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It’s almost impossible to avoid video content these days. Social media platforms, such as TikTok and Instagram, rely heavily on short videos. Facebook even allows users to use videos for their profile pictures. Online news outlets are also increasingly focusing on creating video stories.
And it’s not just online. You can’t walk away from offline video either. Video billboards began to replace more static versions. When I walked into Whole Foods last week, the electric charging station was playing a well-positioned video ad.
Everything is video, all the time.
86% of businesses use video to drive everything from lead generation to brand visibility, according to the latest Wyzowl State of Video Marketing report. The pandemic has helped push video even further into the spotlight, encouraging nearly three-quarters of video-savvy marketers to incorporate video into their strategies.
In other words, now is the time to harness the power of video to connect with audiences, capture attention, share messages, and educate potential business customers.
However, it is not enough to get into video production; you need to start with a well-constructed schedule and strategy.
Risks of creating a video without a timeline
Every video project or campaign needs a timeline. It’s essential for keeping your team focused on the ultimate goal, and it helps team members know how to execute your vision.
Without a defined deadline, you risk falling into traps. Management stakeholders may assume that your video content will be completed ahead of schedule, leading to friction between departments and individual employees.
Another pitfall of not starting with a timeline is that mid-project deadlines might not be taken seriously. Will your script be finished on the scheduled shooting day? Not if you haven’t identified touchpoints during the initial planning process. You will be left at the mercy of everyone’s ideas of what needs to be done and when.
A final stumbling block concerns time-sensitive content. Want your video to promote a B2B service your sales team is planning to highlight in Q2? If your video ends up not being ready until Q3, you’ve wasted everyone’s energy and company resources. This is not good planning or good optics.
All that to say: video is powerful, but it takes planning. Here are four tips to help you create a strategic and effective video schedule.
How to Create Your B2B Video Production Timeline
1. Allow time for feedback
Throughout the video production process, you’ll want to get feedback from key players. For example, you might want your boss to sign a storyboard. Similarly, you might need a script to loop through multiple layers of deciders.
Include time for feedback in all your plans. If you don’t, your end date could be shifted days, weeks, or even months, depending on the scope and complexity of your video.
How much time should you devote to feedback? It depends on the deliverable and the accessibility of the stakeholders. To design an achievable timeline that won’t seem overly ambitious, you can ask a stakeholder for a realistic expectation for feedback.
2. Schedule revisions
It is a fact of video production that revisions will be necessary. Scripts need to be modified. The actors drop out at the last minute, and replacements have to be found. Your development team unveils a new product, and you’re forced to shift gears. Everything can happen.
While you can’t anticipate every possible problem, you can flesh out your schedule to give yourself and your team some breathing room. It makes everyone less nervous about accomplishing pressing goals. Plus, it lets you release your final video earlier than scheduled if nothing gets in the way of your progress.
3. Underestimate what can be done on each shooting day
Shoots are notorious for taking longer than you think. Never assume that it will only take an hour to get shots for your video. If you’re filming in front of multiple backgrounds, swapping talent, or capturing additional content like stills, a day or two might not even be enough.
Don’t put too much pressure on your team to perform superhuman feats and don’t dwell too much on your day on set. You can always wrap up early if you find you need less time. It’s much harder to add days to a shoot than to shoot something ahead of schedule, even if all your talent is in-house.
4. Include your go-live dates in your timeline
Add the release date of your video to your schedule. You can be as specific as you want, including the dates and times you’ll post to YouTube or when your video will play on OTT or broadcast channels. Once the content is live, you can then begin the data tracking stage to chart the performance of your content.
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Video is not just for B2C marketing. It’s also extremely valuable in the B2B world. Even if your competitors aren’t using it yet, they will start using it at some point.
Until then, you can get started and gain a competitive edge with videos that fill your pipeline, build your brand reputation, and get your business noticed. All you need is a vision and a realistic timeline to make it happen.
More resources on B2B video production
How to Create Product Videos That Actually Drive Sales (Article 1 of 3)
Five Reasons B2B Marketers Who Don’t “Do Video” Are Being Left Behind
11 questions to ask before creating a marketing video [Infographic]