Video producer showing client project on tablet.

Projects come and go, but dreaming up the next great video for a good client can mean the difference between caviar and canned beans. While most clients will come to the table with an idea for their first video or (hopefully) two, it’s the job of the independent producer to educate clients on what kinds of videos are possible, which can add value to the client’s value proposition, and why having more videos is ultimately better.

This article won’t go too far into that last one, as video SEO is a pretty huge topic on it’s own. Perhaps next time we’ll cover it. In fact, we’re not going to talk about how to broach the subject of new videos. You know your clients better than we do, so use your best judgment for timing, approach and tact when bringing up the idea of them spending more money on you.

You know your clients better than we do, so use your best judgment for timing, approach and tact when bringing up the idea of them spending more money on you.

All we’re going to look at in this article are a few basic video ideas to pitch a business. Let’s make things simple and specify a little bit and say that it is for a doctor’s office with a large staff. In fact, we’ll go a step further and make it a doctor’s office specializing in elective procedures, such as a plastic surgery clinic, or a cosmetic dermatology office. While the example is specific, the ideas are not. With a bit of imagination, these ideas can apply to any business. To keep our options open, let’s say that they know they want to start making videos but don’t know where to start. This is an ideal situation and one that can turn into the best kind of clients: repeat ones.

Business Profile Video

This is a basic video, describing what they do for the purpose of marketing. Generally short, catchy and to the point, these are generally pretty simple to shoot, involving a talking head and some b-roll. Creative approaches are welcome here too, so don’t feel locked down to a format. Look at competing businesses and figure out how to blow their videos out of the water for your client.

Training Videos

There’s nothing quite like a large staff in a complex work environment. Training is expensive and time-consuming and usually takes an expert away from a necessary post for extended periods of time. Suggest that for each of the major training challenges they face they choose one or two Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) to act as on-camera trainers and create an internal series of videos. Training videos are excellent as staff can revisit them as often as needed without the embarrassment or inconvenience of asking a superior or co-worker to re-teach something.

Procedure Videos

In many cases, the easiest way to sell is to educate, and in the case of a clinic selling elective procedures education is everything. Many potential clients for the clinic could be out there with difficult questions about a sensitive procedure. It would be great for them to be able to answer their own questions before ever having to pick up a phone. Show off the doctors and their brilliance, understand the challenges of the business so the videos address them properly, show the beauty and cleanliness of the facility, broadcast their credentials, but do it all in the context of educating potential clients on what to look for in a clinic, and there’s little question which one they’ll call when the time comes to book a consultation.

Augment Website Copy with Contextual Videos

This one is fun and different, and will drive some video traffic. Don’t lose the written copy altogether, but augment it with video. To give an example, if you were hunting for a job with a clinic such as the one we’re servicing, it might be a bonus to hear a brief chat from a current employee about the culture, workload, drive for excellence, extra-curricular activities and general amazingness the staff experiences while working for your client. Even those who are looking to have a procedure done will be emboldened by the happiness and general excitement about the industry that current staff bring to work every day.

Testimonial Videos or Case Studies

Nothing helps push the decision meter in the right direction quite like hearing from other people who enjoyed their experience in dealing with a specific business. If a website doesn’t feature their own testimonials, potential clients will be forced to hunt for other sources to determine the reputation of a business. As most of us know, happy customers write nice things about companies every so often online, but unhappy customers write bad things about companies all the time. While it’s the job of the clinic to encourage (and encourage, and encourage) happy customers to sing their praises online, you can help the effort greatly by suggesting that their happiest customers take some time out of a day and step in front of a camera to discuss their joy in making the right decision.

There are thousands of ideas for video production, and these ones are some of the most obvious. How your business functions is up to you, and bigger production companies will likely think bigger and further down the road than most of these first ideas, but thinking beyond the one or two videos that are initially on the table between client and producer can be incredibly important. Think video series or talk about building a library. Build a large enough library, and by the time video number twenty is complete it’ll be time to go back and reshoot numbers 1 through 5.

Think long term, think relationship, and think success.

Russ Fairley
Russ Fairley is a producer, editor and motion graphic designer who enjoys writing for Videomaker. He has also written for About.com (Lifewire.com), RedShark News, Modern Drummer Magazine, and others.He is an Adobe Certified Expert, Adobe Community Leader, and co-founder of After Effects Toronto, Canada's largest motion graphic user group.Fairley is the creator and editor of ProductionWorld.net, a popular production news website.

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