Compelling product demo videos are powerful sales tools. They’re informative, educational, and memorable. But most of all, they help you make sales and close deals. A great demo video shares the value of your offering, shows how it solves a problem, and convinces viewers why they cannot live without it.
At TechSmith, we’ve made a lot of demo videos and helped a lot of people make their own. We have a bit of experience in the biz.
In this post, I am going to share some criteria to help you decide how to make your demo video and offer a strategy for crafting one that gets your message across.
Who will make it?
The first thing to consider when you approach a demo video is who will make it. There are essentially two choices:
- Hire a company
- Produce the video in-house
Let’s tackle the first option. Hiring a company to create your demo video can be a great route. There is no shortage of talented, professional companies that will create top-notch videos for you. They’ll usually take care of almost all the work, from creative concepting to scripting and production. You’ll get a high-quality final product that you can host wherever you like and share with customers.
Of course, they will charge a premium for the work. The average explainer video can cost as much as $7,972.
Now, if that price seems a little gaudy to you, you’re not alone. Cost is just one of many reasons companies choose to produce their own product demo videos. Not only is the per-video cost less, but you can personalize demos to your customers.
A video you (or someone at your organization) creates is far easier to update. And, over time, creating your own videos can turn into a sophisticated video marketing strategy. It’s just about taking the leap and making your first (and second, and third) demo video.
Think you’re ready? I’m confident you are. Here are some ways to get started making your own demo videos.
Think solutions, not features
Improve your demo video by focusing on solutions rather than specific features.
I’m sure your product is filled with great features and functionality that all your customers love. It’s tempting to focus on those in your video. I’m here to tell you that you can’t focus on all of them.
For one, there are probably too many to fit in a single video.
Second, they’re features that people love once they know what makes your product so valuable.
And, third, features usually have terminology and jargon that don’t necessarily speak to the problems or pain points the viewer has.
Think of it like this: features only matter if they solve a problem for your customer.
Instead of laying out features to show, think solutions.
Why does someone want to use your product? What task are they trying to complete or problem are they trying to solve? This is the key to creating an effective product demonstration. People will listen and invest in your video when they realize you are speaking to their experiences or answering a question, not just showing off a feature set.
Consider the buyer’s journey
Of course, people might use your software for different purposes. Or, someone might already know the general solution but need a demonstration with more details. This is another reason producing your own product demo is a great choice.
Knowing your audience is key to creating a successful demo. Sales reps may need to see a completely different type of video than end users or decision makers.
You can target different videos at buyers who are at varying points in their journey or interested in different aspects of your solution.
Your first demo video will likely be for viewers who are earlier in their journey.
A good starting point is the Consideration phase. This is where they are aware that solutions are available or what your product is, but aren’t ready to buy yet. Your demo video for these potential customers should be more general. Focus on the broad solution your product offers and how it achieves those goals.
Tell a story in this video. Relate to what has brought a potential buyer to this point, speak directly to their experience, and emphasize the outcomes that your product offers.
After you finish and share your first demo, you can start thinking about a second (and third, and fourth) one. These can speak more specifically to particular buyers, segments, industries, or problems. Buyers at this stage are Product Aware, and likely know of your product along with competitors.
Here you can focus on the particular features that set your offering apart and spend more time demonstrating exactly how your product is used. Buyers at this point must be convinced why your product is the best one on the market.
Making the demo video
At this point you’re probably amped to start making your demo video(s). Allow me to offer some great starting points.
Learn a Video Editing Software – It sounds intimidating, but I am confident in saying anyone can learn to make great demo videos. Naturally, I am partial to Camtasia, which has a low learning curve (and low price tag as well), but feel free to choose whatever you are most comfortable with. Remember that if your product is software or technology, you will likely need screen recording capabilities.
Use Music and Graphics – TechSmith Assets is a tremendous library of graphic and audio resources that you can use in your demo videos. Customize the intros and outros to your company, which allows you to easily create videos with the same look and feel, or use music to set the tone.
Gather Feedback and Perfect Your Video – Demo videos often require input from people throughout a company. Instead of sending a video or link to your product manager, marketing manager, and sales director, try TechSmith Video Review. Invite stakeholders to a review and collect all their feedback in one central location.
For many companies, starting a product demo video strategy sounds overwhelming. They wonder who will produce and maintain the videos, how they’ll be shared with customers, and, simply, where to start. If you started this post with similar concerns or questions, hopefully I’ve been able to answer them and give you a good starting point.
And when you’re ready for more instruction on how to create videos, I highly recommend checking out TechSmith Academy, a brand new (free!) way to learn the basics of video and much more. Between TechSmith Academy, Camtasia, our Camtasia Tutorial series, and the new Video Review service, you’ll be able to create your own product demo videos in no time! If you have any other questions, please leave them in the comments- we’d love to hear from you.