November 3, 2020

Video Marketing for Small Business: A Guide to Creating Attention-Grabbing Videos

Reading time about 10 min

You’ve already heard that video marketing is huge. But you probably missed this: videos embedded in your website encourage a 157% increase in organic search engine results. On top of that, 64% of consumers agree that video influences their decision to purchase a service or product.

That’s some convincing data, isn’t it? Bet you already know that video marketing for small businesses is worth investing in. It’s probably why you’re here in the first place.

So, let’s get past singing praises of a solid video marketing strategy’s ROI and give you the soup to nuts guide on creating videos that wow your audience.

You’ll learn lots including setting goals for your video marketing campaign and using a thumbnail maker to create thumb-stopping posters for your videos.

Ready? Lights, camera, action read on:

Settle on what your video marketing goal is

A successful video marketing strategy stands on a foundation of clear goals. Without a goal, your videos’ aim is likely going to be scattershot, failing to leave the impact that you want to have on your viewers.

Grammarly, for instance, aims to give their product the spotlight. To do so, they’ve taken a creative, storytelling approach (we’ll talk on this in detail below). See for yourself:

The takeaway: kick things off by being clear about what your goal is. Is it to give folks a peek into your work culture and gain their trust? Or, do you want to keep your product in the limelight? Perhaps you want to take an educational approach and create informative videos for your audience?

Select the video format you want to work on

Once you know what your goal is, you need to work on the video type you want to focus on.

Let’s say you want to educate your audience. You can create informational videos for them in two ways:

  • Create a slideshow and add an audio voice-over to explain the presentation’s content.
  • Stand in front of a whiteboard and explain things yourself much like Moz Whiteboard Friday video series.

You can take another format for educational videos too by including live videos in your video marketing strategy.

Similarly, if you plan to gain your audience’s trust, you can create some behind-the-scenes videos that give a glimpse of your work life or even share your team’s insider jokes.

You can bring social proof into the picture too by doing some interview videos with your clients to win your audience’s trust.

Want more video marketing ideas for small business? Dive into this thread to learn 33 types of video you can create:

Settle on what you want to include in your video

This one’s a common mistake that most make.

Working on your first video means you’ve tons of ideas zipping through your mind. And, you want to execute them all – they’re just so good, isn’t it?

But the truth is: too many cooks spoil the broth. Or, too many ideas spoil the video.

So you’ll need to pick and choose between your video ideas. The best way to do so is to write down all your ideas – possibly even flesh them out so you’ve a clear understanding of what each of your ideas is. As you work on this, you’ll realize which idea is thorough (and impactful) enough to be executed.

Oh and in case you’re planning to flesh out your idea or pick between them as you go, think again. Executing video ideas takes a lot more time than estimated. So, it’s wise to toy with the best idea for your video and work to refine it to its best version.

Work on your script beforehand

With your goal, format, and idea for the video clear, get to work on the script.

A video script is a progressive rundown of scenes, dialogues, and action confirming what the characters are doing in each scene, who is saying what, and when they are saying it.

In short, your video script is the entire video plan that highlights the what, when, and who of the video and its characters.

You need to lay all of this in advance. Although there’ll be lots of edits required throughout the production process, a well-planned video script gives you a direction, which minimizes the needs for reshooting.

Each scene has to be impactful.

One good way to excel at creating a memorable script is to go all in and tell stories. Yes, stories! Because our brains are wired to love a good story, a video centered around a good story is likely to be a success than one that lays out facts.

The story, however, needs to be about your viewer – not your product. Because, that’s how people will connect with you.

In Grammarly’s videos, for example, the spotlight is on the viewer and how they make small written language mistakes that can be embarrassing. Their product comes into the video as the solution that the main character (the target audience) needs.

See how the story is unfolding? Here’s a simple storytelling template to bear in mind:

  1. Introduce the hero a.k.a your audience
  2. Show your central character’s problem (the pain point your audience has)
  3. Reveal the solution – slip in your product that leaves your hero happy and content

Nail the video copy

We all tend to remember opening lines from our favorite videos. But, wait, why do you remember them? 

Because the copy is oh-so-good! Good copywriting hooks the viewer into the story in a jiffy. It tugs at their emotional chords, making them connect with your video and even, remember your message.

This is why you need to spend lots of time perfecting the video copy.

Here are some handy tips to follow as you work on your copy: 

  • Keep your sentences short. Ideally, a mix of short and medium-length sentences sounds good to the ear.
  • Use simple language so your audience doesn’t have to use their brain power to understand you. Keeping things simple makes it easy for the viewers to enjoy your video.
  • Talk emotionally. Meaning: use an emotional idea such as a good ol’ childhood memory or a feeling of joy to connect with your viewers.

Want to see all this in action? Pay attention to the language used in the video below. It’s to the point, direct, and made of short sentences. It’s simple as well – free from business speak and technical terms:

If this is the first time you’re working on a video copy, know that writing copy is never really a one-time affair. So expect lots of rewrites with a punch of frustration.


Create your video

With the script ready, the dialogues all prepped, and the plan in place, you’re all set to get your hands dirty.

Two things to take care of as you record:

  • Pay attention to the lighting as it impacts the quality of your video significantly

Natural light is the best for shooting, particularly, if you film in the morning or evening when the light is soft. Shooting in the midday comes with its con: the harsh light casts horrible shadows that won’t look good in the video.

Overhead artificial light does the same by leaving shadows on your face. So if you’re going for artificial light, make sure you position it right.

  • Pick a clean background

A messy background is distracting as it takes the focus away from your story. The solution? Use wallpaper, a solid-colored bed sheet, or backdrop paper as your background.

Whatever you finalize, be sure not to shoot your video with a reflective surface in the background such as a window. Your camera’s reflection can show in such a background –serving a video marketing fail.

Edit and finalize your video

By the end of the step above, you’ll have lots of raw material. But you won’t be done just yet. How impressive your video turns out to be depends on how well you edit it.

Cut out any unnecessary scenes that your story can do without. To do so, ask yourself: would my video survive if I remove this scene? If you find yourself nodding yes, cut out the scene.

You want your video to be crisp to be impactful, so there’s no place for fluff.

Ready to upload your video? Make sure you’ve an eye-catching video thumbnail too. Your video thumbnail is the screen that shows up before your video plays.


It’s crucial the thumbnail is enticing as it encourages an interested person to click and view your video. Generally speaking, a good thumbnail is one that makes viewers curious while also being revealing enough to reel them in.

So how do you go about creating a visually stunning thumbnail?

Use a thumbnail maker like Crello. Although you can design a thumbnail banner from scratch here, the DIY design tool makes things easy for you by offering YouTube thumbnail templates.

Pick the template that you like the most and customize it by changing the colors to your brand colors.

Don’t like the fonts or want to change the image/design object used? Alter those as well on your artboard. Before finalizing it up, preview the thumbnail to see everything is in place, then hit download and use the thumbnail for your video.

Let’s recap video marketing

Here’s hoping you can now bid farewell to all the where-do-I-start-videoing nervousness and jump straight into action. To quickly rewind: a solid video marketing strategy is all about clear goals and a winner video is about a well-thought out idea at its heart.

Once you check off goal setting and idea planning from your video marketing checklist, start  working on your video script and copy. These demand lots of work so remember to keep a brewing cup of coffee and some donuts by your side. Then unleash the videographer in you and get to shooting.

Remember, the start can seem overwhelming, but it’s all possible with a pinch of patience and some retakes. ☕ Good luck!

Written by Masooma Memon, freelance writer for B2B SaaS.

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