How to Use Video Marketing Badly – Observations from Someone who Watches

Bad Video MarketingI am the type of person who is attracted to video marketing.  I hope to start using it myself soon once I lose a little weight.   Excuse #1. However, it’s a great way to market, in my opinion, especially for how to videos.  The problem is…many people do it badly.

I was recently searching out video tutorials for a project I was working on.  The first video had music in the background and the guy doing it was moving his pointer around the screen .  We were supposed to actually see what he was doing.  Right!  It was annoying and frustrating because you couldn’t see the steps and there was no audio or even text as an explanation.  If you have the urge to do this sort of video, go stick your head in the toilet and flush it first.  I say this because a video how to without an audio or text explanation is a total waste of time.   There were comments under the video on Youtube.  “Try using sound!”  “This video sucks!”

Just a side note:  I’ve found video tutorials on Youtube done by 8 year old kids that provided more value and instruction than those produced by certain adults.

Since the video with the musical interlude proved to be useless, I found another one on the same topic. It had audio and was much easier to follow. The problem this time was that the guy was hacking and coughing all the way through it.  He kept saying “excuse me,” but you wanted to find a way to hand him a cough drop through the youtube screen.  Have a nice drink of water and refrain from smoking before you shoot your video.  Otherwise, do a take two!

Here is another video failure, in my opinion:  I was watching a video on how to set up a particular type of microphone.  I do plan to start recording how to’s once I find a way to get my noisy roommate to either go to work or stop playing music all day.  Sorry, had to rant.  Excuse #2.  Anyway, the audio on the video was awful. This was funny considering it was about how to produce great sound.  He was ripping the box open and making all sorts of banging sounds.  Apparently he didn’t know there was such a thing as an editing program.

Other video faux pas include:

Using up the first half of the video yapping about nothing important before you get to the real content. 

This happens on tele-seminars and podcasts as well.  Recently, I signed up to listen to a tele-seminar summit run by a group of women. I spent almost an hour listening to one of the women tell stories about herself  with no content of value what so ever.   I started drifting to Facebook, checked my email, and eventually clicked off.  In any type of media,(video-tele-seminars or podcasting) you have offer  compelling content in the first 15-30 seconds or NEXT!

Bad sound in general  

Use a decent microphone.  Computer microphones simply don’t cut it. I’ve spent 30 years as a voice over actor.  One of the things I’ve done is replace audio on film projects.  It’s called ADR – Automated Dialogue Replacement.  Sometimes a scene is shot and a plane flies overhead, the extras have no energy, an actor has a thick accent, or the performance needs to be enhanced.  The same goes with online videos.  If the sound isn’t perfect, you can always dub over it using a free program like Audacity.  If you have a terrible speaking voice, get someone to do it for you.  That’s what voice over actors are for.  You may find a newbie who wants to break into the business who will work for free.

Bad sound is also caused by clothing that ruffles or jingling jewelry that hits the microphone.  Wear a soft fabric that doesn’t make a scratchy or noisy sounds.  Forget leather. Don’t wear big earrings or long necklaces.  A pop filter is also very helpful if you go hard on p’s and b’s.

Lip Smackers  

I can’t stand it.  It drives me up the wall.  There are people out there who offer fabulous content using media, but I simply can’t listen to them because I know they’re going to smack.  Apparently I have this condition called Misophonia.  (I’m glad someone finally found a name for it) The truth is: You will lose part of your audience from having a dry mouth.  If you’re getting smacky, take a break, have some water, and then resume your recording.

Shaky cam

I live with a retired camera operator. He’s the one who is home all day playing music.  Even though it’s en Vogue to shake the camera as they do in The Office, it’s not very easy to watch without Dramamine.  A good tripod is your friend.

Bad lighting

Want to look 100?  Unless you have light strategically placed, you will end up looking like a ghoul. Of course, this is particularly important if you are over 20.

Wrong Aspect Ratio

Once your video is made and it is embedded on your website, make sure the aspect ratio is correct or the picture will look stretched or smushed.  The player size can be adjusted using the perimeters in the embed code. (width and height) This is especially true for self-hosted videos as Youtube, Vimeo, etc., will generate the correct embed code.

Woo Hoo!  I’ve found some definite subjects to make how to video’s about.  Now I just have to quit making excuses and go to work!

Do you have any badly made media stories or tips to add? Please leave a comment.

Rebecca Forstadt-Olkowski
I'm Rebecca Olkowski and I'm a fun loving entrepreneur, voice over actor and Baby Boomer (but I'm very young at heart and have the voice of an 8 year old) .  I love great food, travel, wine tasting and playing with my two puppy dogs.  A few years ago I discovered I enjoyed blogging and found my inner geek.  I turned it into a business.  I love to help other Baby Boomers and entrepreneurs build businesses and make money online. Please feel free to tweet and share!
Rebecca Forstadt-Olkowski