Education PR - Public Relations for Edtech

Lights, Camera, Action – Preparing for Video Interviews

With Web-based social media platforms increasing their dominance as inexpensive marketing tools, it’s important for companies to consider adding more multimedia to their Web sites, existing social networks, and press materials.  Producing short, informative videos is an easy and inexpensive way to bolster your online content. Videos can provide viewers with simple, to-the-point explanations of your company, products and news announcements, while providing the opportunity for your news to be shared across the Web. Whether producing your own in-house videos, or agreeing to a journalist’s request for an on-camera conversation, it’s important to be ready to make the best impression, and to communicate your message effectively.

When preparing for an in-house video shoot, here are some tips to consider:

  • Know your target audience(s) and tailor your message to grab their attention.video_interview
  • Look directly at the camera and maintain eye contact, just as you would in a personal conversation.
  • Aim to complete your video in 45 seconds to two minutes. Your viewers are watching to receive information quickly, so stick to key points and keep your message clear, concise and simple.
  • If you’re using a prop, be sure it effectively demonstrates your product’s value.
  • Even though viewers may see the video after your news has been announced, speak in the present tense to emphasize its timeliness.
  • Avoid industry jargon and exaggerated adjectives – just describe the benefits of your product or service in plain language.
  • Be sure to include a call to action! Announce your Web address at the end of the video to give your viewers a place to go for more information.

Besides providing strong content for your video, you’ll want to make a positive visual impression on camera as well. Avoid wearing loud, busy clothing that distracts the viewer. Instead, stick to conventional business attire – blazers, blouses, slacks or knee-length skirts, for example – in solid colors that are consistently light or dark.

After some practice, start recording your in-house videos and post them to your company’s Web site, and create video channels on YouTube or Vimeo for posting as well. This allows you to share your videos through social media networks such as Twitter or Facebook, increasing your online presence with only a small amount of time and money.

In addition, it’s important your entire team be prepared for video interviews, not just your company spokesperson. Anyone who represents your company publicly, whether at a trade show or similar event, should be well-versed in your company’s latest news, and prepared to handle on-the-spot video opportunities.

When live interview opportunities present themselves, remember that not all the rules of an in-house video apply. Before a journalist starts recording, ask how long the video is intended to last, and mentally summarize the most important points you’ll want to cover during the interview. You’ll also want to focus on the interviewer instead of the camera when answering questions. And, since live interviews are conversational in nature, use that to your advantage and have your message heard in its entirety.

In the meantime, keep recording your own videos, and don’t be afraid to experiment with other tools like podcasting and video streaming. Start using the social media sphere to your advantage to stay sharp among your competition.