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You Don't Need a Big Budget to Get Started With Video Content Just because your audience expects you to have videos doesn't mean they expect you to do a Star Wars sequel.

By Lesya Liu Edited by Dan Bova

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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Video marketing is bigger than ever -- this is an undeniable fact. In addition to traditional video content, live streams are very popular these days.

If you're still not employing video content in your marketing mix, you are seriously missing out on opportunities. Social media platforms give preferential treatment to native videos and customers increasingly prefer consuming information in this format over the written word.

While producing professional video content may seem overwhelming, it is much less daunting than it appears to be.

Related: Want to Create a Video Presence? Here's How to Write, Shoot and Market Your Content.

Creating video content.

So, how would a company with limited budget and staff go about staying on top of video marketing trends? Easily, if you ask me.

The videos don't have to be Hollywood quality and highly-rehearsed. Here are some tips on how to get started in the video marketing arena.
An entry level digital camera that produces a decent quality video can range from $80 to $200. Don't shy away from occasional smartphone videos for social media as well. As long as the subjects are well-lit and the speech is clear, you're golden. In fact, consumers prefer casual and relaxed videos to the staged ones.

The reason is authenticity and sincerity. Remember that "people want to do business with people and not brands." Consumers want to see the human side of the brand; and videos are a perfect way to lift up the curtain.

Related: How to Build a Great Visual Brand Through Video Content

To save time on scouring for ideas, you can repurpose your old and new content. Start by identifying your best-performing blog posts and record them in a video format. Look for similarities among your most engaging posts – are they "how-to" tutorials, industry analysis or behind-the-scenes moments? You can also create a few videos highlighting your product's benefits or compare it to the competition.

The length of the videos.

Don't stress over how long your videos are.

It is actually better to keep videos under five – better yet, under three – minutes in length. This forces you to focus on the important information and cut down the fluff. Besides, shorter videos have a better chance at retaining your viewers through the whole video before they're too bored or distracted.

Wistia analyzed millions of video views and discovered that 80 percent of people will finish a 30-second video; more than 50 percent of viewers will finish 5- to 10-minute video, and less than half will finish a video that's dragging on for more than ten minutes. So, as a general rule, shorter is better.

Related: How to Make Room for Video in Your Content Strategy

In case you have lots of insightful content to share, you could cut one 30-minutes recording into three 10-minutes video series to build anticipation and interest of your audience. As with any of your branded content, you decide on how to best shape and distribute it.

With all of the great abilities to create videos in a variety of apps, it is still best to record them with a camera or a smartphone through its native application. This way, you will have greater control over post-production effects, as well as, freedom to upload it to multiple networks natively.

So, here are a few video marketing tips you could act on immediately:

  • Go out and get a $100 camera, if you don't have one yet.

  • Identify your best-performing blog posts.

  • Rework that content to sound natural when spoken out loud.

  • Identify a few people who feel comfortable in front of a camera.

  • Create and experiment.

Once you're happy with the final result, upload it to all social media platforms you're on. Currently, all social networks encourage native videos through better organic reach. You will also have a rich content library on all of your channels.

Related: The 4 Essentials of Video Content Marketing Success

Share it on your website as well; YouTube videos embedded in blogs might improve your SEO. You might even want to embed a screenshot of it in your newsletters and see if that will boost engagement and traffic.

Don't stress out over producing lots of videos fast. Just get started, so you can begin seeing the initial benefits and results. By creating just two short videos a month, you will have lots of new exciting content. If you can, create more.

Finally, have fun with this and your existing and potential followers will definitely feel it and enjoy it with you!

Lesya Liu

Social Media Strategist at The Social Media Current

Lesya Liu helps entrepreneurs create a meaningful and profitable Instagram presence that feels right for their creative businesses. Born and raised in Ukraine, she is a social media strategist and a photographer. Her passion lies in combining art and marketing to create compelling storytelling, both visually and textually. Most days she roams the Interwebs, looking for fresh, inspirational ideas or testing things out on her own social channels.

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