The Art Of The 'How-To' Video: How To Get It Right
How-to videos are arguably the most popular form of video we see as we scroll through our social feeds or through search engine results pages. Why? Because audiences react so well to them and they can be designed to suit a specific niche and answer specific queries that people may have.
Whether your audience are looking to follow a recipe, learn how to use a piece of software, or build a piece of furniture, how-to videos go further in explaining something than text alone ever can.
Zidivo are here to explain how to get a how-to video right including the purpose, key aspects and what you will need.
What’s the purpose of a ‘how-to’ video?
There are a few main reasons why how-to videos can be hugely valuable for brands to create and offer their audience online. Firstly, it allows you to show your audience what you know. By creating ‘how-to’ videos on a range of specific topics within your niche, you can basically flex your team’s skills and expertise and establish your brand as an industry leader and expert in your industry over time.
Secondly and on a more simple level, how-to vidoes are entertaining - people love watching them and learning new things without having to read chunks of text. Because of how responsive and engaging they are by nature, you can grab the attention of your audience and keep it, benefitting your brands engagement levels on socials and/or your website traffic.
Last but not least, how-to videos and informational videos in general are a valuable way to boost your brand's visibility online. By targeting common informational topics and queries, you can generate brand awareness which will in turn positively impact your conversions, whatever they may be.
What are the different types of ‘how-to’ videos?
How-to videos actually encompass a wide range of content types, whether you are a brand creating an animated explainer video to ‘explain’ what you do, a content creator screen sharing your gameplay, or an individual offering an instructional video.
- Explainer videos
- Demonstration videos e.g. screencasts.
- Instructional videos e.g. tutorials, training courses, presentations and more.
What are the key aspects of a ‘how-to’ video?
There are several key components of an instructional or informational video to keep in mind when planning, creating and promoting your content.
When creating any content, it's important to put your audience at the forefront of your planning stages. With how-to videos in particular though, its arguably even more essential to make sure your videos are providing what your target audience want to see.
Ask yourself and your audience questions like, what will your audience’s pain points be? What will they want to know or learn? Why will they be watching your video? Create a specific persona for your target audience. This way, you can create highly focused and targeted videos and offer incredible value, rather than trying to appeal to a general audience and not really answering any of their queries sufficiently.
As well as considering your audience’s queries, aim to pinpoint their demographics like education levels, age, profession, interests, goals and concerns. This way, you can make sure you’re speaking their language in terms of terminology, visuals, duration and format.
Choosing specific topics for each video allows you to target a specific group of people, where you can grab and hold their attention, rather than trying to appeal to everyone and seeing people drop-off your video when they realise its not what they’re after.
All how-to videos need a backstory to tell throughout, such as an example to talk your audience through. Having a story allows you to keep your videos on track, avoid any important points being missed and create a rough script so your video doesn’t appear chaotic or unorganised to viewers.
How-to videos can be an effective strategy for any brand, content creator or individual to have a go at and boost their visibility online. Because of this, you don’t need to invest in expensive camera equipment to create a professional piece of content. If you’re planning a video where you’re in front of the camera, start basic using your phone’s back camera and a tripod to create a simple setup. It’s far better to start basic and work your way up than to invest in equipment before you know how best to utilise it.
When it comes to editing, how-to videos can be as high production or simplistic as you like. Think about the purpose of your video when editing to make sure you use graphics where needed, cut out any footage that doesn’t add value and make sure important steps or points are clear to viewers. Don’t forget to create branded, unique and eye-catching intros and outros for your videos too - your intro is the make or break factor in whether people click on to watch your video or scroll past.
Finally, consider where your video(s) will be shared, streamed or hosted? Whether your how-to video is solely for social channels, or it has been created for your website, make sure your video suits that purpose in terms of duration, file size, orientation, visuals and more. Where possible, you should adapt your videos to suit each platform that they will be shared on so you can boost your visibility on all channels such as YouTube, Vimeo, socials, your websites and more.
Zidivo is a user-friendly, affordable and reliable video streaming and hosting platform, which allows you to share your how-to videos on as little or as many platforms as required with minimal hassle or video expertise needed. You can create a simple embed code for your videos to share your videos on any webpage in minutes.
What’s more, we offer a free 30-day trial, so you can use the platform without spending a penny for an entire month to see how it works for you.