual brand colours, making it recognisable but festive.
6. Post your video on YouTube under your companies brand name. And embed it onto your website for everyone to see.
7. Share it with your followers, your customers and across your social media platforms. Ask your employees to share it to their connections, friends and family.
8. Sit back and watch as everyone enjoys your companies taste of Christmas. Be sure to engage with your followers and don’t be afraid to get feedback from your customers.
Topics to consider
You can use any theme or topic to create your video. First do some research and watch other well known Christmas ads to get some ideas of what you can create. If you can’t think of any here are some suggestions.
Social theme - your video doesn't need to be serious. Some of the best videos engage humour. Embrace a fun topic or message to entertain your audience. If you have some money you could hire someone to create some graphics or apply animation.
Workplace theme - Get your work colleagues and staff involved in creating an office or store scene. If others are featured in the video then they are more likely to share it. E.g. Get your staff round a Christmas tree to sing a carol wearing Christmas hats or a jumper. Might seem a bit naff but it’s Christmas and a great time to get away with being a bit cheesy.
Branded theme - put together a video displaying your products and services. You most likely will have a bank of imagery that you already use in your content so you might be able to use these. A video can also contain static shots, it doesn’t need to be compiled just using actual footage.
Giving theme - make a video for charity. Form a relationship with a local charity and give any proceeds you make from the video to them. This is a great way to make money for a good cause. Giving to charity at Christmas in terms of money, presents, clothes or blankets is good for business and also a special thing to do to help others.
Time limit of 2 minutes
All you need is a 2 minute video, any longer than that and your audience may get bored. But be warned even though 2 minutes may seem short, you will need to gather quite a bit of material to reach your finished video. This time frame will give you plenty of scope to create your theme. Remember you are making a video for your business not a feature length production.
With any social media content the aim is to get your post to be seen by as many people as possible and let’s be honest to go viral. Christmas content can still be classed as evergreen, I.e. can be shared overtime, even though only at Christmas. Think about festive songs, they get produced for Christmas and then get replayed over and over again during each festive period. Mariah Carey's All I want for Christmas makes it into the charts practically ever year. That is what you are aiming for, a festive video that can be reused, replayed and enjoyed each year.
Simple but highly effective
It is really that simple. And could mean the difference between your business participating in the festive fun or just feeling left out in the cold. If you found this post helpful then invite us to like and share your video. And lastly it may not be December just yet, but Merry Christmas.
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