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Why Every Startup Needs a Team Video (and How to Create a Great One)

A team video can drive culture, branding and revenue by showcasing your team to both employees and customers.

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Consumers and employees are really one and the same -- just people in different contexts. And consumers and employees alike tend to engage more strongly with video content than they do any other media.

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In fact, according to molecular biologist John Medina, if humans hear a piece of information, they'll remember 10 percent of it three days later, but if they hear information and see an image, they'll remember 65 percent of the information. The reason: Video engages more senses and helps humans process information, regardless of the perspective from which they view it.

This is important because, during the decision phase of buying, potential customers often watch videos to see whether a is the right fit. Potential employees do the same thing. According to research from Jobvite, 59 percent of job-seekers visit companies'  pages to assess their before committing to an offer.

Delta Air Lines spoke to both kinds of audiences recently when it held a 54-hour Facebook Live marathon to thank each one of its 80,000 employees for their work with guest appearances from celebrities and leaders. This live-streamed event helped Delta capture the attention of two birds with one video: Employees felt recognized for their efforts; and current, and potential customers and employees, could see how well the company treats its huge workforce, and by extension, its customer base.

Smaller startups should think about this: They can emulate Delta and attract better talent -- and more clients -- by highlighting their own culture, benefits and teams, using video content.

Team videos can strengthen and showcase your startup's culture.

If you have a young company, video content can help you boost revenue, increase employee morale and develop multipurpose materials.

Just recognize that before prospects can commit to your company -- or any other -- as clients or employees -- they'll first want to confirm that they share your brand’s values. Team videos provide the fuel that for those still on the fence to take that leap of faith; videos do this by bringing into clear focus the faces of the people behind the product -- maybe even the faces of their future co-workers. 

Related: What Happened to the Human Side of Your Recruiting?

The morale boost is the most obvious benefit of producing a team video. Planning for the shoot builds camaraderie and excitement. People with great ideas get to see their proposals in motion. After the video is finished, tying it back to the company culture and values is easy, reinforcing and instilling a sense of pride in those who participated.

As is usually the case, creativity blooms best within boundaries. Our marketing team gave us 30 days to create a new team video from scratch, which forced us to get the whole company involved and find ways to collaborate. After making the video, we realized that the team-building benefits of production were just as useful as the footage we created. Moreover, that footage could be repurposed to recruit more amazing team members, in a virtuous cycle (or recycle, as it were) of content.

Shooting an effective team video

According to Animoto, millennials -- now the generation with the most purchasing power and the most workers in the world -- love video content: 70 percent of them have said in surveys that they watch company videos while shopping online. So, it naturally follows that they're likely checking out those same videos while they're on a job hunt.

This is one reason we turned our own team video into a 15-second commercial that we ran on Facebook a few years ago. Short, cheeky and eye-catching, it provided strong opportunities for engagement without requiring us to reshoot new content.

Want to follow our example? Use these tips to create a video that gets both your employees and customers talking.

1. Involve the whole team. Bring the team together during every step, from planning to filming to post-production. The more time that people spend together during the creative process, the stronger their bonds will grow. Encourage workers in different departments to consider different uses for the content.

Vistaprint created a great, authentic team video using an interview-style approach. Team members talked about why they liked working there and recalled favorite memories. The format was simple but effective; it generated good vibes within the team and positive buzz for the brand.

Related: 5 Low-Cost Ways to Get Started With Video Marketing

2. Plan for maximizing the content. When we made our first team video, our company was only seven people strong. We wanted to put together a narrative, but realized that a complete story would make it difficult to add more people as we grew. Instead, we took a more granular approach that allowed us to add new people as they joined. From the original team video to the newer version, our planning paid off.

In the early stages, think about potential uses for your video. Solicit feedback from team members to get their perspectives. Some brands keep their team videos internal -- this makes sense considering that 60 percent of millennials prefer video to a traditional company newsletter, according to the previously referenced Animoto study. Others use theirs as engagement collateral on social media. Be sure to make this decision before shooting -- it’s easier to get it right the first time than to make big changes later.

3. Distribute the video deliberately. Decide whether the video is for customers, employees or both; then make it highly accessible to the right audience. Include it on your website, on your blog and on your social media pages. Boosterthon has its team video right on its home page, making a great first impression on both buyers and prospective employees.

Recruiters and other people who talk to job candidates can even include a link to the video in their email signatures to ensure that every prospect sees what the company is all about.

Related: 7 Mistakes That Could Turn Your Corporate Video Into a Corporate Disaster

4. Consider alternative audiences. Employees and customers aren’t the only ones watching. We’ve seen companies use their team videos to raise money, both through institutional fund-raising and crowdfunding. Ideas and products get investors’ attention, but strong team videos can be the key to turning 50/50 shots into actual capital.

Highlighting your company culture and its high-level talent in your team video serves to impress and inspire several audiences at once. Take a cue from Snapchat, which combines fact delivery with a culture showcase to appeal to a wide range of investors, consumers and employees.

The best team videos are those made by, about and for great teams. Don’t follow a template and produce something ordinary or mediocre in a single day. Use these strategies and crowdsource compelling and unique ideas from your team to create a video that helps your company grow on many levels and from -- to borrow a bit of terminology from video-making -- many angles.

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