Why are video products important? Because they have a higher perceived value by your prospects and customers. You can charge more for videos than you typically can for ebooks, and they can be easier to sell because more people want to watch videos than read ebooks. If you want to capture both video lovers and readers, simply add PDF transcripts of your videos to your package.
Then if you choose, you can also re-purpose the video by stripping out the audio and selling that as a product, as well as packaging the transcriptions into an ebook or breaking them up into articles and blog posts. And if you're making a series of videos, you can even turn them into an entire course or membership site.
What kind of camera do you need?
You can go with an expensive model, but in the beginning I advocate saving your money and using a fairly decent camera that doesn't set you back several hundred dollars.
After all, what's truly important is the content of your videos, not that you have Hollywood quality film making (you're not going to achieve that level anyway!)
You can haunt your favorite office store and simply pick up an economical camera there. Or you can use the one built into your computer.
And by all means get the tripod – it'll pay for itself the first time you record yourself.
How do you choose your topic for your video product?
It's much the same as for any product – find out what your customers need and want and give them that and more. And to be sure you're on the right track, test it out. Maybe do a blog post or take a survey and see what kind of reaction you get. Even though video products are faster to make than written products, you still don't want to waste a day or two making a product no one buys.
How do you script your video?
There is a myth among those who have never made a video that all you need to do is pick a topic, turn on the camera and start talking. And if you're a polished speaker well versed on your topic, that might even be true. But for most of us, you need to have a game plan before you start recording.
Start with who you are and why they should listen to you on this topic. Are you an expert? Have you interviewed experts? Have you studied your topic? Whatever it is that makes you an authority, place it right up front at the beginning to build your listener's confidence in you.
Next, discuss the problem. Is your video on how to get traffic? Then the problem fairly obvious – no traffic = no sales. Is your product on skincare? Talk about the trials and tribulations (which are very real) of having bad skin.
Let them know that you are a lot like them. You had the same problem and you went through some tough times before you solved the problem.
Then after much expense / trial and error / embarrassment / time / etc. you discovered the solution. You're telling your story of problem, hardship and finally solution.
Next you cover what the solution has done for you and how your life/business has improved since discovering the solution. And you paint a picture of what their life and or business will be like once they implement your solution. This is where you pile on the greatest benefits your solution will give your viewer. Make them FEEL the benefits, get them pumped up and excited, and most of all get them happy they're watching your video and eager to know what you're about to teach.
If this is sounding something like a mini-sales letter, it is. In the beginning of your video you are reassuring your
viewer that they made an excellent decision buying your product by shining a light on their pain and being the expert with the solution.
You might also briefly cover the old ways of dealing with the problem, versus the new way they're about to learn. For example, the old way of dealing with acne was x, y and z. But now we know better. In fact the latest scientific research shows us that those solutions were about as effective as chanting naked under a full moon compared with your new solution.
No one likes to be associated with the "old way," and so this simply reinforces the fact that they scored a home run when they got your product.
Finally, you're going to get into the meat of the product.
All you've done up to this point is set them up to get your
solution, now you're going to provide it, step by step.
Don't be afraid to give them detail, and to tell them not
just 'how' to do something, but also 'why' they should do
it that way. Remember, you are the expert, so by all means be forthcoming with your expertise.
Before you wrap up the video, you've got one more thing to do – tell them what to do next. Tell them to take the information they've just gained and put it to work. And most of all, give them the first step. If you've just given them a boatload of info, they may be overwhelmed into doing nothing. That's why you want to put them on the road to success by reminding them of that first step, and telling them to do it right now while it's still fresh on their minds.
What software do you need?
You'll need some kind of software for creating your finished video product, and the good news is that it's free. If you've got a PC you probably already have a copy of Movie Maker, and if you don't you can download it off of the Internet. If you have a Mac, then you'll be using
iMovie. Of course you can also purchase professional software such as Adobe. But in the beginning, there's really no need since the software you already have on your laptop is probably more than you'll need.
How about editing tips?
First, keep it simple. Sure there are all kinds of fancy tricks you can use in your videos, but to look truly professional you want to keep it simple.
The easiest way of all to edit your video is to hire someone to do it for you. You might use a Fiverr person for this, or someone at Freelancer.com or one of those freelancer websites. Tell them you want a title slide at the beginning, a smooth transition into the video of you speaking, and most of all edit out any and all gaps. You know what I mean – the time you dropped your notes, you lost your train of thought, or when the UPS man knocked on your door.
If you're doing your own editing, then you already know what to do. Remove pauses, gaps and mistakes. Edit out that rough start or end where you were fumbling with the camera.
Did you do the video in segments? Rather than cutting straight from one segment to another, do a cross fade for a smoother transition.
Add front and back title slides to your video. The title slide has the title of the video with your name on it. You might also include what's in the video on that slide or a second slide. The back slide is either the same as the title slide, or it has the addition of your website URL. This little step goes a long way towards making your video look truly professional.
NOTE: If at any time any of this sounds out of your
league, you can either read the software instructions,
Google it, or simply get someone else to do it. The main
thing here is that you NOT get hung up on the technical
stuff. This is minor at best, and definitely not something that should prevent you from making your own video product. Too many people are afraid to try something new because they don't know how to do the technical aspect of it. So what. Get someone else to handle that stuff for you and just DO it. :-)
One more thing – if you're hoping to get your video just perfect, or even close to perfect, I've got news – it will never happen. Ever. You're going to stumble on your words. You're going to get a silly look on your face as you try to remember what you were about to say. You're going to look slightly nervous, or giddy, or whatever. There is no such thing as perfection, so don't even try to attain it - you'll go nuts if you do.
I know a guy who recorded the same 20 minute video 11 times trying to get it just perfect. Know what his best take was? The second one. The next nine were a complete waste of time and a source of tremendous frustration. And just so you know – the second video was only barely
better than the first. Had he simply recorded the video once and stopped like a sane person, he, the video and his viewers would have all been just fine. As it was he didn't record another video product for months because he dreaded going through the same ordeal again.
And by the way – people like people who are human. If you did achieve perfection, you and your video would feel too sterile, like you were some kind of machine. Think about it – what happens when you hear someone stumble on a word in an instructional video? Personally, I think they're more likable and I begin rooting for them.
One thing you should avoid, however, is those little filler noises that add nothing to content and serve only to distract. You know the noises I mean - “Um, errr, ahh” and so forth. If you're thinking it's better to make one of those sounds than to offer a second or two of silence, I beg to differ. And I mean beg. I BEG you to not make those sounds. I once sat through a twenty minute speech in which I heard 281 umms, errrs and ahhhs. Yes, I
counted them. It was the longest 20 minutes of my entire life. The culprit? A local elected official who was (thankfully) kicked out of office by a landslide majority vote prior to the expiration of her first term.
Was she thrown out of office because of her umm's, err's and ahh's? I know it didn't help her, that's for certain.
How do you get the video(s) onto a DVD?
Easy. Go to http://Kunaki.com
I could end here and you would have all the info you need to create your DVD's and send them out; Kunaki is that simple. Kunaki takes your file that you upload and turns it into a professional DVD inside a case, complete with label on the disk, a full color cover on the case with barcode, all shrink wrapped and ready to be shipped. Oh yes, and they'll also ship it to your customers for you.
The total cost? It depends on how many you order – figure about $5. So if you're charging $47 for your DVD, you're clearing over $40. Charge $97 and... well, you get the idea.
NOTE: Do you know one of the greatest benefits of having a physical product? Lower refunds. If you take identical products and make one physical and one an electronic download, the physical product will - 9 times out of 10 – have a lower refund rate because people are lazy. They don't want to hassle with sending the DVD back to get the refund. Also, serial refunders are less likely to order in the first place because they know they'll have to return the DVD to qualify for the refund.
You choose the cover art for your product. And you can order in bulk if you prefer to do your own shipping or sell them at seminars.
One caveat about Kunaki – You need a PC to initially use
Kunaki. This is taken from the Kunaki website:
You can design your artwork on a Mac and you can create your original CD or DVD on the Mac.
Then, borrow a PC for a few hours and use our software to configure your product, select your art work and contents. The software will upload your product to our facility.
Thereafter, you can use your Mac browser to order and manage your products at your account on the Kunaki web site.
So what should you do next?
Create your first video product. If you've already got a video camera, or a phone with a decent video camera inside of it, then use that. Decide what your product is about and Then. Just. Do. It.
Submit it to Kunaki and get your free demo copy. It's
kinda cool (okay, it's a blast!) getting your hands on your first real, tangible product.
And don't get tremendously hung up about the quality of this first product. That's not as important as GETTING YOUR FIRST VIDEO PRODUCT CREATED.
Ask yourself right now – what's your topic going to be? I'll bet there is a product that's been brewing in the back of your head for some time now, a product that you intend to create “once you have the time.” By creating your product in video instead of writing it, you now have the time.
And once you see for yourself how easy this entire process is, I think you're going to want to do it again. And again. And again.
Have fun and enjoy!