Videos of any level of complexity can be effective for your business. And all will give you a shot at winning the BizClips: The Small Business Productivity Makeover Video Contest.
The point is to go for it. Try it out. You might win, and it will help your business get better at communicating with video.
Here are some tips for creating a short video like the one in this contest. We’d focus more on the storytelling, but we’ve included some technical tips, too.
Video Storytelling Tips
- Have a plan. For example:
- Introduce your business and your goals and needs;
- Describe the impact the products and SCORE coaching will have on realizing these goals; and
- Show heartfelt emotion—excitement about the future of your business, gratitude to the contest sponsors, pain of not having key products, etc.
- Or…come up with a unique presentation. Bring your company’s products, philosophy, or vision to life in your own way. A brainstorming session is a great way to generate crazy but winning ideas, so take a break and have some fun with it.
- Show us, don’t just tell us. You can say a lot about your business just by filming your video in the right place and showing parts of your business. Put your speaker in front of an attractive background or a setting that has meaning for your company.
- Share what’s special about your people. Share your character, your company values, and the unique personalities of your staff.
- Show emotion. Emotion helps viewers connect with you. Show humor, enthusiasm, passion—whatever. And smile. It’s true. If you’re having fun, your viewers will, too.
Technical Video Tips
- Use equipment that’s familiar to you or stretch with something new and cool. Options range from just using your phone to film; using your phone together with a video editing app (some are free!); or using a camera and editing software such as iMovie, Windows Media Maker (or Final Cut or Adobe Premiere).
- Be steady. Avoid a shaky image by holding your camera on something solid, like a table, wall, or tripod.
- Pay attention to “framing” the video, and to the details. Put your spokesperson in front of a background that has meaning for this contest pitch. Also, think about what your staff member could wear, hold or do as they talk to get your message across even better.
- Watch the lighting. Make sure the faces of your speakers are well lit, rather than filming with a bright light shining from behind.
- Pay attention to noise. Keep the area quiet so that distracting background noises don’t prevent us from hearing your message.
- Really Go Pro by topping it off with music and your logo. Music is key to building an emotional tie with your viewers—but make sure you are using music that’s royalty-free or self-created. And, even if your camera or audio work isn’t perfect, a logo at the beginning and end provides a solid anchor and will make your brand stick.
Remember the Contest Requirements!
- Make sure you own it (or have the right to use it). This goes for music, photos, logos, etc. Also, make sure everyone in your video agrees to be in it (you’ll need that in writing, if you win).
- Make your video the right length. Your video must be 30-60 seconds long.
- Check the contest rules here to be sure you meet all requirements.
MiniMatters Video + Marketing, a SCORE-advised business, provided us with these tips for making contest videos. For dozens of other video ideas, visit and subscribe to their Video Marketing Blog for weekly tips!