Friday 25 October 2013

Video Doesn't Have To Be Epic

AdWords Video Ads don't have to be a Hollywood production

I'm a big fan of video advertising - not so long ago I was making short films and music videos so that's perhaps not surprising - but I do truly believe that if a picture is worth a thousand words then video takes that principle and expands it immensely.

Whenever I suggest video as an advertising medium normally the first response I get is that it's far too expensive, time consuming and difficult to produce.  (In fact, this is normally the second response - the first is usually laughter).  However, the world of video has changed hugely in the last few years; even budget priced digital cameras can now shoot HD video in various formats and memory cards continue to drop in price making storage less of an issue.  YouTube continues to become more mainstream - it's now the second largest search engine on the Internet - and consumers are becoming more familiar with using YouTube as a resource, more than just somewhere to look for music videos.  So, it's certainly doesn't have to be expensive, but isn't it still time consuming and complex?  No, not if you don't want it to be.

Here's a handful of video spots I've pulled from random searching.  I don't know if any of these are actually being used as AdWords Ads (I suspect not) but they're all promotions and they're great examples of what's possible.

This first, from Criswell Chevrolet is a classic example of a simple, one-shot, straight to camera setup.

OK, so he stumbles on his lines a couple of times but for me that adds to the honesty and simplicity of the video.  Anyone could produce something like this with any camera able to shoot video.  I really like this.

This second is from the UK and is a little more ambitious but still a simple setup using (I think) just one camera and a handful of extras.  (Warning - you may want to keep your hand near your volume control, this, and the next video can be quite loud...)

Even though there's a lot more going on here than in the first it's nothing that couldn't be done with a simple idea, some makeup and a few friends.  This video would need editing to put together the various shots but most modern cameras include a suite of editing tools along with the product and some of them are really easy to use.  Mind you, I'm not entirely sure I'd want to visit a pie shop like that...

This final video, also from the UK, is another step up.  It may not look much more complex than the last, but there are some trickier video effects employed here and some thought to artistry.  It's still probably only a single camera though and probably shot in a single afternoon (though editing would have taken longer).  This does have a thumping sound track so watch those speakers again...

So, what's stopping you?  Brainstorm an idea, grab a camera and go.  You could be done by this time tomorrow!


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