How to Use Video to Promote Your Animal Hospital
Congratulations! You’ve established your online presence through your animal hospital website. The next step: add video.
With 83.5% of internet users accessing videos, the medium is becoming a vital marketing tool. YouTube is the world’s second largest search engine and social media website with more than 300 million user accounts.
Lights, Camera, Action
NorthStar Vets’ impressive online video library is an example of how video can be used to grow a practice and educate clients. You may not have the resources or time to create an extensive video library, but an introductory video is a “must.” Don’t miss an opportunity to tell potential clients what sets your clinic apart while they are focused on you, not on a squirming puppy in for a first visit or the fractious cat that’s been vomiting for 2 days.
If you are uncomfortable with technology or just too busy to attempt to create your own, consider having your video professionally produced. A professional will help you create your message, stage shots and lighting, add music and graphics, post your video, and work with you on search engine optimization (also known as SEO). Creating a semi customized video is another possibility. Companies such as yp.com can provide template ad options or will produce professionally shot videos using an interview or voice-over format.
Produce Your Own Video
It doesn’t take a Martin Scorsese, however, to make an engaging video for your clinic. Consider that this piano-playing cat has been viewed over 23 million times. Your video doesn’t need to go viral to promote your practice; virtually any digital camera, smartphone, or tablet purchased within the past few years is equipped with a video camera capable of taking a good quality video—and you probably have access to a cuter cat.
Producing a video involves shooting, editing, uploading, and creating special effects. Greg Jarboe, author of You Tube and Video Marketing, says that a video should not be longer than 2 to 3 minutes. Ten percent of viewers click away after 10 seconds and 53% after 1 minute.
What your video says in those minutes is up to you; you may want to star in your video and give a brief tour your facility. You might ask a happy client to give a testimonial on your care for a pet, or give instructions on brushing a dog’s teeth. Remember that your task is to appeal to potential and existing clients. Take some time to look at what other hospitals (your competitors as well as practices you admire) are doing.
Videographer Simon Fridlich, “If it's interesting and looks good, then it is.”
As far as the shooting itself, Fridlich makes these suggestions.
• When panning, move slowly or the result will be blurry. A camera
• Zooming in is the first sign of an amateur, however zooming out is
• The average attention span is 6 seconds. Try not to have an edit
• Don’t overthink the editing. Its function is to cut out the junk and keep
• Include a call to action (CTA), such as an invitation and contact
Virtually all computers come equipped with editing software. Apple’s proprietary software is iMovie and Windows software is MovieMaker. Tutorials and tips on taking video, editing, adding titles and effects, transitioning, saving and sharing are a click away. Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premiere Pro are popular programs for more hands-on editing.
Uploading Your Video
Almost all sources agree that posting on YouTube is the easiest and most effective to get your video onto the internet. From there, you can embed the YouTube link into your website, Facebook and Twitter, blog, and emails. Make sure that video title (and the file name) includes the name of your animal hospital and that your video description includes your clinic’s URL. Use YouTube’s free tool, Insight, to find out how many people are watching your video and how they found it.
Take the Leap
Incredibly, it was just 2005 when the first video was uploaded to YouTube. You might be surprised to learn that as many users today are over 50 years old as are between 12 and 17. In the digital age, video is taking the place of word of mouth to promote your services as a veterinarian. Producing a video is an easy way to grow your business and connect with new and existing clientele.
For related articles, please see the following:
Creating an Animal Hospital Website